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From Our Own Correspondent Podcast


Insight, wit and analysis as BBC correspondents, journalists and writers take a closer look at the stories behind the headlines. Presented by Kate Adie and Pascale Harter.

Insight, wit and analysis as BBC correspondents, journalists and writers take a closer look at the stories behind the headlines. Presented by Kate Adie and Pascale Harter.


United Kingdom


World News




Insight, wit and analysis as BBC correspondents, journalists and writers take a closer look at the stories behind the headlines. Presented by Kate Adie and Pascale Harter.




Disillusion in Iraq

When western troops overthrew Saddam Hussein, the argument was that this would turn Iraq from a dictatorship into a democracy. And they have indeed held elections there; the latest vote for a new Iraqi parliament took place last Sunday. Yet when it comes to actually voting, tribal and religious affiliation appear to have trumped any ideological leanings, and with a heavy dose of apathy and disillusionment thrown in, says Lizzie Porter. As with Iraq, Japan also faces much disillusionment with...


A Haitian Odyssey Across The Americas

In recent weeks, images of thousands of Haitian migrants living in squalid conditions in a temporary camp in Texas have caused widespread shock and anger in the United States. US Border patrol agents on horseback forced many of them back across the Rio Grande into Mexico. Thousands more were deported back to Haiti, which is in the grip of its deepest economic and political crisis for years. The US Special Envoy to Haiti, Daniel Foote, resigned last month in protest at the Biden...


Bumps in the road for the Czech Republic

The Czech election this week will decide whether embattled billionaire businessman Andrej Babis gets another four-year term as Prime Minister. He’s under pressure from new revelations in the Pandora papers – seeming to show that he was involved in the purchase of 16 properties on the French Riviera using offshore companies. Mr Babis has denied any wrongdoing: “I don’t own any property in France,” he said. “It’s nasty, false accusations that are meant to influence the election.” He has always...


Silence Falls in Libya

It's not easy to talk in Tripoli; Palestinian anger over Nizar Banat's death; the MH17 trial in the Netherlands; Rwandan forces in Mozambique; a number plate dispute in the Balkans In Libya, the promise of a new dawn after the overthrow of the Gaddafi regime a decade ago now seems to ring hollow. After its revolution came civil war – as militias proliferated and fought for control. For more than six years the country was split between rival administrations in the east and west. There’s been...


Anxiety over Afghanistan

More than six weeks after the Taliban announced their full takeover of the country, Afghanistan is still up against huge challenges. The economy is contracting fast, there’s a punishing drought, and many people are finding it harder to find food, even if they can afford to buy it. The news on human rights and security has been worrying. Journalists have been arrested and beaten up; women’s and girls’ right to education appears to be eroding; and former critics and enemies of the Taliban have...


A tight race in Germany's elections

This weekend's elections will determine the makeup of Germany's parliament - and set the country’s course for a new, post-Angela Merkel era. German politics tend to be less adversarial, less personal and polarised than in many European states – although there’s still plenty to be argued over. So far the campaign has stuck to the issues – there have been no notable gaffes or dramatic confrontations. But it is a close race and opinion polls have swung wildly. After this year’s catastrophic...


China's New Rules for Society

The Chinese government is, as ever, staying busy by devising new regulations. It's unleashed a raft of regulatory changes on everything from the limits on how much debt property developers are allowed to build up, to changes in the tax code and the breaking up of tech giants. But the Communist Party has also launched a series of rather paternalistic moves, reaching right into family homes, with measures designed to tackle perceived problems of laziness, or even what the state calls...


From Our Own Correspondent with Kate Adie

Refugees have been fleeing Iran, as the economic situation there worsens, with food prices going up, and shortages of clean water and power. Meanwhile, there are fears among some people that the country is about to become more oppressive, with a new, hard-line president in charge. It is these conditions which have prompted many Iranians to escape. Iranian Kurds in particular have been seeking sanctuary in the Kurdish part of Iraq. But life there is not always easy. And among this community...


Brazil’s Embattled President Tries to Rally his Supporters

There is only one power Jair Bolsonaro thinks can remove him from power, and that is God - at least that's what Brazil's President, told his audience at a rally on Tuesday. He had called on people to come out and support him at events across the country - and come out they did, though not perhaps the million he had hoped would attend. Mr Bolsonaro clearly wanted to demonstrate that he still has voter pulling power, what with his poll ratings tumbling ahead of elections next year. Many blame...


