Asia-Pacific

School Dropout Rate Soars for Afghan Refugees

“Our children quitting school is the greatest pain we have suffered during our troublesome lives here,” says Multan Shah, a vegetable-seller in a shantytown of Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, one of Pakistan's four provinces.

Reinstatement of Pakistan’s Death Penalty a Cynical Reaction, Says Amnesty

As Pakistan lifts its moratorium on executions in response to this week’s attack on a school in  Peshawar, human rights groups say that resuming the death penalty will not combat terrorism in Pakistan.

Seeking Closure, Bougainville Confronts Ghosts of Civil War

Thirteen years after the peace agreement which ended a decade-long civil war in Bougainville, an autonomous island region of 300,000 people located east of the Papua New Guinean (PNG) mainland in the southwest Pacific Islands, trauma and grief continue to affect families and communities where the fate of the many missing remains unresolved.

‘Cyclone College’ Raises Hopes, Dreams of India’s Vulnerable Fisherfolk

Ten years have now passed, but Raghu Raja, a 27-year-old fisherman from the coastal village of Nemmeli in southern India’s Kanchipuram district, still clearly remembers the day he escaped the tsunami.

Uzbekistan Gears Up to Vote for Rubberstamp Parliament

Uzbekistan's parliamentary elections on Dec. 21 will offer voters a choice, but no hope for change.

Aboriginal Knowledge Could Unlock Climate Solutions

As a child growing up in Far North Queensland, William Clark Enoch would know the crabs were on the bite when certain trees blossomed, but now, at age 51, he is noticing visible changes in his environment such as frequent storms, soil erosion, salinity in fresh water and ocean acidification.

UNIDO Development Initiative Gains Momentum in ACP Nations

The inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID) initiative of the U.N. Industrial Development Organisation to promote industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalisation and environmental sustainability is gaining momentum in the countries of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group. 

CORRECTION/Filipino Children Make Gains on Paper, But Reality Lags Behind

Mae Baez sees some of the darkest sides of communications technology.

What Future for the ACP-EU Partnership Post-2015?

“There are still prospects for a meaningful ACP-EU partnership, capable of contributing and responding concretely and effectively to the objectives of promoting and attaining peace, security, poverty eradication and sustainable development,” according to the top official of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP).

Georgia Confronts Domestic Violence

The issue of domestic violence is moving to the forefront of public attention in Georgia after a series of killings of women at the hands of their respective spouses or ex-spouses made headlines in local mass media.

Mangrove Conservation Paves the Way to a Sustainable Future

When the Asian tsunami washed over several Indian Ocean Rim countries on Boxing Day 2004, it left a trail of destruction in its wake, including a death toll that touched 230,000.

Leading Investigative Reporter Detained in Azerbaijan

Authorities in Azerbaijan took steps Dec. 5 to muzzle Khadija Ismayilova, an investigative journalist who is the country’s most vocal government critic. A Baku court granted a motion to hold Ismayilova in jail pending a criminal trial, while her Facebook page mysteriously went dark.

Civil Society Support for Marshall Islands Against Nuclear Weapons

Ahead of the Dec. 8-9 Vienna Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons, activists from all over the world came together in the Austrian capital to participate in a civil society forum organised by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) on Dec. 6 and 7.

Indonesia’s New President Promises to Put Peat Before Palm Oil

Last week, Indonesia's new president, Joko Widodo, ordered the country’s Ministry of Environment and Forestry to review the licenses of all companies that have converted peatlands to oil palm plantations.

Dushanbe Considering Bill to Restrict NGO Funding

It looks like Tajikistan is following a regional trend by drafting legislation that may sharply restrict the activities of foreign-funded non-governmental organisations. Activists say the bill threatens to hinder the operations of hundreds of organisations working on everything from human rights to public health.

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