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· December, 2016

Stories about Governance from December, 2016

Malaysians Can Have Their Cake and Eat It Too Inside McDonald's — But Only If It's Halal

"Has halal political correctness gone overboard? Will we one day see moral police invading houses to ensure that we are eating only halal food? When will common sense prevail?"

Central Asia in 2016: The More Things Change…?

"Why do they mess about? They should just appoint themselves immortals and pass a law banning death from visiting them."

Bangladesh Blocks 560 Porn Sites

Bangladesh is a Muslim-majority country, where many people have expressed concerns about the spread and consumption of online pornography. But it is also a democracy.

A Year of Violence in Bangladesh

Groups linked to ISIS, Ansar Al Islam or Ansarullah Bangla Team have claimed responsibility for violent attacks on intellectuals and regular citizens. What does this mean for the future?

Myanmar's Most Memorable Moments in 2016

As 2016 comes to an end, The Irrawaddy showcases the best photographs that capture Myanmar’s most iconic moments.

Macedonia's Pollution Is So Bad That Activists Have Installed ‘Mountain Air Breathing Booths’ in Protest

Other unhappy citizens have resorted to parody. A piece of graffiti recently circulated on Twitter pokes fun a government inaction: "Recommendation: Don't die from cancer!"

Five Things Tearing Afghanistan Apart and the Local Proverbs That Help Explain Them

"The goat worries about his life, the butcher worries about the fat.”

Google Mapping of Public Toilets Is the Latest Effort to Stop Open Defecation in India

"It would be naive to think Google’s efforts will change attitudes and rectify India’s sanitation troubles altogether, especially since nearly 900 million Indians don’t have access to the internet..."

Praise, Condemnation After Nigeria’s Offer to Grant Corruption Whistleblowers 5% of the Take

"Must everything bring a monetary reward? How about values like patriotism? Primarily, whistle blowers need protection..."

Investigative Journalists Reveal Accumulated Wealth of Serbian Politicians

The revelations, compiled by investigative journalism network KRIK, are generating lively debate online and within traditional media.

Thailand’s New Computer Crimes Law Threatens Free Speech and Encryption

"The law's most serious shortcoming is in its giving too much power for authorities to make their own judgement whether certain actions may be deemed in violation of the law."

In India, Moviegoers Are Expected to Stand for the National Anthem—Or Else

"I go to cinema to relax and amuse myself, not to show my patriotism to my fellow countrymen. People who question my patriotism can come to my house."

Lives Without Dignity in Thailand’s Female Prisons

"Prisons in Thailand still fail to recognize the basic rights of female prisoners, depriving women of essential health services and goods from sanitary pads to bras."

Educators Respond to Plans to Expand Orthodox Education in Russian Schools

The proposed course was designed to replace the existing religion curriculum entirely, leaving parents without control over their children’s religious education.

Is Nepal No Country for Women?

Nepal's constitution has failed to bring equality to the country's women, but human rights advocates haven't given up.

That Fake U.S. Embassy in Ghana Issued Real Visas for a Decade

For ten years, a U.S. embassy operated quietly in Accra, the capital of the West African country of Ghana. But the embassy wasn't an embassy at all.

‘Keyboard Warriors’ Want To #TakeBackKenya

Even though police used teargas to disperse participants at the #TakeBackKenya walk in Nairobi, Kenyans are determined to speak out against corruption and bad governance.

Social Media Sites Blocked in Kazakhstan on 25th Anniversary of Independence

Activists reported that Facebook, YouTube, and other social media websites were inaccessible in Kazakhstan on Friday, the 25th anniversary of the country's independence from the Soviet Union.

#FreeMaxenceMelo: Authorities Charge Tanzanian Whistleblowing Website Owner Under Cybercrimes Law

"Mentioning 'Tanzania' and 'democracy' in the same sentence amounts to subjecting the term 'democracy' to ridicule."

Controversial Legislation in Bangladesh Highlights the Complexity of Child Marriage

"Civil society easily can see child marriage but is blind to the fact why it happens. When there is development in society...child marriages will fall. We need time for that."

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