Asia-Pacific

Women on the Edge of Land and Life

November is the cruelest month for landless families in the Indian Sundarbans, the largest single block of tidal mangrove forest in the world lying primarily in the eastern Indian state of West Bengal.

Filipino Farmers Protest Government Research on Genetically Modified Rice

Jon Sarmiento, a farmer in the Cavite province in southern Manila, plants a variety of fruits and vegetables, but his main crop, rice, is under threat. He claims that approval by the Philippine government of the genetically modified ‘golden rice’ that is fortified with beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A, could ruin his livelihood.

Pakistan’s Paraplegics Learning to Stand on their Own Feet

When a stray bullet fired by Taliban militants became lodged in her spine last August, 22-year-old Shakira Bibi gave up all hopes of ever leading a normal life.

Will Myanmar’s ‘Triple Transition’ Help Eradicate Crushing Poverty?

Myanmar is never out of the news for long. This has been the case since a popular uprising challenged military rule in 1988. For over two decades, the country was featured in mainstream media primarily as one unable to cope with its own internal contradictions, a nation crippled by military rule.

Will Myanmar’s ‘Triple Transition’ Help Eradicate Crushing Poverty?

Myanmar is never out of the news for long. This has been the case since a popular uprising challenged military rule in 1988. For over two decades, the country was featured in mainstream media primarily as one unable to cope with its own internal contradictions, a nation crippled by violence.

Pakistani Sikhs Back in the ‘Dark Ages’ of Religious Persecution

Balwan Singh, an 84-year-old shopkeeper living in Pakistan’s northern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, is well past retirement age, but any illusions he may have had about living out his golden years in peace and security have long since been dashed.

Can China’s Silk Road Vision Coexist with a Eurasian Union?

There is a good chance that economic jockeying between China and Russia in Central Asia will intensify in the coming months. For Russia, Chinese economic expansion could put a crimp in President Vladimir Putin’s grand plan for the Eurasian Economic Union.

Depression Casts Cloak of Infertility Over Kashmir Valley

It was almost midnight when Mushtaq Margoob woke up to the incessant ringing of his phone. It was his patient, a young woman whom Margoob, a renowned Kashmiri psychiatrist and head of the department of psychiatry at the only psychiatric hospital in Kashmir, had been treating for depression for many years.

Building Disaster Resilience Amidst Rampant Poverty

Of the thousands of landslide-prone villages he has visited and worked with, R M S Bandara, a high-ranking official from Sri Lanka’s National Building Resources Organisation (NBRO), says only one has made him sit up and take note.

Women’s Safety Schemes Go Mobile in India

It was 9:45 pm when 23-year-old Manira Chaudhury, a final-year Master’s student in New Delhi, who was traveling home in a rickshaw, pressed a button on her smart phone that sent out emergency alerts to two of her closest friends.

How a Small Tribe Turned Tragedy into Opportunity

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.

Fishing for Peace in Korea

Environmental problems, by their nature, don’t respect borders. Air and sea pollution often affect countries that had nothing to do with their production. Many extreme weather events, like typhoons, strike more than one country. Climate change affects everyone.

As TPP Trade Talks Miss Third Deadline, Opponents Claim Momentum

For the third year in a row, government negotiators for 12 Pacific Rim countries have missed an internal deadline to reach agreement on a controversial U.S.-led trade deal.

Filipinos Take to the Streets One Year After Typhoon Haiyan

People covered their bodies with mud to protest against government ineptitude and abandonment; others lighted paper lanterns and candles and released white doves and balloons to remember the dead, offer thanks and pray for more strength to move on; while many trooped to a vast grave site with white crosses to lay flowers for those who died, and to cry one more time.

Choosing Between Death and Death in Pakistan

Residents of the Khyber Agency, one of seven administrative districts that comprise northern Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), are in the worst possible predicament: either course of action they choose now, they say, could result in death.

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