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September 18, 2019

South Africa
Why South Africa's Ramaphosa Is Skipping UNGA

Ramaphosa announced that he will not be going to New York this year for UNGA. South Africa’s delegation will be led by Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor. Ramaphosa says that, instead of attending UNGA, he will focus on a number of crises currently facing the country. He will work on implementing measures against gender-based violence and public violence, which almost certainly refers to the xenophobic attacks on foreigners.

Demonstrators hold signs, one of which reads "Just Want to Feel Safe."

September 12, 2019

Women and Economic Growth
Fighting HIV in Young Women Through Economic Empowerment

Voices from the Field features contributions from scholars and practitioners highlighting new research, thinking, and approaches to development challenges. This post is authored by Lanice C. Williams…

Women weave polythene baskets at a community-based organisation in the Kibera slum of Nairobi that empowers women living with HIV/AIDS.

September 11, 2019

South Africa
Poor South Africans Attacking Foreign-Owned Business

Mob attacks on foreign-owned shops in Johannesburg have damaged relations between South Africa and Nigeria. The Nigerian government has announced that it is evacuating some four hundred Nigerians from South Africa. The violence is being characterized as “xenophobic,” which, by all accounts, it is. But the story is more complicated, and aspects of it have roots in apartheid South Africa and the dislocations resulting from too-rapid urbanization.

A man stands and looks among the burnt out cars at his dealership in Johannesburg, South Africa, following attacks.

September 6, 2019

Sub-Saharan Africa
Mugabe and the Zimbabwe He Left Behind

Robert Mugabe, who ruled over Zimbabwe for 37 years, died on September 6. His was an undeniably epic life of glaring contradictions. He was a passionate voice for the liberation of the Zimbabwean people from the injustice and humiliation of white minority rule, but a brutal oppressor when those same people sought to exercise political freedom.

Zimbabwe's former President Robert Mugabe looks on before casting his vote in Highfields outside Harare July 31, 2013

August 22, 2019

Nigeria
Home to Over Half the Population, Nigeria's Cities Continue to Boom

At independence in 1960, Lagos had an estimated population of 763,000; today it is about 13 million. Together with Lagos state, the population reaches 21 million. While Lagos is by far the largest city in Nigeria, security concerns, rural poverty, and hopes for greater economic opportunity are driving people to cities all over the country.

People, buses, and motorbikes move along roads on Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria in front of skyscrapers.

July 31, 2019

Rwanda
Alongside Real Progress, Kagame’s Human Rights Abuses Persist

President Paul Kagame’s Vision 2020 roadmap for Rwanda has led to remarkable progress with respect to women’s equal place in society. But these great strides in gender equality occur alongside Kagame’s human rights abuses. 

Diane Rwigara is held and escorted by two police officers in Rwanda.

July 30, 2019

Women and Women's Rights
The 2019 World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

Human trafficking is more than a gross violation of human rights—it is also a security challenge. On World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, Jamille Bigio explores the security implications of huma…

Suay Ing, daughter of migrant construction workers from Myanmar, was fourteen years old when she was trafficked to Bangkok, Thailand, by a broker who promised her a job and abandoned her. May 25, 2015.

July 23, 2019

Democratic Republic of Congo
Absent More International Support, Ebola Will Continue to Spread Beyond Congo

Disease outbreaks in states with weak governance and high rates of poverty often spread to other countries. With respect to eastern Congo’s Ebola outbreak, they highlight the fact that the disease has spread out of eastern Congo to the border with Rwanda and into Uganda. The World Health Organization has designated the outbreak as a “public health emergency of international concern.” 

Congolese health workers sit at a long table.

July 22, 2019

Development
Why Investing in Women Matters: Mainstreaming Women’s Economic Empowerment in the World’s Poorest Countries

Voices from the Field features contributions from scholars and practitioners highlighting new research, thinking, and approaches to development challenges. This post is authored by Esther Pan Sloane,…

Fofanan Man, a 59-year-old businesswoman, poses for a photograph in front of textiles in her shop in Bouake, Ivory Coast.

July 18, 2019

Development
Development Turns Competitive With Mixed Results

A vast gulf remains between development financing and development goals. International competition could help bridge that gap, but has produced mixed results to date.

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank President Jin Liqun at the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing, China, on April 25, 2019.