UK World

Only France Can Stop Its Dodgy Arms Deal With Russia

Luke Coffey | Posted 08.10.2014 | UK Politics
Luke Coffey

France has made it clear that it is not cancelling the €1.2 billion deal to sell two Mistral-class amphibious assault ships to the Russians.

The Tricycle Theatre Scandal: No One Expected the Spanish Inquisition

David Krikler | Posted 08.10.2014 | UK Politics
David Krikler

Does anyone believe that the good people of the Tricycle harbour a 19th Century hatred of Jews as a racial enemy to be destroyed, as professed by Houston Stuart Chamberlain, Adolf Hitler or the Hamas Charter? Notwithstanding an eccentric auntie or two, I would say that the answer to that is no.

From Egypt to Saudi Arabia, the Arab World Has Abandoned the Palestinians

Mehdi Hasan | Posted 08.10.2014 | UK Politics
Mehdi Hasan

The inconvenient truth is that the collective punishment of the Pales­tinian people in Gaza is a collective endeavour in its own right - led by Israel, enforced by Egypt, endorsed by Saudi Arabia. Pity the poor Palestinians. Their territories are occupied by the Jewish state; their cause is abandoned by the Arab world.

John Kerry Should Set Timelines and Benchmarks to See Progress on Deteriorating Situation of Rohingya in Burma

Tun Khin | Posted 08.10.2014 | UK Politics
Tun Khin

US Secretary of State John Kerry arrives in Burma tomorrow. Just days before his visit, more than 100 security forces came to an internally displaced...

Nigeria: Lies, Half-Truths and No Statistics

Ian Linden | Posted 07.10.2014 | UK
Ian Linden

For violent religious extremism, what ISIS is doing, what Boko Haram is doing, what some Theravada Buddhists are doing to the Rohingya in Myanmar, is not only the enemy of Buddhists, Christians and Muslims in Iraq, Syria, Myanmar and Nigeria but the enemy of our common humanity.

Forget 2003 - The Iraqi People Need Our Help Now

James Snell | Posted 07.10.2014 | UK Politics
James Snell

In Iraq, right now, an ancient culture is being exterminated, wiped from the face of human history. The Yazidi minority had, until recently, found relative safe haven in Kurdish-controlled areas... However, recent reversals have forced both the Iraqi and Kurdish governments to withdraw their forces from the region, as ISIS continued its murderous advance across the north and west of the country.

Will Hammond Keep Human Rights 'At the Very Heart' of Foreign Policy?

Benedict Rogers | Posted 07.10.2014 | UK Politics
Benedict Rogers

With the departure of Burt, Hague and now Warsi, the FCO is left without any ministers who show any deep personal commitment to human rights... It would be unfair to prejudge Philip Hammond and Baroness Anelay, Sayeeda Warsi's replacement, this early on. Instead, one must simply appeal to them to prove the sceptics wrong.

Immigration Policy: Silver Bullets That Never Hit Their Target

Keith Vaz | Posted 07.10.2014 | UK Politics
Keith Vaz

The rise of Ukip, the vitriolic discussion over the relaxation of border controls relating to Romania and Bulgaria, the abolishment of the UKBA and now the problems at the Passport Office, show that immigration is, without doubt, an all-consuming issue for the public and one that is going to be at the front of voters' minds on and before 7 May 2015. However, the government, rather than shadow boxing with Ukip by continuing to make claims over a net migration figure they have no control over, should create a structure that ensures immigration is given its full attention. After all you can have as many silver bullet policies as you like, but without the gun to fire them you're never going to hit the target.

In This Very Challenged Region, Ebola Is Evolving Into a National Disaster

Dr Benjamin Black | Posted 07.10.2014 | UK
Dr Benjamin Black

Occasionally everyone stops what they are doing; the doctors, nurses, and cleaners. Everyone. All attention is directed to the decontamination exit from high risk zone. A patient is being discharged. Like a celebrity the survivor is surrounded by an excitable crowd of whooping and clapping. The beaming faces of the crowd reflected in the broad smile and shining eyes of the survivor. It is an intensely emotional moment, though often bittersweet.

Those Who Kill UN Staff in Gaza Must Be Held Accountable

Ian Richards | Posted 06.10.2014 | UK Politics
Ian Richards

Over the past four weeks the world has watched a humanitarian tragedy unfold in Gaza. For UN staff like me it has been particularly tough. Nine of our schools have been attacked, 11 of my colleagues have been killed. They include Ahmed Mohamed Mohamed Ahmed, a school principal, Inas Shaban Derbas, a 30 year-old teacher and the youngest, Abdallah Naser Khalil Fahajan, who at 21 was a school attendant. UN chief, secretary-general Ban Ki-moon called the most recent attack on Sunday, which took place next to a boys' prep school in Rafah and led to nine deaths including that of a colleague: "a moral outrage and a criminal act."

Culture Is a Contact Sport

John Worne | Posted 06.10.2014 | UK Sport
John Worne

Sport is one of the universal languages which connect people and cultures... Sport is primal, basic, essential and everywhere... Sport and great sporting events are a massive draw. But the best of all is when sport is shared alongside culture. And here Glasgow excelled.

We Tortured Some Folks...

Neil Durkin | Posted 06.10.2014 | UK Politics
Neil Durkin

Barack Obama's now rather famous phrase from the end of last week is quite something... Torture is a worldwide scourge, affecting three-quarters of the world. Acknowledging that it's as wrong when used against "terrorism suspects" as it is against political opponents or even minor criminal suspects is... well, progress.

