The river Congo is navigable for 1,700 kms from Kinshasa to Kisangani. It is the lifeline of a region with few roads or railways and provides a vital source of livelihood for many of the 29 million people living on the banks of the river and its ...


Nick Hannes travelled the length and breadth of the former Soviet Union - all fifteen former republics - to document the reality of post-communist societies in the fragments of the once all-powerful empire. Along the way he uncovered the different ...


In 2011 South Sudan gained independence from Sudan and become the world's newest country. Yet old grievances between different communities in the new nation quickly erupted into a brutal civl war in 2013, causing thousands to seek safety across the ...


Global warming poses a direct threat to the island nation of Tuvalu. If the most pessimistic scientific predictions turn out to be correct, this pocket-sized Polynesian country, its people and its unique culture will be gone in less than a century, made ...


Dubai has developed into a vast theme park, where you can ski in the desert and swim with dolphins. Forever in search of illusions, we lose sight of reality. What does that do to your imagination? How many more malls, theme parks and hotels does a ...


Less than a century ago, Iran had 10 million inhabitants, 5 million of whom were nomadic. Today, the population has risen to over 81 million but only a much smaller number - 1.5 million - still live a nomadic life. The two main tribes are the Bakhtiaris ...


In ancient times the southern part of the Arabian peninsula, modern day Yemen, was known as Arabia Felix, or fortunate, fertile Arabia. The difference to the current situation could not be more stark as starvation stalks the shattered country and a four...


I've lived away from the UK since the Thatcher Years. Brexit came as shock. I had perhaps the excuse of distance, but it made me question my British identity after so many years away. Home suddenly got much further away, and yet uncomfortably close, ...


Among the many complex issues facing negotiators from the UK and the EU trying to hammer out an agreement that will define the United Kingdom's relationship with the bloc after March 2019 when the UK is due to exit, the border between Northern Ireland ...


The conflict in Colombia had been going on for so long that it had almost become part of the scenery. FARC guerrillas had lost some 260,000 of their fighters and seven million people had been displaced, with tens of thousands more missing. The ...


In most cultures around the world, getting married marks a key moment in a person's life. Each culture celebrates the union in its own way, but nowhere, perhaps, is marriage more elaborate or more important than in the tiny island nation of the Comoros. ...


With gangly yellow-green petals that hang limply from their stem, the ylang ylang flower is not much to look at. But its powerful scent is so sublime that is has become a favourite of the world's perfumers. It forms the basis of many floral perfumes, ...


"One day the soldiers came to my home and tortured me in front of my kids. They were asking for my husband who they claimed was a rebel," Esther Minella recalls. Within three days of this event, her husband had been killed and she was preparing...


My trip to Guinea Bissau was the last in a series of journeys to different countries around the world that were colonised by Portugal and still retain Portuguese as their lingua franca. Attempting to analyse the cultural mix of African and European ...


Until early 2018, a tall, decrepit concrete tower, known as the President Hotel, loomed over the streets of Cholon, Ho Chi Minh City's Chinatown. Built as an apartment block by millionaire Nguyen Tan Doi in the 1960s in what was then Saigon, the building...


Bangalore, the centre of India's 'Silicon Valley', is running out of water. Researchers warn that the city, along with other fast-growing urban centres such as Beijing, Mexico City, Istanbul, Nairobi, Karachi and Kabul, could fast be approaching 'Day ...