Foreign Office Blogs

A unique insight into UK foreign policy

31st August 2015 Bangalore, India

Sunil Kumar

by Sunil Kumar

Senior Science & Innovation Adviser

Innovations for a clean water

Declining water quality is a global issue. At a time when the global population is growing and industrial and agricultural activities grow, plus the impact of climate change, clean water is become scarcer globally. While this is not new phenomena, I was amazed at the innovations that are being developed by researchers in UK, India, […]

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27th August 2015 Tunis, Tunisia

Peter Millett

by Peter Millett

Ambassador to Libya, Tripoli

MYTHBUSTERS

People love conspiracies.  They are more fun than reality.  They spread like viruses because they feed popular perceptions.  For example: President Obama wasn’t born in Hawaii; the mafia killed JFK; ostriches bury their heads in the sand when they see danger; Ambassadors eat Ferrero Rocher.  All widely believed; none true. My experience of dealing with […]

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27th August 2015 Sofia, Bulgaria

Radostina Karageorgieva, Simoneta Bozhinova, Yoan Stanev, Sofiya Kalinova, Svetoslav Tsvetkov, Sahar Hasan and Svetoslav Nunev

Former and current interns at British Embassy Sofia

British Embassy Sofia Internship Scheme

“The Embassy has run an internship programme for the last few years. The interns bring to the Embassy a fresh perspective alongside gaining valuable work experience. They are usually tasked with one big “project” (based on their own interests) during their time with us but, also quickly become an important part of Embassy life. I […]

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25th August 2015 London, UK

Graham Harradine

by Graham Harradine

Digital Communications Manager

Getting smart about mobile video

Digital diplomacy

The latest smartphones make everybody a potential video director. But there’s more to creating effective videos than an iPhone and a sprinkling of enthusiasm. The FCO’s Digital Transformation Unit is rolling out a new wave of training to staff in British Embassies and High Commissions to help them make better use of these powerful digital […]

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25th August 2015 Holy See

Stephen Townsend

Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy to the Holy See

The Holy See and Astronomy

The Vatican Observatory. Image: ESA©

On 25 August 1609, Galileo Galilei demonstrated his first telescope to the Venetian authorities. This invention opened up the skies, and piqued men’s interest in the planets and stars around us and beyond, which in turn has led to modern wonders such as men on the moon, the Hubble space telescope, the Rosetta mission to […]

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25th August 2015 Istanbul, Turkey

Leigh Turner

by Leigh Turner

Consul General and Director-General for Trade & Investment for Turkey, Central Asia and the South Caucasus

Greek rites – in eastern Turkey

Leigh Turner

The chanting is mesmerising.  Priests in richly-decorated gowns perform the liturgy before a crowd crammed onto a rock shelf, hundreds of meters above the valley floor.  TV cameras transmit the ceremony live.   Since 2010, the Greek Orthodox divine liturgy has been taking place every 15 August at the Sumela Monastery, high in the Pontic mountains […]

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25th August 2015 Istanbul, Turkey

Gareth Bayley

by Gareth Bayley

UK Special Representative for Syria

2 Years Since Ghouta, Memories of Horror Live On

Gareth Bayley

Last Friday marked two years since the Assad regime attacked Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus in Syria, with chemical weapons. This despicable act killed hundreds of innocent civilians and injured many hundreds more. Since then Assad’s declared chemical weapons stockpile and production facilities have been destroyed. But the UK remains very concerned about credible allegations […]

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25th August 2015 Istanbul, Turkey

Mahmoud

Ghouta Survivor

لا تتسع البرادات لهم جميعاً

الغوطة الشرقية – دمشق – سورية بعد منتصف  ليلة الأربعاء 21 / 08 / 2013 فقط ما يُقارب 10 آلاف مُصاب، تشنج العضلات يملأُ المكان، الكلُّ ينتفضون، يتساقط الناس كأوراق الشجر، هناك نيامٌ لم يستيقظوا .. ماتوا هادئين، وبعضهم استيقظوا ولم يستطيعوا الخروج .. ماتوا مُحاولين، أمٌ كان لابد أن تختار اثنين من خمسة أبناء، […]

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21st August 2015 Jerusalem, Occupied Palestine Territories

Alastair McPhail

by Alastair McPhail

British Consul General to Jerusalem

Extremist Ideology and Settlers

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As I saw the charred remains of the house in Douma where young Ali Dawabsheh and his father lost their lives, and listened to a community still struggling to come to terms with what had happened, I was forcibly reminded of the death of another young boy a little over a year ago – Mohammed Abu […]

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