Your search found 36 Results

  1. 1
    Peer Reviewed

    Domestic violence as a human rights issue. [La violencia doméstica como un problema de derechos humanos]

    Thomas DQ; Beasley ME

    Human Rights Quarterly. 1993 Feb; 15(1):36-62.

    Part I of this paper examines why domestic violence was not analyzed traditionally as a human rights issue. It discusses the three independent, though interrelated, changes that occurred to begin to make such an analysis possible: the expansion of the application of state responsibility; the recognition of domestic violence as widespread and largely unprocesuted (brought about by greater public and international recognition of the daily violence experienced by women); and, the understanding that the systematic, discriminatory non-prosecution of domestic violence constitutes a violation of the right to equal protection under international law. Part II describes the first practical application of this evolving approach, in Brazil, where the presence of a broad-based women's movement made it possible to collect the data necessary to support an analysis of the government's responsibility for domestic violence. Finally, Part III explores the value and limitations of the human rights approach to combating domestic violence. We conclude that the human rights approach can be a powerful tool to combat domestic violence, but that there are currently both practical and methodological limitations--in part related to the use of the equal protection framework to assign state responsibility for domestic violence--that are problematic and require further analysis to make the approach more effective. (excerpt)
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  2. 2
    Peer Reviewed

    Is "3 by 5" enough? Recalculating the global need for antiretroviral treatment.

    Anema A; Chan K; McGuire A; Barer JM; Hogg RS

    Lancet. 2004 Sep 18; 364:1034-1035.

    Epidemiological figures presented at the XV International Conference on HIV/AIDS in Bangkok in July, 2004, raised a disturbing irony—there are more people being infected and dying of HIV/AIDS than being treated. Since the WHO and United Nations Joint Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) launched the “3 by 5” initiative in December, 2003, millions of people have become infected and died of HIV/AIDS. Of the estimated 35–42 million people with HIV/AIDS, only 440 000 of those living in middleincome and low-income countries are on antiretroviral therapy. This number is substantially lower than the 3 million people targeted to be on therapy in these countries by 2005. There is increasing concern that the “3 by 5” target will not be met and that the number targeted by WHO and UNAIDS to be treated by 2005 is too low. Our objective was to estimate the actual need for antiretrovirals among HIV-positive adults outside of Canada, the USA, and western Europe. (excerpt)
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  3. 3

    Country profiles for population and reproductive health: policy developments and indicators 2003.

    United Nations Population Fund [UNFPA]; Population Reference Bureau [PRB]

    New York, New York, UNFPA, 2003. iv, 345 p.

    This section outlines the objectives of the country’s formal population policy (if any), or of population-related components of its general development policies. Actions and other measures currently taken to implement these policies are also highlighted to illustrate the Government’s political will and priorities. These descriptions are based on various sources, including the biennial Population Policy Inquiries of the United Nations Population Division and the regular reports on country programme progress submitted to UNFPA. Each of the major subregions is introduced with an overview of common key issues. (excerpt)
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  4. 4

    Gender, health and development in the Americas, 2003. [Data sheet].

    Pan American Health Organization [PAHO]; Population Reference Bureau [PRB]

    Washington, D.C., PAHO, 2003. [12] p.

    Around the world, efforts to reduce poverty and enhance development have had greater success where women and men have relatively equal opportunities. In much of Latin America, however, women’s low social status, poor health, and subordination to men persist. Governments in the region increasingly acknowledge the need to promote gender equity in health and other aspects of development, but the data to monitor disparities between men and women—and progress in closing the gaps—have not been readily available. This data sheet profiles gender differences in health and development in 48 countries in the Americas, focusing on women’s reproductive health, access to key health services, and major causes of death. Its objective is to raise awareness of gender inequities in the region and to promote the use of sex-disaggregated health statistics for policies and programs. This effort is consistent with the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals, adopted by 189 member countries at the UN Millennium Summit (2000), which focus on achieving measurable improvements in people’s lives, including greater gender equality. The data sheet also provides basic population and development indicators and information on other factors that influence health, including education, employment, political participation, and risk factors. Staff of the Pan American Health Organization and the Population Reference Bureau compiled this information using data from official national sources as well as data collected by specialized international agencies. (author's)
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  5. 5
    Peer Reviewed

    World Trade Organisation reaches agreement on generic medicines. New deal will make it easier for poorer countries to import cut-price generic drugs made under compulsory licensing.

