As Palestine’s Friends Fall Away, Iran is the Last Man Standing

For generations, one issue has united countries across the Muslim world: Palestinian Liberation. But as Saudi Arabia, Israel and the US find a shared priority in battling Iran, the Gulf is losing interest – and Palestinians are left out the in the cold, with nowhere to turn but Tehran.

Read the full report on Inside Over >

Inside Southeast Asia’s Illegal Wildlife Trade

Southeast Asia accounts for less than 3% of the world’s land mass but 25% of the global trade in wildlife. It’s a supplier, consumer and transit hub for the booming black market, where endangered animals are illegally caught, sold, eaten and shipped to customers around the world.  So how do we bring this destructive trade to an end? Read the full report on Inside Over >

Could the COVID-19 Outbreak Finally Lay the Wildlife Trafficking Trade to Rest?

As the coronavirus crisis spreads further afield and claims casualties all over the world, many are asking what lessons we can learn from yet another case of deadly zoonotic disease. This could be exactly the conversation that conservationists working to stop wildlife trafficking need.

Read the full story on Foreign Policy >

Great News for Some Phnom Penh Friends…

When I first came to Phnom Penh earlier this year, I interviewed a really fantastic social enterprise called ARC Hub PNH for an article I was writing about prosthetic limb production in Cambodia and Laos.

During the Secret War that ran concurrently to the Vietnam War, the Americans (illegally) dropped more bombs here than had ever been dropped anywhere before, and the Khmer Rouge continued to carpet Cambodia in landmines until the ’90s. The upshot of this is that, every year, people lose limbs to UXOs all over Laos and Cambodia – and since these are some of the poorest people on the planet, their chances of getting hold of an artificial limb are pretty remote.  Continue reading →

More Goals than Fans: Syria’s Uphill Struggle to Rally Nation Behind Football Team (Guardian)

The team, sitting at the top of the table for its group, is performing remarkably well despite formidable hurdles. The war has crippled football in Syria, scattering players across the world, and leaving them with barely a week to meet and train ahead of each match.

But Syrians everywhere are pouring out their support through social media, says Al Husein, and the crisis at home piles on the pressure to make them proud. He hopes that, by doing so, the team will pull the country’s fragmented identity closer together.

“At the end of the day we come from all aspects of Syria. Whether you’re a Christian or a Muslim or any sector of Islam, we’re all one family, we’re playing for one team, one country.

Read the full story at the Guardian 

These Indonesian Women Are Part of the Design Team for Their Own Development Tech

At a tech fair in Lembata, a volcano-sprinkled island near the eastern tip of Flores, Indonesia, 62-year-old subsistence farmer Daprosa and her friends Maria and Yuliana are checking out a water filter. It’s a simple $15 contraption, made of two plastic tanks with a ceramic-and-silver dome connecting them. The top tank is filled with river water and left overnight, with harmful chemicals and parasites removed as it trickles through. These women aren’t the only ones wondering about its success; local officials are interested, too — they want to know whether a giant version could be used to create a centralized water supply for villages.

Read the full story at How We Get to Next

The Malaysia Scandal: Crazy Enough to be a Far-Fetched Movie Plot, Says Human Rights Director

How an “objective” report on slavery in Malaysia became the centre of a political storm in the US.
Political interference from right at the top of the US government will be the only explanation if Malaysia’s human trafficking rating is raised next week, says human rights expert John Sifton.
“Let’s be clear: this is not a grey area,” he stated last night. “Malaysia has done very little to combat this scourge [of human trafficking]. They have done very little since they were moved to Tier 3 to merit an upgrade.
“If this had happened on House of Cards I’d say, oh, that’s not plausible.”

Continue reading →