News headlines in February 2009

  1. INDIA/PAKISTAN: Trade, Travel Across Divided Kashmir Stalled

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    Trade and travel between the Indian and Pakistan parts of Kashmir, as part of confidence building measures (CBMs) between the two rival countries, appear to have become a casualty of the Nov. 26-29 terror attacks on the port city of Mumbai.

  2. MINING-LIBERIA: Steel Town Blues For Yekepa

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    Three exhausted railroad workers sip beer and talk on the back porch of a makeshift bar in Liberia's rural Nimba County, concealed by nightfall and the deafening din of motorcycles and a generator nearby.

  3. MINING-WEST AFRICA: Ending the Race to the Bottom

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    Resource extraction in West Africa has often coincided with environmental degradation and brutal conflict. Activists further charge that the agreements between governments and transnational mining companies do little to benefit local communities.

  4. BOTSWANA: Media Laws Stir Dissent Within Ruling Party

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    There is growing dissent in the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) over laws that enable the government to regulate the media. Member of parliament, Keletso Rakhudu, broke ranks with his party by publicly criticising the Media Practitioner’s Act as an 'assault' on the 'fundamentals' and 'undermining' free and independent media. He claims a number of his colleagues shared his dismay but were fearful of speaking out.

  5. SOUTH-EAST ASIA: Plans for Regional Rights Body Hit Realities

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    Plans to create a regional human rights body for the ten-nation South-east Asian bloc are threatening to expose the gulf that separates countries that seek to respect political and civil liberties and the notorious violators.

  6. POLITICS: US Allies Overlook Dutch Foe of Islam's Far Right Ties

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    The fiercely anti-Islam Dutch MP Geert Wilders has been traveling through the U.S. this week on a highly-publicised trip to meet with politicians, promote his controversial film ‘Fitna’, and raise money for his legal defence back home.

  7. ENVIRONMENT-PAKISTAN: Death of a Delta

    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    Sitting on a rickety bench outside the dispensary of Dr. Abdul Jalil at Deh Bublo, Issa Mallah, a centenarian, watches the world go by. He says he comes to this ‘city’ everyday to buy his groceries.

  8. RIGHTS-SRI LANKA: India Can Help End Civilian Killings

    Friday, February 27, 2009

    As Sri Lanka’s armed forces battle the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in their last stronghold, the island country’s influential neighbour, India, is weighing diplomatic options to goad President Mahinda Rajapakse’s government to save civilians trapped in the war zone.

  9. SOUTH-EAST ASIA: 'Bali Process' May Address Rohingya Crisis

    Friday, February 27, 2009

    South-east Asian governments are examining the possibility of using a seven-year-old regional mechanism, known as the ‘’Bali Process,’’ to find an answer to minority Muslim Rohingyas fleeing ethnic cleansing in military-ruled Burma.

  10. SRI LANKA: U.N. Urged to Intervene to Protect Civilians

    Friday, February 27, 2009

    The fast deteriorating humanitarian situation in Sri Lanka - caused by the lingering armed conflict between the government and rebel forces - demands immediate action on the part of the U.N., a leading international human rights organisation said Friday.