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Australia's leading international affairs program featuring fascinating, in-depth stories from the ABC's unrivalled network of foreign correspondents.

Genres: Interview | Current Events | Travel
Station: ABC (AU)
Rating: 0/10 from 0 users
Status: Running
Start: 2008-02-05

Foreign Correspondent Season 2023 Air Dates


S2023E01 - Japan's New Frontline Air Date: 16 February 2023 09:00 -

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After decades of peace, Japan is now confronting the possibility of war. With concerns over a resurgent Russia, North Korea and crucially, a more powerful China in the region, Japan is embarking on its biggest military spend since the Second World War.

On Foreign Correspondent, reporter James Oaten has gained unique access to the Japanese military as it fortifies its remote southwest islands with new military bases. The popular tourist destination of Ishigaki, an island that is closer to Taiwan than Tokyo will soon be home to hundreds of soldiers, stockpiles of ammunition and missiles that could one day strike mainland China. The local farming and fishing community is divided over the base, and what it means for their idyllic way of life. The population paid a high price in the dying days of World War 2, fuelling fears that they will once again become a target.


S2023E02 - Russia's Info War Air Date: 23 February 2023 09:00 -

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This week on Foreign Correspondent Eric Campbell, already on Russia's banned list of journalists, travels to Latvia to meet the others who have taken great risks to fight the propaganda war.

On the eve of the first anniversary of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the propaganda war being waged by President Putin has become more extreme. Russian citizens are being repeatedly told that Ukraine is being run by LGBT Nazis and President Vlodomyr Zelensky is a drug addict and a sexual pervert.

Independent Russian journalists forced to flee the country have found sanctuary in neighbouring Latvia where they are now broadcasting factual news about the war into their former homeland via YouTube. On Foreign Correspondent, reporter Eric Campbell, also on Russia's banned list, travels to Latvia to meet the journalists who have taken great risks to fight the propaganda war.

In the capital Riga, Eric interviews Latvian President Egils Levits, one of Ukraine's most ardent supporters. His government is allowing NATO troops to train in his country amidst fears Latvia too could suffer the same fate as Ukraine.


S2023E03 - Saving the Children - Philippines Air Date: 02 March 2023 09:00 -

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This week on Foreign Correpondent, Stephanie March is on the hunt with the international task force rescuing abused children.

In the dead of night in Manila, police officers track down criminals responsible for delivering online child abuse to a growing number of Australian customers. This scene has played out dozens of times across the Philippines as cases hit unprecedented levels.

The demand for live streaming child sexual abuse is so high in Australia that AFP officers are now based permanently in the Philippines working with an international task force investigating this distressing cyber-crime.

On Foreign Correspondent reporter Stephanie March has been given exclusive access to the Filipino police and the international task force as they hunt down the abusers and rescue the children. Parents are often involved in arranging the abuse and in a frank and confronting prison cell exchange Stephanie interviews a mother accused of facilitating the abuse of her own child for money.


S2023E04 - Secrets of the Sepik - Papua New Guinea Air Date: 09 March 2023 09:00 -

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On Australia's northern doorstep lies one of the most extraordinary places on earth – some environmentalists call it the second Amazon. The Sepik River Basin in Papua New Guinea is a natural wonder and home to rich and ancient cultures. It's a place few outsiders ever get to see. For some time, PNG correspondent Natalie Whiting has been hearing rumours about what's going on in the remote areas upriver – claims of a logging land grab, police brutality, even killings. This week on Foreign Correspondent she undertakes the journey far up the Sepik River to see for herself what's happening.

In the rainforest of the Upper Sepik a community is divided. Logging operations and a proposed massive mine site bring hope of economic prosperity for some. But others fear development of the land by international companies means environmental destruction with little benefit. PNG is the world's largest exporter of tropical round logs but out of sight in the Sepik region some landowners say the logging is happening without proper consent and there are consequences for those who stand in the way. With a long history of mistrust of big corporations and the promises they make, many of the locals are angry and ready to do whatever it takes to preserve some of the most unspoilt rainforests and waterways on the planet.


S2023E05 - Cambodia's Cyber Slaves Air Date: 16 March 2023 09:00 -

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In Cambodia, Chinese organised crime syndicates are running global cyber scam operations using workers who have been trafficked and enslaved in secure compounds. The syndicates have strong ties to the ruling Hun Sen regime.


