Reproductive and Sexual Rights

Archaic Laws Stymie HIV/AIDS Work in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka has long enjoyed a low 0.1 percent HIV prevalence but, as the number of fresh infections rises steadily, experts are calling for a change in the country's archaic laws that make sex work illegal and criminalises homosexual activity. 

Vietnamese Girls Grapple With Changing Sexual Climate

Conservative attitudes toward women die hard in Vietnam, as seen in the country’s worsening sex ratio at birth (SRB). Yet, social mores have relaxed sufficiently for women to tune in to late night TV talk shows to learn about the acceptability of one-night stands.

Birth Control – Roping in Pakistan’s Men

“No scalpel, no stitch and no rest needed,” guarantees Dr. Ghulam Shabbir Sudhayao, referring to the surgical procedure called vasectomy - the least popular method of birth control around the world, including Pakistan.

Growing ‘Entertainment’ Industry Traps Nepali Girls

Almost unnoticed, Nepal’s burgeoning adult entertainment industry has been drawing young girls away from being trafficked across the border to the fleshpots of India’s big cities.

War Widows Turn to Sex Work in Sri Lanka

On May 18, some 800 women in Sri Lanka’s northern region will hold Hindu religious ceremonies for the welfare of thier husbands who disappeared or surrendered to the military as it moved in to mop up nearly three decades of armed Tamil separatism.

Badi sex workers await rehabilitation. Credit: Naresh Newar/IPS

Caste Blocks Revamp of Nepal’s Sex Workers

Social activists say that attempts to rehabilitate sex workers in this former monarchy call for special efforts to uplift the Badi, a Hindu caste that has for centuries been associated with entertainment and prostitution.

U.S. Lifestyle Is Not Up for Negotiation

Just before the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, some of the industrial nations, and specifically the United States, were lambasted for their obscenely high consumption of the world's finite resources, including food, water and energy.

Michael Herrmann Credit: Courtesy of UNFPA

Q&A: The Road to Rio Goes Through Cairo

The U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) rightly believes the road to Rio goes via Cairo - and that sustainable development and population are inextricably linked.

Sexual Abuse Keeps Girls Out of School

Sexual harassment of school-going girls is one factor that may prevent this Pacific island nation from achieving the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of eliminating gender disparity in education by 2015.

Samuel Kissi, executive coordinator of Curious Minds, a youth advocacy organisation in Ghana that works to promote a development agenda for youth. Credit: Courtesy of UNFPA

Q&A: Ghana’s Youth Are “The Future of the Nation”

With a whopping 40 percent of Ghana's population under the age of 24, the government's ability to foster their development and include them in the country's development are critical to the country's future.

Oriana Lopez Uribe, Mexican youth activist for sexual and reproductive health services and information.  Credit: Mathilde Bagneres/IPS

Q&A: How to Empower Youths to Take Charge of Their Health and Sexuality

Young people aged 15-24 make up a quarter of sexually active individuals, yet they comprise half of new sexually transmitted infections (STIs) infections each year.

U.N. Focuses on Largest Generation in History

The United Nations, which has remained focused on the world's political and military hotspots, has turned its attention to the bigger socioeconomic issues facing adolescents and youth, including poverty, sexual abuse, female genital mutilation and lack of reproductive health care.

Increasing numbers of Malian women are being raped by Tuareg rebels and armed groups that have swept across the north of Mali since January. Credit: William Lloyd-George/IPS

Armed Groups in Northern Mali Raping Women

Increasing numbers of Malian women are being raped by Tuareg rebels and armed groups that have swept across the north of Mali since the beginning of year, expelling all government troops from the region.

Bano and her cleric husband campaigning against child marriage. Credit: Zofeen Ebrahim/IPS

Fistula – Another Blight on the Child Bride

It was personal experience that turned Gul Bano and her cleric husband, Ahmed Khan, into ambassadors against early marriage and its worst corollary – obstetric fistula which allows excretory matter to flow out through the birth canal.

Demonstrator holds up photo of Agnes Torres. Credit: Felixe/CC BY-SA 2.0

Institutionalised Homophobia Encourages Hate Crimes

Agnes Torres, a transsexual psychologist and gay rights activist, left her home in the central Mexican state of Puebla on her way to a party. The next day, her body was found in a gully, naked from the waist down. Her throat had been slit.

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