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The Hidden Pandemic of Violence Against Women

The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines a pandemic as “an epidemic occurring worldwide, or over a very wide area, crossing international boundaries and usually affecting a large number of people”. We know all too well the disease that has brought the world to a shocked standstill. But what we don’t see is the one that already […]

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Posted in Europe, European Union, France, Humanitarian Intervention, Mexico, Turkey, World

Image courtesy of Yuri Samoilov

COVID-19 has Revealed a World of Strong States and Global Enmity

“Viruses know no borders and they don’t care about your ethnicity, the colour of your skin or how much money you have in the bank.” The words of WHO official Dr Mike Ryan about Coronavirus (COVID-19) would seem to many of us common sense. What appears ‘common sense’ does not, however, always manifest in the […]

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Posted in Australia, China, Europe, European Union, Germany, Refugees, Security Issues, UN, US, World

Image courtesy of Chaoyue Pan

Explaining the China-Russia Partnership in Syria

‘War is the continuation of politics by other means’. This well-known quote from 19th century Prussian military strategist Carl von Clausewitz epitomises the Russian and Chinese role in the Syrian conflict, which is now in its tenth year. The conflict began in March 2011 after pro-democracy protests in Syria were brutally crushed by the Syrian […]

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Posted in China, Conflict, Middle East, Russia, Syria, UN, World

Image by Sophia Menemenlis

Why the Paris Agreement Will Survive Donald Trump

New members of the United States Congress supporting a Green New Deal do so against a backdrop of increasing American isolation on climate change, driven by President Trump’s intent to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement. Despite impending American non-participation, which will formally take effect after November 4, 2020, the international community reached a milestone in […]

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Posted in Environmental Security, UN, World

'Small footprint, high payoff': US Marine team trains Ugandan forces to face al-Shabaab

Kony 2016: Ugandan Pullout a Big Win for LRA

In 2012 a 30 minute documentary about a rebel leader in Uganda set the internet alight. KONY 2012 brought to the public view the gruesome activities of Lord’s Resistance Army leader Joseph Kony and his kidnapping of young children. While the campaign itself was short lived, the Bush and later Obama administrations had already pledged […]

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Posted in Africa, Conflict, UN, World

Image by UNMISS MEDIA

Kabila and the DRC: A Perfect Storm of Problems

The UN Under-Sectretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Mark Lowcock, visited the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) this week for the first time. Following meetings with internally displaced persons, Lowcock underscored that the DRC is the site of one of the most devastating humanitarian crises in the world today. A year after his term ended, Congolese […]

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Posted in Africa, Conflict, Refugees, UN, World

Image by UN Women Asia and Pacific

The Truth Behind the Fiction: 16 Days to End Violence Against Women

The television adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ has gripped viewers and political pundits alike, since its release in April 2017, for its astonishingly realistic parallels between the fictional world of Gilead, and the very real Donald Trump led USA. As the global campaign for 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence draws to […]

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Posted in Culture, Global Economy, Security Issues, UN, World

President of Zimbabwe Addresses General Assembly

Don’t Lift Sanctions on Zimbabwe – Just Yet

Zimbabwe has finally toppled its longtime dictator, Robert Mugabe. So it’s time for the the international community to lift its sanctions on the country, right? Wrong. The new leader of Zimbabwe, Emmerson Mnangagwa, was one of Mugabe’s most notorious henchmen until he fell out of favor a few months ago. It would be premature to […]

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Posted in Africa, Global Economy, UN, World

Image by Ted Lipien

Women’s Rights and the Decline of the Culture Wars

By Jonathan Zimmerman, professor of education and history at NYU Last Sunday, at the United Nations, world leaders marked the 20th anniversary of the landmark Beijing accord on women’s rights. They celebrated women’s progress—especially in education, health, and labor—and underscored ongoing gender inequalities. But they also condemned the jailing of female political dissidents in China, which […]

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Posted in China, Religion, UN, World

By U.S. Department of State

Shaping Safety: How Architects Can Build a Stronger Peace

  I take my home for granted. There, I said it. Chances are you do, too, if your conception of home – like mine – does not include worrying about the daily dangers of a civil war playing out on your doorstep; the mortar shelling that has left your family homeless; or the stability of […]

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Posted in Conflict, Humanitarian Intervention, Iraq, Middle East, Refugees, Security Issues, Syria, World

Secure fencing surrounds the Detention Center on Christmas Island, Australia. In 2015 some 150 male asylum seekers to Australia were being held here.