    Kapp C

    Lancet. 2003 Sep 6; 362(9386):807.

    After a bitter struggle over patent protection, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) reached agreement in Geneva on Aug 30 to allow developing countries stricken with HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria to import cheap generic drugs. (excerpt)
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  6. 6

    Engendering development through gender equality in rights, resources, and voice. Summary.

    King EM; Mason AD

    Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2001. vii, 32 p. (World Bank Policy Research Report)

    This conclusion presents an important challenge to us in the development community. What types of policies and strategies promote gender equality and foster more effective development? This report examines extensive evidence on the effects of institutional reforms, economic policies, and active policy measures to promote greater equality between women and men. The evidence sends a second important message: policymakers have a number of policy instruments to promote gender equality and development effectiveness. (excerpt)
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  7. 7
    Peer Reviewed

    Lumping and splitting: the health policy agenda in India.

    Peters DH; Rao KS; Fryatt R

    Health Policy and Planning. 2003; 18(3):249-260.

    India’s health system was designed in a different era, when expectations of the public and private sectors were quite different. India’s population is also undergoing transitions in the demographic, epidemiologic and social aspects of health. Disparities in life expectancy, disease, access to health care and protection from financial risks have increased. These factors are challenging the health system to respond in new ways. The old approach to national health policies and programmes is increasingly inappropriate. By analyzing interand intra-state differences in contexts and processes, we argue that the content of national health policy needs to be more diverse and accommodating to specific states and districts. More ‘splitting’ of India’s health policy at the state level would better address their health problems, and would open the way to innovation and local accountability. States further along the health transition would be able to develop policies to deal with the emerging epidemic of non-communicable diseases and more appropriate health financing systems. States early in the transition would need to focus on improving the quality and access of essential public health services, and empowering communities to take more ownership. Better ‘lumping’ of policy issues at the central level is also needed, but not in ways that have been done in the past. The central government needs to focus on overcoming the large inequalities in health outcomes across India, tackle growing challenges to health such as the HIV epidemic, and provide the much needed leadership on systemic issues such as the development of systems for quality assurance and regulation of the private sector. It also needs to support and facilitate states and districts to develop critical capacities rather than directly manage programmes. As India develops a more diverse set of state health policies, there will be more opportunities to learn what works in different policy environments. (author's)
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  8. 8

    Decentralization and public services: the case of immunization.

    Khaleghian P

    Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2003 Mar. 43 p. (World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 2989)

    This study examines the impact of political decentralization on an essential public service provided in almost all countries: childhood immunization. The relationship is examined empirically using a time-series data set of 140 low- and middle-income countries from 1980 to 1997. The study finds that decentralization has different effects in low- and middle- income countries. In the low- income group, decentralized countries have higher coverage rates than centralized ones, with an average difference of 8.5 percent for the measles and DTP3 vaccines. In the middle-income group, the reverse effect is observed: decentralized countries have lower coverage rates than centralized ones, with an average difference of 5.2 percent for the same vaccines. Both results are significant at the 99 percent level. Modifiers of the decentralization- immunization relationship also differ in the two groups. In the low- income group, development assistance reduces the gains from decentralization. In the middle-income group, democratic government mitigates the negative effects of decentralization, and decentralization reverses the negative effects of ethnic tension and ethno- linguistic fractionalization, but institutional quality and literacy rates have no interactive effect either way. Similar results are obtained whether decentralization is measured with a dichotomous categorical variable or with more specific measures of fiscal decentralization. The study confirms predictions in the theoretical literature about the negative impact of local political control on services that have public goods characteristics and inter-jurisdictional externalities. Reasons for the difference between low- and middle- income countries are discussed. (author's)
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  9. 9
    Peer Reviewed

    Challenge to the new political and military order.

    Brunet A

    Women and Environments International. 2003 Spring; (58-59):18-20.

