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Crossing Continents

BBC

Series focusing on foreign affairs issues

Series focusing on foreign affairs issues

Location:

London, United Kingdom

Networks:

BBC

Description:

Series focusing on foreign affairs issues

Language:

English


Episodes

Bulgaria's Children and the Norwegian Bogeyman

5/14/2020
Thousands of Bulgarian parents pulled their children out of school in a mass panic last October, fearing they would be abducted by social workers. Many more are protesting against a draft law they say puts 70 per cent of children at similar risk. Are they right to be scared? Or have rumours and fake news spread hysteria about the power of the state? Suddenly, campaigns to defend the “traditional family” are gathering strength in Bulgaria – and across eastern Europe. What’s behind them? And...

Duration:00:28:14

Lithium: Argentina's 'White Gold' Rush

5/7/2020
Are lithium-powered electric vehicles as ‘green’ as we think they are? With the advent of electric cars, manufacturers tell us we’re racing towards a clean-energy future. It’s lithium that powers these vehicles. Most of the world’s stocks of this lightest of metals are found in brine deep beneath salt flats, high in the Andes. In Argentina, in Jujuy - the province with the highest percentage of indigenous households in the country - massive projects are underway. But in a super-dry region,...

Duration:00:28:06

Spain’s care home nightmare

4/30/2020
Why did so many people die in just one elderly care home in Madrid? After Covid-19 smashed its way across the globe, Spain - one of the worst-hit nations of Europe - is beginning to take stock of the devastation the virus has left in its wake. Most painful perhaps, will be an assessment of how the deadly contagion was able to rip through Spanish care homes at such speed, killing thousands of elderly people. In March 2020, the alarm was first sounded in a privately run institution, Monte...

Duration:00:28:07

Ireland's Housing Hunger

4/23/2020
Ireland’s government is in crisis mode dealing with the public health emergency caused by the coronavirus pandemic. But another crisis in its housing provision has long haunted the country’s young people. Ireland has booming investment and lots of new jobs but people cannot find adequate and affordable housing. Anger about this, and fear of mass emigration by the young are issues with deep roots in Irish memory. And the housing crisis was a crucial factor in February’s Irish election result...

Duration:00:28:29

Chile: An Education for All

4/21/2020
A much anticipated referendum in Chile on a new constitution has been postponed till the autumn amid safety concerns over the spread of the coronavirus. President Sebastian Piñera had agreed to the vote and a range of reforms following months of civil unrest. Since last autumn, the country has been experiencing a wave of protests with people on the streets angry at the level of inequality in the country. Amongst them thousands of university students, teachers and school children – who have...

Duration:00:28:08

Riding the 'Motel 22'

4/9/2020
California is one of the wealthiest states in America yet it has the largest population of homeless people – more than 151,000 - in the US. In the Silicon Valley many find shelter on the bus route 22 which runs an endless loop from Palo Alto to the Valley’s biggest city, San Jose. Along the way it passes some of the world’s biggest tech giants: Google, Apple, Hewlett-Packart and Facebook. It is the Valley’s only all night bus and many of its night-time passengers ride it to keep warm and...

Duration:00:27:46

The Man Who Died for Trees

4/2/2020
Romania's forests are the Amazon of Europe - with large wilderness areas under constant pressure from loggers. For years, corrupt authorities turned a blind eye to illegal felling. But now a series of killings in the woods has intensified demands across the continent to end the destruction. Six rangers - who defend forests from illegal cutting – have been killed in as many years. Two died in the space of just a few weeks late last year. The latest victim, Liviu Pop, father of three young...

Duration:00:28:22

Indonesia: Not cool to date

3/26/2020
Saying no to dating is part of a growing ultraconservative social movement in Indonesia being spread through Instagram and WhatsApp. “When I look at couples, I see my old self, how I used to be affectionate in public, holding hands, hugging,” says 23-year-old Yati, “and now I think that’s disgusting.” When Yati broke up with her ex, she didn’t just swear off dating; she joined Indonesia’s anti-dating movement - Indonesia Without Dating. Its leaders say dating is expensive, gets in the way of...

Duration:00:28:40

Ayahuasca: Fear and Healing in the Amazon

1/16/2020
Growing numbers of tourists are travelling to the Peruvian Amazon to drink ayahuasca, a traditional plant medicine said to bring about a higher state of consciousness. Foreigners come looking for spiritual enlightenment or help with mental health problems like trauma, depression, and addiction. But not everyone is happy about Peru’s booming ayahuasca tourism industry. A group of indigenous healers are fighting back against what they see as the exploitation and appropriation of their cultural...

Duration:00:28:58

Belarus: The Wild World of Chernobyl

1/9/2020
Ninety year old Galina is one of the last witnesses to the wild natural world that preceded the Chernobyl zone in southern Belarus. 'We lived with wolves' she says 'and moose, and elk and wild boars.' Soviet development destroyed that ecosystem. Forests and marshland were tamed and laid to farmland and industrial use. But when the Chernobyl reactor exploded in 1986, the human population was evacuated; their villages were buried beneath the earth as though they had never existed. A generation...

