The Conversation

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Jerusalem: the politics behind the latest explosion of violence in the Holy City

The recent violence at the al-Aqsa mosque/Temple Mount area and in the Old City of Jerusalem has spiralled into something bigger and more dangerous. Clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinian protesters at the weekend have left hundreds injured. Tensions…

Two classes of trans kids are emerging – those who have access to puberty blockers, and those who don’t

For people who have never thought about it before, it might sound reasonable to require trans kids to wait until they’re adults before they can receive certain forms of care known as gender-affirming treatment – which is what legislation that…

The Chinese Mars lander: how Zhurong will attempt to touch down on the red planet

For the first few months of 2021, the Martian atmosphere was buzzing with new visitors from Earth. First, it was the UAE Space Agency’s Hope probe, followed by the Chinese Tianwen-1 entering orbit. More recently Nasa landed the biggest-ever rover…

Alexei Navalny: protesters defy state crackdown to support hunger-striking Russian dissident

Tens of thousands of protesters have gathered in the streets of Russia’s cities to support the dissident politician Alexei Navalny, who is currently on hunger strike in a prison hospital. The fact that those numbers were down on the crowds…

How children are taking European states to court over the climate crisis – and changing the law

Even before Greta Thunberg launched her school strike for climate at age 15, youth activists have been key players in public action on the climate crisis. Now they’re breaking new ground in court. On November 30, six Portuguese children and…

Scientists invent home COVID-19 test using coffee machine capsules

Transitioning to home working had its challenges for us all, but when your job involves researching biological applications for nanotechnology, those trials are a little more complicated than juggling the household’s broadband usage. So barred from his lab, you might…

The story of the Iranian new year, Nowruz, and why its themes of renewal and healing matter

ANCESTRAL CULTURE         by Pardis Mahdavi As the days grow longer and the flowers start to bloom, my 5-year-old gets excited and exclaims, “Nowruz is coming.” Nowruz – or “new day” in English – is the Iranian…

After the Ever Given: what the ship wedged in the Suez Canal means for global trade

In the early hours of March 23, the container ship Ever Given was blown off course by high winds on its way through the Suez Canal. At 400 metres long, the Ever Given is longer than the canal is wide,…

Prosecuting ex-presidents for corruption is trending worldwide – but it’s not always great for democracy

Former presidents are being investigated, prosecuted and even jailed worldwide. In Bolivia, ex-President Jeanine Áñez was arrested on terrorism, conspiracy and sedition charges on March 13. A week before, former French President Nicolas Sarkozy was sentenced to prison for corruption…

Ebola strikes West Africa again: key questions and lessons from the past

News of a new outbreak of Ebola in Guinea is indeed distressing. The last in West Africa occurred between 2014 and 2015 and affected Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. It was the world’s deadliest Ebola outbreak, which began in Guinea…

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