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OPINION: On Reproductive Rights, Progress with Concerns
Joseph Chamie is a former director of the United Nations Population Division
(Wed, 01 Oct 2014 16:29:45 +0000)

Vaca Muerta, Argentina’s New Development Frontier
Production here has skyrocketed so fast that for now the installations of the YPF oil company at the Loma Campana deposit in southwest Argentina are a jumble of interconnected shipping containers. Argentina is staking its bets on unconventional oil and gas resources, and the race to achieve energy self-sufficiency and surplus fuel for export can’t […]
(Wed, 01 Oct 2014 14:53:45 +0000)

Zimbabwe’s Family Planning Dilemma
Pregnant at 15, Samantha Yakubu* is in a fix. The 16-year-old boy she claims was responsible for her pregnancy has refused to accept her version of events, insisting that he was “not the only one who slept with her”. Now Yakubu has dropped out of school and, like many sexually active youth in Zimbabwe, faces […]
(Wed, 01 Oct 2014 01:58:02 +0000)

OPINION: A Roadmap to Living – and Thriving – in Harmony with Nature
Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias is Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity
(Tue, 30 Sep 2014 17:30:39 +0000)

Boosting Incomes and Empowering Rural Women in Cuba
Leonor Pedroso’s sewing machine has dressed children in the Cuban town of Florida for 30 years. But it was only a few months ago that the seamstress was able to become formally self-employed. “My husband, a small farmer, didn’t let me work outside the home,” Pedroso, 63, told IPS. “I could only sew things for […]
(Tue, 30 Sep 2014 15:54:29 +0000)

From Subsistence to Profit, Swazi Farmers Get a Helping Hand
Men in blue overalls are offloading vegetables from trucks while their female counterparts dress and pack the fresh produce before storing it in a cold room. When another truck drives in, the packed items are loaded and the consignment is driven away again. Such are the daily activities at Sidemane Farm, situated a few kilometres […]
(Tue, 30 Sep 2014 10:17:27 +0000)

Lack of Accountability Fuels Gender-Based Violence in India
On a bright March morning, a 17-year old tribal girl woke as usual, and went to catch fish in the village river in the Chirang district of India’s northeastern Assam state. Later that evening, villagers found her lifeless body on the riverbank. According to Taburam Pegu, the police officer investigating the case, her assailants had […]
(Tue, 30 Sep 2014 00:32:31 +0000)

U.S. to Create National Plan on Responsible Business Practices
The United States will begin developing a national action plan on responsible business practices, following on several years of related advocacy from civil society. The plan will detail how the United States will implement landmark U.N. guidelines outlining the responsibility of multinational businesses to respect human rights. While the United Nations has urged participating governments […]
(Tue, 30 Sep 2014 00:14:55 +0000)

Outgunned by Rich Polluters, Africa to Bring United Front to Climate Talks
As climate change interest groups raise their voices across Africa to call for action at the COP20 climate meeting in December and the crucial COP21 in Paris in 2015, many worry that the continent may never have fair representation at the talks. The African Group noted during a May meeting in Ethiopia that while negotiations […]
(Mon, 29 Sep 2014 17:43:34 +0000)

OPINION: Tackling the Proliferation of Patents to Avoid Limitations to Competition
In this column, Carlos Correa, the South Centre's special adviser on trade and intellectual property issues, argues that the global increase in number of patents does not indicate the strength of innovation but a weakening in the standards of what can be considered patentable. He calls for an intrinsically balanced system of protection of innovation that remains neutral in its effects on competition.
(Mon, 29 Sep 2014 15:30:33 +0000)

Blistering Drought Leaves the Poorest High and Dry
The last time there was mud on his village roads was about a year ago, says Murugesu Mohanabavan, a farmer from the village of Karachchi, situated about 300 km north of Sri Lanka’s capital, Colombo. “Since last October we have had nothing but sun, all day,” the 40-year-old father of two school-aged children told IPS. […]
(Mon, 29 Sep 2014 06:50:15 +0000)

‘Youth Exodus’ Reveals Lack of Opportunities
The small South Pacific island state of Samoa, located northeast of Fiji, attracts tourists with its beaches, natural beauty and relaxed pace of life, but similar to other small nations with constrained economies, it is experiencing an exodus of young people, who are unable to find jobs. Samoa has a net migration rate of -13.4, […]
(Mon, 29 Sep 2014 05:20:18 +0000)

Militarising the Ebola Crisis
Joeva Rock is a graduate student in the Department of Anthropology at the American University in Washington, DC, focusing on colonial legacies in West Africa.
(Sun, 28 Sep 2014 11:05:02 +0000)

Arms Trade Treaty Gains Momentum with 50th Ratification
With state support moving at an unprecedented pace, the Arms Trade Treaty will enter into force on Dec. 24, 2014, only 18 months after it was opened for signature. Eight states – Argentina, the Bahamas, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Czech Republic, Saint Lucia, Portugal, Senegal and Uruguay – ratified the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) at a […]
(Sun, 28 Sep 2014 10:17:50 +0000)

Iraq Looking for an ‘Independent’ Sunni Defense Minister
Iraqi President Fouad Massoum said this past week that the government was looking for an independent Sunni Muslim to fill the post of defense minister in an effort to improve chances of reunifying the country and defeating the group that calls itself the Islamic State (IS). Massoum, in his first extended comments to a U.S. audience since […]
(Sat, 27 Sep 2014 13:54:06 +0000)

Zero Nuclear Weapons: A Never-Ending Journey Ahead
When the United Nations commemorated its first ever “international day for the total elimination of nuclear weapons,” the lingering question in the minds of most anti-nuclear activists was: are we anywhere closer to abolishing the deadly weapons or are we moving further and further away from their complete destruction? Jackie Cabasso, executive director of the […]
(Sat, 27 Sep 2014 07:48:22 +0000)

Championing Ocean Conservation Or Paying Lip Service to the Seas?
President Barack Obama this week extended the no-fishing areas around three remote pacific islands, eliciting praise from some, and disappointment from those who fear the move did not go far enough towards helping depleted species of fish recover. Last June, Obama had proposed to end all fishing in the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ) of five […]
(Sat, 27 Sep 2014 06:32:18 +0000)

Cuba’s Sugar Industry to Use Bagasse for Bioenergy
Cuba’s sugar industry hopes to become the main source of clean energy in the country as part of a programme to develop renewable sources aimed at reducing dependence on imported fossil fuels and protecting the environment. The project forms part of the plans for upgrading and modernising sugar mills that have been opened up to […]
(Fri, 26 Sep 2014 15:08:45 +0000)

Living on a Ballpoint Pen in Kabul
Seventy-year-old Mohamad Arif still earns a living in the streets of Kabul. He prepares all kind of documents for those who cannot read or write – in other words, the majority of people in this country of 30.5 million people. “I was a Colonel of the Afghan Air Force but I can barely survive with […]
(Fri, 26 Sep 2014 11:14:28 +0000)

OPINION: How Obama Should Counter ISIS
Emile Nakhleh is a Research Professor at the University of New Mexico, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and author of ‘A Necessary Engagement: Reinventing America’s Relations with the Muslim World’.
(Fri, 26 Sep 2014 10:52:48 +0000)