A rundown of original reports from several of RFE/RL's broadcast regions.
# RUSSIA - President Vladimir Putin's well-publicized stunts involving wild animals have often turned awry. First, there was the "wild" Siberian tiger that was (it's claimed) really borrowed from a zoo. Then there was the "rescued" snow leopard that (reportedly) was abducted from a nature reserve. Now reports say his latest -- involving a flight with endangered cranes
-- can be added to the list of wildlife mishaps. Claire Bigg reports.
# PAKISTAN - Daud Khattak looks at how the case of Rimsha Masih
, the 14-year-old Christian girl accused of blasphemy
and currently in police custody in Pakistan, has stirred public sentiment on both sides of a highly polarized Pakistani society.
# IRAN - President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has been accused of planning to stay in power
after the end of his current term through a Putin-style power grab, after responding in a TV interview question about his presidency by asking, “How do you know it will be the final year?” Correspondent Golnaz Esfandiari reports.
# GEORGIA - Elizabeth Stone is a world class swimmer, who was born without the lower half of her right leg. She has won several medals already at this year's Paralympic Games, where she is representing the United States – one of a crop of several disabled athletes who were adopted from the ex-USSR
. But as correspondent Richard Solash reports, Stone's record of overcoming adversity began well before she hit the pool, in an impoverished orphanage in Soviet Georgia.
# AFGHANISTAN - Thanks to a Radio Azadi report
, an Afghan national who was the robbery victim of corrupt police found justice from local Pakistani officials and support from a community of Afghans living in Peshawar.
# UKRAINE - This is not your traditional fairy tale. Sleeping Beauty is awakened from a hundred years' slumber by a kiss, but the kiss is from another woman
. Daisy Sindelar reports on the unlikely outcome of a living-art exhibit in Kyiv.
Also, be sure to check out Luke Allnutt's latest Tangled Web blog on how content platforms and social media that democratize distribution make publishing fake news easier than ever