South Korea Research | International

South Korean Dating Preferences

Marriage agency DUO surveyed attitudes of South Koreans towards dating foreigners and found that the vast majority were open to dating non-Koreans and that a significant proportion even prefer to do so.

88.9% (men) / 85.8% (women)

South Koreans who are open to relationships with foreigners

30% (men) / 37.2% (women)

South Koreans who prefer pursuing relationships with foreigners rather than other South Koreans

Research by: DUO
Sample size: 425

Read the results at The Korea Times.

Nigeria News | Women

Lagos state bans out-of-court settlement for sexual and domestic violence cases
  • The Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team announced that cases of rape, defilement, and violence against women would no longer be able to be settled out of court.
  • The team coordinator met with tribal leaders to discuss ways of effective intervention when women come to them for advice on how to handle such cases.
  • Officials have been trying to reroute cases from traditional settlement to judicial settlement through state legal structures.

Read the full story at the Daily Trust.

South Africa Feature | Black Children

Playing with Blackness

Image Credit: Leonardo Angelucci/AFP/Getty Images, via The Guardian
Image Credit: Leonardo Angelucci/AFP/Getty Images, via The Guardian

Childish Trading and Manufacturing founder Maite Makgoba hopes her Mommpy Mpoppy doll will help change the way young black South African children look at themselves. In a market overwhelmed by whiteness, her dolls feature dark skin and natural-looking hair, giving black children an opportunity to insert images of themselves into their play fantasies. The Guardian takes a look at the toy and the uphill market challenges Makgoba faces.

Read the full feature at the Guardian.

Russia Feature | Adoptive Families

The Assisted Families of Russia

Image Credit: Irina Yakobson/The Moscow Times
Image Credit: Irina Yakobson/The Moscow Times

The Moscow Times delves into the intricate process of adoption in Russia, highlighting the legal and psychological challenges faced in a country that sees relatively high levels of adoption, but also high failure and dissolution rates. Couples discuss their attempts to celebrate their families and increase the visibility of adoption in Russia as the nation closes many of its doors to international adoption.

Read the full feature at The Moscow Times.

Myanmar News | Muslims, Interfaith & the Unmarried

Myanmar president signs bills perceived as targeting Muslim minorities, interfaith couples, and the unmarried into law
  • President Thein Sein signed four “Race and Religious Protection Laws” into being in the lead-up to November elections.
  • The laws include one criminalizing polygamy and unmarried cohabitation and two laws restricting religious conversion and interfaith marriage.
  • Buddhist nationalists in the country have promoted the laws as the latest in a series of measures restricting the activities and practices of the country’s Muslim minority.

“They set out the potential for discrimination on religious grounds and pose the possibility for serious communal tension.”

Read the full story at Reuters.

(Image Credit: Toru Hanai/Reuters)

Afghanistan News | Girls

Afghan police investigate gas poisoning at girls’ school in Herat province
  • More than 100 girls were taken to the hospital in Herat province for toxic gas poisoning at their school in the village of Enjil.
  • While police investigate whether the incident was intentional, politicians suspect it was the work of conservative factions who oppose education for girls in the country.
  • Most of the girls were discharged the same day as their hospitalization.

Read the full story at Reuters.

Austria & Hungary News | Migrants & Refugees

Austria announces it will check migrants’ asylum status at border with Hungary
  • Hundreds of migrants discovered on an overcrowded train from Budapest at the Austrian border will have their status checked by Austrian authorities.
  • If migrants are discovered to have applied for asylum in Hungary, they will be barred from further movement and returned to Hungary.
  • Migrants with no asylum application in progress will be given two weeks to decide whether to apply for asylum in Austria, or be returned to their last country of transit.

Read the full story at Reuters.

Turkey News | Journalists

VICE reporters face terrorism charges in Turkey
  • Four journalists affiliated with VICE News –two British, one locally based, and one unknown–were detained by Turkish anti-terrorism forces for covering the conflict between the government and the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK).
  • The journalists had their equipment seized after they filming clashes between police and PKK supporters.
  • Because Turkey considers the PKK a terrorist organization, the government has obstructed the work of journalists attempting to contact or cover the group.

“It is completely proper that that journalists should cover this important story. … The decision to detain the journalists was wrong, while the allegation of assisting Islamic state is unsubstantiated, outrageous and bizarre.”

Read the full story at BuzzFeed News.

