Asia-Pacific

Advisors Propose New System To Regulate China’s Overseas Investments

A government-backed coalition of international advisors to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has recommended that China apply more stringent environmental controls over its overseas investments. If adopted, this would be a major departure from China’s usual approach of deferring to host country rules, many of them inadequate, for regulating its overseas investments.

Q&A: China Accused of Intimidating, Detaining Citizens Critical of COVID-19 Linked Abuses

China must end its campaign against individuals seeking redress for COVID-19 linked abuses and the human rights lawyers and activists who help them, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has said as reports ranging from allegedly trapping them inside their homes, to chaining alleged lock-down violators to metal posts emerge.

Culture of Misogyny and Toxic Masculinity Driving Sexual Violence in Bangladesh

In October 2020, Bangladeshi citizens took to the streets, outraged by the reports of gruesome gang rapes and sexual violence that were taking place in the country. According to Ain O Salish Kendra, a Bangladeshi human rights organization, 975 women were raped in the first nine months of 2020, 43 women were killed after being raped and 204 women were attempted to be raped by men in Bangladesh.

Tales of the 21st Century: Rohingyas Without home

Mohammad Rakibul Hasan is a Bangladeshi documentary photographer, photojournalist, filmmaker and visual artist who has been visiting the camps in Cox’s Bazaar to document the Rohingya refugee crisis.

Shifting Conversations in Multifaceted Policymaking

As the people of Kiribati, Samoa and Tonga gear up as the first nations to welcome 2021, communities around the Asia-Pacific region and beyond look forward to bidding farewell to the most tumultuous year in recent decades.

Mining giant Rio Tinto Face Environmental, Human Rights Complaint in Papua New Guinea

Local communities in the vicinity of the abandoned Panguna copper mine, have taken decisive action to hold the global mining multinational, Rio Tinto, accountable for alleged environmental and human rights violations during the mine’s operations between 1972 and 1989.

Wanted: Affirmative Legislation in the Job Market in Nepal

In Nepal, a dominating culture traditionally representing the elites, the so-called higher castes of the society according to the Hindu culture, still endures and prevails.

Empowering Women through Wisdom

During the COVID 19 lockdown in Sri Lanka, seven women from diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds came together to deliver Wisdom and their message that women must be empowered and their voices for national unity must be heard through this movement.

Islamic Feminists Speak on Fight to Reclaim Rights

The court victory to allow women into the inner sanctum of a Sufi shrine in Mumbai was a significant victory for a secular rights-based movement led by Muslim women. However, there is a fear the political climate in India regarding Muslims, could put the women’s rights agenda on the back foot.

The Impact of COVID-19 on Child Marriage and Other Gender-Based Violence

I recently visited rural areas of Bangladesh amid the COVID-19 pandemic and returned to Dhaka with a new understanding of the impact that COVID-19 is having on child marriage, a harmful practice that is a global challenge. The fundamental shift that I saw was that child marriage, which has typically been encouraged by struggling parents, is now being encouraged by struggling girls. This worrisome trend underscores a new burden of the pandemic on the poor.

A Pakistani Farmer is Using Technology to Stop Agricultural Exploitation

Anas Shaikh is a Pakistani farmer on a mission to bring solutions to the many difficulties small and medium-scale farmer’s face in making a sustainable living.

Afghanistan’s Historic Year: Peace Talks, Security Transition but Higher Levels of Violence

While Afghanistan ends a historic year, filled with the hope for peace as the government and Taliban sat down for almost three months of consecutive peace talks for the first time in 19 years, it was also a year filled with violence with provisional statistics by the United Nations showing casualties for this year being higher than 2019.

Kashmir’s New Land Laws Could Impact Biodiversity

Walking in the middle of fields of delicately-scented purple saffron crocus flowers, 36-year-old Mubeen Yasin, a saffron farmer from the southern region of Indian Kashmir, is not optimistic that in a few years time the scenery will remain as beautiful as it is today.

Sid Chatterjee Epitomizes the New Leadership Model of UN Resident Coordinators Worldwide

Siddharth Chatterjee, who has served with the United Nations for over 20 years, has been appointed as the new Resident Coordinator in China, the world’s second largest economy after the United States.

India: National Education Policy 2020 Could Transform Early Childhood Education If Implemented Effectively

It is after almost 34 years that the central government approved the new National Education Policy 2020 on July 29, 2020. This document contains comments on the entire education system and its various recommendations are being heavily debated.

Can Conservation and Development Be Balanced in Sri Lanka?

The Sri Lankan government recently cancelled three circulars that protected 700,000 hectares of forests, labelled Other State Forests (OSFs), which are not classified as protected areas but account for five percent of the island nation’s remaining 16.5 percent of forest cover.

R & D Expenditure: How to Raise It and Why

Economic growth is the time-tested method of raising living standards and, if not accompanied by large increases in inequality, lowering poverty. Since World War II, economic growth has lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty, including in South Asia.

Celebrating Vanuatu’s Path to Sustainable Development

The Pacific Island Developing State of Vanuatu has emerged as one of the region’s great success stories. Vanuatu has joined the ranks of Samoa and the Maldives as one of only six countries to graduate from being a least developed country, since the category was introduced by the United Nations in 1971.

Can Agricultural Apps Bring Indonesia’s Farmers Back to the Fields?

When his friends prodded him to use an agricultural app in July, rice farmer Mustafa reluctantly downloaded RiTx Bertani into his smart phone. Four months later, he feels happy to have given the technology a try.

Climate Action for Human Rights

Climate change and human rights are two key issues in international development and their interaction is increasingly in need of focus at national, regional and international levels. In the Pacific, where the 22 Pacific Island countries and territories are on the front line of both climate ambition and the ongoing effects of the climate crisis, climate change is recognised as the region’s single greatest threat. Urgent climate action is consistently called upon to protect the interests of youth and the most vulnerable populations, together with preserving the ‘shared needs and interests, potential and survival of our Blue Pacific and this great Blue Planet’.

What Indonesia’s Local Elections Mean for National Politics

In just over a day, on 9 December, Indonesia holds 270 simultaneous local elections for executive office. This involves nine of the republic’s 34 governors, 224 of 416 bupati (district chiefs) and 37 of 98 mayors. The polling was initially scheduled for 23 September but the independent KPU (General Elections Commission) put the date back to 9 December due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Next Page »