BBC Crossing Continents

Crossing Continents

On the ground reporting from around the world which focuses on the human dimension of the big international stories.
English United Kingdom Places & Travel
91 Episodes
1 – 20

Iran Protests: Tales from the front line

Why did people take to the streets, risking arrest and a barrage of bullets? After protests turned violent and hundreds of people were killed, four Iranians tell the story of why they risked their lives. What has been happening in Iran to drive them out onto the streets to face…
26 Jan 29 min

A Return to Paradise

In 2018 the town of Paradise in the hills of northern California was wiped out by one of the worst wildfires in California's history. The disaster made headlines around the world - regarded as a symbol of the dangers posed by climate change. So what does the future hold for…
19 Jan 28 min

Saving Children from the Mafia

Southern Italy is home to some of Europe's most powerful criminal organisations; the Sicilian Mafia, the Camorra in Naples and the Ndrangheta based in Calabria. For many, crime is a family business. So a judge in Sicily has come up with a radical plan to prevent young people becoming the…
12 Jan 30 min

South Korea - a room with a view

“It’s like living in a cemetery.” Jung Seongno lives in a banjiha, or semi-basement apartment in the South Korean capital Seoul. Last August parts of Seoul experienced major flooding. As a result several people, including a family of three, drowned in their banjiha. Seongno dreams of having a place where…
5 Jan 30 min

Fighting 'fat-phobia' in Brazil

As in many countries, obesity in Brazil is a major issue with one in four Brazilians now classified as obese and more than half the population overweight. But rather than focusing just on trying to lower this rate by promoting exercise and healthier ways of eating, campaigners and some city…
29 Dec 2022 29 min

Spain's Flamenco on the Edge

To many of us, the passionate music and dance known as flamenco is an important marker of Spanish identity, and perhaps even synonymous with it. So much so, that UNESCO has recognised the art form as part of the world’s Intangible Cultural Heritage. Yet its place within the country of…
22 Dec 2022 27 min

Hungary’s power dilemma

Paks, a small Hungarian town on the shore of the River Danube an hour or two south of Budapest has prospered from its nuclear power station, built by the Soviet Union in the mid-1980s. Hungary has prospered too. Paks provides some 40 per cent of the country’s power requirements. But…
15 Dec 2022 29 min

California's cannabis reparations

In California, cannabis is legal for recreational use and it’s created a multi-billion dollar industry. But who’s been reaping the rewards? For decades people from Black and Latino communities have been disproportionately arrested and imprisoned on cannabis drugs charges – and yet few appeared to benefit from the legal cannabis…
8 Dec 2022 28 min

Cold-calling Siberia

Sasha Koltun volunteered to fight in Putin's war against Ukraine, though his mother Yelena begged him not to go. Four days later, he was dead, one of several dozen new recruits from across Russia who never even reached the battlefield. What happened to him - and will his mother, battling…
1 Dec 2022 28 min

Trouble in Taiwan?

China’s President Xi Jinping says that Taiwan‘s reunification with the mainland “must and will be fulfilled.” The view from democratic Taiwan is somewhat different. It’s a threat the islanders have been hearing ever since the 1949 Chinese Civil War, when the Government of the Republic of China was forced to…
24 Nov 2022 27 min

Bye-bye Baguette?

The bakers and farmers trying to wean Senegal off imported wheat. Trotting along on a horse and cart, over the bumpy red dirt roads, through the lush green fields of Senegal’s countryside, Oule carries sacks of cargo back to her village. She is the bread lady of Ndor Ndor and…
10 Oct 2022 28 min

A ‘Me Too’ Moment for Israel’s Ultra-Orthodox Jews?

Israel’s ultra-Orthodox Jewish community is struggling to come to terms with high-profile sex abuse scandals. In the past year, two of its leading lights were accused of taking advantage of their status to sexually assault vulnerable women, men, and children. What has added to the shock is how, after one…
22 Sep 2022 29 min

The Texas Tank: A Prison Radio Station Changing Lives

The Allan B. Polunsky Unit in Livingston, Texas, used to be known as the Terror Dome for its high rates of inmate violence, murder and suicide. Polunsky houses all the men condemned to death in Texas (currently 185) and nearly 3,000 maximum security prisoners. But since the pandemic, a prison…
8 Sep 2022 28 min

Nigeria’s oil thieves

Illegal oil is big business in the Niger Delta. Oil thieves cut the pipelines, siphoning off oil, which they refine in the bush and sell on the black market. This vast underground industry is a huge employer in the region but it’s a dangerous business. Earlier this year, over 100…
1 Sep 2022 28 min

Lacrosse: Reclaiming the Creator’s game

Why are Native Americans striving to ‘reclaim’ the game of lacrosse? Lacrosse may have the reputation as a white elitist sport, played in private schools. In fact, it was originally a Native American game, practiced across North America before European colonisers arrived. As white settlers pushed westwards, taking land and…
25 Aug 2022 28 min

Moldova - East or West?

Sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine, the former Soviet Republic of Moldova has recently been awarded EU candidate status. In an echo of what happened in Ukraine, Moldova lost a chunk of its eastern territory to separatists in a short war 30 years ago. The separatists were backed by elements of…
18 Aug 2022 29 min

After the ‘Narco-President’: Rebuilding Hope in Honduras

When the president stands accused of drug trafficking, what hope is there? From 2014, for eight years Juan Orlando Hernandez ruled Honduras like his personal fiefdom. A Central American strongman comparable with some of the worst from decades past, under his presidency Honduras began a rapid descent into a so-called…
11 Aug 2022 29 min

Ukraine: Collaboration and Resistance

Ukrainian forces have launched a counteroffensive to retake Kherson, the largest city captured by Russia in this year's invasion. But the occupiers are redoubling their efforts to integrate the city and surrounding region into Russia - and they need the help of local collaborators. A few Ukrainians are eagerly serving…
4 Aug 2022 28 min

The Return of the Tigers

Tigers are making a remarkable comeback in Nepal. The small Himalayan nation is on track to become the first country to double its wild tiger population in the last decade. A new census will be released on International Tiger Day (29th of July). The recovery is the result of tough…
28 Jul 2022 28 min

Love-bombing Estonia’s Russian Speakers

Can music and culture help unite Estonia? Guitar riffs lilt through the air and over the narrow river that marks the border between Estonia and Russia. It’s the first time Estonia’s annual festival Tallinn Music Week has been held in Narva, bringing coach loads of musicians from 30 countries around…
19 May 2022 31 min
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