05/28/2015SRI LANKA Rising rates of liver disease and cancer among Sri Lankan farmers by Melani Manel Perera Pesticides could be the main culprit, especially glyphosate, an herbicide known for its high level of toxicity. The government has banned the compound, but expert opinion warns that more controls are needed. Even young farmers are getting sick. Colombo (AsiaNews) – Farmers in the districts of Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa (Northern Central Province) and Monaragala (Uva Province) show higher rates of liver cancer and chronic liver diseases.
The constant use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides – especially...
05/28/2015BANGLADESH Bangladesh to deport 32,000 Rohingya to an island because they harm tourism The plan is to move refugees from a region Bangladesh wants to develop as a tourist resort. Bangladeshi PM calls Bangladeshi economic migrants "mentally sick," accusing them of hurting the country's image. For Rohingya leader, the plan would only make life worse for the refugees.
05/28/2015INDIA India: promises and realities of Modi’s Nationalist government (one year on) by Nirmala Carvalho Wada Na Todo Abhiyan (Wnta), a network of over 400 voluntary organizations all over the country, has compiled a report on the first 12 months in office of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). Many campaigns and development programs have been launched, but with little effect on the population. Concerns over cuts to education and healthcare sector, areas crucial to the future of new generations. Increased violence against religious and social minorities.
05/28/2015CHINA China celebrates one million millionaires According to figures from Bain & Company, China had 1.04 million millionaires at the 2014, an increase of 330,000 compared to 2012. Another study predicts that Asia will become the centre of billionaire growth.
05/22/2015INDIA For Catholic Church, “mining threatens India’s tribal peoples” by Shafique Khokhar In Odisha, the Office for Justice, Peace and Development of the Catholic Bishops' Conference looked at the effects of heavy mining on indigenous communities. For an Adivasi leader, “tribal cultures die when their peoples are forced to leave their lands."
05/22/2015CHINA – ASIA Beijing and Delhi to lead Asian ‘super bank’ A consensus has emerged from a meeting of the lender’s founding members. To avoid undue European influence, Asian members have accepted that China’s share of the bank’s capitalisation will be between 25 and 30 per cent with India as second largest shareholder. Germany will be represented on the bank’s board of directors.
05/22/2015CHINA Beijing returns to Soviet planning to save the Party by Willy Lam The Chinese economic strategy emphasizes the role of state-controlled companies. President Xi: "The Chinese Communist Party should control the economy if it wants to rule the country forever." Big profits for private companies close to the Party elite. The initiative strengthens control over interior regions and contains the centrifugal forces. Beijing can absorb the nation’s excess production. The theory of the "three non-changes". The marginalization of the Premier Li Keqiang who wanted to liberalize the market.
05/21/2015INDONESIA Jakarta cracks down on illegal fishing by sinking 41 foreign vessels Ships from China, Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines are now at the bottom of the sea. With Indonesian President Widodo taking a hard-line position, tensions in the South China Sea could worsen. Now, a deal on disputed maritime borders seems unlikely.
05/20/2015NEPAL For survivors, psychological problems more damaging than the earthquake by Christopher Sharma Almost a month after the earthquake, people are discouraged and fearful. Two million Nepalese suffer from post-traumatic syndrome whilst thousands are still waiting for help. For apostolic vicar, counselling and spiritual assistance are a priority.
05/20/2015CHINA Beijing to focus on new technologies to revamp economy The State Council unveiled an ambitious ten-year plan to upgrade manufacturing, including ocean engineering and aerospace technology, to pull the country out of its current impasse. With rising labour costs and environmental degradation, China has no choice; however, some analysts believe the private capital and foreign knowhow are needed.