Headlines

Reimagining Ageing: Older Persons as Agents of Development

Older persons are highly visible across Asia and the Pacific: they work in agricultural fields producing our food supplies, peddle their wares as street vendors, drive tuk-tuks and buses, exercise in our parks, lead some of the region’s most successful companies and form an integral part of our families.

International Criminal Court at 20: Renewing the Promise of Justice for the Gravest Crimes

On 1 July 2022, the International Criminal Court (ICC) turns 20. The entry into force on 1 July 2002 of the ICC’s founding treaty, the Rome Statute, officially created the Court and marked the start of its work towards building a more just world.

UN’s “No-Fly List” on Sexual Harassment Falls Short, Complains Rights Group

The United Nations has continued to crackdown on sexual harassment system-wide since 2017 while its “whistle blower protection policy” has provided “protective status” for nearly 68 UN staffers who reported wrong doing. But Equality Now, an international human rights organization, is accusing the UN of faltering on its longstanding “zero-tolerance” policy.

Digital Training in Pakistani Villages Yields Bumper Participation

Farmer Abdul Waheed, 32, has been using his cell phone for everything but work for the past seven years. But after a recent training session he has installed six farming apps and says the move has paid off.

Bangladesh Flood Victims Cry for Relief

After losing everything in the recent devastating flood that swept the northeastern districts in Bangladesh, pregnant mother Joynaba Akter, her three children and her husband took refuge in a shelter centre at Gowainghat in Sylhet.

NATO Summit Set to Further Militarise Europe, Expand in Africa?

The three-day North Atlantic Treaty Organisation-NATO Summit in Madrid (28,29, 30 June 2022) is expected to agree to considerably increase Europe’s military power, heavily weaponise Russia’s border, and further expand its presence in Africa, according to a diplomatic source.

Sharing Minds Can Change the World

Parasite, a Korean black comedy film directed by Bong Joon-ho, shows the story of a poor family who infiltrated the household of an affluent family by getting employment by pretending to be highly qualified persons.

Jobs Will Not Empower Young Women Until We Address Sexual Harassment

What does empowerment for young women look like? For many, the answer would include jobs. But the belief that jobs bring empowerment through income, greater autonomy, and bargaining power within the family fail to recognise that these potential gains for young women are undermined by widespread sexual harassment.

Climate Hypocrisy Ensures Global Warming

Rich country governments claim the high moral ground on climate action. But many deny their far greater responsibility for both historic and contemporary greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, once acknowledged by the Kyoto Protocol. Climate injustice Worse, responsibility has not been matched by commensurate efforts, especially by the largest rich economies in the G7, which dominates the G20. Its continued control of international economic resources and policymaking blocks progress on climate justice.

Roe Overturned: What You Need to Know about the US Supreme Court Abortion Decision

After half a century, Americans’ constitutional right to get an abortion has been overturned by the Supreme Court. The ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization – handed down on June 24, 2022 – has far-reaching consequences. The Conversation asked Nicole Huberfeld and Linda C. McClain, health law and constitutional law experts at Boston University, to explain what just happened, and what happens next.

Global Biodiversity Agenda: Nairobi Just Added More to Montreal’s Plate

As the last working group meeting of the Post 2020 Global Biodiversity Agenda concluded here on Sunday, the delegates’ job at COP15 Montreal just got tougher as delegates couldn’t finalize the text of the agenda. Texts involving finance, cost and benefit-sharing, and digital sequencing – described by many as ‘most contentious parts of the draft agenda barely made any progress as negotiators failed to reach any consensus.

Five Takeaways from the 2022 State of Civil Society Report

2022 is halfway through. It’s clear this is a year of immense disruption, mayhem and contestation. Horrendous war crimes are taking place in Ukraine. The conflict is spurring soaring living costs, impacting the most vulnerable people, already faced with the adverse impacts of the pandemic and extreme weather caused by climate change.

Urgent Need to Enact Proposed Law to Secure Sexual and Reproductive Health in East Africa Countries

The Ministry of Health in Kenya recently reported that about 700 teenage girls got pregnant daily over a two-month period, in this year alone. What is more is that during this period, 98 adolescent girls between the ages of 10 and 19 contracted HIV every week in this time period

Healthy Planet Needs ‘Ocean Action’ from Asian and Pacific Countries

As the Second Global Ocean Conference opens today in Lisbon, governments in Asia and the Pacific must seize the opportunity to enhance cooperation and solidarity to address a host of challenges that endanger what is a lifeline for millions of people in the region.

‘When it Comes to Gender Equality, Our Best is Not Good Enough’: says Dr. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted lives all over the world. According to this report, gender is emerging as a significant factor in the social, economic and health effects of Covid-19. Women have been hit much harder socially and economically than men. The greatest and most persistent gender gap was seen in employment and uncompensated labour, with 26% of women reporting loss of work compared with 20% of men globally in September 2021.

Digital Tools Complement Organic Farming at Islamic School in Indonesia

It appears to be business as usual at the Al-Ittifaq pesantren, the local term for an Islamic boarding school. Yadi and Rezki, both 18, join the subuh, pre-dawn prayer, in the local mosque. After a session of religious meditation, along with other santris, or students, the two study science in a pre-dawn class for about 30 minutes.

Centering Gender in the Next Biodiversity Agenda: A Long Way to Montreal

“I often hear, ‘What do women have to do with biodiversity?' And I want to ask them back, 'What do men have to do (with biodiversity)?’,” says Mrinalini Rai, a prominent gender equality rights advocate at the 4th Meeting of the Open-Ended Working Group of the UN Biodiversity Convention, which started this week in Nairobi.

Nuclear-Armed Powers Squander $156.000 Every Minute on Their ‘MAD’ Policy

They call it MAD: Mutual Assured Destruction. It is about the nuclear-armed powers' doctrine of military strategy and national security policy. And they spent on their MAD policy more than 156.000 US dollars, every single minute, in just one year–2021.

International Relief Effort After Deadly Afghan Earthquake Displaces Thousands

Survivors of the deadly earthquake that hit Afghanistan’s Paktika and Khost provinces told of their losses while being treated in hospitals in neighboring Pakistan after a 5.9-magnitude quake killed at least 1000 and displaced thousands more in the early hours of June 22, 2022.

Digital Technology Buoys Indonesian Catfish Farmers

For years Indramayu has been known as one of Indonesia’s rice centres. The district in West Java is the country’s number one rice producer, generating 1.3 million tonnes of husked rice in 2021, according to Indonesia’s Centre of Statistics (BPS). The country’s total rice production was 54 million tonnes.

Across Asia and the Pacific, Digitalization of Rural Communities is Leading the Way to a Better Future – But the Goal is to Leave No One Behind

It wasn’t that long ago that Internet connectivity faded the moment one left a populated area like a city or big town – “no service” was the take-away message back then. But thanks to 3G, 4G and now 5G mobile technology, coupled with widespread installation of cellular towers in rural areas region-wide, that little message shows up much less frequently.

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