Ukraine: The War in the Countryside

From Our Own Correspondent Podcast

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Ukraine: The War in the Countryside

From Our Own Correspondent Podcast

The destruction of Ukrainian cities such as Mariupol has garnered global headlines, but the fighting has also filtered out to the rural towns and villages which surround it. These lack the city’s resources for dealing with the dead, the injured, and the bereaved, and when Wyre Davis reached one of these rural spots, he found even the most day-to-day tasks present significant challenges and risks. Turkey’s President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan is trying to occupy the middle ground on Ukraine; he remains on good terms with Vladimir Putin, but Turkey is also a member of NATO. This has enabled President Erdogan to take a central role in efforts to reach a peace deal, inviting negotiators to meet in Istanbul. And this is perhaps the ideal city for discussions aimed at healing division. Istanbul marks the point where Europe and Asia meet, with the Bosphorus Strait running between the two. The Bosphorus also occupies a key strategic position in this conflict, which Ellie House found herself reflecting on as she took a boat ride along one of its busier stretches. A series of setbacks have left Sri Lanka running out of cash, meaning there is now no money to pay for food or fuel. This has resulted in power cuts for up to thirteen hours a day, and prices rising to the point where people are having to skip meals, while hospitals run out of medicine. The protestors who have been out on Sri Lanka’s streets this week knew who to blame, pointing the finger at the government and its economic mismanagement. Rajini Vaidyanathan says that for ordinary Sri Lankan people, the situation remains dire. Once upon a time, VIktor Orban was seen as a brave campaigner for democracy, demanding Soviet troops leave Hungary during the Cold War. Nowadays, he is a reliable friend of the Kremlin - a matter of some concern to his European Union and NATO allies, but something they will have to continue to live with. This week, Mr Orban won a fourth successive term as Prime Minister. Nick Thorpe has met him many times over the years, and has a few ideas about what lies behind his success. How can a city and its people recover from war? This is something the people of Mosul in Iraq have had time to consider. It has been fought over at various points in the past two decades, by US troops, the Iraqi national army, Al Qaeda, and then, by Islamic State. IS attempted to destroy much of Mosul's tradition and culture, yet the city is now undergoing something of a renaissance, as Leila Molana-Allen found on a recent night out.
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The destruction of Ukrainian cities such as Mariupol has garnered global headlines, but the fighting has also filtered out to the rural towns and villages which surround it. These lack the city’s resources for dealing with the dead, the injured, and the bereaved, and when Wyre Davis reached one of these rural spots, he found even the most day-to-day tasks present significant challenges and risks. Turkey’s President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan is trying to occupy the middle ground on Ukraine; he remains on good terms with Vladimir Putin, but Turkey is also a member of NATO. This has enabled President Erdogan to take a central role in efforts to reach a peace deal, inviting negotiators to meet in Istanbul. And this is perhaps the ideal city for discussions aimed at healing division. Istanbul marks the point where Europe and Asia meet, with the Bosphorus Strait running between the two. The Bosphorus also occupies a key strategic position in this conflict, which Ellie House found herself reflecting on as she took a boat ride along one of its busier stretches. A series of setbacks have left Sri Lanka running out of cash, meaning there is now no money to pay for food or fuel. This has resulted in power cuts for up to thirteen hours a day, and prices rising to the point where people are having to skip meals, while hospitals run out of medicine. The protestors who have been out on Sri Lanka’s streets this week knew who to blame, pointing the finger at the government and its economic mismanagement. Rajini Vaidyanathan says that for ordinary Sri Lankan people, the situation remains dire. Once upon a time, VIktor Orban was seen as a brave campaigner for democracy, demanding Soviet troops leave Hungary during the Cold War. Nowadays, he is a reliable friend of the Kremlin - a matter of some concern to his European Union and NATO allies, but something they will have to continue to live with. This week, Mr Orban won a fourth successive term as Prime Minister. Nick Thorpe has met him many times over the years, and has a few ideas about what lies behind his success. How can a city and its people recover from war? This is something the people of Mosul in Iraq have had time to consider. It has been fought over at various points in the past two decades, by US troops, the Iraqi national army, Al Qaeda, and then, by Islamic State. IS attempted to destroy much of Mosul's tradition and culture, yet the city is now undergoing something of a renaissance, as Leila Molana-Allen found on a recent night out.
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