UK World

Chinese: Can't Swim, Won't Swim

John Worne | Posted 12.12.2014 | UK
John Worne

When it comes to languages we're like a nation of committed non-swimmers faced with a swimming pool - no appetite for diving in and no idea of the benefits and joys of taking the plunge.

Guantánamo PR Can't Obscure the Reality of Force-Feeding

Clive Stafford Smith | Posted 10.12.2014 | UK
Clive Stafford Smith

The new motto is "Guantánamo: Safe, Humane, Legal, Transparent." It is neither safe, humane or legal, however, if you are a detainee engaging in a peaceful protest against more than a decade of arbitrary detention. It is hardly transparent.

The Link With Islamic State, and Why the Politics Behind Ebola Could Kill You

Dr Raj Persaud | Posted 09.12.2014 | UK
Dr Raj Persaud

Is it possible that we could suffer a world-wide Ebola epidemic, killing hundreds of thousands, because our government has been distracted by Islamic State, which in fact poses less threat to the citizens of this country, than a contagious infection with a previous case fatality rate of 79%?

The Heroes of Kobane

John Wight | Posted 08.12.2014 | UK
John Wight

On the Turkish frontier, around the town of Kobane in northern Syria, the world is witnessing the very best of humanity alongside the very worst.

How Hong Kong Protesters Put the 'Civil' into 'Civil Disobedience'

Tom Grundy | Posted 09.12.2014 | UK
Tom Grundy

In the run-up to Hong Kong's occupation protests, the initiators of the movement were called "radicals" and "extremists" and their actions dubbed "terrorism". Yet the young people peacefully demonstrating for universal suffrage across the city have won hearts and minds across the world in what amounts to a meticulous reading of peaceful dissent. By putting the "civil" in "civil disobedience", these young protesters have already won an important moral victory, no matter what happens next.

Today LEGO Dumped Shell - Here's Why It Matters to Us All

James Turner | Posted 09.12.2014 | UK
James Turner

By placing its logo in thousands of playrooms around the world, Shell tried to insulate itself against anyone who claims that oil companies have no long term place in our society... Not only do our kids influence the way we think and act, they are the opinion formers of tomorrow. And Shell has been trying to buy them off.

Ebola: Why the World Must Act Now

Robbie McIntyre | Posted 08.12.2014 | UK
Robbie McIntyre

I write this from Monrovia, Liberia's capital. This country accounts for more than 2,000 of the 3,400 estimated deaths from Ebola across the region, but with cases going unreported, some choosing to die without seeking help, and others succumbing in communities which are barely accessible, that is almost certainly a gross underestimate. UNICEF calculates that around 2,000 children in Liberia have lost both parents to the virus. And what faces a child in this position?

The Turkish Jewish Community Is a Part of History and the Future of Turkey and They Must Be Protected

Fiyaz Mughal | Posted 07.12.2014 | UK
Fiyaz Mughal

Totalling about 18,000 people, the Turkish Jewish community has shrunk slowly over time. It is the second largest Jewish community in a Muslim majority country and comes second to Iran.

Kurdish Female Fighters and Kobanê Style Revolution

Houzan Mahmoud | Posted 07.12.2014 | UK
Houzan Mahmoud

Take a look at the media coverage of the recent uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa region. News of the sexual harassment of women in the "Arab uprising", brutal attacks, imprisonments and virginity tests of female protestors dominated the screens. Yet women played a significant role in these events. For them, the uprising was part of a long history of resistance to suppression and a lack of freedom in their countries. The fact is that women were fighting and have proved their existence despite the counter revolutionary and anti-women treatment that they were receiving.

See the Miracle

Dr Caroline Harper | Posted 07.12.2014 | UK
Dr Caroline Harper

This week 69-year-old Winesi March, who has been blind for two years, will undergo life-changing surgery as the world watches. Twenty-four hours later anyone with an internet connection can rejoin Winesi and his family in rural Malawi as his bandages are removed and he sees his grandson for the first time.

Wanted Urgently: Adequately Trained Teachers So All Children Can Go to School by 2030

Aaron Benavot | Posted 05.12.2014 | UK
Aaron Benavot

How many teachers do we need? The year 2015 is just around the corner, and yet UIS data show that  countries will need to recruit about 4 million more teachers to achieve universal primary education by the deadline.

Are We Really in the Third Millennium?

Vian Dakhil | Posted 06.12.2014 | UK
Vian Dakhil

Many times I ask myself: are we really in the third millennium? Or are we living in the Middle Ages, a time when the law of the jungle reigns supreme and the strong does as it pleases to the weak, killing the latter's women, kidnapping them, selling them and forcing them together with their children to change their religion?

