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ISS Africa | Beyond rhetoric: the role of women in sustainable peacebuilding

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ISS Africa | Beyond rhetoric: the role of women in sustainable peacebuilding.

“A high-level review of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolution 1325, expected to be released in October this year, provides an opportunity for policymakers to move beyond the rhetoric of gender mainstreaming and start putting words into practice. Resolution 1325 underlines the need for gender-sensitive approaches to peace and stability in post-conflict contexts.

Although the inclusion of women in peacebuilding processes has gained momentum in policy discussions over the last 15 years, the number of women in decision-making positions remains relatively small. Peacebuilding is the foundation for creating sustainable human security and equitable development in countries emerging from conflict. UNSC resolution 1325 recognises that women are disproportionally affected by conflict, and to address this, women should play a key role in achieving lasting peace after conflict…”

Schools that ban mobile phones see better academic results | Education | The Guardian

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Schools that ban mobile phones see better academic results | Education | The Guardian.

“It is a question that keeps some parents awake at night. Should children be allowed to take mobile phones to school? Now economists claim to have an answer. For parents who want to boost their children’s academic prospects, it is no.

The effect of banning mobile phones from school premises adds up to the equivalent of an extra week’s schooling over a pupil’s academic year, according to research by Louis-Philippe Beland and Richard Murphy, published by the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics.

“Ill Communication: The Impact of Mobile Phones on Student Performance” found that after schools banned mobile phones, the test scores of students aged 16 improved by 6.4%. The economists reckon that this is the “equivalent of adding five days to the school year”.

The findings will feed into the ongoing debate about children’s access to mobile phones…”

End deaths on the sea by ending the wars around it – Al Jazeera English

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End deaths on the sea by ending the wars around it – Al Jazeera English.

“How to digest the reality of 1,500 dead migrants when most of the victims are lost to the sea; their hopes, dreams and even their names drowned with them?

Blame is of course being assigned; or rather deflected, divided, avoided. British stinginess, smugglers’ greed, ISIL’s savagery, European racism, the oppression of the Amazigh and the vagaries of war – each has its measure of truth. And however tragically dramatic, the present large-scale migration across the Mediterranean is only the latest in at least half a dozen cycles of mass global migration in the modern era.

Global capitalism and global war have always driven large-scale human migration…”

Farafenni identified as one of Africa’s ‘Boom Towns’ – The Point Newspaper, Banjul, The Gambia

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Farafenni identified as one of Africa’s ‘Boom Towns’ – The Point Newspaper, Banjul, The Gambia.

The town of Farafenni in the North Bank Region of the Gambia has been identified by DHL as one of Africa’s ‘boom towns’ and cities that are enjoying growth on the back of growing industries and providing opportunities for African businesses.

In a statement issued in Cape Town, South Africa, on Thursday, DHL Express Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) described Farafenni as being situated on the north bank of the Gambia River, about 120 kilometres inland from the capital Banjul.

It said the town is home to numerous banks and insurance firms and that it is experiencing fast growth mainly due to its geographical location on the main road between Dakar and Casamance (the southern area of Senegal), and its close proximity to the ferry crossing on the Gambia River….

Billion dollar ivory and gold trade fuelling DR Congo war: UN – Times LIVE

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Billion dollar ivory and gold trade fuelling DR Congo war: UN – Times LIVE.

“Militarised criminal groups with transnational links are involved in large-scale smuggling” of “gold, minerals, timber, charcoal and wildlife products such as ivory” of up to $1.3 billion each year from eastern DR Congo, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) said.

The revenues finance at least 25 armed groups — but up to 49 according to some estimates — that “increasingly fuel the conflict” in the war-torn region, the report read.

Control over the mineral-rich areas is a key factor in the conflicts that have raged in eastern DR Congo for decades.

“These resources lost to criminal gangs and fuelling the conflict could have been used to build schools, roads, hospitals and a future for the Congolese people,” said Martin Kobler, UN chief in DR Congo, and head of the 20,000-strong UN peacekeeping force, MONUSCO….

On The Edge Of …

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The science of sexiness: why some people are just more attractive – Telegraph

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The science of sexiness: why some people are just more attractive – Telegraph.

A new study suggests that long-distance runners are more attractive because they have greater levels of testosterone which makes them more manly and fertile.

But there are other biological and evolutionary triggers which are constantly drawing us to certain individuals, even if we don’t realise it is happening. Scientists in Geneva discovered that determining whether we are attracted to someone is one of the most complex tasks that the brain undertakes. Here are the scientific secrets of attraction:

Symmetry

Charles Darwin once wrote: “It is certainly not true that there is in the mind of man any universal standards of beauty with respect to the human body.”

However recent research suggests that there are universal agreements about beauty which hold true across all cultures and even throughout the animal kingdom.

Probably the most important is facial symmetry….

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