Asia-Pacific

World’s Poorest Nations Weighed Down by Fastest Growing Populations

With a new report projecting a rise in population, specifically in Asia and Africa, the United Nations has warned that continued rapid population growth presents enormous challenges for sustainable development in the world’s 134 developing nations.

Poor Outlook for HIV-positive Children in Pakistan

Over 785 people have been diagnosed with HIV in Larkana, Pakistan. 82% of those individuals are children, and only half are receiving the treatment they need.

Rising Population Trends Threaten UN’s Development Goals in Asia & Africa

The world’s developing nations, currently fighting an uphill battle in their attempts to implement the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), are facing another stark demographic reality: a rise in world population by 2.0 billion people in the next 30 years: from 7.7 billion to 9.7 billion in 2050.

Asia-Pacific Region Falters on UN Development Goals

UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed told a Chatham House meeting in London last week that the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), one of the legacies of the late Secretary-General Kofi Annan, “spawned tremendous progress” in the battle against poverty worldwide.

UN Says Kyrgyz Journalist Should be Freed

On a recent morning in Bazar-Korgon, southern Kyrgyzstan, Khadicha Askarova was giving hasty instructions to her daughter about what needed to be packed.

Afghan Schools Left Unprotected by Government & International Community

Attacks on Afghan schools tripled between 2017 and 2018, according to a UNICEF report released last week: from 68 attacks to 192 in 2018. This figure seems unlikely to decrease as the Afghan government prepares to use schools once again for political activity in the upcoming election.

What Standardised Testing Doesn’t Tell Us About Learning

When we look at learning outcomes for children, we only look at standardised tests, ignoring any indigenous knowledge, language, or problem solving strategies they might have.

India’s Most Significant Innovations Have Roots in Civil Society

When we look at some of the things we take for granted in India today, there is a common thread to all of them. Every single one. They all originated from civil society.

Modi Cruises with Ease as Prime Minister of India for a Second Term

The boy who sold tea at railway platforms for a living has become the Prime Minister of world’s largest democracy for the second time. Narendra Dhamodaradas Modi, incumbent Prime Minister and leader of the BJP secured a second chance to be the Prime Minister at Indian elections which took place recently. The election was perhaps the largest held in any part of the world with 39 days of polling and involving as many as 900 million voters.

The New Face of Activism: Youth

Rather than waiting for adults to act, more young girls and boys are standing up and speaking out on the world’s pressing issues.

Asia-Pacific Region Viewed as Engine of the World Economy

Since this Commission first met in 1947, our countries have travelled a long journey. Our economies are expected to become larger than the rest of the world combined, measured by purchasing power parity. It is often said the Asia-Pacific region is the engine of the world economy.

Modernity Triumphs over Feudalism in India

“We worked for the poor and they voted us back to power,” was the explanation that Prime Minister Narendra Modi made to newly-elected legislators on Saturday, May 25, on the spectacular win scored by his nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in India’s just concluded general elections.

Does God Hate Women? A Bangladeshi Murder Case

On 6 April, nineteen-year-old Nusrat Jahan Rafi was by a fellow student brought to the roof of their school. She told Nusrat that a friend of hers was beaten up there. Unknown to Nusrat, Moni who was four months pregnant at the time, had earlier bought burqas and gloves for three of the men who were awaiting them on the roof. Another girl, Umma, was already there beckoning Nusrat to come up. However, when Nusrat entered the roof Umma threw her down and tied her legs. The burqa-dressed men surrounded the defenseless Nusrat, demanding her to withdraw accusations of sexual harassment against the schools´headmaster. When Nusrat refused to give in, one of the men held her head down, while another poured kerosene over her and set her on fire.

As Fathers Die, Kashmir’s Children Become Breadwinners

Mubeen Ahmad was nine years old when his mother sold him into service to a mechanic for the petty sum of few thousand Indian rupees. His mother had found it hard to support the family after his father, a labourer, was killed during one of the anti-India protests in Jammu and Kashmir in 2008.

Rural Education: Moving Past “Poor Solutions for Poor People”

Communities are treated as passive recipients, giving them no say in the functioning of their schools. Here's why this needs to change.

Want Social Change? Give Communities More Agency

No external force can bring about real change in society. Only the community itself can.

Massacre of the Innocents: Whereto from Here?

We have been here before. This blooded precipice is familiar, this looming abyss. What is unfamiliar, what renders the Easter Sunday massacre most vile and truly nightmarish is the total absence of any knowable rationality.

Terror and Religion

Just before nine o´clock in the morning of April 21st, Christians in Sri Lanka were in their churches peacefully celebrating Easter Sunday, while tourists were waking up in their hotel rooms. Suddenly explosions blasted three churches and three hotels. Among the ruins lay hundreds of wounded people, as well as 253 corpses of men, women and children. They had been killed and maimed because some fellow human beings believed they acted in God´s name and out of promises of an unproven, heavenly bliss if they killed themselves after obliterating people they did not know; sowing death, lifelong suffering and sorrow.

Muslim Terrorists Heading Towards a Jihadist Hell Hole

The history of terrorism in Sri Lanka reveals a clear pattern. The first to take up arms in the post-Independent era were the misguided Sinhala youth. They were educated youth desperately running in search of a quick solution to establish their classless paradise. Their violence did not take them anywhere.

Sri Lanka’s Easter Sunday Carnage: Quo Vadis?

I returned from attending a three-hour Easter Sunday mass at the Fordham University Church around midnight New York time on April 20, 2019, when my phone rang and a colleague asked me what’s going on in Sri Lanka? I said what is going on? He said there were a series of coordinated terrorist bombings with multiple fatalities and scores of injuries in my native country. For the next four and a half hours I was on the phone trying to piece together what happened, including reaching out to Sri Lanka’s Secretary of Defence Hemasiri Fernando.

Empowering Girls Through Sport

For too long, women and girls have been excluded from the playing field—literally. But now, many are paving the way in the fight against gender inequality through sports.

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