Archives for May 2011

Michael Buchanan in Saudi Arabia

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George South | 14:53 UK time, Friday, 20 May 2011

More from Michael Buchanan in Riyadh:

"Saudi Arabia is hugely, some would argue, exclusively defined by its religion. The clogged streets of Riyadh are like runways on a Friday morning as everyone, and I mean everyone, prepares to head to the mosque."


"The country's religious leaders have made clear that protests are un-Islamic, which has helped stability in the country, despite the protests elsewhere in the city. But in some districts, like Awamiyya in eastern Saudi Arabia, young people have been taking to the streets on Friday after prayers."


"The area is almost exclusively Shia, as the black flags highlight, and impoverished. It is also extremely nervous at the moment, with these teenagers who were playing football saying they don't engage in politics, a refrain I heard constantly in the area whatever their smiles and eyes were saying."

Saudi football

"It is impossible to over-state how conservative the country is - and why any change that happens is likely to be incremental. Women can't vote, can't drive, can't sign legal documents."

Women queuing for food

"A suggestion last week that boys and girls should go to the same primary school, was dismissed by one opponent who said it would turn girls into tomboys and boys into transvestites. As one man said to me - we don't challenge our parents at home, so why do you think we'd challenge our government on the streets. "

Driving in Saudi

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Eddie Mair | 15:06 UK time, Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Michael Buchanan writes:

"Last Sunday the Saudi king, Abdullah, opened what is believed to be the largest women's university in the world. It can take 50,000 students, has more than 20 academic schools, a large hospital and 2 mosques. It also has a 19 km railway track to get around the campus, because women are not allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia.
Najla Hariri has had enough of that. For the past few days she has been driving around the city of Jeddah in broad daylight. She says she's not scared and that her family, including her husband, are very proud of her. She's at the vanguard of several calls for reform from across Saudi Arabia, most of which are likely to be resisted by the country powerful and vocal religious leaders."

July 7th: Julie Nicholson interview in full

Eddie Mair | 16:33 UK time, Friday, 6 May 2011

We now have the conclusion of the July 7th inquest. You can read more here.

Someone who was at the inquest even more often than Peter Hunt was Julie Nicholson, whose daughter Jenny was killed in the attacks on the Edgware Road train. Julie joined us a few weeks ago to explain why it was important to her, to witness so much of the inquest in person. She's also written a book entitled "A Song for Jenny: A Mother's Story of Love and Loss".

In PM tonight you can hear an edited version of a new interview we've just recorded with Julie. You can hear the full version here:

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Newcastle election information

Eddie Mair | 17:43 UK time, Wednesday, 4 May 2011

as mentioned on the programme tonight - is here.

Bath and North East Somerset

George South | 17:33 UK time, Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Yesterday PM featured a report examining the challenges for Labour at the forthcoming English local elections. Today Terry Stiastny looks at one of the fights the Conservatives will have on their hands - against the Liberal Democrats in Bath and North East Somerset. The Conservatives have been running the council for the last four years -- they would need to win one seat to take overall control. Here's a full list of candidates standing in the election.

more beach!

Carolyn Quinn | 10:11 UK time, Monday, 2 May 2011

The eagle-eyed among you may have noticed my earlier bungle which has now been removed! I posted the wrong pictures. These are, hopefully, the correct pictures ... from Jonnie.

Message from Jonnie ...
Not the typical beach pictures, however I quite liked the contrast and the way they turned out. These shots are of the 'seven sisters'.

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