S2023E06 - Somalia: A Story of Survival Air Date: 23 March 2023 09:00 -

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Somalia is one of the most dangerous places on earth. Almost two decades of conflict with the al-Qaeda backed terrorist group al-Shabaab has taken a huge toll on the country. Now Somalia is experiencing its worst drought in 40 years. With the world distracted by the war in Ukraine, the crisis is escalating away from the public gaze.

This week on Foreign Correspondent reporter Stephanie March and producer/cinematographer Matt Davis travel to Somalia where makeshift camps have become home to more than a million hungry children and their families. There, they meet mothers with babies who have walked for days without food and very little water. They hear incredible stories of courage and survival in a landscape that is unforgiving and unsafe. And they also face their own safety problems when their security team worries al-Shabaab has been told of their whereabouts.

As the Somali government fights back against al-Shabaab, another threat, which they have no control over, is driving the extreme weather: climate change. In the midst of this turmoil, the Foreign Correspondent team meets extraordinary people who are determined to make their story one of survival.


S2023E07 - Waking the Red Dragon - Wales Air Date: 30 March 2023 09:00 -

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This week on Foreign Correspondent, reporter Nick Dole explores the new push for Independence in Wales and meets the leaders campaigning to break up with Britain.

When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, Brexit supporters predicted the UK would boom. Three years later and the nation is at breaking point with high inflation, an energy crisis and concerns about a recession fuelling a healthy dose of Brexit regret. No more so than in Wales where something remarkable is happening.

The Welsh are finding their voice, and the famous red dragon is awakening.

This week on Foreign Correspondent reporter Nick Dole explores the new push for Independence and meets the leaders of the movement campaigning for Wales to break up with Britain.

He travels to the city of Wrexham where the locals are riding high on a wave of pride as their football team gains global recognition thanks to the popular tv streaming show Welcome to Wrexham. The club was recently bought by Hollywood celebrities Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney – and it's put Wrexham on the map. But as well as a growing confidence in their team for some there's also an increasing belief that Wales can achieve much more as an independent nation, away from the rule of Westminster.

With a major push now on to preserve the Welsh language one question is getting louder: A fyddai cymru yn well ei byd ar ei phen ei hun? (Would Wales be better off on its own?)


S2023E08 - The Last Resort - Fiji Air Date: 06 April 2023 10:00 -

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Check shirts in tow, this week on Foreign Correspondent special guest reporter Craig Reucassel travels across the islands of Fiji to see how the nation is combatting climate change.

With tourism back and booming, Fiji is again a number one destination for travelers seeking an island paradise experience.  And while water lapping on the shoreline might make for an Instagram worthy picture, for the people of Fiji, it presents a threat to their way of life. 

With his trademark style, Craig goes off the tourist track and shows what living with climate change actually means for those who don't have the luxury of arguing about it. More than 800 villages are now on a government climate risk list – some communities have already been moved to higher ground but others are resisting. And many are asking: who caused the problem and who should pay to fix it?


S2023E09 - Bahrain: The Middle East's Party Capital Air Date: 13 April 2023 10:00 -

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The Persian Gulf nation of Bahrain is reinventing itself as a liberal oasis and its capital Manama has become the place to party for young Saudis who can do things that are forbidden in their own country.


S2023E10 - Florida: The War on Woke Air Date: 20 April 2023 10:00 -

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The US State of Florida has become the centre of America's culture wars as Governor Ron DeSantis pursues a right-wing agenda focused on gender and race laws which some hope will take him all the way to the White House.


S2023E11 - The Defectors - North Korea Air Date: 27 April 2023 10:00 -

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This week on Foreign Correspondent reporter Naomi Selvaratnam meets some of the North Korean women who have fled to South Korea, as they struggle to fit in.

They're the refugees from North Korea's hermit kingdom who overcome huge odds to escape to a new life in South Korea. Most of them are women and the journey they undertake is a perilous one. Many are influenced to leave after viewing smuggled South Korean TV dramas which showcase a life of freedom and opportunity. But the reality is often very different. Instead of finding happiness they are overcome with loneliness and isolation. On arrival, often after harrowing experiences at the hands of human traffickers, they are placed in a training school and taught how to live in the modern world, South Korean style. Once on the outside, their accent, clothing and behaviour often make them stand out, and they struggle to assimilate, some often barely surviving.