    The idea is not for us to stop our work within the UN's proceedings, but rather to better focus our contributions. More importantly, it is to question new trends, new concepts which superimpose the rights of some upon others, a diplomatic maneuvering which too often allows a right to be forgotten. What was clear yesterday has today become obscure. It isn't a set of laws we deal with, but rather a labyrinth we venture into, in total darkness. Beyond the construction of this labyrinth, very little interest is given to the responsibility of states, corporations, and big busnesses in the militarization of our societies. (excerpt)
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  10. 10

    Namibia's exceptional admission to the ILO.

    Fromont M

    WORLD OF WORK. 1998; (26):2-3.

    Namibia officially became the 136th member state of the International Labour Office (ILO) on October 3, 1978. At that time Namibia was politically dependent on South Africa and lived under apartheid. This stood in contradiction to international law, given that since October 1966 the UN General Assembly had terminated the Republic of South Africa's mandate over the territory. In 1967 it had entrusted its official administration to the UN Council for Namibia, which requested Namibia's admission to the ILO as a full member. Namibia met all the criteria required of a state: an established population and territory, a stable and internationally recognized legal structure, together with the capacity to enter into relations with other states. Namibia was recognized by the Conference as the de-facto authentic government through an election in which 368 voted in favor of Namibia with no oppositions and 50 abstentions.
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  11. 11

    [Trends in the urbanization process in Central America in the 1980's] Tendencias del proceso de urbanizacion en Centroamerica en los 80.

    Lungo Ucles M

    CUADERNOS DEL CENDES. 1990 Jan-Aug; (13-14):101-17.

    In the 1980s, urbanization in Central America was increasing compared to the three previous decades. By 1990, the urban population reached 42% in Guatemala, 44% in El Salvador, 43% in Honduras, 59% in Nicaragua, 53% in Costa Rica, and 54% in Panama. The urban population increased mostly in the largest cities, in contrast to Latin America, where secondary cities grew fastest. This trend was particularly true in Managua and San Salvador because of the military conflicts. The only exception was Honduras, where the second city underwent stronger growth. The urban population comprised 51.7% women and 48.3% men in Central America. The segregation and polarization of social classes was also increasing because of increased poverty and unemployment during the 1980s. This was partly caused by the increasing privatization of public services, decentralization, and the reinforcement of local governments, which all ensued from the structural readjustment programs of the International Monetary Fund. This neoliberal model of economic development in the short run resulted in increased poverty and unemployment for the urban populations. In 1982, the informal sector represented 29% of the total employment in Central America, and its share reached 40% in Managua and San Salvador. Urban unemployment increased from 2.2% in 1980 to 12% in 1988 in Guatemala; from 8.8% to 13.1% in Honduras; and from 10.4% to 20.8% in Panama. In the political arena, the process of democratization was underway, with civil presidents taking power and promoting privatization and deregulation of the economy. There was a close relationship between the urban social structure, the economy, and politics in the region. In Costa Rica, during the Arias administration between 1986 and 1990, a program was implemented creating 80,000 new homes, and in El Salvador there was an increasing demand to find a negotiated solution to the military conflict. These new political and economic perspectives could lead to genuine popular participation in solving urban problems.
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  12. 12

    Africa on the precipice. An ominous but not yet hopeless future.

    Elmore-Meegan M; O'Riorden T

    JAMA. 1993 Aug 4; 270(5):629-31.

    There are 3 political obstacles that have to be overcome before real progress can be made in Africa: civil wars, corrupt autocratic rulers, and government economic mismanagement, Africa is plagued by a series of interminable civil wars that are fueled by intertribal and interclan conflict, ideological disputes, ethnic separatism, imperialism religious intolerance, and personality cults. In 1989, all but 7 of the countries of sub-Saharan Africa were ruled by either military or one-party dictatorships, many of which had been in place since their independence. In 1990, more African countries introduced democracy than in the previous 25 years, and, in 1993, almost half of Africa's countries had some form of multiparty democracy. On the other hand, state acquisition of natural resources and major industries produced a flight of foreign capital, and the industries soon became corrupted by patronage appointees. The governments borrowed heavily against these industries, but, as commodity prices fell during the past 10 years, foreign debt accumulated to a massive $174 billion, a sum equivalent to the entire gross national product of sub-Saharan Africa. During the past 10 years, sub-Saharan Africa's share of the world economy has decreased from 1.9 to 1.2%, with its gross national product equivalent to that of belgium. The average annual per capita income of sub-Saharan Africa's 548 million people is only $290. The World Bank is now stressing the importance of education, primary health care, and improvements in the status of women in an effort to improve the quality of Africa's work force. AIDS is spreading at alarming rates, with an estimated 500,000 cases and a prediction that by the year 2000. 10 million children will be infected at birth with the virus and that millions more will have been orphaned by the disease. One notable success is primary health care employing indigenous health workers to reduce childhood mortality by 30% within 5 years in Tanzania.
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  13. 13
    Peer Reviewed

    Guatemala: a ray of hope.

