Ancient cultural artifacts in surrounding areas of the Angkor Wat temple site in north central Cambodia are being stolen. The demand for artifacts has risen dramatically over the last few years as technological advances in the study of ancient civilizations have grown. Cambodia’s culture and fine arts ministry has made the protection of the Angkor Wat artifacts a major priority. Digging has been a main source of finding valuable artifacts while less valuable, monetarily speaking, bowls and vases are being tossed aside as looters find expensive things to take away. In villages approximately 40 miles away from the temple, desolation of protectors has left the area a prime digging spot for thieves.

Heavy rains effected a fatal landslide in Peshawar, Pakistan, on the night of Aug. 5. Seven people were found dead and over 12,000 houses were either damaged or completely destroyed. Pakistani soldiers were sent into the rubble to look for eight villagers that were missing after the landslide subsided. The villagers were found under the wreckage of their homes. Flooding in the greater part of the North West provinces was brought on by the torrential rainfall. An additional 27 people died as a result of the flooding.

Tombstones dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries in Melbourne, Australia have been destroyed. In the Alma Road cemetery, 50 gravestones were damaged by a 24-year-old man who was spotted by cemetery employees on the morning of Aug. 8, and who was later arrested. The man used flowerpots, urns, and other gravestone adornments to wreak havoc on the cemetery. Once a few of the gravestones were in pieces, those pieces were used to desecrate other stones. The historically relevant gravestones, some several hundred years old, will be difficult to replace due to their age.

Aug. 7 was met with a protest in Mexico City for AIDS activists to rally for human rights. Activists presented Mexican government officials with a declaration calling for laws to be made for information, treatment and prevention for AIDS patients. Current policies criminalize and punish those needing treatment, a policy that causes a majority of AIDS patients to leave their disease untreated or to flee the country for treatment purposes. The declaration, titled, “Now, More than Ever,” hopes to change those policies. “Now, More than Ever” has been approved by over 600 organizations in 105 countries. A global response to HIV has been recognized, and protesters along with activists, wanted to bring up the issue of the need for laws promoting fundamental human rights.