Lebanon's Medicines Emergency

Lebanon was once the embodiment of glamour: its capital, Beirut, was nicknamed the “Paris of the Middle East” and enjoyed as an international playground. Today those glory years seem long gone. A political crisis has left the country without a properly functioning government – and its economy has imploded. The currency has lost more than 90% of its value and poverty has skyrocketed. There are shortages of fuel, water and food - and as Leila Molana-Allen explains, even essential medicines are...


Forever wars – and how they can end

The Taliban takeover in Afghanistan has serious implications for global security. Western governments are concerned about the prospect of more attacks on their own turf. But there’s also particular worry that jihadist movements in Africa and Asia could gain ground. Might the news from Kabul attract new recruits to their ranks – especially in those places where international forces have been deeply involved in fighting them back? The various armed groups allied with Al Qaida and the Islamic...


Afghanistan: Questions, Doubts and Fears

It’s been a week of searing and surreal images from Afghanistan after the Taliban’s lighting takeover of Kabul. The spectacle of an official Taliban news conference, televised live from the capital on Tuesday, was proof of how just how fast events have moved. The Taliban leadership may have promised forgiveness, reconciliation and protection of women’s rights. But the mood is fearful and there are still thousands of Afghans desperate to get out of the country by any means possible. Lyse...


A Summer of Fires in Greece

Greece has been ravaged by almost six hundred wildfires in recent weeks. Thousands of firefighters have struggled to contain the raging flames which have destroyed hundreds of thousands of hectares of land; more than 60,000 people so far have had to flee their homes to safety. The Greek government has promised compensation payments for those affected and a massive drive to reforest the burnt areas “We saved lives, but we lost forests and property”, the Prime Minister admitted this week,...


The price of dissent in Belarus

The repressive tactics of the Belarusian state have been back in the news this week – and all over the map. The Olympic Games in Tokyo were shaken by sprinter Krystina Timonovskaya’s row with her coaches – she ended up seeking asylum in Poland. In Ukraine, the head of a group helping Belarusian emigres was found hanged in a park in Kyiv; his death is still being investigated. In Belarus itself, it’s nearly a year since the disputed election of August 2020 - which sparked mass protests over...


Tunisia's Unfinished Business

The political crisis which broke out in Tunisia last weekend is still simmering. Of all the countries in North Africa and the Middle East which toppled their dictators a decade ago, only Tunisia emerged as a full, multi-party democracy. Its free and fair elections, featuring candidates and groups of all ideological stripes, have been an exception in the wider region since then. But discontent has still mounted over the state of the economy, pandemic response and police tactics. Plenty of...



The destructive power of water is often underestimated… until it’s too late. Large areas of Europe and China are still reeling from the damage left by some of their worst floods for decades. Across Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany, there were over 200 deaths and billions of euros' worth of damage done. Now there are questions over whether this disaster will make voters more concerned about the effects of climate change. Although the Netherlands was least affected by the latest floods,...


The Meaning of Home

In the eastern Mediterranean there are far fewer refugees and migrants arriving by boat than in recent years - but the moral dilemmas of dealing with migration are still acute. In Greece, the government of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has tightened its asylum laws, built new walled camps and pushed back boats at sea. Over his reporting career, Fergal Keane has followed many global waves of migrants and refugees, from their home countries, along their journeys and to their various end...


Cubans' patience wears thin

The combined miseries of an economic crunch, a spike in Covid infections and simmering long-standing frustration drove hundreds of people to speak out in public last weekend. The Cuban government often brings out the crowds for mass demonstrations of revolutionary will – but it cracks down hard and fast on any shows of organised dissent. Will Grant has been sensing the pressure mount for months. The world was horrified by scenes from the pandemic in India – but there was less global...


What NATO leaves behind in Afghanistan

This week sees the end of the NATO mission in Afghanistan. These are the last days of a 20-year military presence of British and other forces – and the growing Taliban insurgency is moving quickly into the territory they’re leaving behind. The BBC's Security Correspondent Frank Gardner made numerous reporting trips to the country , four of them in a wheelchair; he reflects on some of the more poignant moments and what the future holds. The killing of Haiti’s President Jovenel Moise has...


Face to face with Abiy Ahmed

Two weeks ago Ethiopia held a parliamentary election billed as the first truly ‘free and fair’ vote in its history – after nearly 20 years of continuous economic growth. It should have been a success story – but the election was only held in some parts of the country, as war was still raging in the Tigray region. There have been over eight months of armed conflict there as the central government moved to re-establish control; and there have been many reports of atrocities – and of hunger....