Special Report

Curbing the Illegal Wildlife Trade Crucial to Preserving Biodiversity

For over five years, 33-year-old Maheshwar Basumatary, a member of the indigenous Bodo community, made a living by killing wild animals in the protected forests of the Manas National Park, a tiger reserve, elephant sanctuary and UNESCO World Heritage Site that lies on the India-Bhutan border.

On Sri Lanka’s Tea Estates, Maternal Health Leaves a Lot to Be Desired

A mud path winds its up way uphill, offering views on either side of row after row of dense bushes and eventually giving way to a cluster of humble homes, surrounded by ragged, playful children.

Can Land Rights and Education Save an Ancient Indian Tribe?

Scattered across 31 remote hilltop villages on a mountain range that towers 1,500 to 4,000 feet above sea level, in the Malkangiri district of India’s eastern Odisha state, the Upper Bonda people are considered one of this country’s most ancient tribes, having barely altered their lifestyle in over a thousand years.

What’s More Important, the War on AIDS or Just War?

They say there is a war on and its target is the deadly human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).   

In Pakistan, Militants Wear Aid Workers’ Clothing

Muhammad Tufail, a 22-year-old resident of Mardan, one of 26 districts that comprise Pakistan’s northern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province, has recently become a volunteer aid worker.

From Tigers to Barbers: Tales of Sri Lanka’s Ex-Combatants

People are willing to wait a long time for a few minutes in the hands of Aloysius Patrickeil, a 32-year-old barber who is part-owner of a small shop close to the northern town of Kilinochchi, 320 km from Sri Lanka’s capital, Colombo.

Violence Casts Shadow Over ‘Himalayan Viagra’ Harvest in Nepal

Intense competition during harvest season for a fungus dubbed ‘Himalayan Viagra’ – coveted for its legendary aphrodisiac qualities – has sparked violence in Nepal’s remote western mountains, causing concern among security officials here about the safety of more than 100,000 harvesters.

Zimbabwe’s Unfolding Humanitarian Disaster – We Visit the 18,000 People Forcibly Relocated to Ruling Party Farm

As the villagers sit around the flickering fire on a pitch-black night lit only by the blurry moon, they speak, recounting how it all began.They take turns, sometimes talking over each other to have their own experiences heard. When the old man speaks, everyone listens. “It was my first time riding a helicopter,” John Moyo* remembers.

India’s ‘Temple Slaves’ Struggle to Break Free

At 32, Nalluri Poshani looks like an old woman. Squatting on the floor amidst piles of tobacco and tree leaves that she expertly transforms into ‘beedis’, a local cigarette, she tells IPS, “I feel dizzy. The tobacco gives me headaches and nausea.”

Rural Costa Rican Women Plant Trees to Fight Climate Change

Olga Vargas, a breast cancer survivor, is back in the countryside, working in a forestry programme in the north of Costa Rica aimed at empowering women while at the same time mitigating the effects of climate change.

A Honduran Paradise that Doesn’t Want to Anger the Sea Again

At the mouth of the Aguán river on the Caribbean coast of Honduras, a Garífuna community living in a natural paradise that was devastated 15 years ago by Hurricane Mitch has set an example of adaptation to climate change.

Brazilian Innovation for Under-financed Mozambican Agriculture

Some of the technological excellence that revolutionised Brazil’s tropical agriculture is reaching small producers in Mozambique. But it is not enough to compensate for the underfinancing of the sector.

Rich Railroad Brings Few Opportunities in Brazil

The Carajás railroad, regarded as the most efficient in Brazil, runs a loss-making passenger service for the benefit of the population. But this does little to make amends for its original sin: it was created to export minerals and crosses an area of chronic poverty.

North Korea Doing Fine Without the South

If the North Korea of the 1990s was seen as a starving nation that produced an exodus of hungry people, then the picture should be even gloomier now – six years after it stopped receiving South Korea’s generous aid. But it’s not. The nation of 24 million people, widely said to be the most secretive in the world and a nuclear threat, appears to have weathered the years well.

Where Would You Like Your New Glacier?

The idea sounds like harebrained science-fiction, but the accelerated retreat of glaciers due to global warming and the effects of mining is leading scientists to seek to restore or recreate these valuable reservoirs of fresh water.

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