By Nicholas Stern*
BERLIN | LONDON (IDN) - The European Union has reached a critical point in its history, facing simultaneously a severe political-economic crisis, and its biggest opportunity to create and sustain prosperity and well-being for its people.
Voters in Greece, France and the UK have sent a clear signal . . . that they want governments to give priority to jobs and opportunities as well as reducing deficits and debt. Prolonged stagnation or recession not only wastes resources now and deeply damages the skills of the next generation, but it may also produce dangerous political instability.
By Jamshed Baruah
BERLIN | VIENNA (IDN) - "I urge you all, as human beings, to consider again the inhumanity of atomic weapons," Tomihisa Taue, the Mayor of Nagasaki and Vice President of the Mayors for Peace organisation told government representatives participating in a crucial event well in time for an international conference in 2015 to review the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
By Germán Velásquez*
Communicable diseases still kill more than 10 million people every year, 90 per cent of whom live in developing countries. One-third of the global population does not have ordinary access to needed medicines. The situation has worsened in Least Developed Countries (LDCs) where up to 50 per cent of the population does not have access to necessary medicines. This calls for a paradigm shift to promote research and development (R&D) for pharmaceutical products in order to meet the needs of public health in the long and medium term, especially in developing countries.
By Shastri Ramachandaran*
NEW DELHI (IDN) - Working as a journalist in China's newspapers can be an eye-opening and engaging experience, revealing unsuspected potential and unforeseen possibilities. Such work, more often than not, is with the state media. To make the most of the situation, it is necessary to leave behind a lifetime's misconceptions and prejudices.
By Ernest Corea*
WASHINGTON (IDN) – Support for nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation suffered a set-back when Republican Senator Richard Lugar was defeated at a pre-election primary (May 8) in the state of Indiana. He was eliminated by a tea party supported contender, and will not be the Republican Party candidate for the Senate in November. Lugar has announced, as well, that he will not run as an Independent.
By Martin Khor*
BONN (IDN) - In the quest for an international climate agreement on actions to address the climate change crisis, three aspects have to be the basis simultaneously: the environmental (E) imperative, the developmental (D) imperative, and the equity (E) imperative. This EDE formula requires that different pieces of the climate negotiations be seen and addressed as a whole, in a holistic way.
By Jamshed Baruah
BERLIN (IDN) - A new report is calling for abandoning the Cold War rationale and ushering in a systemic change in U. S. nuclear force structure, strategy and posture in order to address the security threats in the 21st century.
The impassioned plea has been made by the U.S. Nuclear Policy Commission of Global Zero, an international movement for the elimination of all nuclear weapons.
By Shastri Ramachandaran*´
NEW DELHI (IDN) - Norwegians often venture where lesser mortals fear to tread. They are also known to be diplomatic and modest. But Norwegian Trade Minister Trond Giske, who warned India of "political implications" if telecom giant Telenor is forced to quit the country, obviously doesn’t give a damn about being diplomatic.
Nor does he personify the Lutheran modesty typical of Scandinavians when he thumps the table to say: "Telenor is not just any company. Fifty-four per cent of its shares are owned by the Norwegian people through the state."
By J.C. Suresh
TORONTO (IDN) – "Unless the transatlantic community takes the lead in addressing the challenges arising from the unprecedented global demand for land, energy, food, water, and minerals, severe market disruptions are likely to occur, as are increased chances of violent conflict at interstate and local levels in many 'hot spots,' especially in Asia, Africa, and Latin America," warns a new study.
By Shastri Ramachandaran*
NEW DELHI (IDN) - There are times on the world stage when statesman and diplomats stoop to conquer. And, there are times when Indian diplomats take the moral high ground only to emerge as losers. India voting in favour of the US-sponsored resolution on war crimes in Sri Lanka at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHCR) in Geneva on March 22 falls in the latter category.
By Moeed Pirzada*
RAWALPINDI (IDN) - Will Pakistan be able to attend the NATO summit in Chicago on May 20-21? And if yes, then on what terms and conditions? There is considerable feverish anxiety around these two questions in Islamabad.
A tripartite commission consisting of NATO's commander in Afghanistan, General Allen, and the military chiefs of Pakistan and Afghanistan kept on meeting in Rawalpindi on May 12 and May 13 to brainstorm the border control measures and how untoward incidents like the Salala tragedy of November 26, 2011 can be avoided. The Defence Cabinet Committee (DCC) was expected to meet, with PM Gilani in the chair, on May15-16, and some analysts were predicting that Pakistan will be announcing opening the NATO supply route on May 17.