America's Identity Crisis

Jon-Christopher Bua | Posted 06.10.2014 | UK
Jon-Christopher Bua

As the global landscape rapidly changes Americans are re-examining their role in the world... America and its people may be battle weary of shouldering the cost and the burden of "keeping" or as some may say "disrupting" world peace - it is after all a weighty responsibility to be so engaged.

International Community Must Strenuously Push for a New Ceasefire in Gaza

Osama Damo | Posted 06.10.2014 | UK
Osama Damo

We sleep in the corridors where the building is strongest and jump at the slightest of sounds. The other day my wife put a bottle of water down loudly and I ducked for cover, thinking it was another air strike. Another time we heard a loud whistling noise and ran to the corridor, only to realise it was a car with a high-pitched engine going past. I have feared for my life too many times.

Commemorating the Great War: A Glimpse on the East Front

Dr Ion Jinga | Posted 06.10.2014 | UK
Dr Ion Jinga

Initially neutral, in the spring of 1916 Romania was insistently requested by France and Great Britain to enter the war in order to relieve the huge German pressure on the West front. Queen Maria of Romania, who was British by birth and a grand daughter of Queen Victoria, strongly advocated entering the war on the Entente side.

Why Aren't People on the Streets for North Korea?

Benedict Rogers | Posted 05.10.2014 | UK
Benedict Rogers

Why aren't people on the streets in protest at North Korea's crimes in large numbers, the way they are over Gaza or were over the war in Iraq? Why isn't there a mass public movement, of the kind that helped bring down apartheid in South Africa? Why aren't Bono, Richard Gere, George Clooney and Angelina Jolie doing anything to bring the North Korea cause into our hearts and homes?

Warsi Represents Something Cameron Has Never Understood

Denis MacShane | Posted 05.10.2014 | UK Politics
Denis MacShane

The conventional Westminster bubble accounts of Sayeeda Warsi quitting the government rely on unpleasant Tory spin questioning her motives. In fact there is a much richer Warsi story to be written about the multiple complexities of the British Muslim communities - the plural is important - which cannot be reduced to the horrors of the Gaza conflict.

Gaza: Why Outrage Isn't Enough

Richard Burden | Posted 04.10.2014 | UK Politics
Richard Burden

UK ministers always seem to preface what they say about the crisis in Gaza by acknowledging Israel's right to self defence against attack. I agree with them about that. Actually, the Palestinians have the right of self defence too. The point is that neither can credibly be invoked to justify the carnage that is unfolding.

Hey, Eli Roth, About Your 'Cannibal Horror-Thriller'...

David Hill | Posted 03.10.2014 | UK Entertainment
David Hill

Do you think indigenous peoples in the Peruvian Amazon would eat a group of Americans? Do you think that 'un-contacted tribes', as you have been reported to call them, in particular would eat a group of Americans? If the answer is yes to either of these questions, can you explain why you think that?

Intervention Was Not the Cause of Libya's Woes - Quite the Opposite

James Snell | Posted 03.10.2014 | UK Politics
James Snell

Libya is now in flames. This might seem to be a rather hyperbolic note on which to begin, but it is true. The country is spiralling out of control, and the city of Benghazi, the former rebel capital in the 2011 revolution against the dictatorship of Colonel Gaddafi, has reportedly been captured by Islamist militants and declared an 'Islamic emirate'.

Rising Tide of Humanitarian Crises Demand More Than Aid

Mark Goldring | Posted 01.10.2014 | UK
Mark Goldring

This is not just a humanitarian imperative; it is in all our interests to act. In the globalised 21st Century conflicts are not easily contained by borders. As the Stern Review made clear, tackling climate change will ultimately be cheaper than allowing it to proceed unchecked. But it is the human cost of these crises, the children of Gaza, the homeless Philippines and the South Sudanese families who do not know where their next meal is coming from that really demand our action. The UK public have shown they are up to the task; it is time for world leaders to do likewise.

A Grandfather's Grave

Robin Lustig | Posted 01.10.2014 | UK
Robin Lustig

The grave must have lain untended and forgotten for more than 70 years. And now, just three days after honouring my grandmother Ilse at the scene of her death, here I am in the cemetery, honouring her husband, my grandfather. This is truly a journey back to my family roots.

Do You Believe in the Death Penalty?

Neil Durkin | Posted 01.10.2014 | UK
Neil Durkin

Opinion polls already show slowly diminishing US public support for the death penalty and these high-profile horrors are surely tipping the balance still further... Capital punishment is a botched experiment with justice. If you still believe in the death penalty, it's time to change your mind.

Central American Insomnia

Agus Morales | Posted 01.10.2014 | UK
Agus Morales

The number of children on the route to the US keeps on growing. Nine per cent of the patients treated by MSF in south and central Mexico are minors. "Kids typically come with their families - normally they are not alone," says MSF psychologist Miguel Gil. "They live it in another way, they have a clearer perspective of time than adults, and they learn the route and the places by heart."

The Other Side of Jamaica

Reggie Yates | Posted 30.09.2014 | UK Entertainment
Reggie Yates

Today, Usain Bolt will compete in the 100m relay for Jamaica in his first ever Commonwealth Games. As the fastest man in the world, he is one of Jamaica's most famous exports, alongside the country's glorious, sun kissed beaches that thousands travel to every year. But my trip to the small island in the Caribbean with UNICEF was to see a very different way of life.