Out of Sight, Out of Mind: On the History and Legality of Detention Centres

It’s official: Australia’s “Stop the Boats” campaign is a success. Or so the government claims. Back in 2013, former Prime Minister Tony Abbott ascended to his post in part because of his pledge to “stop the boats,” or, in less catchy rhetoric, to prevent asylum seekers – mostly arriving by sea from the Middle East […]

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Posted in Africa, Asia, Australia, Conflict, Europe, Iran, Political Security, Refugees, Syria, UN, World

African Union Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Raising the Bar for Collective Action in Africa

While the West seems hell-bent on withdrawing from the global stage and focusing instead on domestic issues, recent developments in Africa point to the continent pulling in the other direction: towards concerted action and deeper integration. The firm response from the Economic Union of West African States (ECOWAS) to the Gambian president’s refusal to accept […]

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Posted in Africa, Security Issues, UN, World

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Crowdfunding: the Way to Grassroots Climate Governance

Modern crowdfunding—the idea of grassroots fundraising via the internet—officially began in 1997 when the British rock band, Marillion, ran a successful internet fundraising campaign with their adoring fans to finance the band’s North American tour. Since then crowdfunding sites have burgeoned, utilizing dedicated internet platforms to connect entrepreneurs and social-movement-mobilizers with crowds of netizen-investors and supporters to […]

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Posted in UN, World

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Aid or Trade? Problems with the UN’s Human Development Figures

  By Amanda Beal and Maria Sofia This past September, many of the world’s leaders gathered in New York to sign the United Nations (UN) new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Numerous man-hours and unspeakable amounts of money have been used to promote this transition and enhance the global partnership for development. However, no one yet […]

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Posted in Africa, Asia, Economics, Global Economy, Humanitarian Intervention, Latin America, UN, World

Image by noborder network

Mediterranean Migration Reveals Flaws in Dublin Convention

John Donne famously reminded us that ‘no man is an island’. Likewise in today’s polycentric, ever-globalized, and interconnected world, no state can remain untouched by social, economic, or political influences from neighbouring states. As terrible as Islamic State has been for people living in Syria, Iraq and Libya, its effects on Europe are also increasingly being felt. […]

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Posted in Africa, Conflict, Economic Security, Europe, Germany, Humanitarian Intervention, Iraq, Islam, Middle East, Refugees, Security Issues, Syria, Terrorism, UN, World

Image by Steve Gumaer

Genocide in Myanmar

Millions of Myanmar’s citizens will go to the polls on 8 November to cast their votes in the first relatively democratic elections in 25 years. At stake is control of the country’s bicameral legislature – the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw, which is currently dominated by President Thein Sein’s ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP). As stipulated […]

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Posted in Asia, Humanitarian Intervention, Islam, Refugees, Religion, UN, World

Image by quapan

Was ISIS Inevitable?

ISIS’ exploits dominate headlines, horrifying witnesses around the world. As a history graduate who specialised in researching the rise of Islam, its culture, and its creation of a complex and inspiring civilisation, the recent destruction of millennia old artefacts have almost reduced me to tears. As we now watch and condemn the destruction of priceless […]

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Posted in Conflict, Humanitarian Intervention, Iraq, Islam, Middle East, Political Security, Refugees, Religion, Security Issues, Syria, Terrorism, World

Image by riekhavoc

Compulsory Drug Treatment in Southeast Asia – Neither Ethical Nor Effective.

ASEAN foreign ministers signed the Joint Declaration for a Drug-Free ASEAN on the 25th of July 1998, committing association members to eradicate illicit drug production, trafficking and abuse by 2015. The strategy, founded on the specious belief that taking a sufficiently ‘tough’ stance on the drug trade would result in its demise, has been shown to be as […]

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Posted in Asia, Drugs, UN, World

Image by Bernabeu

The overlooked story of Syria’s Yarmouk death camp

A brave 12-year-old girl named Zeynab Daghastani recently attempted to escape the grim living conditions of a besieged Palestinian refugee camp in Syria. Starving and bone-tired, she did not make it very far before being shot and killed by an ISIS sniper. Welcome to Yarmouk. On April 1st, a group of ISIS’s mask-wearing jihadists swept through the […]

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Posted in Conflict, Humanitarian Intervention, Israeli Palestinian Conflict, Middle East, Political Security, Refugees, Security Issues, Syria, Terrorism, UN, US, World

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Bibi Wins Re-election in Israel, But at What Cost?

Incumbent Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has won re-election. Under immense pressure, Netanyahu displayed his winner mentality and insatiable desire to govern Israel by seemingly pulling out all the stops to assure another Likud victory, but at what cost? First there was Netanyahu’s Republican-hosted speech to U.S. Congress where his apparent aim was to display […]

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Posted in Conflict, Middle East, Security Issues, UN, US, World

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As Ardern storms it in NZ... and a battered UK starts discussing a failed “herd immunity” strategy again, it’s worth remembering: 1) Economies that have kept the virus down have kept the economic damage down. 2) This: pic.twitter.com/ABZ6sXbI96

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