Elephants get a break as Cites opens in Bangkok

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GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The Cites meeting to review the state of the world’s endangered species opened this weekend in Bangkok, Thailand, with a promise from the country’s foreign minister that trading in ivory in the country would be brought to a halt. Thailand’s laws allow some trade but it is also a centre for illegal […]

Recycled bikes, a green on green idea

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Vélos pour l’Afrique will be sending its 100,00oth recycled bicycle to Africa this week, a point brought to my attention by M-Way, the Migros shop that sells electronic bikes – and that is giving CHF250 discounts to anyone who buys a new e-bike and trades in their old bike. A great way […]

Global child mortality, wages as share of wealth numbers: growing disparities

Overall, fewer children dying, but Africa and some parts Asia not keeping pace Richest 1% in several countries have 10-20% of national wealth GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Global child mortality, which measures the number of deaths of children under age five, has fallen from 12 million a year to 6.9m, from 1990 to 2011, a report […]

RIP: Andy Sundberg, Geneva (update)

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Americans overseas lose one of their staunchest defenders   Update: Andy Sundberg services will take place at 15:00 on Monday 3 September at the Lutheran Church, in Geneva. To read comments, please go to the end of the article. GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The US presidential election in November will be missing a key voice, but […]

Uganda fights deadly Ebola outbreak, WHO speaks on the disease (video)

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Shaking hands and other physical contact could be deadly said the Ugandan President on 31 July. The warning came after a health worker died in the capital Kampala, after traveling by bus to the city following the death of her baby. 14 people have died since the highly contagious viral illness broke […]

Swiss move up to 10 on Global Peace Index

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Guns in homes weakens country’s standing GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Switzerland ranks number 10 in the 2012 Global Peace Index published by Australia-based Vision of Humanity for the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP). The country moved into the top 10 for the first time and it showed the largest improvement among European countries, mainly as […]

More bribery behind sharp increase in suspect money flows

MROS, Switzerland, growth in suspicious financial activity reporting in 10 years

Arab spring played a role Numbers are impressive but it’s the criminal tales that are gripping BERN, SWITZERLAND – Switzerland saw a 40 percent increase in 2011 in the number of suspicious activities reports (Sars) to MROS, the Money Laundering Reporting Office Switzerland, the federal office shows in its annual report published Monday 14 May. […]

World jobs outlook gloomy, new ILO report says

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – A quick fix for joblessness worldwide, but particularly in Europe, is not at hand, says the International Labour Organization (ILO). The Geneva-based UN body gives a gloomy prognosis in its new “World of Work 2012″ report, issued Monday 30 April. It argues that the time has come to “move towards a growth- […]

Substantial groundwater reserves identified in Africa (update)

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GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Africa could be sitting on 100 times more water underground than what it has on the surface, according to a British report. A report in the Journal of Environmental Research Letters says that some of the largest aquifer reserves are reportedly located under the most arid States, including Egypt, Libya, Sudan, Algeria, […]

“Ghana calling” and hearts, or at least ears, gladden

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – There are few politicians I’m as pleased to listen to as former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, and it has nothing to do with the value of what he’s saying. He has one of the most delightful accents in the English-speaking world, the one that tops my list (certain soft Irish accents run […]