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From Our Own Correspondent

From Our Own Correspondent

Podcast From Our Own Correspondent
Podcast From Our Own Correspondent

From Our Own Correspondent


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  • Flight From Russia
    Russian men have been flooding across the border to escape Vladimir Putin's military draft. Around 10,000 Russian citizens have been entering the republic of Georgia daily since the call-up was announced. Rayhan Demytrie has spoken to Russians crossing the border. As protests continue across Iran, following the death in custody of a young woman after allegedly breaking headscarf rules, Rana Rahimpour reflects on how restrictions on women have evolved since the Iranian Revolution of 1979 and her own experience growing up in Tehran. Giorgia Meloni is set to be Italy's next Prime Minister, after winning a convincing victory in last weekend’s election. The far-right leader has been quick to denounce the party’s fascist links but not all are convinced. Mark Lowen has been looking at how history weighs on Italy – and whether its likely first female Prime Minister will tone down in office. The strategically well-placed Pacific Islands continue to be a battleground for influence for the US and China. Among the island nations they’re courting is Fiji - Suranjana Tewari travelled there recently and found the country is looking to a self-sustained future, with the advent of a thriving start up scene. And finally, we’re in the forests of Northern Ukraine where the war has not only taken a human toll but has also had a dramatic effect on an oft-forgotten aspect of life in that country: the rare flora and fauna. Moose, deer, lynx and wolves are all known to live in this remote corner of the continent. Our Security Correspondent Frank Gardner travelled to Ukraine’s northern forests to visit a part of Europe few visitors ever see.
  • Brazil at a crossroads
    Brazilians will vote in the first round of presidential elections on Sunday. The front-runner is former leftist president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva – currently, polls suggest he has a healthy lead over the incumbent far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro. Political observers say these will be the most closely watched elections since Brazil returned to democracy in 1989 - and some of the most polarised, as Katy Watson explains Tensions flared up again earlier this month between the former Soviet states of Armenia and Azerbaijan leaving more than 200 people dead. The fighting is linked to decades-old hostilities over control of the Nagorno-Karabakh region. A fragile ceasefire is now in place. Grigor Atenesian spoke to one family who have twice been forced from their home. Singapore recently announced it will repeal its strict laws banning gay sex after years of fierce debate. But even during that period, Singapore’s gay bars, nightclubs and festivals continued to thrive and are being showcased in the city-state’s first LGBT walking tour. Tessa Wong went for a stroll. In North America, John Murphy watches a game of lacrosse in the region where it first originated, among Native Americans. Following the arrival of European colonisers, the original game was adopted and adapted with indigenous players being excluded. Now, there’s a move to reclaim the indigenous game. The Roman emperor Domitian was known for his tyrannical rule. After his death, by assassination, the Roman Senate condemned his memory to oblivion, but not everything was eradicated, as Hugh Levinson discovered on a visit to the walled city of Kotor in Montenegro.
  • Putin’s Gamble
    Vladimir Putin’s announcement of a partial conscription to fight in the war in Ukraine was interpreted by many as an act of desperation. Within Russia, the news sparked protests by Russians who are against fighting a war they don’t believe in. Until now many Russians had continued with life almost as normal, unaffected by Putin’s so-called special operation. This week changed that, says Sarah Rainsford Iran is facing the most serious challenge to its leadership in years. The death of a young woman in police custody, after she was arrested for allegedly failing to follow hijab rules has triggered nationwide protests in both middle class and working-class areas. Kian Sharifi says these protests show a stiffening resolve. Rajini Vaidyanathan visits a hospital in Sindh Province in Pakistan, which was the worst affected area in recent floods. The World Health Organisation has warned that the country now faces a second disaster amid an outbreak of waterborne diseases. Over the past year, Israel's Ultra-orthodox community has struggled to deal with a series of sex abuse scandals. One of the biggest involved a leading light of the ultra-Orthodox world, Rabbi Chaim Walder who was accused of abusing women and children. Yolande Knell, reports on the shockwaves these revelations have caused. Centuries ago, Getaria, a town on Spain’s Atlantic coast, gave birth to a man who changed the world: Juan Sebastián Elkano, the first person to navigate a ship around the globe. Julius Purcell was in Getaria for the anniversary of Elkano’s mighty achievement and finds the town caught in a national debate over Spain’s imperial legacy.
