Stories written by Baher Kamal
Baher Kamal is Senior Advisor to IPS Director General on Africa & the Middle East. He is an Egyptian-born, Spanish-national, secular journalist, with over 43 years of experience. Since the late 70s, he specialised in all development related issues, as well as international politics. He also worked as Senior Information Expert for the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership at the European Commission in Brussels, and as the first-ever Information Officer and Spokesperson at UNEP’s Mediterranean Action Plan in Athens. Kamal speaks Spanish, Arabic, English and Italian. | Twitter |

This Planet Is Drying Up. And these Are the Consequences

Drought is one of the ‘most destructive’ natural disasters in terms of the loss of life, arising from impacts, such as wide-scale crop failure, wildfires and water stress.

Black ‘Fraud-Days’ and the Shocking Cost of Staying Fashionable

Please take a quick look at this short report before rushing to shop on a Black Friday, Christmas sales and all those long chains of big discounts and wholesales, most of them are fake, as often denounced by consumers organisations that report that the business usually inflates prices before launching such deals.

Crimes Against Children

An indisputable truth is that no child has ever chosen where to be born, which colour of skin to have, which ethnic community to belong to, what religion to practice and language to speak, or how safe or dangerous the context to grow up in. A child is the most innocent and defenceless human being.

Don’t Be Fooled: Climate Disasters Are Highly Lucrative

As much as wars --or even more--, climate disaster represents a great business opportunity, so don't bother those who pour their fortunes into fueling them with talks about stopping it.

In Praise of Toilets

For those who have it, a toilet is that ‘thing’ in the bathroom, next to the bidet, the hand-washing sink with hot and cold water faucets, and the bathtub.

Market Lords, Much More than a War, Behind World’s Food Crisis

While grain exports continue to regularly flow to world's markets since the July 2022 Turkey-brokered agreement between Russia and Ukraine to resume cereals and fertilisers shipments from both countries, food prices are still skyrocketing everywhere. How come?

Revealed: Rich Countries ‘Miserably’ Fall Below Their Climate Promises, Further Indebt the Poor

Just a few days ahead of the UN Climate Conference (COP27) in Egypt (6-18 November), new revelations show how far rich, industrialised countries –those who contribute most to the growing catastrophes- have been lying over their real contributions to climate finance.

Will The Lettuce Outlast All This?

No. No lettuce, no matter how British it may be, could outlast such a steady depletion of the very foundation of life.

Europe in Its Labyrinth

European politicians continue to run in all directions to find a way out of their energy crisis. One of them – Simonetta Sommaruga, the Swiss Environment Minister, asked people to ‘shower together’. Others are competing to grant the business of transporting energy from the North of Africa to the continent. All this is not new.

Rural Women Work the Hardest, Produce the Most, Eat the Least

Make no mistake. Violence against women has been perpetuated, specially when it comes to those who have already been deprived of their basic human rights, as it is the case of rural women in over two-thirds of the world.

Millions of Girls Abused in the Name of Toxic Masculinity

A common feature to religions – including the monotheistic ones – is that groups of males have self-proclaimed themselves as the source for interpreting the “Word of God,” shaping them, and spreading them among the peoples of good faith.

Africa, The Looted Continent

Africa. The birthplace of “Homo Sapiens.” The land of plenty. The origin of farming. The richest region in terms of natural resources. And human capital. Home to over 1.3 billion humans, continues to be looted.

The Fatal Attraction of the City

While cities are seen as a symbol of glamour and comfort for a number of their residents, over one billion people continue to live in overcrowded settlements with inadequate housing. And their number is rising every single day.

Go and Tell the Hungry that Their Food Is Being Thrown in the Garbage

These are facts, not guesses: about 1.3 billion tons of food is wasted and lost… every single year, the equivalent of one ton per each of the one billion hungry people, many of them are those who produced the food.

Of the Mexican Joke and the Nuclear Top Guns

A Mexican joke goes: “I kill people for money. But you are my best friend, so I will kill you for nothing.”

A World of One Billion Empty Plates

Have you eaten today – or are sure you will? The answer depends on where you were born and where you live now. If you are Spanish or live here, you likely did or will, provided that you are not one of this European country’s 900.000 inhabitants who face some sort of hunger, malnutrition or undernourishment.

Why Are Politicians Able to Read – and Understand – Some Texts and Not Others?

Day after day, the world's scientific community, based on solid investigations, elaborates dozens of studies identifying the causes of the existing emergencies facing humanity. They also prepare understandable summaries and conclusions and propose feasible solutions to the current crises and ways to prevent major future risks.

Full Gender Equality Almost 300 Years Away at Current Rate of Progress

While women in rich societies are paid around 25% less than men for equal jobs, those living in impoverished countries receive by far much lower salaries, if any at all.

Hundreds of Millions of Children Sentenced to Ignorance

More than two-thirds of 10-year-olds are unable to read and understand a simple text. This shocking finding should be enough to be alarmed about the horrifying fate of an entire generation. But there is much more.

Afghanistan: A Treasure Worth More than a Trillion Dollars

Both mainstream media, international bodies and human rights defenders continue to rightly denounce the Taliban's inhuman abuses against the Afghan people’s basic rights, in particular those of women and girls.

A Tale of the Spanish Neckties and Other Made-in-Europe Things

Shortly before the 25 August approval by the Spanish Parliament of the government’s plan to save energy, the country’s right and far-right opposition parties revived their debate about an earlier suggestion of not wearing neckties in the Spanish Congress and Senate and other official institutions.

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