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In many countries in Asia, new forms of authoritarianism are on the rise. In the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte—a former mayor accused of organizing death squads and who promised to make the fish of Manila Bay grow fat from the bodies of drug dealers—won the presidential elections in 2016.
Agriculture has been the driving force for India’s economy. At one point farming was even considered to be one of the most respectable job an individual could have.
CONTRACT FARMING AND ITS IMPLICATIONS ON SMALL SCALE FARMING IN INDIA
For majority of peasants and indigenous people in India and around the world, climate change is a dreadful reality that has drastically altered their and rendered them vulnerable to hunger, poverty and deprivation. Even at the best of times, millions of them live on the edge, surviving on paltry income.
December 15th, 2017 - On the fifth anniversary of the enforced disappearance of Lao civil society leader Som
For its video on the situation of human rights in Asia, human rights violations in the form of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances, Focus will receive a human rights award; the video received the most likes and share among the participants/contenders. The awards night is on December 1, 2017.
Focus in 2016 initiated and engaged more vigorously in endeavors that challenged the impunity of state and non-state actors in the region. One of the main approaches in doing this was working closely with human rights organizations and networks of rights defenders and activists.
Across Asia, we are seeing the repression, denial, abuse and violation of rights of peoples and communities through criminalization, intimidation, disappearances, violence, and even murder.
For Immediate release
On the day of his birthday, 17th September, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Sardar Sarovar Dam, and dedicated this act to the nation.
Malolos, Bulacan— Around 150 farmers, women, senior citizens, and children who were part of a "Lakbayan" (march) from Bataan to Malacanang to request President Rodrigo Duterte to help get the lands
Civil society organizations from Indonesia, Philippines, and Europe criticized the European Union’s Multilateral Investment Court proposal as an attempt to multilateralise the investor-State disput
22 February 2017, Manila, Philippines - Civil society and grassroots organizations from across Asia gathered in Manila for a two-day strategy meeting, February 21 and 22, to discuss a global campai
Manila, 16 January 2017:
Jakarta, December 8th: The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is being negotiated in Jakarta, Indonesia this week (December 2-10)[i].
Organised by: The Sombath Initiative
11am, Wednesday 31 August, 2016, Bangkok
Dutertism. Dutertismo. The suffix ‘ism’ according to the dictionary may refer to a “distinctive practice, doctrine, theory,” and/or ideology. Does attaching an ‘ism’ therefore to the president’s name imply that he carries with him a unique brand of presidency; a different style of governance; a vision for the country that would set him apart from previous post-EDSA 1986 administrations?
The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP), a mega-regional free trade agreement being negotiated by the 10-member ASEAN regional bloc and its FTA partners China, India, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand held its 18th round of talks May 2-12 in Manila, Philippines.
The English version is available here: https://focusweb.org/content/engine-economic-growth-overview-private-inv...
2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the second largest source of development finance in the Asia-Pacific region, next to the World Bank Group. In the last five decades, the ADB has moved more than USD 250 billion in a bid to promote economic growth, facilitate regional trade integration, and expand opportunities.
Ever since the integration of India's peasants into global agri-food markets, their livelihoods have become at risk. In this globalized food system where large corporations rule, small-scale farming is not economically viable because global economic rules are against it.
The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is currently being negotiated between 16 countries in the Asian region. It includes China, members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other key trading nations such as Australia, South Korea, Japan and India.
Super typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan has been a wake up call to Filipinos and the bigger global community to the reality that the impacts of extreme weather events related to climate change are already being felt now, and thus the urgency for concerted response.
December 15th, 2017 - On the fifth anniversary of the enfo
Report Launch- SEZs and Value Extraction from the Mekong: A Case Study on the Control and Exploitation of Land and Labour in Cambodia and Myanmar's Special Economic Zones
Invitation to Report Launch on:
The following open letter has been issued and signed by scholars, academics, and civil society members from across the world in support of the five academics and researchers who have been summoned by the military following the International Conference of Thai Studies (ICTS13), and to object to attempts by the state to control spaces of learning.
We the undersigned express our alarm and dismay at the Summons issued by Col Suebsakul Buarawong, deputy commander of the 33rd Military Circle in Chiang Mai, to Dr Chayan Vaddhanaphuti, Pakawadee Veerapatpong, Chaipong Samnieng, Nontawat Machai, and Thiramon Bua-ngam. They are accused of violating the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) chief's Order No.3/2015, Thailand’s military regime's ban on political gatherings of five or more persons. Conviction on the charges issued against these five scholars carries a potential six months in prison.
Statement from iDEFEND on the declaration of martial law in Mindanao, the Philippines
On Tuesday night, President Rodrigo Duterte declared Martial Law on the entire Mindanao Island while on a state visit in Russia, following the fighting between the military and the Maute group.
It has to be clarified that the clashes were triggered by law enforcement operation in Marawi. This is a situation started by the government itself. Similarly, the Maute group is a local terrorist group, and not ISIS, even as the former tries to ally itself with ISIS.
It’s been over a year since the late afternoon on 16 April 2016 when Den Kamlae went missing on his way to collect forest items. Material evidence was later discovered between 23-25 March 2017. Today, these important materials are still under examination by forensic scientists and the Central Institute of Forensic Science (CIFS).
On 14 March 2017, the International Day of Action for Rivers, we, the Save the Mekong Coalition along with civil society and community partners from Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, make this statement to express our gratitude to the Mekong River and the way of life she supports. The Mekong is our mother river, home to unique biodiversity and a lifeline for millions of people throughout the river basin. We recognize the efforts of Mekong communities who are working to protect and preserve the unique ecosystems and resources of the river for future generations.
July 11, 2016 - We, the undersigned Cambodian civil society groups, are outraged at the brutal murder of independent political analyst and grassroots organiser Kem Ley yesterday morning, and call for a prompt, thorough and independent inquiry into his death.
Kem Ley, 46, was shot twice, in his chest and his head, in a heavily-frequented Caltex petrol station cafe in central Phnom Penh shortly before 9.00 on Sunday morning.
Secretariat: c/o NFBM #1066-B, Emerald St., Taglesville Subd., Balanga City, Bataan
5th July 2016
5th July 2016
Translated from Filipino
Kilusan para sa Pambansang Demokrasya (KILUSAN) strongly condemns the treacherous murder of our comrade Gloria Capitan of Mariveles, Bataan!
Labor Day statement of Independent Senatorial Candidate Walden Bello
Today, I march side by side with our workers to affirm their struggle for labor rights and continue the fight for dignity for our working class.
Labor day is a celebration of what the labor movement has won over decades of struggle.
Not many people know this but the fact that it is illegal to force workers to work for more than 8 hours and that they have to be paid more if they work beyond that is something that workers—through collective action—achieved.
You may sign this statement by clicking here
Suffering the brunt of the ongoing El Nino, more than 6 thousand farmers converged along a national highway in Kidapawan in the island of Mindanao in the Philippines on March 30 to demand 15,000 sacks of rice and financial subsidy promised to them six months earlier by the provincial government. They urgently need this assistance to tide them over until they are able to plant and harvest rice again.