I recently found a good news site for human rights-related news. AlertNet is a service by the Thomson Reuters Foundation. The content comes from AlertNet journalists from all over the world and from the Reuters news bureau network. Relief organisations and other specialists also provide contributions. AlertNet was founded in 1997, in reaction to the “slow media response and poorly coordinated activities of relief agencies” during the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
Besides breaking stories and special reports, it has a blog, multimedia section, a crisis centre where you can read about various crisis topics (like natural disasters, war, health, and hunger) or explore crises by region, country profiles, and even a database for careers in aid and relief.
AlertNet also has an amazing interactive tool you can use to find statistics on a multitude of areas in every country. For example, did you know that in 2002, 1.9% of Papua New Guinea’s land was protected and in 2007 that percentage had risen to 3.1%? That compares to 8% of Canada’s land being protected (I’d have expected that stat to be higher) and only 0.3% of Uruguay’s land. This particular tool may be useful to you in future research for other classes, or for articles you may write. But watch the clock while you’re using it–I’ve just blown more than an hour on AlertNet!