Een onmogelijk dilemma

First published by Trouw

Orgaanhandel | reportage | Nepal worstelt met zijn huidige transplantatiewet. Die is te strikt en houdt daardoor de illegale orgaanhandel in stand, zeggen experts.

Hoe koop je een nier? Met wat valse documenten kom je een heel eind. Dat leerde Nepalees Sarju Shrestha, illustrator en kunstenaar, toen zijn schoonvader vorig jaar begon te sukkelen met zijn nieren. Continue reading

Nepal: Door blokkade van de grens met India dreigt een humanitaire ramp — ‘Tweede aardbeving’ treft Nepal in het hart

First published by Het Parool

Nepal lijdt onder een politieke crisis die wel ‘de tweede aardbeving’ wordt genoemd. De impact van een wegblokkade door oppositiegroepen in het zuiden van het land, is volgens economen nu al erger dan die van de aardbeving die Nepal eerder dit jaar trof. Voedsel, bouwmaterialen en benzine komen het land maar mondjesmaat in. De steun, toegezegd door overheid en hulporganisaties, zal veel slachtoffers daardoor dit jaar niet bereiken.

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Nepal krijgt miljarden van de wereld

First published by Trouw

Wie dat geld verantwoord gaat uitgeven is onduidelijk. Internationale hulporganisaties niet betrokken bij herstelplan.

Op de internationale donorconferentie die gisteren in Kathmandu plaatsvond, werden twee dingen duidelijk: Nepal heeft minimaal vijf jaar nodig om de aardbeving van 25 mei te boven te komen, en het Himalayaland weet zich in de donorgemeenschap goed te verkopen. Maar hoe en door wie de toegezegde miljarden op een verantwoorde manier gaan worden uitgegeven, is vooralsnog een raadsel. De internationale hulporganisaties waren niet uitgenodigd. Continue reading

Through our eyes

First published by Nepali Times

Just a few minutes into Narbahadur’s film the audience gasps. After four days of walking the 18-year-old former child soldier arrives home in a remote part of Humla district. He has warned the viewers: ‘There is nothing in my village.’ But they are unprepared for the images of grinding poverty in the young filmmaker’s home: malnourished sisters swatting flies, an emaciated mother, and his grey-haired father, a blacksmith who is going blind.

Narbahadur’s film, My Sun Rise, is part of the Through Our Eyes trilogy produced by three teenagers who joined the Maoists when they were only twelve. Like Narbahadur (back centre, pic), Sukmaya (centre) comes from a Dalit background, and as a child was painfully aware of the fact that she was ‘at the bottom and always the last’.

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Picturing war

First published by Nepali Times.

War is hard to capture. The heart of war is a schizophrenic place where extremes of love and hate, heaven and hell, touch and ignite each other.

Few photographers can capture this. But when they do the image is never forgotten and sometimes even change the course of history. A little Vietnamese girl, naked, fleeing a napalm attack, the soldier in the Spanish civil war caught at the moment of his death, Saddam’s teetering statue or prisoners being tortured at Abu Gharib, these images lie buried in our minds and hearts and have become part of humanity’s common consciousness.

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Final farewell in a distant land

First published by Knack. Published in English by Nepali Times and in Nepali by Himal Khabar.

How did a popular university graduate from Myagdi end up jumping off a bridge in Belgium? 

On a cold December afternoon Prem Prasad Subedi, aged 32, climbed onto the railing of the Muide Bridge in the town of Gent. While cars sped past on the frozen asphalt, he jumped into the dark waters of the harbour below. Someone screamed. A passing boat threw a life buoy, he did not take it.

It took divers from the Gent Fire Brigade two days to retrieve Prem Prasad’s body. Police found his landlord’s address in his pocket. The Nepali Embassy was informed, and it says the information was passed on to the Home Ministry in Kathmandu.

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How to name a revolution?

First published by Nepal Times.

Epic moments, never to be forgotten. Thousands of people marching around the capital, waving green leaves, defying tanks and machineguns. Worn out, yet their spirits soaring. We might never know exactly how many people left the safety of their homes, braved injuries, hunger, thirst and possibly death, in order to establish a truer, safer and more inclusive society. But those who did and those who witnessed, will never be the same again.

Image by REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar

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