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A show produced with photos, videos and personal accounts from our Observers around the world - all checked by our staff here in Paris. Saturday at 10.15 am Paris time. We'll be back in September with a new series.

THE OBSERVERS

THE OBSERVERS

Latest update : 2013-05-29

Makeshift weapons in Syria, gay weddings in South Africa, and more

This show is made up entirely of amateur images. We've seen time and time again how images captured by ordinary citizens then uploaded onto the Web can change history, or at least shift the balance of power. This week, we take a look back at some of those moments.

Story 1: Syria

We begin once again in Syria. The rebels have suffered a series of defeats in recent days. One of the reasons is that they are massively outgunned. The regime has attack aircraft and sophisticated missiles, largely thanks to arms shipments from Russia. The rebels do what they can to close the gap. That includes recycling the weapons they capture on the battlefield - and even modifying them for their own use. This report is from one of our Observers in Homs.

 

Story 2: South Africa

Here in France, gay marriage has just become legal. In South Africa, it's already been allowed for five years. But while South African might have been ahead of the curve in making same-sex marriage legal in the eyes of the state, it's not so simple when it comes to society. Our observer Tshepo and his partner Thoba wanted to show they are proud to be gay and African. So for their wedding, they chose a traditional ceremony.

 

Story 3: World

Now for our weekly roundup of other stories on the Observers site.

First stop Israel, and the plight of migrant workers from Africa. They have been the target of recent demonstrations by right-wing nationalists. Our observer Abdalla runs a Sudanese restaurant in Tel Aviv. He tells us health inspectors recently raided the city's African restaurants. He says inspectors poured bleach on 200 kilograms of his meat. They say it wasn't being kept at the right temperature. Abdalla says it was. He sees the raid as harassment, an effort to push African immigrants out of the country.

Now to Togo in West Africa, and our Observer Dédé Rose Crépy. She is a textile retailer, whose business was until recently flourishingn - enough for her to be able to drive around in a Mercedes, making her a 'Benz babe'. But she says her business is being undercut by cheap Chinese imports. A fire in the market in January was the last nail in the coffin, and she's now running the business from her home. The glory days of the 'Benz babes' are over, she says.

And finally today, the results of the first-ever Observers photo contest. We asked you to send in photos of yourselves at sites that are symbols of the town or country you live in. We had entries from Denmark, Tunisia, Ivory Coast, Paris... but congratulations go to the winner Fatoumata, from Guinea Conakry. She lives in a slum called Wanindara outside the capital. She says she and her neighbors are proud of where they live, and don't let the trash and dust from passing trains cramp their style.

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