Nepal is struggling to overcome the aftermaths of a decade-long civil war that cost 11,000 lives. The war formally ended in 2006, but violence and impunity continue in parts of the country. Kul Chandra Gautam analytically and evocatively reflects the tensions of the country, as a new Prime Minister, from the Maoist Party, takes over as elected head of the interim government. With a background note by Gabriele Köhler
History has given the Maoists a second chance to lead the Government of Nepal in three years. The new Prime Minister, Dr Baburam Bhattarai, assumes leadership of the nation with a mixed reputation – but on the whole, with high respect and great anticipation. In public opinion polls, he scores a much higher rating than any other current political leader of the country. Many Nepalis, especially the younger generation, hold him in high esteem as a highly educated, intelligent, competent and clean politician with a vision...
At first glance, everyday life seems not to have changed in Istanbul. The streets are congested; people hurry to the ferry or the bus. For weeks, there has been no terror attack. Nevertheless, there are some visible changes. There are much more policemen in the streets. In some days, the Istiklal Caddesi, the main shopping street on the European side, seems to be under a state of siege. At every street corner, there is police van with the blue light switched on.
Recent disturbing trends in international finance have particularly problematic implications, especially for developing countries. The new United Nations report, World Economic Situation and Prospects 2017 (WESP 2017), is the only recent report of a multilateral inter-governmental organization to recognize these problems, especially as they are relevant to the financing requirements for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Trump government signals unequivocally the end of international US hegemony. An international hegemon is able to define rules that find relatively broad acceptance internationally and plays a role in safeguarding international economic stability. The Trump government announced measures that go against the present economic rules while not proposing new ones.
The global deficit in quality jobs and deteriorating economic conditions in a number of regions threatens to undo decades of progress in poverty reduction, warns a new report by the International Labour Organization (ILO), the World Employment and Social Outlook (WESO) 2016.
Weakening of workers' rights in most regions is being aggravated by severe crackdowns on freedom of speech and assembly, according to the 2016 Global Rights Index. Restrictions on freedom of speech and assembly, including severe crackdowns in some countries, increased by 22%, with 50 out of 141 countries surveyed recording restrictions.