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Mental health woes for southern Thai women

PATTANI, 30 April 2014 (IRIN) - Activists and academics in southern Thailand are calling for improved assistance, including mental health services, for women affected by the decade-long armed conflict between government forces and Muslims seeking greater autonomy. full report

Jihadi jurisprudence? Militant interpretations of Islamic rules of war

DUBAI, 24 April 2014 (IRIN) - Within extremist militant circles is a debate over acceptable behavior under the Islamic rules of war. This so-called “jihadi jurisprudence” is increasingly studied by humanitarians as practitioners seek to understand the degree to which there is room for even the most radical armed groups to be influenced in favour of the protection of civilians and aid workers. full report

Islamic law and the rules of war

DUBAI, 24 April 2014 (IRIN) - Islamic law contains a rich, but complex set of rules on the protection of civilians which can be difficult to understand, given the range of sources and interpretations available. IRIN walks you through the basics. full report

“Hell is real for the Rohingyas in Thailand”

BANGKOK, 28 February 2014 (IRIN) - Abdul Kalam, 53, a Rohingya from Myanmar’s western Rakhine State, arrived in Thailand more than 30 years ago, after escaping forced labour in his home village of Nalywah. “I know I am not safe here. I worry a lot about it. I have seen too many people die in detention or in human trafficking camps,” said Kalam. full report

Stepping up the fight against drug-resistant malaria in SE Asia

PHNOM PENH, 20 February 2014 (IRIN) - Efforts are being scaled up to stem a further spread of drug-resistant malaria in Southeast Asia. “The emergence of resistance… threatens worldwide malaria control and treatment since there is no alternative to this drug if its efficacy decreases further and the resistance spreads outside the region,” wrote the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which is providing some US$150 million for malaria prevention and elimination programmes in the Greater Mekong sub-region within the next two years. full report

Connectivity and emerging infectious diseases in Southeast Asia

BANGKOK, 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. full report

Rethinking Thailand’s war on methamphetamines

BANGKOK, 13 January 2014 (IRIN) - Despite an aggressive crackdown on drugs, Thailand’s fight against methamphetamines is failing, activists say. With supply and demand rising, these highly addictive substances, commonly known as “meth”, are now the drug of choice. full report

Life-saving hepatitis C drug approved, but cost is high

New York, 23 December 2013 (IRIN) - Following approvals in the US and Europe this month of a new drug to treat hepatitis C, activists are pushing for the medication to be made available in poor countries. full report

Summit spotlights Asia’s food and nutrition security

BANGKOK, 25 November 2013 (IRIN) - Representatives of the UN, governments, NGOs and private sector farming are expected to gather in Bangkok, Thailand, on 26 November for a two-day forum on how to fill the Asia-Pacific’s growing food demands and nutrition gaps in a region more devastated by natural disasters than any other worldwide. full report

When rebels retire in Indonesia

ACEH/JIJIEM, 7 October 2013 (IRIN) - Joining a rebellion is not a typical career move. Yet up to 26,000 people in Indonesia spent years working for a separatist rebellion that lasted nearly 30 years in northern Sumatra. Children followed their parents into battlefields and war rooms. Sons went abroad for training. Upon leaving the force, a number received payment. But any similarities with gainful employment end there. full report

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