India's Growth Cannot Be Judged on GDP Alone

Lord Bilimoria CBE | Posted 03.12.2014 | UK
Lord Bilimoria CBE

Following his landslide electoral triumph in May, Narendra Modi's first act as Prime Minister of the largest democracy on earth was to travel to the Kashi Vishwanath temple and offer prayers on the banks of the Ganges...

From Crisis to Catastrophe in South Sudan

Mark Goldring | Posted 05.12.2014 | UK
Mark Goldring

Oxfam and other aid agencies are warning that rival groups in South Sudan are regrouping ready to resume violence once the rainy season ends this month. An upsurge in fighting would exacerbate what is already the world's worst food crisis and could lead to famine. The number of people facing dangerous levels of hunger is expected to increase by one million between January and March.

Exploited Workers in Hong Kong Went on Strike This Week to Call for Pro-Democracy

Martin Gemzell | Posted 05.12.2014 | UK
Martin Gemzell

Seven years ago China promised 2017 elections by universal suffrage for Hong Kong. In a referendum this summer hundreds of thousands of voters demanded open nomination of candidates. Yet Beijing in August said only candidates approved by a selection committee would be allowed to stand.

Learning From the United Nations General Assembly 2014

Toyin Ojora-Saraki | Posted 03.12.2014 | UK
Toyin Ojora-Saraki

As we've learnt from the MDGs, progress cannot occur in silos. We need to learn from each other, we need to educate each other, and we need to work together to achieve real change.

The UK Has Picked the Wrong Friends in Bahrain

Clive Stafford Smith | Posted 03.12.2014 | UK Politics
Clive Stafford Smith

Perhaps it is too much to expect that the British should adopt an "Ethical Foreign Policy", as once they promised, but please let us not choose the most immoral alternative. The government must intervene at once to insist that Nabeel's exercise of his right to free speech while he was our guest in Britain cannot form the basis for his detention upon his return home.

Iraq and Syria: A Better Way

Robin Lustig | Posted 03.12.2014 | UK
Robin Lustig

Peace, like democracy, cannot be imposed from above, or from outside. But if the two sides in Syria's civil war can agree to at least a few temporary local truces, they may be better able to turn their attention to IS. That's certainly what would be in their best interests, and in the interests of their foreign backers, whether Iran, Saudi Arabia, Qatar or Turkey.

TTIP - Four Letters That Spell Rising Poverty

Martin Whitlock | Posted 02.12.2014 | UK Politics
Martin Whitlock

The danger of TTIP is that Europe and America will start exporting their significant levels of poverty to each other at a much faster rate than at present - a potentially disastrous chase to the bottom in which poverty increases inexorably as real wages continue to fall.

What Would Chinese Rule Mean for Hong Kong?

Jody-Lan Castle | Posted 02.12.2014 | UK Politics
Jody-Lan Castle

The fight goes beyond the call for a full democracy. It is the protection of the very basic rights of a population, under threat of a state that finds the idea of human rights laughable. And to those who don't realise what that has meant yet, remember... you only know what you've got, when it's gone.

Why I Wore a Hijab for a Week

Kate Leaney | Posted 01.12.2014 | UK Lifestyle
Kate Leaney

I stand in solidarity with the Muslim community because some of the greatest examples of love, hospitality and compassion have been modelled to me by good friends who happen to also be Muslim, but unfortunately this is not the view of Islam or its followers that is championed through our media sources of late.

Why Sri Lanka's Detention of Mrs Balenderan Jayakumari Is So Sinister

Callum Macrae | Posted 01.12.2014 | UK
Callum Macrae

Mrs Jeyakumari and her daughter were well known activists who had been among the crowds which mobbed British prime minister David Cameron when he visited the former war zone in Jaffna in November last year. Three months later Mrs Jeyakumari sent me a video address in which she warned that she was being followed and harassed as a result of her campaign.

Hong Kong Protests - China's New Tiananmen Moment

Oggy Boytchev | Posted 01.12.2014 | UK
Oggy Boytchev

Karl Marx once famously said: 'History repeats itself, the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce.' I wonder if China's second Tiananmen moment would be a tragedy, too. Because I do believe that what's happening in Hong Kong at the moment bears all the hallmarks of a Greek tragedy.

I Love to Travel - Some Would Tell You Not to Date Me

Clare Dyckhoff | Posted 30.11.2014 | UK Lifestyle
Clare Dyckhoff

Whether it's sipping a glass of cold sangria after a long trek up a hill in Barcelona, paragliding off of a cliff in Turkey (this IS refreshing, I promise) or the cold shower after an extensive day of sight seeing, camera snapping or for the more traditional out there, map reading, I bet there's something about going abroad, into the unknown that quenches this thirst.

UNFCCC and Post-2015 Development: More Than the Sum of the Parts

David Nussbaum | Posted 25.11.2014 | UK
David Nussbaum

New York, 25 September 2015. There is no denying the fundamental and inextricable link between climate change and development. The latest Intergovernm...