Duration:00:28:24

Sierra Leone - The Price of Going Home

1/2/2020
Fatmata, Jamilatu and Alimamy all see themselves as failures. They’re young Sierra Leoneans who risked everything for the sake of a better life in Europe. Along the way, they were imprisoned and enslaved. They saw friends die. Eventually, they gave up. Now, they’re home again - facing the devastating consequences of what they did to their families before they left, actions that have left them ostracised by their nearest and dearest. Who will help them to survive back home? Can they rebuild...

Duration:00:28:16

Iceland: The Great Thaw

12/26/2019
Iceland's glaciers are melting at an unprecedented rate, with scientists predicting that they could all be gone 200 years from now. How is this affecting the lives of local people, and the identity of a nation that has ice in its name? Maria Margaronis talks to Icelandic farmers and fishermen, scientists and environmental activists about their (sometimes surprising) responses to climate change, and asks why it’s so difficult even for those who see its effects from their windows every day to...

Duration:00:31:48

Finland's Race to Go Carbon Neutral

12/19/2019
How do you achieve net-zero carbon emissions in just fifteen years? In Finland, a fisherman-turned-climate scientist believes he has part of the answer: re-wilding the country’s peat fields. Gabriel Gatehouse travels to the country's frozen north to meet Tero Mustonen, as he battles lobbyists and vested interests in government and the peat industry, in a race to mitigate the consequences of climate change. Michael Gallagher producing. Editor, Bridget Harney.

Duration:00:28:38

A Fight for Light in Lebanon

12/12/2019
Life in Lebanon is a daily battle to beat the power cuts caused by the country's chronic electricity shortage. If you live in a block of flats, you have to time when you go in and out to avoid getting trapped in the lift. Food goes bad because fridges don't work, families must often choose between air-conditioning and watching TV, and those on life-support machines live in constant fear of a switch-off. But if it's hell for citizens, it's heaven for operators of illegal private generators...

Duration:00:28:20

Sri Lanka: The New Climate of Fear

12/5/2019
There’s a new climate of fear in Sri Lanka. This time it’s the Muslim community who are fearful of the future. The Easter bomb attacks in Sri Lanka - targeting churches and international hotels - horrified the island. It’s suffered civil war - between the majority Sinhalese and the minority Tamils - but never known jihadi violence. But the attacks also intensified a creeping campaign by the Sinhala Buddhist majority against the Muslim community - with Muslims murdered, their businesses...

Duration:00:28:24

The Man Who Laughed at al-Qaeda

11/28/2019
Raed Fares, founder of Syria's legendary Radio Fresh FM, was mowed down by unknown gunmen as he left his studios in rebel-held Idlib in November 2018. The death of the man who fought hatred with humour and laughed in the faces of President Assad, ISIS and al-Qaeda, sent shockwaves way beyond his troubled homeland. When ordered by Islamist extremists to stop broadcasting music he had replied with bird song and clucking chickens. On being told to take his female presenters off air, he put...

Duration:00:28:52

Russian Women Fight Back

11/21/2019
Domestic abuse in Russia is endemic with hundreds maybe thousands of women dying at the hands of their partners every year. Despite this a controversial law was passed in 2017, which scrapped prison sentences for first-time abusers. Beatings that do not cause broken bones or concussion are now treated as administrative offences rather than crimes. As one activist puts it: “the punishment for beating your wife now feels like paying a parking ticket.” But Russian society is waking up to the...

Duration:00:28:19

The Bitter Song of the Hazelnut

9/19/2019
Every August tens of thousands of Kurdish migrant workers, including children, toil long hours for a pittance in the mountains of northern Turkey picking hazelnuts for the spreads and chocolate bars the world adores. Turkey provides 70% of all hazelnut supplies – and the biggest buyer is Ferrero, maker of Nutella and Kinder Bueno. The confectionery giant says it’s committed to ethical sourcing, and aiming for its hazelnuts to be 100% traceable next year. But how is that possible in Turkey,...

Duration:00:29:29

Colombia’s Kamikaze Cyclists

9/12/2019
Precipitous mountain roads, specially modified bikes, and deadly consequences. Simon Maybin spends time with the young men who race down the steep roads of Colombia’s second city Medellin. Marlon is 16 and he’s a gravitoso - a gravity biker. He hooks onto the back of lorries or buses climbing the precipitous roads to reach high points around the city. Then, he lets gravity do its thing and - without any safety gear - hurtles back down the roads, trying to dodge the traffic. This year, two of...

Duration:00:28:20

Marawi: the story of the Philippines’ Lost City

9/5/2019
Marawi in the southern Philippines is a ghost town. In 2017, it was taken under siege for five months by supporters of Islamic State who wanted to establish a caliphate in the predominantly Muslim city. After a fierce and prolonged battle, the Philippine army regained control – but Marawi was left in ruins. Two years on, reconstruction has barely begun and over 100,000 people are yet to return home. Philippines Correspondent Howard Johnson tells the story of Marawi from the siege to the...

Duration:00:27:55