The Observers

Social unrest in Syria, Ivory Coast refugees in Ghana and Moroccan aid mission in Fukushima

This week, our Observers tell us about the anti-government protests in Syria, about Ivorian refugees fleeing to Ghana, and of the brave initiative of two Moroccan businessmen who organised an aid convoy to quake-hit Fukushima in Japan.


Presentation: Derek Thomson. Editorial team: Julien Pain, Lorena Galliot, Ségolène Malterre, Sarra Grira, Peggy Bruguière.


We begin in Syria, with a wave of protests that would have been unthinkable just a few weeks ago. Our Observer was among the first Syrians to take to the streets… braving the country’s dreaded secret police, the Mukhabarat. He’s been amazed to see how far it’s gone.

Observer: Nabil.

Now to Ivory Coast… and the exodus from the commercial capital Abidjan. The UN says up to a million people have now fled the city… as violence worsens between supporters of rival presidents Laurent Gbagbo and Alassane Ouattara. Our Observer lives in a small town near the border with Ghana. He’s been watching the refugees arrive.

Observer:  Diomandé Vadama.


Our last Observer today is a Moroccan businessman who’s lived in Japan for years. When the first reports started coming about the country’s damaged nuclear reactors, his first thought was to do what a lot of other expats did – get out. But then he saw a TV report about people living close to the plant… Japanese people, who had nowhere else to go. He decided to stay, and help.

Observer: Rachid Elmerini.


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