Those who do escape are known as defectors and they rarely speak out publicly. This week on Foreign Correspondent reporter Naomi Selvaratnam meets some of the North Korean women who are trying to make new lives for themselves in South Korea and asks them: Has their escape been worth it?


S2023E12 - The Fentanyl Kings - Mexico Air Date: 04 May 2023 10:00 -

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Fentanyl is the main source of drug overdoses in the United States, supplied by the infamous Mexican Sinaloa cartel. The drug is making a fortune for the cartel, we go inside to see the luxurious lifestyle.


S2023E13 - Surviving ISIS Air Date: 27 July 2023 10:00 -

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It's almost a decade since ISIS forces swept through Iraq and Syria but the legacy of their brutal caliphate remains. The Yazidis of northern Iraq were slaughtered and enslaved by ISIS. Today the search continues for the missing Yazidis who have still not returned home.


S2023E14 - Treasure Hunters: Searching for Cambodia's stolen antiquities Air Date: 03 August 2023 10:00 -

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It's been called the biggest art theft in history – thousands of statues stolen from temples across Cambodia and sold to private collectors and international museums, including here in Australia. Now a team of art sleuths, on behalf of the Cambodian Government, are on a mission to bring home the country's cultural heritage.

In this episode of Foreign Correspondent, the inside story of how Cambodia's stolen antiquities are being tracked and returned in a global treasure hunt. South-East Asia correspondent Mazoe Ford travels with the restitution team as they journey across the country and over borders to identify, trace and reclaim Cambodia's missing treasures.


S2023E15 - Bollywood: The Politics Behind the Scenes Air Date: 10 August 2023 10:00 -

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In India the Modi Government is being accused of waging a war on Bollywood, the country's most powerful cultural force. Filmmakers who criticise the government or resist pressure to produce pro-Hindu content face a backlash.


S2023E16 - Secret Interviews: Inside Iran's resistance Air Date: 17 August 2023 10:00 -

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Almost a year since widespread protests over women's rights erupted on the streets of Iran, young Iranians who are still defying the country's repressive regime, talk about the price they are prepared to pay for freedom.


S2023E17 - Canada on Fire Air Date: 24 August 2023 10:00 -

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In Canada Australian firefighters join an international team in a desperate battle to help combat the nation's worst forest fires in recorded history. An area of 32 million acres has been scorched in this climate catastrophe.


S2023E18 - Citizens of the Reich - Germany Air Date: 31 August 2023 10:00 -

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In Germany an anti-State 'sovereign citizens' group is increasingly engaged in acts of terrorism. Intelligence authorities are worried about its connections with a right-wing extremist party gaining popularity in the polls.


S2023E19 - After Uvalde: Guns, Grief and Texas Politics Air Date: 07 September 2023 10:00 -

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A year after the Uvalde school shooting in Texas the community is still traumatised. They're angry about the inadequate police response on the day and they're determined to change the law on the sale of deadly assault rifles.


S2023E20 - Barbados: Who Should Pay? Air Date: 14 September 2023 10:00 -

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Barbados was the first British slave society in the Caribbean. Now, two years after becoming a republic, there is a growing demand for institutions and the descendants of slave owners to make amends for the sins of the past.


S2023E21 - LeBron's Hometown Hope Air Date: 21 September 2023 10:00 -

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S2023E22 - Syria - Addicted to Captagon Air Date: 28 September 2023 10:00 -

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A billion-dollar illegal drug trade is funding the Syrian regime under President Bashar al-Assad. Insiders reveal details of the drug operations and the links to members of the president's family and the Syrian Armed Forces.


S2023E23 - Saving Argentina Air Date: 05 October 2023 09:00 -

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Argentina is on its knees with inflation rates over 100 percent and 40 percent of the population living in poverty. There's hope that mining the country's vast supply of the rare metal lithium could solve the current crisis.


S2023E24 - Before the War - Israel Air Date: 12 October 2023 09:00 -

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Before the war, 2023 had been the deadliest year for Jews and Palestinians in the occupied West Bank in 15 years. This program looks at the rising tensions between the two before the brutal terror attack by Hamas.

Next Episode of Foreign Correspondent is

Season 2024 / Episode 13 and airs on 18 July 2024 10:00

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