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Our Khat-free Wedding

55 minutes
First broadcast:
Thursday 18 April 2013

Baraa Shiban is a young, 27-year-old activist from Yemen. Last year, he and his wife Najah hit the headlines, after they banned guests at their wedding from chewing the stimulant leaf khat. They tell Matthew Bannister how some of their relatives threatened not to attend the ceremony.

Then, we hear from the Chadian film director Mahamat Saleh Haroun. He left Chad in the 1980s, after being wounded during the country's civil war. Little did he know that many years later he would be preparing to open the country's first international film school.

On the day that the Russian parliament gave its initial backing to a new law that would ban gay propaganda, TV presenter Anton Krasovsky announced live on air that he himself was gay. As Anton told Outlook, he was then sacked from his job.

We also meet Rossano Ercolini, an Italian primary school teacher from Tuscany. For the last 20 years, he has led a double life. In school hours, he teaches. In the rest of his waking life, he runs a campaign called "Zero Waste". Earlier this week, he was awarded the 2013 Goldman Environmental Prize.

Baluji Shrivastav is an internationally acclaimed blind sitar player. He is musically very versatile - playing Indian classical styles, but also jazz improvisation and working with some of the biggest names in pop and rock, such as Stevie Wonder, Massive Attack and Coldplay.

Photo Credits: David Arnold / The Yemen Times


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