Call for the release of an activist in Bahrain, Denmark

denmark free imprisoned rights defender

The Danish government should renew and strengthen efforts to secure the immediate and unconditional release of a prominent human rights defender and dual Danish-Bahraini citizen, 118 international and Bahraini rights groups said today in a joint letter to Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen of Denmark.

The rights defender, Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, 59, is serving a life sentence in Bahrain’s Jau prison for his peaceful political and human rights activities, in violation of his right to freedom of expression.

Protecting fragile ecosystems from lithium mining

lithium mining 1

Between 2015 and 2018 the price of lithium carbonate, the source of one of the most important elements in electronics, more than tripled.

It was a nasty shock for the electronics industry as lithium is the key ingredient in rechargeable batteries that power everything from smartphones, to toothbrushes, to electric cars.

Hunger and famine put girls at risk

hunger famine girls

Children and teenage girls are at an increased risk of starvation, violence and sexual exploitation in parts of South Sudan as a result of looming famine.

In the month of December 2020 alone, 1,455 children under the age of five were admitted to a nutrition facility run by Plan International in Pibor county. 

It comes after the South Sudan Integrated Phase Classification (IPC) Famine Review Committee classified Pibor and its surrounding areas as IPC phase 5 last month, meaning that famine is likely.

The construction of the Great Green Wall in Africa thanks to microscopic creatures

green wall africa

A young woman scientist in Burkina Faso is researching the role of micro-organisms in fighting desertification in the Sahel Region, as part of a UN programme to restore degraded land in Africa.

30-year-old Barkissa Fofana studies the relationship between acacia trees, and they way they interact with different fungi and bacteria, in the hope that it will help to explain how they resist drought. This kind of research is an important way to build resilience against climate change, and make land in the Sahel green and productive.

Attacks on reproductive rights and equality in marriage in Honduras

reproductive rights and marriage equality

Honduran lawmakers should reject a proposed constitutional amendment that would entrench current harsh restrictions on reproductive rights and the prohibition on same-sex marriage, Human Rights Watch said today.

On January 21, Congress approved in its first reading an amendment that would increase the number of votes needed in Congress to amend two articles of the constitution which prohibit abortion and same-sex marriage. It would increase the votes needed from the current two-thirds majority of the legislature to three-quarters, making future reform of these provisions extremely difficult. The proposed amendment still needs a second vote to be ratified. The next legislative session will begin on January 25.

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