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The grassroots democracy practised at the village level is “self-autonomy” that existed before the People’s Republic of China (PRC) was established in 1949 by Mao Zedong. Credit: Kalinga Seneviratne.

China’s Grassroots Democracy Paves Path to Sustainable Development

By Kalinga Seneviratne

HUANGSHI, Hubei Province, China | 12 January 2024 (IDN) — About 30 minutes drive from this city in Hubei Province are villages that are providing a model of village-based grassroots democracy that is paving the path to achieving the sustainable development goals (SDGs), adopted by the United Nations (UN) in 2015, which China supported. (P29) Arabic | Chinese | Japanese | Korean |  Spanish

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Thailand: Farm Academy Training Takes Kids Away from Screens

By Pattama Vilailert

KHON KAEN, Thailand | 6 January 2024 (IDN) — Nalinthip has been a nurse for 13 years and is the mother to two children aged three and five. Her husband is a YouTuber who spends most of his time on the screen at the age of 40. His Internet using behavior alarmed Nalinthip and she became worried that her young children would follow in the father’s footsteps. (P28) Indonesian | Italian | Japanese | Thai

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Africa: Instability Slows Down Progress in Sustainable Development

By Jeffrey Moyo

HARARE, Zimbabwe | 10 December 2023 (IDN) — For almost two years, Zimbabwe’s opposition politician, Job Sikhala, has remained jailed without conviction after he was arrested in 2021, facing charges of inciting public violence.

Another opposition leader, Jacob Ngarivhume, was jailed in April this year for four years on similar charges as in 2020 when he called for a national shutdown in protest over poor government leadership here. (P26)  Japanese | PortugueseSwahili | Turkish

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Why War and How Peace – the Nordic Perspective

By Lowana Veal

REYKJAVIK, Iceland | 5 November 2023 (IDN) — While the global media is focusing on the decision of Finland and Sweden to join NATO against the backdrop of the Ukraine War, along with the Israel–Palestine conflict, little attention is paid to the Nordic Council of Ministers and the vision of the Nordic Council —which involves Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland—to make the Nordic region the most sustainable and integrated region in the world. (P23) German | Japanese

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Vienna Conference Considers Boundaries and Frontiers in Human Trafficking

By Aurora Weiss

VIENNA | 29 October 2023 (IDN) — Combatting Trafficking in Human Beings remains a global phenomenon that requires intensive collaboration between governmental and non-governmental entities. Interdisciplinary cooperation, awareness raising, and proactive efforts on national, regional, and international levels are essential in this context. An effective preventive measure is the professional exchange of expertise among anti-trafficking practitioners. (P22) Arabic | French | Japanese

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Civic Engagement Key to Tackle Our Biggest Challenges

By Simone Galimberti

The writer is co-founder of ENGAGE and Good Leadership, Good for You & the Society.

KATHMANDU, Nepal | 21 October 2023 (IDN) — How staggering is it that one of the best tools to fight the most formidable challenges humanity faces remains undervalued and underappreciated?

I am talking about the role that civic engagement should play in helping tackle the most intractable and urgent issues that we are pressed to deal with.  From climate change to societal polarization, we are indeed at a crossroads. (P21) Indonesian | Japanese | Thai 

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