Stop decorating the “wall of shame”

Better to employ an enormous grey wall for artistic purposes than leave it a towering eyesore? Palestinians and foreigners alike have been painting the Israeli government's separation wall since construction began. But on both the Israeli and the Palestinian sides of what has been dubbed "the wall of shame", there are those who don't want it to be coloured in, and for very different reasons. Read more...


Prostitute’s online AIDS confession – one big joke for the Chinese

The Chinese blogosphere was very excited last week after an alleged prostitute and HIV carrier published a blog post with the telephone numbers of 279 of her former clients, telling them "If your number is included, then congratulations, you've got AIDS". Instead of being appalled however, the Chinese blogosphere thought the whole thing rather amusing - a worrying indication of China's naive attitude towards the lethal virus. Read more...


In Colorado, cannabis grows in parks

When a rancher from northwest Denver went looking for lost cattle a couple of weeks ago, he stumbled upon what appeared to be a mass of weeds in the middle of a state forest. In fact, it was a mass of weed - over 5,100 plants, weighing in at over a tonne. Read more...


Stabbed in broad daylight by a soldier, proof in photos

These photos show a Guinean soldier stabbing a supposed protestor in broad daylight. The scenes are even more brutal than those which were revealed the day after the September 28 massacre in Conakry, something which junta chief Moussa Dadis Camara refuses to accept responsibility for, saying that he was "overwhelmed" by his army. Read more and see the photos...


Sarkozy nepotism row viewed from abroad: “a return to monarchy”

The prospect of Nicolas Sarkozy's 23 year-old undergraduate son being catapulted to the head of a major public agency has sparked widespread accusations of favouritism both at home and abroad. Our Observers in Gabon and China give their views on Sarkozy's latest imperial move. Read more...

Kidney for sale, asking price €1,500

This ad appeared on the walls of Kuwait City last week. It might seem surprising but it reveals the extent of a growing trend in private sales of organs in the Gulf state. One of our Observers in the capital phoned the number on the poster for further details. Read more...


Dakar’s €21m statue rises amongst the poverty

An enormous mound of bronze, rising from the rubble of Dakar. The pride of President Abdoulaye Wade - at a cost of 14 billion CAF (€21m) - is the outrage of the local residents. Read more...


Democracy's first 'disappeared' dots walls of Buenos Aires

Julio López disappeared on his way to one of the final hearings in the trial of the man who ordered his detention and torture during Argentina's brutal military regime. Three years later, and the 80-year-old bricklayer is still missing, for the second time. He has not been forgotten however; his face can be seen all over Buenos Aires, in stickers, paintings, and stencils. Read more...

French aviation company congratulates 'brother and leader of the Libyan revolution' Gaddafi

It's not unusual for companies in Libya to publicly well-wish "Brother and leader of the Revolution", Colonel Muammar Gaddafi. Except when it's... French military aviation company Dassault Aviation. Read more.