(Image Credit: Ilyas Akengin/AFP/ Getty Images)

U.S. News | Native American

President Obama announces tallest North American mountain will have native name officially recognized
  • Denali (“the high one” in Athabaskan) is the native name for Mount McKinley, the tallest mountain in North America, and has now become federally recognized as the official name of the mountain.
  • In 1896, the mountain was renamed Mount McKinley during President William McKinley’s second election campaign despite Ohioan McKinley having no connection to the mountain or Alaska.
  • President Obama will announce the change as he becomes the first sitting president to visit the Alaskan Arctic, where he will meet with Alaskan Native leaders to discuss cooperative measures.

Read the full story at BuzzFeed News.

(Image Credit: Becky Bohrer/AP, via BuzzFeed News)

Italy News | LGBT

Venice mayor says no Pride parades for city during his tenure
  • Recently elected mayor Luigi Brugnaro was elected on a center-right ticket and has made his opposition to LGBT rights clear previously.
  • Rights group Arcigay, which hosts numerous Pride events throughout Italy, condemned the statement, having last hosted a parade in Venice just last year.
  • Brugnaro’s statement is the latest in anti-LGBT moves to come from his office, including a blanket ban on books featuring same-sex couples from Venice schools.

“There will never be a gay pride in my city. … Let them go and do it in Milan, or in front of their own homes.”

Read the full story at the Guardian.

C.A.R. Feature | Muslims & Christians

Connecting the Living through the Dead

Image Credit: Laurent Correau/RFI
Image Credit: Laurent Correau/RFI

Situated in the Boeing neighborhood of the Central African Republic capital Bangui, a Muslim cemetery that was long the stronghold of Christian anti-balaka militants found itself in need of repair. RFI highlights how the situation provided a unique opportunity for the city’s Christian community to help their Muslim brethren clear not only the weeds of the burial plots, but the divisions between their communities as well.

« Nous sommes en train de désherber sur le cimetière musulman de Boeing. Je suis un chrétien. Ce qui m’a poussé à venir travailler, main dans la main avec les musulmans, c’est la cohésion sociale. Si nous sommes réunis, c’est parce que nous voulons que la paix revienne dans notre pays et pour éviter les problèmes qui se posent encore dans notre pays »

Translation: “We’re pulling weeds in Boeing’s Muslim cemetery. I’m a Christian. What pushed me to come to work, hand in hand with Muslims, is social cohesion. If we’re gathered, it’s because we want peace to return to our country and to avoid the problems that still come up in our country.”

Read the full feature at Radio France Internationale (in French).

France News | Americans & Britons

Three Americans and one Briton receive France’s highest honor for role in subduing train attacker
  • French President François Hollande awarded the four men the Legion d’Honneur at a reception at the Elysée Palace.
  • The men were a part of a group that subdued the gunman on a train bound for Paris with more than 550 passengers reported on board.
  • A French-American, who was shot and remains hospitalized, and an additional unnamed man also assisted and will receive their honors at a later date.

Read the full story at BuzzFeed News.

(Image Credit: Pool New/Reuters, via BuzzFeed News)

U.K. Feature | Gay Asian Muslims

Gaysian and Proud

Image Credit: Borja Suarez/Reuters
Image Credit: Borja Suarez/Reuters

A new documentary featuring renowned British drag queen Asifa Lahore (Asif Quarashi) highlights struggles of Britain’s gay Asian and Muslim drag queen communities. Probing the complexities at the intersection of an at times violently opposed faith community and a gender and sexual minority community that often whitewashes its population, Muslim Drag Queens premieres today in celebration of Britain’s vibrant Gaysian community.

Read the full feature at the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

(Image Credit: Borja Suarez/Reuters)

China News | Incarcerated Seniors & Veterans

China announces rare prisoner amnesities ahead of WWII anniversary
  • Four groups, including seniors and war veterans, will receive amnesty.
  • The decision marks only the eighth time China has granted incarceration relief in Communist Party history.
  • Those convicted of violent crimes such as rape, murder, or terror will remain incarcerated.

Read the full story at Reuters.

Myanmar News | Rohingya

Rohingya politician barred from re-election as hundreds of thousands find themselves struck from voting rolls
  • Lawmaker U Shwe Maung, a member of Myanmar’s governing party, was informed by the country’s electoral commission of his ineligibility to run for re-election.
  • The commission claimed Shwe Maung was not a citizen, the result of Myanmar’s recent invalidation of the identity cards held by the majority of the country’s Rohingya population.
  • The mass disenfranchisement of Rohingya has compromised the integrity of the upcoming November elections, which will be the first to include a democratically led party to compete with the military-backed governing party.

“This is the government really stripping them of their last right. … It suits the government’s long-term plan of compelling them to leave.”

Read the full story at The New York Times.