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Analysis: Finding the roots of Nepal’s rural mountain poverty
11 February 2014 (IRIN ), Despite six decades of development interventions and nearly a billion dollars in annual foreign assistance, Nepal is still struggling to combat rural poverty. Some experts and local leaders say improving the lives of the rural poor requires patient community-driven initiatives and proper management of the resources communities already have, rather than large-scale strategies.
Papua New Guinea battles open defecation
10 February 2014 (IRIN ), When Willie Savo needs to relieve himself, there’s only one place to go. “Near the mango tree,” the five-year-old said outside his family’s village home. “Where else am I supposed to go?”
Why Sri Lankan children in north drop out
7 February 2014 (IRIN ), Sri Lankan authorities have expressed concern over an increasing number of reports that children are dropping out of school in the conflict-affected north, where economic pressure and poor prospects are creating conditions that could have negative consequences for the future development of the region.
Eco-friendly medical waste disposal in Nepal
6 February 2014 (IRIN ), Managing waste is one of the most complicated and risky tasks among the many challenges of running a hospital in Nepal. Few health facilities comply with the applicable waste disposal laws, which can jeopardize patient and practitioner health. But one government hospital is using eco-friendly methods to reduce its waste.
Final phase of Sri Lankan demining will take longer
5 February 2014 (IRIN ), Sri Lankan military officials have confirmed that the “final phase” of landmine clearance in the conflict-affected parts of northern Sri Lanka will take another two or three years.
Inquiry urged into Bangladesh's "extrajudicial" killings
4 February 2014 (IRIN ), Activists in Bangladesh have called for an investigation into a recent spate of killings described by many as ‘extrajudicial’. Activists claim most of those who died were affiliated to the opposition.
Connectivity and emerging infectious diseases in Southeast Asia
3 February 2014 (IRIN ), Experts sometimes describe Southeast Asia as a “hotspot” for emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) because several major outbreaks have started in this region. Now, with unprecedented levels of connection between animals and people through urbanization, and of people with other people through increased air travel, scientists say the threat level for new diseases is high.
Indonesian eruption displaces people, buries crops
3 February 2014 (IRIN ), Thousands of people displaced by steadily falling ash from an active Mount Sinabung thought they would be able to return to their homes and resume their livelihoods, but those hopes have been dashed by a deadly eruption on 1 February.
Papua New Guinea’s battle over betel nut
31 January 2014 (IRIN ), Health officials in Papua New Guinea (PNG) are concerned over rising levels of oral cancer in betel nut chewers amid a controversial ban on its usage in the capital, Port Moresby. Upwards of 25,000 people die annually from mouth cancer, many more than the 15,000 just a few years earlier, according to the Department of Health.
Minorities targeted in Bangladesh political violence
31 January 2014 (IRIN ), Following attacks on religious minorities, mostly Hindus, activists in Bangladesh are calling for increased protection to forestall further violence in the majority Muslim country.

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