The twists in Brazil's politics recently would shame the most melodramatic TV soap opera - but as she reported on last week's tense stand-off, with ex-President Lula da Silva at bay, Katy Watson was also moved to reflect on how polarised the political climate has become. As some Brazilians blame Lula for everything and profess nostalgia for the days of dictatorship, others denounce the media as lying right-wingers. In South India there's more drama as Andrew Whitehead traces the intimate relationship between the Tamil-language cinema box office, and the ballot box in local elections. Lorraine Mallinder reports from Guinea Bissau on whether international efforts to suppress the cocaine traffic have really driven the drug trade out, or just driven it underground. As the city of Basel prepares to mark the 75th anniversary of history's first LSD trip - with a commemorative bicycle ride - Matt Pickles traces the long and strange relationship between this rather staid place and one of the world's most notorious hallucinogens. And Simon Parker bats his way to cricketing glory - at least briefly - as an international in the Easter Cup, played last week in San Salvador at it sweltered in 40-degree heat.
Nick Thorpe in Hungary, contemplating this weekend's parliamentary election, wonders whether a recent vote in a small town near the Croatian border portends change for prime minister Viktor Orban or politics as usual. Claire Bolderson is in eastern Ohio, where opioid drug addiction has become the most serious public health crisis to hit the mid-Western US state in a generation. Speaking to recovering addicts, she discovers how it's affected their lives and communities - and their job prospects. Attending a premier of the new blockbuster movie, "Black Panther", in Guangzhou reveals to Marcus Ryder just how close the link between China and Africa has become - and what it may mean for the future. Rebecca Henschke in Jakarta considers what it has meant for her to go viral with stories three times in recent months in a country where social media platforms command huge numbers of enthusiastic users. And in Zambia Nick Miles speaks to firefighters in the capital and discovers they often have more than just flames to contend with when rushing to deal with a blaze. Editor: Richard Vadon.
Kim Jong Un’s train rolls into to Beijing as the North Korean leader meets President Xi. Kate Adie introduces stories, wit, and analysis from correspondents around the world:
China correspondents were once known as tealeaf readers, now they’ve become motorcade analysts and trainspotters says Stephen McDonell, as he tries to unpick the meaning of Kim Jong Un’s surprise visit to Beijing.
Jonah Fisher has the story of Nadya Savchenko and her journey from prison to national hero and back to prison again.
Bethany Bell explores why Austria won’t be implementing a smoking ban any time soon and finds out what the coffee drinkers of Vienna think of that.
Mike Wendling joins the pro-gun control crowds at the ‘March For Our Lives’ in Washington DC and reflects on how things have changed since he was a teenager in the US when he and his classmates would shoot at paper targets in their school’s basement.
And in Morocco, Kieran Cooke learns what impact Chinese tourists are having on Fes and comes face to face with the head of a dead camel.
The USA's Invisible Army
The US Air Force has a third of its drones stationed at Kandahar airbase in Afghanistan. Kate Adie introduces stories, insight, and analysis from correspondents around the world:
During almost two weeks with US Forces in Afghanistan, Justin Rowlatt gets a glimpse of the intensity of the air war that is a key part of President Trump’s new strategy there.
In Belarus , Lucy Ash hears talk of dancing tractors and virtual tanks tearing through computer generated downs – unlikely indicators of economic success.
Paul Blake returns to the British Virgin Islands to see how they’re coping six months after Hurricane Irma tore through the Caribbean.
Jane Dyson marvels at the Pandav Lila – an epic, twelve-day re-enactment of the Hindu Mahabharata which consumes a village high up in the Indian Himalayas every two years.
And Petroc Trelawny meets a Transylvania aristocrat who’s just got his castle back three-quarters of a century after it was seized.
Incompetence and Conspiracy
How was Boko Haram able to kidnap more than one hundred school girls in Dapchi, Nigeria? Kate Adie introduces stories and analysis from correspondents around the world:
A failure of the security services, conflicting official accounts, and misinformation - Stephanie Hegarty examines the similarities between Boko Haram’s 2014 attack in Chibok and the kidnapping in Dapchi last month.
In Bolivia, Laurence Blair visits the multi-million-pound museum celebrating the country’s President and asks how much longer can Evo Morales can stay in power?
In Greece, Sally Howard meets the anarchists who now see helping migrants, rather than spray-painting buildings or throwing Molotov cocktails at cops, as the best way to further their cause.
In Afghanistan, Auliya Atrafi reveals how repeated foreign interventions have only made his fellow Afghans more inventive in their conspiracy theories. From judges to generals everyone seems to accept that foreign powers are to blame for almost everything.
And in the US, Graeme Fife takes a tour of George Washington’s estate and the gardens that were never far from the mind or the heart of the country’s first president.