    Chelala CA

    Lancet. 1992 Sep 5; 340(8819):599-600.

    In Guatemala over 100,000 people were killed in the last 30 years, mostly Indians. The guerrillas and the government signed an agreement in August 1992 that hold out the hope of improvement of human right abuses. The violence goes back to 1954, it diminished in 1984 with the democratic election of a president, but killings and disappearances have continued albeit at a lower rate. Hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced or fled abroad whose repatriation is assisted by international organizations. The PRODERE program of the Pan American Health Organization consists of educational, agricultural, and health components. Maternal mortality is 170/100,000 women and infant mortality is 55.6/1000 live births, but both are likely to be underreported figures. Decentralized health service delivery and infrastructure is set up to improve sanitary conditions. The training of 64 auxiliary nurses, 77 traditional birth attendants, and 170 village health workers has been carried out. Health units and posts have been organized attended by auxiliary nurses. There are rehydration units in health center and in the houses of village health workers to preclude the spread of cholera. The collaboration of the Ministry of Health, UNICEF, and a nursing school have been instrumental in these training programs. The sanitation program involved provision of potable water, wells, and latrine construction with community collaboration to improve poor hygiene. The program has been in operation for 1 year to be completed by the end of 1993 with expectations of positive results in the health status of the population as peace unfolds.
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  14. 14

    Why Nicaraguan children survive. Moving beyond scenario thinking.

    Sandiford P; Coyle E; Smith GD


    The authors respond to Tony Dajer's critique of their study concerning the trend in Nicaraguan infant mortality and its possible explanations. It is pointed out that the sharp decline in Nicaragua's infant mortality in the mid-1970s is an intriguing phenomenon, since it began to occur at a time of economic slump, civil disturbance, and under a government that gave low priority to the social sector. It is contended that a number of factors (among them the Managua earthquake) prompted the government to shift its allocation of resources from hospital-based health care in the capital city to ambulatory health care throughout the country. After the revolution, the Sandinista government continued this process. Dajer's characterization of USAID-funded clinics as "notoriously ineffective" is rejected; arguing that although operating under overt political guidelines, these projects are well-advised by experts. Dajer's question as to the importance of health care within the Sandinista government is considered. It is maintained that the revolution was not fought in order to reduce infant mortality, and that health was not the primary concern of the Government of National Reconstruction. It was the international solidarity movement, not the Sandinista government, which focused so intently on infant mortality, hoping to find good news to report. The issue of health care had the added advantage of being politically noncontroversial. It is also maintained that since the mid-70s, the country's health policy has remained stable, despite the radical changes in government because the international arena helps determine national health policy.
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  15. 15

    Africa 2000: looking at development afresh.

    Sai F

    PEOPLE. 1992; 19(1):32-4.

    The IPPF President asks his fellow Africans to look inward to find sources and solutions to the continent's problems. They can no longer blame colonialism and the international community for its problems, but should realize the governments of African countries which had little regard for their own people have misused government resources and not invested in people. Further the 1 party state is no longer effective at solving Africa's problems and people in many countries are beginning to prefer a multiparty democracy. In addition, 11% of the world's population inhabit Africa but Africa takes part in only 2% of the international trade. Africa's population growth rate is >3%/year and in 1992 it had almost 500 million people, yet the gross national product of the continent equals that of Belgium, a country of 10 million people. Development will need to come from Africans so governments must 1st develop its human resources base such as implementing policies that releases the entrepreneurial spirit, providing universal education, and training high levels professionals including planners, engineers, and entrepreneurs. In fact, military expenditures should be curtailed to make room for the much need development efforts. Further African governments must give priority to developing effective population and family planning programs. African population and family planning experts should convince government officials of the need to appropriate funds to these programs. Governments must also confront the problem of AIDS, but not at the expense of investment and general health programs. The 1990s are the last opportunity for Africa to mobilize its people, especially women and children, to pull itself out of poverty and despair.
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  16. 16

    Eastern Africa: mapping the politics of AIDS.

