Marginalised communities and civil society groups helping them are warning of a “tragedy” in Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA) as international funding for HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis (TB) programmes in the regions is cut back.
Polish farmer Slawek Dobrodziej has probably the world’s strangest triathlon training regime: he swims across the lake at the back of his house, then runs across his some 11 hectares of land to check the state of the crops, and at the end of the day bikes close to 40 kilometres to and back from a nearby town for some shopping.
Among the labyrinth of winding narrow streets just outside a major shopping centre in the Kumkapi neighbourhood of Istanbul is a rundown road, congested with shops and apartments stacked atop one another.
Authorities in Romania have been attempting to bulldoze through public opposition to push through controversial extractive projects such as gold mining at Rosia Montana and shale gas drilling at Pungesti.
Street protests are snowballing in Romania against a Canadian-led gold mining project in the Rosia Montana area in the Apuseni Mountains. More than 20,000 people joined a protest march in Bucharest on Sunday, and thousands in other Romanian cities took to the streets.
Twenty-two-year-old Dario (not his real name) came to Belgium from Brazil in 2005. Just a teenager at the time, he told IPS he “came to escape the economic, social and political conditions in Brazil and to learn another language”.
New HIV infections among Romanian drug users have grown exponentially over the past couple of years, from three to five cases annually between 2007 and 2009, to 98 just in the first half of 2012.
Pressure from the Catholic Church, social stigma, a lack of information about sexuality and reproductive health and limited access to reproductive healthcare services are putting the lives of hundreds of thousands of women across Eastern Europe at risk.
Romanian President Traian Basescu is close to being impeached after the Parliament suspended him Friday. The political crisis, however, distracts from citizens’ calls for a more responsive political class and a halt to declining standards of living.