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South Sudan: Civil society organisations call for urgent intervention as humanitarian crisis looms in Boma 

A humanitarian crisis looms in South Sudan as Yauyau militias, under the command of David Yauyau, continue to fight the SPLA government forces in Boma and Pibor towns, Jonglei. Civilians, mostly women and children, have been caught in the crossfire and reports from Minority Rights Group International (MRG) partners on the ground show looting of household items as well as cows and sorghum....

Botswana: Bushmen face imminent eviction for ‘wildlife corridor’  

Survival International has received disturbing reports about an imminent eviction of several hundred Bushmen in southern Botswana to make way for a ‘wildlife corridor’.The Bushman community at Ranyane has allegedly been told by the local government that trucks will arrive on Monday to remove them from land they have inhabited for generations.Their houses will be destroyed. The Bushmen’s land is in a proposed...

Democratic Republic of Congo: Forest Peoples Programme launches pioneering book on indigenous peoples free, prior and informed consent 

As part of its project: "REDD financing, Human Rights and Economic Development for Sustainable Poverty Reduction of forest communities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)", Forest Peoples Programme (FPP), and it’s local partners in the DRC have published, in collaboration with the Organisation d’Accompagnement et d’Appui aux Pygmées (OSAPY), the first volume of a new book series titled Forêts Africaines - Tabernacle des...

Tanzania: Government unrelenting on parceling out Maasai land in Loliondo 

The government of Tanzania, through the Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Hon Ramadhan Mwinyi, during the Permanent Forum on Indigenous issues in New York, delivered a firm stand on their action to parcel out huge chunks of pastoral land for wildlife conservancy. "The government took this decision with the understanding that environment conservation is as important for eco-system protection as it...

India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal: Call for UN focus on Dalit women - MRG co-host event 

IDSN has urged UN member states to recognise Dalit women as a particularly vulnerable group in the upcoming annual resolution in the Human Rights Council on violence against women.Dalit women are frequently subjected to multiple forms of discrimination and violence due to their caste as well as their gender. This issue will be discussed at a side event at the UN Human Rights Council...

USA: American-Muslims dispel the stereotypes of Muslim women who cover - new photo exhibit 'iCover' 

The International Museum of Women (IMOW) is an  online museum that showcases art, stories and ideas to celebrate and advance the lives of women around the world. IMOW's exhibit Muslima: Muslim Women's Art & Voices presents inspiring art and innovative ideas from Muslim women worldwide who are leading the movement for a more just, equitable, and inclusive world.This exclusive selection of portraits from iCover,...

Mauritania: MRG visits Haratine community as part of campaign to end slavery 

Vernonique Dion, MRG's Mauritania Programme Coordinator (pictured left in the photograph), and Shobha Das, our Head of Programmes, visited Mauritania in September 2012 to meet with members of the Haratine community.MRG’s work in Mauritania, with SOS-Esclaves and Association des Femmes Chef de Famille, hopes to establish new organisations representing Haratine women, and strengthen their capacity to better advocate for their rights.Haratine in Mauritania are...

Mauritania: Video - Haratine women of 'slave caste' perform traditional song 

The bemdjé is a traditional musical/dancing practice amongst Haratine women of slave descent in Mauritania. This video of a bemdjé was filmed by MRG staff members on a visit in September 2012, as part of our ongoing work in the country.The singer, who is accompanied by a chorus of drummers, sings about relations between women and men, social relationships, and issues that affect their...

Morocco: The Threshold of the Desert 

Watch a trailer of the documentary The threshold of the desert  (www.the-threshold-of-the-desert.org).  AZIZ NAJAT is part of the very limited 15% of women who are economically active population in rural areas of Morocco. She has crossed the threshold of her house, has gone out to work to generate resources and streamline her environment. Her daily struggle for autonomy is an act of self-empowerment within...

Ecuador: One indigenous woman’s perspective on discrimination in the health system 

In the public hospital in Otavalo in Ecuador, indigenous women have seen a major change in their maternal and child health services and this has increased their trust in the system. In the past, discrimination was a major problem, and women were not allowed to use their traditional birth practices or bring their traditional birth attendants (TBAs) with them. They were not able to...