    Hyden G; Lanegran K

    AIDS AND SOCIETY. 1991 Jan-Feb; 2(2):1, 6, 12-3.

    The political constraints slowing the battle against AIDS in Africa are getting AIDS on the public agenda, integrating the international community into the AIDS policy-making agenda and cultural barriers in national AIDS strategies. Policy making in most Africa is bureaucratic rather than democratic, so whether AIDS is a government priority depends largely on perception of AIDS risk by the leaders. In Zambia and Uganda, AIDS is a concern because it affects the ethnic group or family in power, while in Tanzania and Kenya, AIDS is associated with minority or "high risk" groups. The domination of AIDS agenda setting within nations in Africa by international donors and non-governmental organizations is a problem, made more severely severed by sensitivity of Africans who perceive research as a foreign effort to prove that AIDS originated there. Foreign domination is also detrimental because it prevents localities from becoming committed to AIDS interventions. Cultural barriers against effective interventions are similar to those in Western countries: AIDS is seen as a disease of shame affecting immoral people. In addition, the prevalent concept of fatalism defeats the Western insistence on intervention and strategies. Furthermore, women who are largely dependent on men cannot insist on preventive behavior, not do they have organizations in place to protect their rights. Finally, the concepts of behavioralism, and learning new behaviors for person-centered reasons, are foreign to much of Africa.
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  17. 17

    International trends in reproductive rights.

    Huston P

    [Unpublished] 1990 Jun. Paper presented at the 5th Annual International Women's Rights Action Watch (IWRAW) Conference: A Decade of the Women's Convention: Where are we? What's next?, Roosevelt Hotel, New York City, Jan. 20-22, 1990. 5 p.

    The acceptance and guarantee of a person's basic human right to decide freely and responsibly the number and spacing of one's children still remains an on-going challenge in legal and social institutions. Government's organized opposition to women's freedom in reproductive health care are illustrated in this paper by examples drawn from Romania, Singapore and the Soviet Union. In spite of the fact that the 1st mention of reproductive health care was paralleled to a basic human tight in the UN in 1966, such international guarantees are ignored by governments and powerful coalition groups thus denying the access and availability of services to millions of men and women. There are now around 300 million couples practicing responsible reproduction, an additional 300 million who are seeking such services and another 100-200 million who will join there 2 groups. Finding appropriate resources to meet the needs of education, information, counseling, and follow-up services are a few of the tasks facing administrators and policy-makers in the next decade. Strong political backing is a pre-requisite to assure success of such investments because of the existence of such groups as the anti-choice lobbyists in the US who have succeeded in denying US government funding to UNFPA and IPPF. Constant vigilance is a 2nd requirement to protect, defend and uphold women's right to reproductive choice. Providing women with legal mechanisms is essential if such practices as genital mutilation (female circumcision), child marriage, slavery and illegal prostitution are to be eradicated. The suggestion that 1994 be proclaimed "International Year of the Family" with the theme Family: Resources and Responsibilities in a Changing World, will allow NGO's to develop viable agendas to defend women's reproductive rights internationally. (author's modified)
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  18. 18

    Primary health care -- 10 years on] [editorial]

    Ebrahim GJ

    JOURNAL OF TROPICAL PEDIATRICS. 1988 Dec; 34(6):268-9.

    In 1978 at Alma Ata, the international health community declared Primary Health Care (PHC) as the means by which to bring health to all. PHC's dominant theme is empowerment of individuals, families, and communities to take responsibility for their health. Health professionals and health systems are to assist and support this empowerment. Many developing countries inherited at independence an urban based, elitist learning hospital oriented system as their model for health development. These countries have found it difficult to break out on that model. On the other hand, experiences in China, Cuba, Sri Lanka, and Kerala state in India provide evidence that the key elements of PHC are effective when implemented as part of a national strategy of health development. But trends in health and socioeconomic development differ among countries and even among areas within 1 country, e.g. India, because the trends are part of the process of unique historical, cultural, and political heritage of a society. The national political arena, the ministries of health, and the community are the main fields of action for new developments in health. Nevertheless, a 1985 WHO global review of PHC revealed that 146 of 166 member states participated in PHC exercises and much progress has been made. New distractions to PHC have emerged, however, and emphasis has switched to a technocratic approach called selective primary health care. This includes new technologies targeted on groups or disease problems, e.g. oral rehydration and national campaigns for immunization. This approach calls for basically no change in the status quo with regard to established health systems and local community power structures. The availability of resources will largely determine what approach will be used and, since some countries have achieved good health at low costs, countries will likely follow their lead and use the PHC approach.
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  19. 19