  • A turning point for Ukraine?
    The news of Ukraine’s stunning counter-offensive in the country’s north-east has raised hopes of a possible turning point in the war with Russia. But tentative celebrations about Ukraine’s advances were quickly tempered after the gruesome discovery of a mass grave in Izyum. Hugo Bachega reports. As Pakistan confronts the damage wrought by catastrophic floods in recent weeks, Secunder Kermani reflects on this and other major events he has covered as he leaves the region: the US invasion and withdrawal from Afghanistan, local politics and the Taliban’s resurgence. In the US, the use of the death penalty has gradually declined over recent decades. Several states have abolished it altogether but 11 states continue to perform executions including Texas. Maria Margaronis travelled to Livingston, where she met one prisoner with just weeks left before his execution date. Greece has finally emerged from a strict monitoring programme imposed by the EU. This marks the end of a chapter in a debt crisis which was first triggered by the 2008 financial turmoil. Antonia Quirke has been to the Peloponnese region where she met a tourist guide harking back to an era long before the European project. Australia's PM, Anthony Albanese is going to the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II on Monday, despite being an avowed Republican. For many Australians, she become a beloved friend. But, beyond this period of mourning, questions remain about the British Monarch’s role as the country’s head of state. Nick Bryant explores a rather paradoxical relationship. Presenter: Kate Adie Producer: Serena Tarling Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith Researcher: Ellie House Production Coordinator: Iona Hammond
  • Queen Elizabeth II and the World
    From the Commonwealth country of Canada, to the fifth republic of France, we reflect on how the world remembers Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. As Head of the Commonwealth, the Queen had to negotiate the ever-evolving relationship with its member states as they declared independence and as Britain’s relationship to its former colonies underwent profound change. The British Monarch remains head of state of 14 countries, from Canada to the Solomon Islands. Lyse Doucet is in Ottawa where Canada’s leaders have made warm tributes and reflects back on her own encounters with the Queen. Despite its anti-monarchist history, one of the more powerful tributes to the Queen emerged from French President Emmanuel Macron. He spoke fondly of her as a ‘great head of state’ and a ‘kind-hearted queen.’ So what was the Queen’s relationship to France? In 1972 Queen Elizabeth famously told former President Georges Pompidou 'we are not driving on the same side of the road, but we are going in the same direction', when he lifted the veto to Britain entering the Common Market. Hugh Schofield reflects on a unique relationship. The Oscar-winning film Parasite portrays the story of a low-income South Korean family living in a basement apartment. In one memorable scene, the heavens open and floodwater fills the family home. Last month, in a cruel example of life imitating art, Seoul experienced its heaviest flooding in 100 years. Water rushed into homes, trapping residents inside – four people were killed. The city government has since promised to get rid of the basement apartments and create more social housing. But as Jean Mackenzie has been finding out, this offers little comfort to those who live there. The Gambia is Africa’s smallest nation, where the process of reconciliation is proving arduous, five years after the end of a murderous dictatorship. Former President Yahya Jammeh, who fled to Equatorial Guinea in 2017 after losing a re-election bid, is wanted internationally for crimes against humanity, including extrajudicial killings, torture, forced disappearances, and sexual violence. Because he still enjoys a measure of loyalty back home, the nation he left behind is divided. Most of Jammeh’s hit men fled when he did, and many Gambians say reconciliation is impossible until they are all brought to justice. When Alexa Dvorson visited the country she witnessed a rare act of contrition. The Republic of Moldova sits on a fault line of geo-politics, with warring Ukraine on one side and Romania, firmly ensconced in the EU and Nato, on the other. Within its borders, is Transnistria, where a Russian-backed separatist war broke out thirty years ago. Today the area is a frozen conflict zone, but Russia still has a military presence. Piggy-in-the-middle between East and West, perhaps nothing tells Moldova’s complicated story more clearly than its main industry – wine - as Tessa Dunlop finds. Presenter: Kate Adie Producer: Serena Tarling Production coordinator: Iona Hammond Editor: Richard Fenton-Smith

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