Stories written by Rebecca Murray

Kaltoum Alhadi bound for Italy for corrective surgery stands before a list of approved patients.  Credit: Rebecca Murray/IPS.

Libya Faces a Health Check

At a crowded corner of the Tripoli Medical Centre, people gather every morning to submit paperwork for medical treatment abroad, or worriedly scan new lists of approved names plastering the walls.

The police training camp at Zawiyah. Credit: Rebecca Murray/IPS.

Rebels March Into New Libya With a Hangover

A few hundred police cadets in ad hoc camouflage uniforms march up and down the grounds at a training centre in the coastal town Zawiyah. "You are the people protecting the revolution and symbol of our pride," proclaims the scrawled writing on the wall behind them.

Student union members in Tripoli. Credit: Rebecca Murray/IPS.

Libyan Youth Yearn for Normalcy

Young men and women socialise together at Tripoli University’s ‘campus B’ tarmac parking lot as they prepare to sit for examinations during this tumultuous school year.

Hard to Stay in Libya, Difficult to Return

At the battered terminal of Tripoli’s tiny Mitiga airport, over 150 young men and women jostle to be repatriated home to Nigeria on Libya’s Buraq airlines. This journey to Lagos is one of hundreds the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has facilitated since the start of the uprising against Gaddafi’s regime over a year ago.

A rare moment of joy at a Nigerian wedding in a Tripoli church. Credit: Rebecca Murray/IPS.

Hard to Stay in Libya, Difficult to Return

At the battered terminal of Tripoli’s tiny Mitiga airport, over 150 young men and women jostle to be repatriated home to Nigeria on Libya’s Buraq airlines. This journey to Lagos is one of hundreds the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has facilitated since the start of the uprising against Gaddafi’s regime over a year ago.

Misrata Rebuilds, Slowly

This week more than half the residents eligible to vote in Libya’s embattled coastal city of Misrata cast their ballots for local council representatives in their first democratic election in decades.

An Old Gaddafi Town Is Not All Celebrating

On the first anniversary of Libya’s revolution, Sirte brigade members lounge on leather couches in the lobby of the upscale Mahari Hotel, supervising its reconstruction. A base for the Misrata rebels during October’s fierce fighting, the hotel is notorious as the site where 65 alleged Gaddafi loyalists were executed on its seafront grounds.

AFGHANISTAN: 38 Attacks a Day Take Their Toll

A red flare lights up the moonless night at a remote military outpost in southern Kandahar, a signal to land for the incoming helicopter. Bordering Pakistan, this desolate strip of desert is deadly, especially during peak ‘fighting season’ every summer between NATO-ISAF military forces and the Taliban.

AFGHANISTAN: Trains Face a Rough Political Terrain

Last month the first cargo train crossed the ‘Friendship Bridge’ from Uzbekistan to the border town Hairatan in northern Afghanistan, and rolled along 75 kilometres of newly laid track to Mazar-e-Sharif.

AFGHANISTAN: Catch ’em Young, for Prostitution

Soma was a teenager in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif when her grandfather arranged her marriage to a husband she had never met.

Afghan women in Herat. Credit: Rebecca Murray/IPS.

AFGHANISTAN: Husband, 60, Wife, 8

Activists voice concern that Afghan women’s rights continue to be marginalised, and nowhere is gender inequality more starkly illustrated than in the country’s flawed justice system.

The Pul-e-Charki prison in Kabul. Credit: Rebecca Murray/IPS.

Death Penalty Returns to Haunt Afghanistan

While Afghanistan’s violent decades-long war has claimed thousands of lives, the last known state-sanctioned execution was in June under the direct order of President Hamid Karzai.

AFGHANISTAN: Land Triggers New Conflicts

A small plot of urban land has pitted Assadullah, 55, against an unwelcome neighbour in a bitter personal property dispute that has stretched on for almost a decade.

AFGHANISTAN: False Intelligence, True Tragedies

A night raid in Hakimabad in the heart of eastern Nangarhar province shows the face of U.S.-led presence in Afghanistan, and what it means to local people.

Liberians lack confidence in a corrupt, under-funded and poorly managed national police force. Credit:  Rebecca Murray/IPS

LIBERIA: When the Mob Prevails

It was past midnight when Carroll Johnson was woken by angry shouting in his suburban neighbourhood of Fiamah. Around the corner a frenzied crowd with sticks had gathered in the darkness, and now stood menacingly over an armed robber called 'Bush Cat'.

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