    Sodnom D

    In: Population perspectives. Statements by world leaders. Second edition, [compiled by] United Nations Fund for Population Activities [UNFPA]. New York, New York, UNFPA, 1985. 109-10.

    The fundamental concern of every society must be the right of people to work, to participate actively in productive and social life, and to improve their material and spiritual circumstances. This principle forms the basis of the population policy of the People's Republic of Mongolia. Toward this end, the government has carried out a cultural revolution to overcome the backwardness left behind by the previous feudal-theocratic regime and has created a modern system of health care, education, and social security based on the dynamic development of the country's economy. Among the country's goals for the year 2000 are a general plan for the development and deployment of labor and material resources; programs for food and agriculture, rational energy use, housing, and manpower allocation; and programs for scientific and technical progress. Increasing the size of the population remains a central focus of Mongolia's population policy. Imperialist economic policies and the consequent hunger, malnutrition, and poverty are the main obstacles to development in poor countries--not overpopulation. Despite successes in increasing life expectancy, improving school attendance rates, and increasing per capita income and social consumption, Mongolia has faced several problems in recent years. The increasingly young population has required large expenditures for social needs; in addition, industrialization and consequent urbanization have produced labor shortages in agriculture. The fact that the population is scattered over such a wide area creates obstacles for cultural and educational work. Mongolia is in full support of United Nations population activities aimed at removing obstacles to solving the problems of developing countries and views ensuring peace and security as a necessary 1st step.
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  20. 20


    Machel SM

    In: Population perspectives. Statements by world leaders. Second edition, [compiled by] United Nations Fund for Population Activities [UNFPA]. New York, New York, UNFPA, 1985. 113.

    A legacy of Mozambique's colonial history is extreme underdevelopment, with a strong polarization of the productive infrastructure and social benefits. As a result of the distorted colonial economy, the yearly rate of population growth is several times greater than the rate of economic growth and the standard of living of the majority of the population is inadequate. Improvements in the standard of living of all the people of Mozambique will require careful attention to population growth, fertility, infant mortality, population distribution, and other aspects of demographic behavior. It will be necessary to take action in the areas of health, education, housing, and the social productivity of labor. These goals will be made more difficult by the imported inflation, protectionist measures, deterioration of the terms of trade, and worsening of the rate of interest that the international crisis has imposed on developing countries. Successive natural disasters, food shortages, and technological and scientific dependence further hinder achievement of development. The International Conference on Population should make an important contribution to the search for practical solutions for the development of countries such as Mozambique.
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  21. 21


    United States. Department of State. Bureau of Public Affairs

    BACKGROUND NOTES. 1987 Sep; 1-8.

    The Kingdom of Belgium which borders on the nations of France, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and the Federal Republic of Germany, is one of the smallest European countries and is a parliamentary democracy under a constitutional monarch. The branches of its government are the executive (with a king, a prime minister, and a Council of Ministers), the legislative (a bicameral Parliament and various regional and cultural assemblies), and the judicial (a Court of Cassation modelled on the French system). 30% of Belgium's gross national product comes from machinery, iron and steel, coal, textiles, chemicals, and glass. During the 80 year period which preceded WWI, Belgium remained neutral in an era of intra-European wars until German troops overran the country during their attack on France in 1914. Some of the worst battles of that war were fought in Belgium. Again in 1940, Belgium was occupied by the Germans. There was a government-in-exile in London; however the King remained in Belgium during the war. The course of Belgian politics was determined largely by the division of the Belgian people into 2 major language groups--the Dutch speakers and French speakers. Regional and language rivalries are taken into account in all important national decisions. The 3 major political parties representing the main ideological tendencies are the Socialists, the Socialist Christians, and the Liberals. Belgium is one of the most open economies in the world and is a densely populated, highly industrialized country in the midst of a highly industrialized region. An economic austerity program was instituted at the beginning of this decade which included devaluation of the Belgian franc, reduction of government expenditures, a partial price freeze, etc. Improvements have been seen as a result of this program. Although US investment has declined in recent years, total US direct investment is estimated at $5.28 billion and there are 899 US companies currently operating in Belgium. As a member of NATO, Belgium's armed forces are part of the NATO integrated military structure. Belgium is a proponent of close cooperation with the US and they seek improved East-West relations. In this vein, Belgium works closely with the US both bilaterally and multilaterally to liberalize trade, and to foster economic and political cooperation and assistance to developing countries.
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  22. 22


