Asia

An aerial shot of a palm oil plantation on Sumatra Island. Photo: Jefri Aries/IRIN

Indonesia: Demand for palm oil fuels land-grabbing

by IRIN July 6, 2010

"Each year, more people are fighting palm oil companies to hold on to their land," said Gefri Saragih, campaign department head of Sawit Watch, a local NGO monitoring palm oil cultivation....

Maj. Gen. Khattiya Sawatdiphol, who had allied himself with protesters, was shot in the head on Thursday in Bangkok. Photo: Steve Pace/Reuters More Photos

Thai general linked to protests is shot

by Thomas Fuller and Seth Mydans New York Times May 13, 2010

BANGKOK — A renegade major general who allied himself with the protesters who have paralyzed Bangkok for weeks was shot in the head and critically wounded here on Thursday as the military began sealing off a barricaded encampment of antigovernment protesters....

An estimated six million Indonesian woman – some 90 percent of all Indonesian migrant laborers – are now working overseas. Most go to the Middle East,  with the rest are in Asia Pacific. Many Indonesian villages are left with a shortage of women with many men assuming the role of a single parent for years at a time. Photo: David Swanson/IRIN

Families struggle as 6 million Indonesian women work abroad

by IRIN News May 7, 2010

The number of women leaving the archipelago, legally or illegally, has been steadily climbing over the past decade, according to the National Authority for the Placement and Protection of Indonesian Overseas Workers. ...

lyas Masih with one of his seven daughters. Feeding so many is not easy. “I struggle even to buy a single kilo of `atta’ [wheat flour], which costs Rs 30 [36 US cents], and even that produces just about half a `roti’ [flat bread] for each of us,” he said. For Ilyas’s family, securing each meal – eaten on the floor around a kerosene oil stove on which his wife, Nasim, cooks – is an ordeal. “Especially at night, it is painful to hear the children beg for more food. Sometimes they snatch food from each other,” Ilyas said. Photo: Kamila Hyat/IRIN

Pakistan: A family of 9, living on $1.20 a day

by IRIN News May 7, 2010

In their two-room tin-roof house in one of the many shanty towns that dot Lahore, in eastern Pakistan, Ilyas and Nasim Masih and their seven daughters, aged three to 15, eke out an existence dependent on Ilyas’s meagre income as a day labourer. ...

Once a popular Muslim street in Jaffna, Moor Street sits in disrepair today. Sri Lankan Muslims displaced by the Tamil rebels during the country’s decades-long civil war are slowly returning home, but the challenge of reconciling with their Tamil neighbors and the past, remains.  Photo: Contributor/IRIN

Sri Lanka: Muslims and Tamils deal with the past

by IRIN News April 29, 2010

Sri Lankan Muslims displaced during the country’s decades-long civil war are slowly returning home, but the challenge of reconciling with their Tamil neighbours, and their past, remains....

Pakistan government failed to do enough to protect former president Benazir Bhutto and failed to properly investigate her murder, UN commission fin...

by Al Jazeera April 16, 2010

"These officials, in part fearing intelligence agencies' involvement, were unsure of how vigorously they ought to pursue actions, which they knew, as professionals, they should have taken," it added....

Transferring drinking water from one pail to the next. People must pay the equivalent of up to $1 daily to buy clean water for drinking and cooking from vendors transporting water in jugs.Photo: Jefri Aries/IRIN

People in Jakarta’s slums must pay nearly $1 per day for fresh water while living on less than $2 per day, and bath and wash clothes in murky gr...

by IRIN News April 16, 2010

In Jakarta's northern Muara Angke coastal area, a lack of access to piped water has forced people to bathe and wash clothes using murky grey water from fish ponds....

Campaign to eradicate polio makes real progress in countries most affected, Nigeria and India

by Celia W. Dugger New York Times April 6, 2010

JOHANNESBURG — A decade after the world’s original deadline for eradicating polio, the most tenacious bastions of the crippling virus — Nigeria and India — have recently shown remarkable progress in halting its spread, giving even some of the antipolio campaign’s severest doubters hope tha...

Dams along Mekong River borders not thought by farmers or fishermen to ease drought

by Thomas Fuller New York Times April 1, 2010

BANGKOK — In southern China, the worst drought in at least 50 years has dried up farmers’ fields and left tens of millions of people short of water....

In Timor-Leste, government and population cope between harvests

by IRIN News April 1, 2010

The World Food Programme (WFP) says about one-third of Timor-Leste’s 1.1 million inhabitants regularly experience food shortages, notably towards the end of the two lean seasons between harvests, October-November and February-March. ...

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