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Water mixed with salt was dinner for Umar Abubaker and his family of eight, including three young children, for many nights during Nigeria’s five-week lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Before the lockdown, Abubakar, who has a physical…
A man reading the newspaper "The Nation"
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Vulnerable, Poor Communities at Risk of Further Abuse

  In parts of Colombia, armed groups exercise a frightening amount of control over the population. Now, some groups are threatening to brutally enforce measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Armed groups have issued threatening…
Colombia ELN soldiers
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In June, two weeks after I returned from Nigeria, I got a message that another child had died from lead poisoning -the 11th in the same family. I could picture the scene: the child starts convulsing; his parents rush him two hours over barely passable…
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It’s the Americas’ largest reunion. Happening every three years, the Summit of the Americas brings together the heads-of-state of the region to talk about pressing concerns. Over the weekend in Cartagena, Colombia, the theme will be “Connecting the…
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For a Nation Speeding Forward, Health Is Left Behind

Lead poisoning usually causes life-long debilitating illness, not immediate death. Yet in the state of Zamfara, a poor, arid region in northern Nigeria, lead poisoning has killed more than 400 children in the past six months. The soil in this area is…
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Bringing to justice those who commit atrocities has obvious appeal. It provides redress for victims and their families, punishes perpetrators, and deters others from replicating their crimes. But is the price too high? Critics argue that the threat of…