Asia

Peace Prize recipient Kailash Satyarthi has long campaigned against child labor

by Annie Gowen and Rama Lakshmi Washington Post October 10, 2014

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Malala Yousafzai, 17, said she was honored to be the youngest person to receive the award. S

Two champions of children are given the Nobel Peace Prize

by Declan Walsh New York Times October 10, 2014

“Who is Malala?” shouted the Taliban gunman who leapt onto a crowded bus in northwestern Pakistan two years ago, then fired a bullet into the head of Malala Yousafzai, a 15-year-old schoolgirl and outspoken activist.That question has been answered many times since by Ms. Yousafzai herself, who s...

A man stands in the middle of parched paddy land in the northern Kilinochchi District. Sri Lanka’s staple rice harvest is expected to record a loss of 17 percent from around four million metric tonnes in 2013. Photo: Amantha Perera/IPS

Sri Lanka: thirsty land, hungry people

by Amantha Perera Inter Press Service October 7, 2014

Gazing out over the parched earth of Sri Lanka’s Northern Province, one might think these farmlands have not seen water in years. In fact, this is not too far from the truth.The World Food Programme (WFP) last month allocated 2.5 million dollars to assist hundreds of thousands of Sri Lankans in th...

Activists have called for the exclusion of Cambodian sugar from duty-free treatment in Europe, saying that it triggers corporate land grabs. Above, a worker harvesting sugar at a Phnom Penh Sugar plantation. Photo: Thomas Cristofoletti/New York Times

Sugar industry highlights conflicts over trade policy and land

by Keith Bradsher New York Times September 30, 2014

OMLIANG COMMUNE, Cambodia — Yim Lon nurses bitter memories of how three years ago the local authorities forced her and her family to dismantle their small home and move it to make way for a sugar plantation. ...

Bangladesh is one of poorest countries on Earth, and farming families have to make use of whatever space is available. Criss-crossed by 230 of the world’s most unstable rivers, the situation is worsened by flooding that affects millions of people each year, with at least 100,000 women, men and children forced to move as villages and livelihoods are literally washed away. And in recent years, flooding has intensified and lasts longer.

Farming on sandbars in Bangladesh

by Nazmul Chowdhury and Nirmal Chandra Bepary Farming Matters September 30, 2014

Bangladesh is one of poorest countries on Earth, and farming families have to make use of whatever space is available. Criss-crossed by 230 of the world’s most unstable rivers, the situation is worsened by flooding that affects millions of people each year, with at least 100,000 women, men and chi...

More investment needed to reduce high levels of stunting in Timor-Leste

by IRIN News May 29, 2014

New data indicate that stunting among under-five children is being reduced in Timor-Leste, but experts warn much greater investment is needed in areas such as micronutrient supplementation, salt iodization and education to bring levels down further....

Class war: Thailand’s military coup. Outnumbered by the country’s rural voters, Thailand’s once vibrantly democratic urban middle class ...

by Walden Bello Foreign Policy May 27, 2014

After declaring martial law on Tuesday, May 20, the Thai military announced a full-fledged coup two days later. The putsch followed nearly eight months of massive street protests against the ruling Pheu Thai government identified with former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. The power grab by army ...

Child trafficking rampant in poor Indian villages

by K.S. Harikrishnan Inter Press Service September 4, 2014

In a country where well over half the population lives on less than two dollars a day, it takes a lot to shock people. The sight of desperate families traveling in search of money and food, whole communities defecating in the open, old women performing back-breaking labour, all this is simply part o...

Thai military declares a coup, detains key political leaders

by Chico Harlan and Lennox Samuels Washington Post May 22, 2014

Soldiers swept into the streets of Bangkok, protest leaders were rounded up and international TV networks went dark Thursday after a military coup pitched Thailand into an unsettling new period of settings...

“Land grabs” in Laos are driving poor farmers, including ethnic minorities, off their land, away from livelihoods they know and into further poverty, activists and experts say. Photo: Martin Abbiati/IRIN

Laos “land grabs” drive subsistence farmers into deeper poverty

by Dana MacLean IRIN News May 22, 2014

“When these lands [are given] to companies and converted to industrial agriculture or other uses, it destroys the foundation of rural people’s lives, livelihoods and knowledge systems, as well as their access to food, nutrition, medicines and incomes," Shalmali Guttal, a senior analyst with Focu...