What’s New December 1999

This page lists recent changes made to this site. The "Find Out More" links will take you to the changes. If this jumps to the middle of a page, you can easily scroll up to understand the context of the new information a bit further.

Date of Update

Description


December 28, 1999


  1. Britain promised a 100 per cent debt cancellation. However, there is much red tape possibly in the way too. While a positive move by the British government, there are still some strict conditions tied to the relief. Some are positive, such as getting assurance from nations that the saved money would be used for poverty eradication, while others are negative, such as the countries who possibly benefit still have to prove their ability to meet the existing stringent economic conditions that are laid down by the IMF. These have led to the poverty in the first place. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Causes of Poverty / Fair Trade


  2. A new section regarding conflicts in Africa has been added. This one is about Nigeria, its oil and the conflict that has resulted. Large transnational oil corporations have been constantly accused for funding and hiring Nigerian military to crackdown on local protestors. These people have been protesting for years at the environmental destruction and lack of economic rights they have suffered due to the practices of these oil corporations. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Geopolitics / Human Rights / Trade Related Issues


  3. There could be possible changes to the notorious military School of the Americas next year. It has been announced that as well as a name change, there could be more civilian transparency and participation. However, skeptics are still concerned that the training of human rights violators will continue... Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Arms Trade / Human Rights / Trade Related Issues


  4. According to Amnesty International, there is still murder, abductions, violent attacks etc going on in Kosovo. This is by Ethnic Albanians against Serbs and Roma Gypsies still in Kosovo. According to Amnesty International, this is being perpetrated at a rate almost as high as in June when the initial peace-keeping forces came in. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): The Kosovo Crisis / Geopolitics


  5. The 1990s have been the warmest decade in recorded history. According to the World Meteorological Organization, the 20th century has been the warmest in the last 1000 years. Many of the warmest years on record have been in the 1990s, such as in 1998 and 1997, which have been the warmest on record. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Environmental Issues


  6. Some Genetically Modified crops still seem to require pesticide use. This would suggest that there is still a long way to go before such crops and food would be fulfilling the promises they bring and be safe for consumption. Currently it seems like a lot of the drive behind genetically engineered food is the potentially immense profits. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Genetically Engineered Food / Environmental Issues



December 20, 1999


  1. New updates on the events in Seattle at the WTO meeting have been added. The updates include more links to interviews and analysis of events during the meeting in Seattle. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty


  2. Russian onslaught in Chechnya could result in isolation from other Western nations. Such was the threat from the G8 and the European Union, if Moscow do not stop their campaign. The conflict has been brutal with many civilian casualties. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Geopolitics / Human Rights / Trade Related Issues


  3. Britain promises a 100 per cent debt cancellation. Following a similar announcement from the US, this is very positive news although it may still take a year or so before reductions are actually made. Debt is perhaps the worst cause of poverty and hunger due to the conditionality of loans that are made. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Causes of Poverty / Fair Trade


  4. The income gaps between richest and poorest people around the world is increasing. According to a new report from UNICEF, in 1960 the income gap between the richest one-fifth of the world population and the poorest was 30-1. In 1997 it was 74-1. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Causes of Poverty / Fair Trade


  5. Governments are failing to uphold the right of Women. According to Amnesty International, despite many governments signing the Womens Convention, not enough is being done to follow it through. Also, there are still many governments, including the US, who have not ratified the convention. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Human Rights


  6. The Sierra Leone peace agreement is a fragile one. There are still problems with various parties violating the agreement. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Geopolitics / Human Rights / Trade Related Issues


  7. An additional resource on East Timor has been added. This one is a OneWorld Dispatch on Indonesia and East Timor. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Geopolitics / Human Rights /



December 12, 1999


  1. Various updates on the events in Seattle at the WTO meeting (and outside!) have been added. The updates include more links to interviews, analysis and web sites that covered the event in detail. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty


  2. Oil is a major cause of the Chechen conflict. Oil pipelines and routes are a major cause of contention. Last week, Russian forces issued an ultimatum for Chechens to leave Grozny in a few days, before they stormed in... Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Geopolitics / Human Rights / Trade Related Issues


  3. People of Aceh, Indonesia are still facing human rights abuses and the military are being rewarded for it. While the Indonesia/East Timor crisis is off the radar screen of most of the mainstream media, in a nearby region called Aceh, which is a part of Indonesia, there have been violent crackdowns and abuses for many years as well. Human Rights Watch has indicated that problems in Aceh could be potentially worse than those seen in East Timor. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Geopolitics / Human Rights


  4. Some additional links to trade-related issues have been added These are guides on consumerism, ethical consumerism and development, from OneWorld. They have some thought-provoking introductions and great links to in-depth analysis on the impacts of these issues. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty


  5. While there are many potential benefits of genetically engineered food, is it safe? Concerned scientists believe that at this time there is not enough knowledge to determine that it is currently safe. There are numerous potential benefits, so perhaps one day it will be. However, the corporate drive to get them into the market place doesn't help. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Genetically Engineered Food / Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty



December 6, 1999


  1. Various updates on the events in Seattle at the WTO meeting (and outside!) have been added. The updates include additional links to interviews and web sites that covered the event in detail. Estimates on the number of protestors differ widely, from 50,000 to 100,000 people. Almost all of them were non-violent, although the media concentrated on the few that were involved in some violence and looting. The indiscriminate crackdown of the police and National Guard was harshly criticized. The (corporate-owned) mainstream media coverage was, as expected, one sided, concentrating mainly on the sensationalism outside the WTO meeting rooms. The trade talks inside, were also deemed a failure. Even delegates from developing countries were angry at the way they were treated and sidelined. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty


  2. As the Chief Economist of the World Bank resigns, he further criticizes the IMF and World Bank. He reiterates that the impositions of conditions on loans to developing countries has failed and is frustrated that these institutions are not more open, transparent and welcoming to alternative views and ideas. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty


  3. An additional link to foreign policy issues has been added. This one is a link to a site called Emperors New Clothes. They have articles and interviews on a number of issues. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Foreign Policy / Geopolitics


  4. Food patents (or theft, as it is often described in developing countries) on stable food crops could affect food security. There are many contentions on the ability to have patents on knowledge that may have existed for hundreds, even thousands, of years. The crops and their genes that are being patented are being done by corporations from industrialized nations and cost too much for most developing nations to appeal against. The end result would be that age-old knowledge comes with a price and the industrialized nations would be able to provide substitutes that would undermine developing nations and their farmers would become dependent upon them. Find Out More »
    - Related Section(s): Genetically Engineered Food / Fair Trade / Causes of Poverty


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