Inside Europe: The Inside Take on European Affairs April 15, 2010

from Inside Europe· ·

Britain prepares for a pivotal poll - French journalism ethics clash with paedophilia - Has Russia finally made amends with Poland for a wartime massacre? - National symbols in Latvia - Berlin's motley cyclists - Tackling drug abuse in Britain - Russian red tape for foreign workers - Nagorno Karabakh: Europe's forgotten front line - The last meal on the Titanic - France's love affair with Chopin.
Britain prepares for a pivotal poll

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has announced that the UK will hold a general election on May 6th. The confirmation followed a formal meeting with the Queen ...



Britain prepares for a pivotal poll - French journalism ethics clash with paedophilia - Has Russia finally made amends with Poland for a wartime massacre? - National symbols in Latvia - Berlin's motley cyclists - Tackling drug abuse in Britain - Russian red tape for foreign workers - Nagorno Karabakh: Europe's forgotten front line - The last meal on the Titanic - France's love affair with Chopin.
Britain prepares for a pivotal poll

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has announced that the UK will hold a general election on May 6th. The confirmation followed a formal meeting with the Queen to ask her permission to dissolve Parliament.

It signals the official start of a general election campaign expected to focus on economic issues. But the polls suggest Britain could be headed for a hung Parliament, which it hasn't seen since the 1970s. Olly Barratt reports from London.

French journalism ethics clash with paedophilia

In France, a controversy is brewing about the role of journalists and the protection of their sources. It stems from a documentary on paedophilia that aired this week.

With a hidden camera, an investigative journalist met 23 paedophiles. Upon finishing his report, he turned in all their names to the police. Some say the reporter betrayed journalism's most basic tenet of not divulging sources. Others believe he did the right thing. Eleanor Beardsley has this report.

Honouring the victims of the Katyn massacre

On Wednesday, the Russian and Polish prime ministers Vladimir Putin and Donald Tusk became the first leaders of their countries to attend a joint ceremony honouring victims of the World War II massacre of Katyn.

It was 70 years ago that the Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin ordered the killing of 22,000 Polish officers and intellectuals. The Soviets blamed Nazi Germany for the atrocity and Russia only acknowledged the truth in 1992. Geert Groot Koerkamp has more from Moscow.

The debate over national symbols revs up in Latvia

An emotional row about nationalism has erupted in Latvia after a previously unknown nationalist website published a list of more than 100 cars which are decorated with the symbols of the former Soviet Union or Russia. Their owners are mainly Russians who live in Latvia and who the website describes as disloyal inhabitants.

The list contains not only the car's registration number, model and a photo, but also the owner's name and address. The owners concerned say the website has not only insulted them but also breached their privacy. From Riga Ģederts Ģelzis has more.

Berlin cyclists filling police coffers

It seems spring has finally arrived here in Germany and people are ditching their cars in favour of bicycles to get from A to B.

In Berlin though, the police have realized that badly behaved cyclists are an excellent source of revenue. As we hear from Leah McDonnell in this Postcard from Berlin.

Tackling drug abuse in Britain

The British government says the drug mephedrone will probably be banned this month. The ecstasy and cocaine-like substance has fast become the drug of choice with clubbing students and has so far been available to buy legally as plant food.

Mephedrone is already banned in Scandinavia and Germany, and after being linked to the death of several British students, the UK is next in line. But as Lars Bevanger reports from the popular clubbing city of Manchester, not everyone thinks banning it will solve the problem.

Is Russian red tape forcing out foreign workers?

Russia is known for being a land of bureaucracy. But lately red tape has taken on a whole new meaning for foreign workers there.

It's all because of a four year old law that's suddenly being enforced. Jessica Golloher has the details from Moscow.

Europe's forgotten front line

Is another war on the horizon in the volatile Caucasus region - this time in the disputed mountain territory of Nagorno-Karabakh? Ethnic Armenians seized Nagorno-Karabakh from Azerbaijan during a vicious conflict in the early 1990s, and declared independence. Years of peace talks between the Armenians and Azerbaijanis have so far failed to find a negotiated solution to the dispute.

Meanwhile Azerbaijan has been using its huge revenues from oil and gas sales to buy increasing amounts of military hardware, and in recent months has stepped up its threats to take back control over Nagorno-Karabakh by force. Matthew Collin visited the frontline in Nagorno-Karabakh to find out more.

Titanic cuisine: the final meal

On April 14th 1912, the Titanic hit an iceberg and eventually sank on its maiden voyage. Since then it's fate has captured the world's imagination. It's first class passengers, of course, were travelling in unparalleled style and luxury. But have you ever wondered what sort of food they were served on the voyage?

A guest house in Belfast is now offering customers a chance to taste the last menu on board the ill-fated liner. Conor McClelland, the owner and chef of Rayanne House, told Helen Seeney more.

France's enduring love affair with Chopin

Frederic Chopin, the great romantic pianist and composer, was born 200 years ago. His mother was Polish, he was born in Poland and, during his long years of self-imposed exile, he kept a silver cup of Polish soil that was poured on his coffin when he died.

For the French, though, Chopin is one of theirs. His name was French. His father was French. He lived half his life and composed his greatest works in France. Chopin is, in any case, their favourite composer - and France is marking what they're calling Chopin Year with a sparkling array of concerts. John Laurenson reports from Paris.