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India: What Exactly Is a Smart City?
By: Kumar Sambhav Shrivastava, Scroll-in
04 September 2017
What exactly is a smart city? The Indian government does not want you to know. It thwarted the Bureau of Indian Standards’ plan to fix clear criteria for defining a smart city, and came out with a fuzzy ‘Liveability Index’ instead.     Are the urban centres selected by the Union government
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The Cost of Land Grabbing in Mozambique
By: Burag Gurden, Pambazuka News
31 August 2017
The cost of land grabbing in Mozambique`s Tete Province     Tete Province is very rich in coal. An estimated 23 billion tons of mostly untapped coal lies beneath Tete. It is expected to become the region’s energy powerhouse built on coal and hydroelectricity. However, local farmer communities have been on the losing
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UN Finance-for-development Reform
By: Jomo Kwame Sundaram, IPS
30 August 2017
KUALA LUMPUR—Growing global interdependence poses greater challenges to policy makers on a wide range of issues and for countries at all levels of development. Yet, the new mechanisms and arrangements put in place over the past four decades have not been adequate to the growing challenges of coherence and coordination
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Tanzania: Forced Evictions of Loliondo Maasai
By: Chris Lang, Conservation Watch
30 August 2017
“Forced evictions of Maasai people in Loliondo, Tanzania”: Urgent Alert from the International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs     The International Working Group for Indigenous Affairs (IWGIA) last week put out a short report about the violent evictions of Maasai pastoralists in Loliondo, Tanzania.   According to reliable information received by IWGIA, forced and
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Anatomy of ISIL in the Middle East
By: Joseph Schechla,* Pambazuka News
29 August 2017
  Most concerned observers and analysts have deplored the phenomenon known as ISIL, a movement in the Middle East asserting a particularly abominable form of governance that deviates majestically from the norms of international law and world order, while calling itself a “state.” The prevalence of ISIL has wide-ranging consequences and
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Houston Drowning—in Its Freedom from Regulations
By: Steve Russell, Newsweek
28 August 2017
We do value our freedom here in Texas. As I write from soggy Central Texas, the cable news is showing people floating down Buffalo Bayou on their principles, proud residents of the largest city in these United States that did not grow in accordance with zoning ordinances.   The feeling there was
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Turkey: More Destruction of Sur, Diyarbakır
By: HIC-HLRN
25 August 2017
HLRN has received updated reports from local sources about the ongoing demolitions and forced evictions in the remaining neighborhoods of Sur District, Diyarbakır, in southeastern Turkey.   The focus now is on the present situation in Alibey and Lalepaşa neighborhoods. For more information on the context, consult the latest report on Sur
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Italy: Rome Police Evict, Beat Refugees
By: Human Rights Watch
25 August 2017
ROME—Police used violence and water cannons to evict a group of squatters, predominantly refugees, in Rome on August 24, 2017, Human Rights Watch said today. The Italian authorities should conduct a serious and transparent investigation into the use of force by police. Hundreds of people who had been living in
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USA: Seniors Suffer with Reverse Mortgages
By: Jenifer McKim, The Washington Post
25 August 2017
More seniors are taking loans against their homes—and it’s costing them     As she was getting on in years and her resources dwindled, Virginia Rayford took out a special kind of mortgage in 2008 that she hoped would help her stay in her three-bedroom Washington rowhouse for the rest of her life.
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UN Reports on Rakhine Living Conditions
By: HIC-HLRN
23 August 2017
After one year of consultations held across Rakhine State (Myanmar) and in other parts of the country and the region, the UN’s Advisory Commission on Rakhine State submitted its final report to national authorities on 23 August.   The Commission, chaired by Kofi Annan, has put forward recommendations to surmount the
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HLRN Input to UN Treaty Body Review
By: HIC-HLRN
22 August 2017
AMMAN—The Regional Consultation for the Middle East and North Africa Region on the 2020 review of the United Nations Treaty Body System has concluded in Amman, Jordan, after convening for two days, on 21–22 August. The event was organized under a project bringing together Columbia University’s Global Freedom of Expression,
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Trump War to Extract Afghanistan Minerals
By: Michael Hughes, The Global Post
09 August 2017
Trump Strategy to Exploit Afghan Deposits Rests on Faulty Foundation     President Donald J. Trump has reportedly been at odds with his military chiefs over the way forward in Afghanistan because he is reluctant to waste more money on a war that the United States risks “not winning.”   Mr. Trump has, in fact,
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Nicaragua: Future Canal Threatens Mass Eviction
By: Amnesty International
03 August 2017
Nicaragua: Country’s future for sale as canal threatens thousands with forced eviction     The Nicaraguan government must stop placing business before the future of the country and its people, Amnesty International said in a new report today looking at a secretive deal that will lead to the construction of a canal
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Global Peasant Movement Convene at Bilbao
By: Huffington Post
28 July 2017
Global Peasant Movement Assesses and Responds to a Heated Political Moment     Four years ago, La Vía Campesina brought its peasant activists from around the world to Jakarta for its VI International Conference. The gathering was held in a padepokan, a Javanese center reserved for the teaching and exchanging of knowledge and
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No SDGs without Major Progress on Land
By: Luca Chinotti, International Land Coalition
28 July 2017
Land and the SDGs: Key takeaways from the 2017 HLPF and what we need to do next     This was the clear and strong message that was brought by the land community into the major global forum on the SDGs, the High Level Political Forum (HLPF), which is the central platform for
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UNHRC Resolution Links Human Rights to NUA
By: Gregory Scruggs, Citiscope
27 July 2017
UN resolution seen as key win for New Urban Agenda’s contentious rights language     A new resolution from the United Nations’ top human rights body is being lauded by supporters in part because it solidifies contentious new language included in last year’s New Urban Agenda strategy on sustainable urbanization.   The UN Human Rights
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City of Johannesburg Defies Court, Evicts 257
By: Socio-economic Rights Institute of South Africa (SERI)
19 July 2017
City of Johannesburg leaves 257 men, women and children out in the cold, despite court orders   The High Court has ordered the City of Johannesburg to accommodate 257 men, women and children who were yesterday evicted from Fattis Mansions at 66 Harrison Street, Johannesburg.   The residents of the property initially
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Trump’s Beautiful (Real Estate Money) Launderette
By: Michael Zeldin, CNN and various others
19 July 2017
Why Russia-probe investigators are looking at anti-money laundering database     It has been reported that the Senate and House Intelligence committees investigating possible ties between Trump campaign officials and the Russians have begun to receive access to financial data from the Treasury Department`s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).   FinCEN`s mission is to
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USA: EPA Dumps, Drops Duties
By: The Indigenous Americans
15 July 2017
EPA Refuses to pay claims after mine spill dumps 3,000,000 gallons of toxic waste into water on Native American land   The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has refused to pay more than $1.2  billion in claims filed against it in response to the Gold King Mine spill, reported the Farmington Daily Times.   The EPA says the
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“Spotlight” on UN High-Level Forum, SDGs
By: HIC-HLRN
10 July 2017
As the UN High-Level Forum opens in New York, a global civil society report spotlights the role of big business in hindering development and deepening economic and social disparity.   Unbridled privatization, corporate capture and mass-scale tax abuse are blocking progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals, argues a new report by a
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