Kenya: Obstetric fistula – a preventable but deadly condition for mothers in sub-Saharan Africa 

Girls who marry young or suffer genital mutilation are at highest risk from obstetric fistula, a hole in the birth canal caused by prolonged or obstructed pregnancy. The condition is easy to treat – the difficulty is getting women the medical care they need. Obstetric fistula generally occurs as a complication of pregnancy during which labour becomes obstructed – it is often a result of...

India: Power of participation - women’s groups dramatically improve health for Adivasi mothers and newborns in eastern India 

Case study by Dr Audrey Prost, Dr Prasanta Tripathy and Soumen SarangiInvolving Adivasi women in the planning and evaluating of health care has significantly reduced deaths and empowered women among India’s Adivasi communities in Jharkhand and Odisha.Over 84 million Adivasis (original inhabitants) from more than 500 tribal groups live in western, central, eastern and north-eastern India. Today a quarter of all Adivasis reside in...

Burma: Despite the ceasefire, health care woes continue in south-east 

In a bustling waiting room, Naw sits on a fold-up chair, her hair caught in the breeze of a whirling fan. Her arms rest over the bump just beginning to show beneath her clothes.This will be the eleventh time she has been pregnant. However, it is the first time she will actually consult with a health professional during the sensitive prenatal months.For many like...

China: Maternal deaths remain high for ethnic minorities 

Case study By Rinnai NgadanMany minority women in western China do not give birth in hospitals because of poor-quality facilities and culturally insensitive care.Despite China’s national progress in the areas of maternal and infant health, rural and ethnic minority regions lag behind. A 2010 UN report tracing China’s progress toward the Millennium Development Goals shows that maternal mortality rates are almost twice as high...

Kenya: The impact of land-grabbing, displacement and discrimination on health 

Case study by Chelsea PurvisThe plight of the Ogiek community highlights the impact of land-grabbing, displacement and discrimination on health. The Ogiek are an indigenous group of about 20,000 people in Kenya.The Kenyan government has repeatedly and forcibly evicted the Ogiek from their ancestral land in the Mau Forest and around Mount Elgon. This has left entire communities of Ogiek homeless or without proper...

Uganda: Batwa – sexual violence and lack of health care spreads HIV/AIDS 

Displacement and loss of access to ancestral territory has had devastating effects on indigenous peoples, including on their health status. Arguably, those most severely affected have been the Batwa communities of East and Central Africa.With recent news about increases in HIV infection rates in Uganda, MRG interviewed Faith Tushabe, Executive Director of African International Christian Ministry, an NGO that works closely with Batwa communities...

Mauritania: Why do Haratine women still live in slavery? 

The government must step up efforts to eradicate all forms of slavery and provide health care for its most vulnerable citizens.Though facing serious obstacles Mauritania, 155th of 187 countries on the UN Development Programme’s (UNDP’s) Human Development Index, has been taking steps towards meeting the MDGs. In 2010 it was reported to be very close to halving extreme poverty, and had made slight progress...

Burma: Continued fighting causes human rights abuses and health concerns in non-ceasefire areas 

Lway Poe Ngeal is a Palaung woman who left Burma for better education opportunities in neighbouring Thailand. Now, she works with the Palaung Women’s Organization, which advocates for the rights of an ethnic minority community concentrated in northern Shan state.Palaung civilians have become caught up in the violence between the Burma Army and armed ethnic militias, including the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), the Ta-ang...

Hungary: Roma children arbitrarily separated from families 

The case of a Roma woman whose children were taken away because of alleged ‘mental disabilities’ shows how social services are failing vulnerable families in Hungary.The Hungarian Civil Liberties Union has been representing a case that shows eloquently how the most vulnerable people can be abused and how authorities treat them arbitrarily, affecting the most important aspects of their lives.A 20-year-old woman called LV...

Egypt: Three Churches Pray for Abducted Minor Christian Girls 

The three Churches of Egypt were prompt in responding to calls for prayers, initiated by The Association of Victims of Abductions and Enforced Disappearances (AVAED), in solidarity with abducted minor Christian girls.Both Rev. Rafik Graish, spokesperson of the Catholic Church, and Fr. Luka Rady of the Kousseya Archdiocese of Assyut governorate welcomed the initiative, indicating that they will recite the names of the disappeared...


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