Posts By William Foerderer Infante

Notes from the Field

In Mongolia: Combating trafficking in persons – Government and civil society making a difference

August 27, 2008

In May of last year, Silvano Jino and Sarangerel Chuluunbaatar were convicted under Mongolia’s Criminal Code Article 113 for trafficking Mongolian women to Macau; they were sentenced to over 10 years in prison. This was the first trafficking in persons case that resulted in a conviction under Article 113 in nearly a decade, and it […]

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Mongolia’s Election is Marred by Violence

July 2, 2008

Just after noon on July 1st, hundreds of demonstrators gathered on Sukhbaatar square in central Ulaanbatar to protest the June 29th election results, which they alleged were fraudulent. Throughout the afternoon, the demonstration grew in size to more than 8,000, and then erupted into violence around 7pm. 36 hours after the polls closed, the Mongolian […]

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In Mongolia: Elections, Mining & National Security

June 25, 2008

Late in 2007, at a meeting of senior government officials and development partners, Member of Parliament S. Oyun commented, that “how Mongolia develops its mining sector is a matter of national security.” In other words, the choice of which foreign partner will help develop Mongolia’s vast minerals resources is a material concern for Mongolia’s government, […]

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In Mongolia: Corruption and the Canada Parallel

June 11, 2008

In 2007, both Mongolia and Canada improved their corruption-fighting performance by the same nominal amount, two tenths of a point, according to the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index. And this is almost where the parallel ends: Canada ranks number 9, and Mongolia ranks number 99. According to numerous polls, Mongolians believe that corruption is among […]

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In Mongolia: Mercury Waste Threatens Water Supply

November 21, 2007

Worldwide, thousands of tons of mercury are discharged into the environment every year. In many countries, including Mongolia, human and environmental health are in peril. In September 2007, a Communities and Small Scale Mining (CASM) conference was held in Ulaanbaatar, which united international scientists in expressing their concerns for Mongolia’s environment. Dr. Peter Appel, Senior […]

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In Mongolia: A New Prime Minister Sweeps in Largely Unnoticed

November 7, 2007

Mongolia will soon have a new Prime Minister. The implications are profound and could signal a changing political climate — one that is more stable and secure. This would bode well for trade, and for investment, particularly in the largely-untapped minerals sector where tens of billions of dollars in gold, copper, coal and other resources […]

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In Mongolia: Culture and Conservation set to Clash

June 20, 2007

Citizens across Mongolia are expressing increasing concern about water quality and water quantity accessible to them. Herding has been a Mongolian cultural and economic tradition for centuries, if not millennia, and many herders are community advocates. They commonly emphasize the need for conservation and responsible use of resources. Paradoxically, these herder-conservationists may exacerbate water quality […]

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In Mongolia: Urban Air Pollution Threatens Human Health in Ulaanbaatar

January 29, 2007

Last week, the editors of Mongolia’s major newspapers addressed an open letter to the resident international community on behalf of 1 million Mongolians and the 50,000 infants born every year whose health is compromised by chronically poor urban air quality in Ulaanbaatar and other Mongolian cities. The letter was a plea to help curb the […]

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