Asia-Pacific

The Unwanted People of Myanmar: A Tropical Srebrenica in the Land of the Golden Pagodas

The massacre of Srebrenica will enter human history as one of our darkest chapters. From 11 to 22 July 1995, Bosnian Serb military forces massacred approximately 8,000 Muslim Bosniaks. It became the largest massacre committed on European soil since the end of the Second World War. In November last year, the Bosnian Serb military commander Ratko Mladic was convicted of war crimes and of genocide. This constituted relief for the victims of the Srebrenica genocide and a victory for international justice after 22 years.

How Development Excludes Adivasi Peoples

Failing to understand the Adivasi world view and imposing the dominant development paradigm on Adivasi peoples is affecting their identity and well-being. The mainstream development paradigm has aggravated discontent among Adivasi communities. The reasons are not difficult to recognise—it encourages the siege of native resources, drives competition, is surplus-driven, instils private ownership, and consequently, is affecting the cultural identity of Adivasi peoples.

Maldives Reiterates Commitment to ‘Free, Open Indo-Pacific Region’ & Democracy

Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid has reiterated his nation's commitment to a “free and open” Indo-Pacific region and to democracy. During his meeting with Secretary of State Michael Pompeo in Washington Feb 20, Shahid “underscored the importance of his government's reform efforts to (ensure) the vitality of Maldives' democracy,” the department's Deputy Spokesperson Robert Palladino said.

What, After Buenos Aires Conference on South-South Cooperation?

Initially, in its BAPA+40 follow-up, the Group of 77 should address – in its own circle and in a comprehensive manner – the challenges and opportunities facing South-South cooperation.

Dismantling Sexual Health Stigma in India

Results from a survey with young and unmarried women suggest that as low as 1% of women have received information on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) from their mothers, doctors or government campaigns. And 53% of these women feel unsure if the sexual health problems they faced were severe enough to visit a gynaecologist. Within the Indian context and patriarchal system, any conversation around young women’s sexuality is limited and stigmatised.

Bringing #MeToo to the Fashion Industry

The global #MeToo movement has put a spotlight on sexual harassment and violence in various industries including the film and music industries. Is it now time for the fashion industry to address these issues within their supply chains, one organisation says.

Back to the Future: Vietnam Now and Then

In 1989 I watched Back to the Future, Part II by Robert Zemickis, a complicated story about a youngster who from 1985 time travelled to 2015. Within the movie I spotted a poster from the imaginary 2015: US AIR Surf Vietnam. Back in 1989 I associated Vietnam with the war that lasted from 1955 to the fall of Saigon in 1975 and by different media was brought into the homes of millions, radicalizing and engaging youngsters, not the least me.

Asia’s Expanding Illicit Market: Brides

Paradoxically, the world’s most populated countries are facing a population crisis: a woman shortage. And it’s women who are paying a brutal price for it.

World’s First International Day of Education Could Not Come Soon Enough

Children´s education is in a state of emergency when it comes to protracted crises. 75 million school-aged children and young people are in desperate need of educational support, are either in danger of or are already missing out on their education in countries facing war and violence (1*).

Asia’s Landlocked

Structural economic transformation and the expansion of international trade are among the most pressing issues to be addressed, if Asia’s landlocked developing countries (LLDCs) are to overcome the development challenges related to their geographical locations.

Moving Beyond Just Building Toilets

One of the most laudable initiatives of the current government’s regime is the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) that was launched on Oct 2, 2014, with a larger vision of a clean India. The critical aspect of the mission was that—unlike many of the movements that preceded it—this had a measurable outcome (making India open defecation free) and a firm timeline (by 2019).

Moving Beyond South Korea’s Hierarchal Business Structure for Sustainable Green Growth

Despite the international rise of South Korean businesses like Samsung, Hyundai and LG as global powerhouses, the corporate culture in this East Asian nation is often known to have a vertically rigid command line.

Why We Should Care about Vulnerable Coastal Communities

According to UN statistics, approximately 40 per cent of the world’s population lives within 100 kilometers of the coast, and overall the world’s coastal population is increasing faster than the total global population. At the same time, global warming is causing sea levels to rise and increasing extreme weather incidents on coastlines.

Building Mongolia’s Green Future

The landlocked country of Mongolia sparks certain images in the mind—rolling hills with horses against a picturesque backdrop. However, the East Asian country is facing a threat that will change its landscape: climate change.

With All Things Equal Would the Ruling Party have Won the Elections in Bangladesh ?

It was the first time in the history of parliamentary elections in Bangladesh that a party won with such a huge margin. But according to local analysts familiar with Bangladesh's political climate, the victory by the ruling Awami League (AL) led coalition—which won over 96 percents of seats in parliament in the country's 11th national elections on Dec. 30—was expected in the face of the country's unprecedented development. 

Recorded Increase in Human Trafficking, Women and Girls Targeted

Human trafficking is on the rise and it is more “horrific” than ever, a United Nations agency found. In a new report examining patterns in human trafficking, the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) found that the global trend has increased steadily since 2010 around the world.

Turning Mangrove Trees into Sustainable Assets for Myanmar

In 2015, Worldview International Foundation began a mangrove restoration project, planting saplings of the trees on about 121 hectares of land in Myanmar’s Ayyerwady region.

Sprouting Mangroves Restore Hopes in Coastal Myanmar

Htay Aung is having a moment. The 63-year-old retired professor of Marine Science sits at the foot of a Buddha statue atop a hill on Shwe Thaung Yan sub township, in Myanmar's Ayyerwady region, almost in meditation. Below him, a vast thicket of mangrove glistens in the gold of a setting sun. For Aung, this stretch of mangroves—known as the Thor Heyerdahl Climate Park—is a symbol of joy, hope and all things good.

Getting Sustainable Development Back on Track in Asia & the Pacific

2019 will be a landmark year for the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Four years will have passed since world leaders adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Four years since governments recommitted themselves to eradicating extreme poverty, improving universal health care coverage, education and food security, and achieving a sweeping set of economic, social and environmental objectives. Long enough to assess our direction of travel and then refocus work where progress is falling short.

BAPA+40: An Opportunity to Reenergize South-South Cooperation

The upcoming conference on the Buenos Aires Plan of Action (BAPA+40), scheduled to take place in the Argentine capital on 20-22 March 2019, ought to be more than just another UN conference where the developing countries assemble to present their demands and seek support from the North.

Q&A: For Vietnam, the Quality of Economic Growth is Starting to Matter

Vietnam’s shift from a centrally planned to a market economy has transformed the country. And while it is now is one of the most dynamic emerging countries in Southeast Asia, this has sometimes been at the expense of the environment. But the country has begun to prioritise green growth.

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