News headlines in February 2016

  1. New Nuclear Hysteria in the Middle East

    MADRID, Feb 29 (IPS) - Three years ago when the tsunami of panic around Iran's potential capability to develop nuclear weapons reached its peak, a combined diplomatic, media campaign warning that a Gulf Arab state would think of purchasing atomic bombs was spread like an oil spot.

  2. Garbage, Garbage Everywhere, but…

    ROME, Feb 29 (IPS) - Imagine a river bursting its banks and flooding entire cities and towns. But when the river is made of malodorous garbage and is in Beirut, this is a stark and dramatic situation affecting the city's 2.226 million people.

    It all started in July 2015, when the Lebanese administration closed the major landfill of the city. Since then, trash is being piled all over the streets of Jdeideh in Beirut's northern suburbs. This river of garbage grew steadily, as reported in recent days by a wide section of news media, including Al JazeeraCNN and Reuters. Thousands of kilometers away in Pakistan, a very similar situation is reported by Dawn.

  3. World’s Rural Poor Need Social Protection, Says UN

    UNITED NATIONS, Feb 29 (IPS) - The success of the UN's post-2015 development agenda is predicated on one underlying theme: no one should be left behind – and certainly not the world's rural poor --in the fight to eradicate hunger and poverty by 2030.

  4. Tackle ‘Hidden Hunger’ by Improving Food Systems

    KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 29 (IPS) - Nutrition is complex and multi-dimensional. Micronutrient deficiencies or ‘hidden hunger' are much more widespread than chronic undernourishment or hunger, understood as inadequate dietary energy. Micronutrient deficiencies refer to the lack of essential vitamins, minerals and other substances required over the human life cycle by the body in small amounts. Micronutrient undernutrition has long-term effects on health, learning ability and productivity, leading to high social and public costs, reduced work capacity in populations due to high rates of illness and disability, and loss of human potential.

  5. Groundwater Governance in Andhra Pradesh

    NEW DELHI, Feb 29 (IPS) - India is the largest user of ground water in the world. But reliance of this overexploited resource has reached its limits in many parts of the country. Nowhere is this more evident than in the drought-prone districts of Rayalseema, uplands of Prakasam, Krishna, East-West Godavari, parts of Nellore, Vizianagaram and Srikakulam in the state of Andhra Pradesh (AP). Forty per cent of the state's irrigation needs are met through groundwater. In the drought-prone Rayalseema region – which comprises Chittoor, Anantapur, Kurnool, Prakasam and Kadapa districts -- dependence on groundwater for irrigation is particularly high. The water crisis is also most severe in this region.

  6. Of the Same Ilk

    Feb 27 (IPS) - IT has been almost two weeks since the beginning of a protest movement of students, teachers and the wider democratic community in and around Delhi`s famed Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) that represents arguably the biggest challenge that Narendra Modi`s BJP government has faced since coming to power. Perhaps unsurprisingly, we in this country have scarcely paid attention to the whole af fair, even though it tells us much about India, its politics, and, indeed, just how similar our two countries are.

  7. Mexico’s Chinampas – Wetlands Turned into Gardens – Fight Extinction

    XOCHIMILCO, Mexico, Feb 27 (IPS) - David Jiménez grows two kinds of lettuce and other fresh produce on his "chinampa" or artificial island just under one hectare in size in San Gregorio Atlapulco, on the south side of Mexico City.

  8. Free Speech and Free Media: Help or Hindrance to Development? / Part 2

    DHAKA, Bangladesh, Feb 26 (IPS) - The second part: the relevance of free speech and free media to development. Freedom is the central object of development, says Amartya Sen. He argues that development cannot simply be seen as GNP or industrialization or social modernization.

  9. Europe: The Schengen Agreement In Danger

    ROME, Feb 26 (IPS) - Exclusion of Greece from the European free travel zone established by the Schengen Agreement is pending. The European Commission has ruled that the Athens government has "seriously neglected its obligations to control its own borders," and if the deficiencies are not corrected within three months, the other member states of the Schengen area may exclude it from the agreement.

    Emma Bonino Emma BoninoIn 2015, some 850,000 people seeking asylum and work in northern European countries passed through Greece, and the influx is continuing.

  10. Migrant Crisis: Migrant Offshore Aid Station to Begin Mission in Andaman Sea

    Feb 26 (IPS) - Global search and rescue charity, Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS), will begin a new mission in the Andaman Sea and adjacent areas on March 3 to track, monitor and, if needed, provide search and rescue of refugees or migrants.