Americas

El Salvador: Response to the rise in gang killings ‘cruel and inhuman’

The introduction of a series of measures in El Salvador in response to a rise in gang killings, has prompted the grave concern of the UN human rights office, which noted on Tuesday a pattern of “unnecessary and excessive use of force” by police and military forces.

First Person: Visions of hell, in Haiti

Samuel (not his real name) grew up near the Haitian Capital of Port-au-Prince, and has seen his childhood home descend into lawlessness and gang violence. Now a staff member with the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in the country, he faces the daily risk of kidnapping, or worse.

The key to climate action and sustainable peace? Women’s full and equal participation

Women and children increasingly bear the brunt of climate change, which deepens the inequalities and vulnerabilities they already face, such as poverty, violence, lack of opportunities and basic human rights. Yet women are not victims; they are survivors, innovators and solution-multipliers who deserve a real seat at the table. Two Colombian activists tell us why this is true.

UN highlights human cost of transatlantic slave trade

The United Nations on Tuesday remembered the horrors of the transatlantic slave trade and its continued impact on the modern world, by honouring the tradition of resistance to slavery and unity against racism, through personal stories of courage.

Farmers in northern Haiti dig for resilience

Farmers in the north of Haiti are working to build their resilience to extreme weather patterns in an attempt to better protect themselves from the loss of property and crops that often result from natural disasters.

‘Sharp rise’ in Nicaraguans fleeing to Costa Rica, strains asylum system

Around three per cent of Costa Rica’s population is now made up of Nicaraguan refugees and asylum seekers, the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, said on Friday.

Canada urged to amend transgenerational discriminatory Indian Act

The UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) called on Thursday, for Canada to fully address long-standing gender-based discrimination in its Indian Act, which continues to affect tens of thousands of descendants of indigenous women today.

First Person : I don’t want to die in the body of a man

A transgender woman in Haiti has said she does not want to die in a man's body, and hopes to leave her native country to fulfill her dream of transitioning from being a man to a woman. Semi Alisha Fermond works with transgender people at Kay Trans Ayiti (the Creole name for Trans House Haiti) and is an activist with the UNDP and UNAIDS-supported organization Community Action for the Integration of Vulnerable Haitians (ACIFVH). 

Students go back to Haitian school three years after gang attack

Students have returned to the Lycée National de La Saline after it was closed due to gang violence.

Training offers a way out of poverty for young victims of Colombian conflict

Camilo Vergara is one of hundreds of young Colombians benefiting from a UN programme aimed at pulling victims of the country’s former conflict out of poverty, and into stable employment.