    United States. Department of State. Bureau of Public Affairs

    BACKGROUND NOTES. 1987 Aug; 1-7.

    Madagascar, in the Indian Ocean near Mozambique, is officially known as the Democratic Republic of Madagascar. This republic has 3 branches of government and includes 6 provinces or subdivisions. Since 1981, it has received more than $62 million in grants and concessional sales from the US. There have been other types of assistance as well, including a development assistance program begun in 1985. Its population is largely of mixed Asian and African origin. There exists an historic rivalry between the Catholic coastal people, Cotiers, and the Protestant Merina, who predominate in civil service, business, and the professions. To combat this, the government has set one of its goals to be the highlighting of nationalism. The beginning of Madagascar's written history can be traced to when the Arabs established trading posts along the coastal areas. Eventually, Madagascar moved toward independence from the French and became an autonomous state in 1958. The president is elected for a 7-year term and is the head, during that time, of the Supreme Revolutionary Council. There is a 3-tiered court system, including a lower court for civil and criminal cases, a criminal court for more serious crimes, and a supreme court. The government represents a strong socialist philosophy and outright criticism of the President and his government is not tolerated. The economy of Malagasy is dominated by agriculture, which employs about 85% of the population. Although it faces some serious problems in the areas of foreign exchange and imports/exports, Madagascar is a potentially prosperous country. It boasts diversified agricultural production, it is rich in minerals, and it maintains strong commercial ties to the West. Madagascar's major trading partners are France, the US, the Federal Republic of Germany, the Soviet Union, Qatar, and Japan. Madagascar maintains the Popular Armed Forces for its defense; however, there is a heavy reliance on the Soviet Union for military equipment and training. US-Malagasy relations have been warm for most of its history until 1971 when the US ambassador and 5 members of his staff were expelled. In 1980, a new ambassador arrived and in 1981, 2 Food for Peace rice agreements were concluded. In 1986, Madagascar became the 1st African country to be the recipient of assistance under the program Food for Progress, given to nations which have undertaken successful economic reform.
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  23. 23

    [Democracy, migration and return: Argentinians, Chileans and Uruguayans in Venezuela] Democracia, migracion y retorno: los Argentinos, Chilenos y Uruguayos en Venezuela.

    Bidegain G

    Caracas, Venezuela, Universidad Catolica Andres Bello, Instituto de Investigaciones Economicas y Sociales, 1986 Jul. 36 p. (Documento de Trabajo No. 29)

