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Multimedia

  • Balancing inequalities among children

    December 07, 2016

    UNICEF appeals for action to balance inequalities among the world's children, using this story as an illustration: Two Indonesian children living in different provinces of the same cou

  • Life along the Mekong River

    December 07, 2016

    Life along the Mekong River is changing rapidly. Dams, illegal fishing, and increased salination through climate change and drought are threatening the food security of 70 million people who live downstream in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Fisherfolk say dwindling fish stocks meant the rewards are to small to justify the back breaking work and they are looking for alternative employment, heralding a sea change in a culture dating back centuries. The major issue is plans by Laos to construct 11 dams across the mainstream of the Mekong River, and another 123 elsewhere, which is threatening fish migration patterns and spawning. Vientiane recently announced construction of its third dam across the mainstream of the Mekong River will go ahead at Pak Beng. Increased populations have also lifted demand while "fishing down," where large fish are replace by small and previously unwanted fish, is now common. Authorities argue hydro-power will deliver a much needed source of revenue for Laos and its impoverished population. They also say that fish bypass passages will be built to enable fish to continue their seasonal journey upstream to spawn. However, scientists, environmentalists and more importantly the people who fish these waters are unimpressed and counter that no evidence exists to suggest the man-made troughs are effective. (Photos and text by Luke Hunt)