Posted by msrb on June 2, 2008
Food Riots Break Out in Bangladesh Again
Thousands of Bangladeshi garment workers protesting over low wages and soaring food prices clashed with the police on Sunday during fresh protests over low wages and soaring food prices.
“They smashed dozens of vehicles, attacked nearby factories and pelted stones and bricks at our officers. Police fired shotguns to disperse the unruly workers,” police chief said.
Four protestors, including two with bullet wounds, were admitted to Chittagong Medical College Hospital A nurse said.
Bangladesh’s garment industry employls about 2.5 million workers, or 40 percent of the industrial workforce, and accounts for about 80 percent of the country’s export earnings. The average garment worker earn a basic minimum wage of about 25 dollars a month.
Bangladeshi households spend nearly 70 percent of their income on food. Prices for rice, the country’s staple food have doubled in the past 12 months mainly because of floods last summer and a major cyclone that caused severe damage to the crops in November.
Unions have demanded a major increase in salaries, saying the existing basic payment fixed in late 2006 has become redundant due to rocketing prices of food and other commodities over the past year.
In April, at least 20,000 protesting garment workers clashed with police and 50 were injured.
Bangladeshi demonstrators protesting against rising food and fuel prices on the outskirts of Dhaka in April, 2008. Police clashed with thousands of garment workers in southwest Bangladesh Sunday during fresh protests over low wages and soaring food prices. (Image may be subject to copyright. see MSRB Fair Use Notice.
Food Riot in Kenya
About a thousand Kenyan demonstrators protesting against rising food prices were assaulted by the riot police who fired teargas to disperse them on Saturday.
Widespread food shortages have led to skyrocketing food prices amid political corruption. Annual inflation rose by an average 24.2 percent in April and May.
“The government must subsidize the cost of food, it is not fair for the poor to be suffering with high food prices yet the government has not increased salaries,” said one of the organizers.
Disputed presidential election has also triggered violent clashes across Kenya killing 1,600 people and displacing about one half of a million people since December 2007.
Food and fuel riots, protests and strikes have erupted this year throughout the “third world” countries in Africa Asia and the Americas including Bangladesh, Bolivia, Cameroon, Egypt, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mozambique, Pakistan, Philippines Senegal, Singapore, Somalia, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Yemen (other countries may have been omitted inadvertently).
Posted in Africa, against nature, agriculture, Americas, asia, basic needs, biocapacity, China, collapse, ecosystems, Energy, environment, Food, Global Warming, government, money, politics, staple diet, war | Tagged: Bangladesh, Bolivia, Bonn, Buffett the Poor, Cameroon, demonstrations, Egypt, El Salvador, Emerging Food Crisis, Fao, food riots, food shortages, Fueling Food Shortages, garment workers, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Italy, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mozambique, Oil Chaos, Pakistan, Philippines Senegal, Poverty Index, protests, Singapore, Somalia, strikes, UN, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Yemen | 6 Comments »
Posted by msrb on April 23, 2008
Delivering Climate Security: International Security Responses to a Climate-Changed World
According to the above-titled report written for Britain’s Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), governments around the world have hugely underestimated the potential conflicts resulting from climate change. The highlights of the report are:
- If climate change is not slowed and critical environmental thresholds are exceeded, then it will become a primary driver of conflicts between and within states
- In the next decades, climate change will drive as significant a change in the strategic security environment as the end of the Cold War,” said Mabey.
- If uncontrolled, climate change will have security implications of similar magnitude to the World Wars, but which will last for centuries
- A failure to acknowledge and prepare for the worst case scenario is as dangerous in the case of climate change as it is for managing the risks of terrorism or nuclear weapons proliferation
- Unless achieving climate security is seen as a vital and existential national interest it will be too easy to delay action on the basis of avoiding immediate costs and perceived threats to economic competitiveness
Can the world elite brand the poor and starving masses as “terrorists” in order to eliminate them?
Major retailers in New York, in areas of New England, and on the West Coast are limiting purchases of flour, rice, and cooking oil as demand outstrips supply. There are also anecdotal reports that some consumers are hoarding grain stocks.” According to a report by New York Sun.
Posted in Bush, collapse, ecosystems, Energy, environment, Global Warming, government, money, politics, war | Tagged: collapse, Costco, Food, food rationing, food riots, food shortages, Future Scenarios, government, human impact, new england, New York, poor, poverty, Root Cause Matrix, RUSI, Sam’s Club, Security, terrorists, walmart, west coast | Leave a Comment »
Posted by feww on April 10, 2008
Since February 2008, riots and protests concerning rising food prices or food shortages have been reported in Bangladesh, Bolivia, Cameroon, Egypt, El Salvador, Haiti, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Mauritania, Mozambique, Philippines Senegal, Uzbekistan, and Yemen.
According to AFP Report: “Analysts have said economic misery in crushingly-poor Myanmar was a force behind protests which drew up to 100,000 people into the streets of the military-ruled country last year.”
Poorer countries like Bangladesh, Indonesia and in which 60-70 percent of the income is spent on food are particularly hard hit by soaring food prices.
“In the Philippines, one of the world’s biggest importers of rice, the government deployed troops last week to deliver grain to poor areas of the capital Manila amid worries about shortages.”
Grain prizes have risen by 42 percent and dairy products 80 percent since2007. The head of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization said: “There is a risk that this unrest will spread in countries where 50 to 60 percent of income goes to food . . .”
Elsewhere, soaring food prices are leading to political instability and humanitarian crisis:
In China, the price of pork, their staple diet, has risen by more than 60 percent in the last 12 months.
In Vietnam, consumer prices rose by about 17 percent (YoY) in the first quarter of 2008. Up to 20,000 workers at a Vietnamese shoe factory opted for a a two-day strike last week “because of the increase in prices which has hit people hard recently,” according to union official Nguyen Thi Dung.
In Singapore, one of Asia’s wealthiest countries, ten people were arrested by police last month for holding a rally, without a permit, to protest rising living costs.
Rising food (and fuel) prices have triggered protests also in India, Malaysia and Pakistan causing seismic shifts in political and social policies.
The World Bank anticipated last week “heightening political tensions” throughout Asia should “rising inflation stalls poverty reduction measures.”
Posted in Bolivia, Cameroon, Egypt, El Salvador, Ivory Coast, Mauritania, Mozambique, Senegal, Uzbekistan, Yemen | Tagged: Food Crisis, food shortages, fuel shortages, government, Philippines, politics, protests, riots, UN, world bank | 7 Comments »