    Data from national censuses, migration registers, and the migration survey of 1981 were used to estimate the volume of migration from Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay to Venezuela in the past 35 years as well as the number returning to their countries of origin through programs established by international agencies. Immigrants from the 3 countries to Venezuela have in the past been a tiny minority. In 1950, they numbered just 1277 persons and represented .59% of persons born abroad. They were enumerated at 5531 in the 1961 census, at 8086 in the 1971 census, and at 43,748 in the 1981 census. In 1981, they accounted for 4.1% of the foreign born population. Between 1971-84, 13,074 Argentinians, 23,907 Chileans, and 6947 Uruguayans entered Venezuela. From 1971-79, 45,848 immigrants from the 3 countries entered Venezuela, with 13,000 more entering than exiting in 1978 alone. 1973-78 were years of economic prosperity and progress in Venezuela. From 1980-84, as economic conditions deteriorated, almost a quarter of a million persons left Venezuela, including 129,834 foreigners and 107,321 Venezuelans. About 2000 persons from Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay left Venezuela in the 5-year period. To determine whether the reemergence of democracy in Argentina and Uruguay in the 1980s had prompted the return of migrants from these countries, the subpopulation returning with the aid of 2 international organizations was studied. The records were examined of all individuals returning to the 3 countries between January 1983-June 1986 with the assistance of the Intergovernmental Committee for Migration or the UN High Commission for Refugees. 462 women and 395 men were repatriated during the study period. 46.4% of those repatriated were 20-49 years old and 39.7% were under 20. About 60% of the Uruguayans but only about 25% of the Argentinians and Chileans were assisted by the UN High Commission for Refugees. The crude activity rate was 52.2% for repatriated men and 34.2% for repatriated women. Activity rates were 58.4% for Uruguayans, 48.7% for Argentinians, and 48.0% for Chileans. The repatriation was highly selective; 79.5% of Chileans, 74.3% of Argentinians, and 67.4% of Uruguayans declared themselves to be professionals, technicians, or related workers. Of the 857 persons repatriated from Venezuela, 550 went to Argentina, 196 to Uruguay, and 107 to Chile. An additional 4 Chileans went to Sweden. The Argentinian colony in Venezuela has shrunk and will probably continue to do so, the Chilean colony has not declined and may actually grow because of economic and political conditions in Chile, and the Uruguayan colony has hardly declined, suggesting that immigration is continuing.
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  24. 24


    United States. Department of State. Bureau of Public Affairs

    BACKGROUND NOTES. 1985 Oct; 1-6.

    Burundi, with 1 of the highest population densities in sub-Saharan Africa, is a high, rolling country in the Nile-Congo crest. Of the 3 main ethnic groups, the Hutu, about 85% of the population, are primarily farmers. Burundi became independent in 1962. Ultimate political power is vested in the Central Committee of the sole political party, called the UPRONA. Its members are all those citizens of Burundi who profess allegiance to its principles. The Burundi government is dedicated to improving the living conditions of the rural poor and to ethnic reconciliation and national unity. Over 90% of the population are subsistence farmers; Burundi is 1 of the world's poorest countries. Over 80% of export earnings are provided by coffee but tea production continues to increase. Burundi seeks good relations with its neighbors Rwanda, Zaire, and Tanzania and has even entered into joint economic development projects with Rwanda and Tanzania. Its armed forces are well-trained and well-equipped and they work to keep law and order and to deter foreign interference by neighbors of Burundi. The US government keeps friendly relations with Burundi and has encouraged efforts to establish political stability and peaceful economic development. The US Agency for International Development program development strategy in Burundi focuses on promoting food availability, fuel production, and family health. Numerous other programs in effect are also mentioned. Principal US officials, travel notes, principal government officials, and other information are included.
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  25. 25


    United States. Department of State. Bureau of Public Affairs

    BACKGROUND NOTES. 1985 Nov; 1-4.

    Fiji is a group of volcanic islands located in the South Pacific. Because of the rough terrain in its center, that area is sparsely populated; most of Fiji's population live on the island coasts. Almost all indigenous Fijians are Christians and English is the official language. In 1970 Fiji became a fully sovereign and independent nation within the British Commonwealth. The British monarch appoints the governor general who in turn appoints as prime minister the leader of the majority party in House of Representatives. The transition to independence for Fijians was achieved in a peaceful fashion. While there are some racial tensions between the Indo-Fijians and the indigenous Fijians, the 2 major political parties and the various leaders have succeeded in maintaining order. The government of Fiji, since attaining independence, has worked hard toward economic and social progress and there have been great strides made in education, health, agriculture, and nutrition. The thrust of Fiji's economy is sugar and the 2nd component is tourism. Fiji does import a wide variety of goods but industrial development is proceeding well. Fiji encourages local and foreign investment in the hopes of promoting development and providing industrial jobs. Regional cooperation is the main element in Fiji foreign policy they joined the UN in 1970. Full diplomatic relations exist between the US and Fiji and US and Fijian officials have exchanged visits. In 1985 the US provided $1.5 million in disaster relief funds to Fiji; there is expedcted to be a bilateral aid agreement between the 2 countries in 1986. Travel notes, government and US officials, and further information are included.
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