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Curiously, for once everything about it is French!

Sudhirendar Sharma I have come to realize that my connection with the French goes beyond the gust of wind and the burst of fire, the proverbial reference to the deadly Mirage and the destructive Rafale. Perhaps, fashion and wines have a better claim to the country’s identity than its controversial defence deals. Even heroin smuggling from Turkey to Canada via ... Read More »

Life starts with everyone clapping

Sudhirendar SharmaThe pun in his remark got me clapping involuntarily. Wonder, how else could anyone react to famous rapper and Grammy winner Jay-Z holding former US President Bill Clinton as the ultimate rock star, “people clap in a restaurant when he finishes dinner.” And, he didn’t stop at just that and added “I don’t get that treatment. I get it ... Read More »

2019 – A Devastating Year in Review

By Farhana Haque Rahman ROME, Dec 16 2019 (IPS) – By any measure, this has been a devastating year: fires across the Amazon, the Arctic and beyond; floods and drought in Africa; rising temperatures, carbon emissions and sea levels; accelerating the loss of species, and mass forced migrations of people. Read More »

Cop hailed as hero for saving newborn from dogs

Chattogram, Aug 21 (UNB) – A police officer is being praised for protecting a newborn from dogs in the port city on early Tuesday. Sub-Inspector Mostafizur Rahman and tales of his selfless act went viral on the social media within hours. He said he was standing in front of Akteruzzaman Centre near the end of his night shift when he ... Read More »

2000 hand pumps go dry as groundwater down in Dhaka suburb

Keraniganj, July 12 (UNB)- It is not about a single tube- well that would go out of order and could be fixed soon. Imagine a village dependent on groundwater, where one day residents wake up to find not 1, 10, or 20 but rather 2,000 tube-wells together have been rendered useless to the task of lifting water. The situation can ... Read More »

Bladder cancer ‘attacked and killed by common cold virus’

Dhaka, Jul 8 (UNB) – A strain of the common cold virus can infect and kill bladder cancer cells, a small study suggests, reports the BBC. All signs of the disease disappeared in one patient, and in 14 others there was evidence that cancer cells had died. University of Surrey researchers said the virus could “help revolutionise treatment” for the ... Read More »

BD High Court declares all rivers as living entities

Dhaka, July 1 (UNB) – The High Court has observed that Bangladesh’s existence depends on the protection of rivers. “The country will survive, beloved Bangladesh will survive if the rivers are protected,” it said. The HC bench of Justice Moyeenul Islam Chowdhury and Justice M Ashraful Kamal came up with the observations in the full verdict declaring the Turag River ... Read More »

Ending colonial injustice: Chagos Islands back to natives

By Dr Jaspal Kaur Sadhu Singh The correction of this injustice has been achieved through a long drawn fight, somewhat of a David and Goliath contest. The outcome, culminating in a spectacular opinion and vote, has a number of consequences that can impact a rules-based international order, a commitment promoted by the UN Charter which specifically seeks to ‘establish conditions ... Read More »

‘Born a refugee, I dream of a place called home’

By Mohammed On World Refugee Day, personal reflections of a young Palestinian from the Gaza Strip CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina, USA, Jun 20 2019 (IPS) – I am a refugee, born to a refugee family. I was granted that status on the day I came into this world. I was not aware of what had happened before then. I did ... Read More »

An uncertain future for Palestinian refugees

By Charlotte Munns UN, Jun 12 2019 (IPS) – The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has been forced to justify its existence at the United Nations ahead of a pledging conference later this month. UNRWA came under fire by Jason Greenblatt, US Special Envoy for International Negotiations, at a Security Council ... Read More »

In hot water? Study says warming may reduce sea life by 17%

Washington, June 11 (AP/UNB) — The world’s oceans will likely lose about one-sixth of their fish and other marine life by the end of the century if climate change continues on its current path, a new study says. Every degree Celsius (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit) that the world’s oceans warm, the total mass of sea animals is projected to drop by ... Read More »

Where did insects come from?

by Geetha Iyer The evolution of insects About 500 million years ago (MYA), the Earth experienced a remarkable evolutionary event. Called the Cambrian explosion, it resulted in the emergence of a plethora of life forms – some gigantic, others small; some that lived on land and others that occupied water. Around 412 MYA (in a time period called the Devonian), ... Read More »

Botswana decriminalises gay sex in landmark case

By Cara Anna | AP Johennesburg — Botswana became the latest country to decriminalize gay sex on Tuesday, a landmark case for Africa, as the High Court rejected laws punishing it with up to seven years in prison. Jubilant activists in the packed courtroom cheered the unanimous decision in the southern African nation that is seen as one of the continent’s most ... Read More »

23 million boys married before 15 globally: Unicef

Dhaka, June 8 (UNB)— An estimated 115 million boys and men around the world were married as children, according to the first-ever analysis on child grooms, launched on Friday by the UN Children’s Fund (Unicef). Twenty-three million among them married before the age of 15. Using data from 82 countries, the in-depth study brings the overall number estimated child marriages ... Read More »

Stressed out? Your dog may feel it too, study suggests

New York, June 7 (AP/UNB) — When dog owners go through a stressful period, they’re not alone in feeling the pressure — their dogs feel it too, a new study suggests. Dog owners experiencing long bouts of stress can transfer it to their dogs, scientists report in a study published Thursday in Scientific Reports. The Swedish researchers focused on 58 ... Read More »

When to have thyroid test?

The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped endocrine gland located at the front of the neck below Adam’s apple. It is basically responsible for the secretion of thyroid hormones which regulates body processes such as respiration, body temperature, pulsation, digestion and almost all the metabolic processes in your body. Thyroid Gland produces mainly two hormones T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine) ... Read More »

Pakistani and Afghan refugees seek safe haven in Sri Lanka

By Caroline Gluck Negombo, Sri Lanka, May 31 2019 (IPS) – Thirteen-year-old Bariea, a Pakistani asylum seeker in Sri Lanka, is taking shelter at a mosque in the city of Negombo, where an uneasy mix of high anxiety and extreme boredom hover over the room. “We just have a few small bags, mostly clothes,” said Bariea. “We thought we would ... Read More »

How European telcos are monitoring people’s online activity

by Katherine Barnett The security and privacy of personal data are being jeopardised as Deep Packet Inspection is deployed by internet service providers. Europe has not escaped the global move towards ‘surveillance capitalism’. Numerous pieces of legislation are under consideration which put online freedoms and privacy at risk—the UK’s Online Harms white paper is just one example. Now European telecommunication ... Read More »

Welcome to GAFA land of tech giants where winner takes all

by Susanne Wixforth Amazon symbolises the four platform giants, also known as GAFA (Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon). The company is Europe’s largest platform retailer and its turnover is twice as high as that of its 20 largest competitors. While Amazon´s chief executive earned 2.16 million dollars per hour in 2017, its workers must be grateful if they receive the ... Read More »