The Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) suggests that a discussion about the implications of the proposed UN Fifth World Conference on Women in 2015, and 20 years after the last one in Beijing, is urgently needed among feminists and women’s rights activists from all regions of the world.

There are diverse opinions about the organization, hosting and purpose of the proposed conference, which have not been broadly debated, wrote on AWID’s web site Susan Tolmay, in charge of Information at this institution.

Yao Graham.
(Photo: Reflection Group)

African civil society organizations called on governments to shift from being mere regulators to become promoters of investments in the mining sector at a conference convened in Accra by the Third World Network-Africa (TWN-A). The meeting was aimed to improve and deepen their knowledge on the African Mining Vision (AMV), a strategic plan signed in 2009 by the heads of State.

Marcus Agius. (Photo: CBI)

Marcus Agius was called in 2006 to manage the rescue of Barclays Bank, a British firm on the verge of bankruptcy due to irresponsible financial bets. Six years later, on Monday 2 July, the City woke up to the news of the resignation of Agius to all his public and private offices due to “unacceptable behavior within the bank”… nothing less than the largest financial fraud ever attempted, a white-collar theft of billions of dollars that has duped governments around the world and ultimately impoverished millions of people who never heard of Agius, Barclays or the City of London and just happened to have borrowed money from a bank.

The international community needs to be ambitious and work to solve the urgent global crisis of today. A "business as usual" process to update the agreed goals that expire in 2015 is not enough. That was the main message to the United Nations of the final panel held July 6 in New York as part of the Development Cooperation Forum, the first high level international debate after the Rio+20 Summit. Juan Somavía, director general of the International Labour Organization (ILO), and Roberto Bissio, coordinator of Social Watch, were among the speakers.

Photo: Association for the
Prevention of Torture

The Tunisian League for Human Rights (LTDH), the Arab Human Rights Organization (Egypt) and the Libyan Human Rights League, among several organizations and activists, signed on Sunday an international Pact of Honour against torture in Tunis, reported TAP news agency.

Photo: Press TV

Amjad al-Shawwa of the Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizations Network (PNGO, focal point of Social Watch in the occupied territories) says the Israeli regime is responsible for the deteriorating sanitary conditions in the besieged Gaza Strip, Press TV reported.

“Children and poor families were left behind before the crisis, they have been severely affected by the multitude of global shocks since 2008, and that, although they were briefly supported during the first phase of the crisis (2008-09), they were again left behind in 2010 despite their significant needs and increasing vulnerability,” wrote Isabel Ortiz and Matthew Cummins in the first pages of “A recovery for all: Rethinking socio-economic policies for children and poor households”, a book recently edited by UNICEF.

Agnieszka Kozlowska-Rajewicz,
plenipotentiary minister for
equal treatment.
(Photo: Polish government)

Homosexuality is equivalent to rape, according to official teaching materials for Poles studying to be nurses and midwives. Teaching books refer to homosexuality as a “pathology”, under the section of “sexual problems”. “This is a particularly dangerous incident of homophobia,” said Agata Chaber, the president of the Campaign Against Homophobia of Poland.

Chili Harvest, Bhutan. (Photo:
Gill Fickling/UN)

The recent Rio2012 Summit upheld the right of all people to food, and the need to support small farmers and promote ecologically-sound agriculture, reported Martin Khor, executive director of South Centre, in his most recent column for The Star, one of the leading Malaysian newspapers.

Meeting of the Afghanistan Youth
Leaders Initiative in Kabul.
(Photo: Asia Society)

The Afghanistan Young Leaders Initiative, a non-partisan and non-political group of young people who share common values and beliefs to address the social, economic and political problems in the country, asked the Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan that will be held on Sunday 8 “a proper follow-up mechanism […] to ensure the promises delivered upon from both the […] government and its international development partners”.



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