GlobalPost delivers stories that inform and entertain, taking people to far flung places around the globe most will never visit but where events are shaping all of our lives.

JALAWLA FRONT LINES, Iraq — As the world tries to cobble together a coalition of the willing to fight the Islamic State (IS), there’s already an unlikely alliance of front-line forces working to hold back the violent extremists.

Watch GlobalPost’s On Location video by Tracey Shelton:

What the front-line fight against the Islamic State looks like

GlobalPost’s Heather Horn writes:

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — Zebiba, 28, sits in her purple headscarf in the small clinic room, the cramping already beginning. She took the tablets early this morning. She is three months pregnant.

By 2 p.m., her abortion should be complete. She will return to her two children, now at school. She is divorcing their father, who has taken a second wife.

Thus far, she has refused pain medications. Her relief at the ease of this termination is palpable. “She was nervous coming here,” says the nurse.

A generation ago, botched abortions were the single biggest contributor to Ethiopia’s sky-high maternal mortality rate. Doctors in the largest public hospital in Addis Ababa, where Zebiba lives, still remember the time when three-quarters of the beds in the maternal ward were reserved purely for complications from such procedures.

Then, in 2005, the country liberalized its abortion law.

Today, it’s hard to find a health provider who’s seen more than one abortion-related death in the past five years. Although access to safe procedures and high quality care could still be expanded, doctors say that, increasingly, those who need an abortion can get one safely.

Read the full piece here: How Ethiopia solved its abortion problem

Photos by Heather Horn/GlobalPost


More than a year of unprecedented violence has plunged Central African Republic (CAR) into perhaps the most unstable and bloodiest era of its history. Armed groups called anti-balaka, comprised of Christians and animists who were initially organized to fight local crime, are seeking revenge mostly against the Muslim minority for a cycle of looting, torture and killing that began after the mainly Muslim rebel coalition Séléka seized power in March 2013. Anti-balaka refuses to lay down their arms. Instead, they hunt and kill Muslims who remain in areas under their control or those who attempt to flee.

Photographer William Daniels has been awarded a 2014 Getty Images Grant for Editorial Photography for his project ‘CAR in Chaos.’ Read more about William and the project here.

Although he was killed by Islamic State militants, James Foley’s quest to chronicle modern war lives on through his selfless journalism.

Foley cared deeply about the victims of war, and the rights of people living under oppressive regimes. He was an old-school reporter, who traveled light, talked to the locals and put the story first.

His conflict reporting — from Afghanistan to Libya to Syria — exemplifies the intrepid and selfless work of someone willing to risk his life so the world could understand the horrors of modern war.

Here’s some of his finest work for GlobalPost:

Syria: Rebels losing support among civilians in Aleppo

Surviving tanks, snipers and a broken economy, one Libyan family looks to the future

Without international help, a disorganized and ill-equipped rebellion would have little hope

In Libya, a young rebel army struggles to fight back

Rebels say no-fly zone not enough to stop Gaddafi

Despite string of defeats, rebels remain defiant

American man joins Libya’s rebels

Libya News: Civilians flee besieged Sirte

Libya: Rebels push into central Sirte

Libya: Bani Walid families flee

Libya: Documents show cooperation between CIA and Gaddafi

Read more here.


Tracey Shelton and Niklas Meltio at the Peshmerga frontlines just outside of Jalawla, Iraq #rememberingjim. Tracey worked with Jim for GlobalPost in both Syria and Libya. 


Tracey Shelton and Niklas Meltio at the Peshmerga frontlines just outside of Jalawla, Iraq #rememberingjim. Tracey worked with Jim for GlobalPost in both Syria and Libya. 

GlobalPost’s Tracey Shelton reports from Zakho, Iraq:

A little more than a week ago, 23-year-old Assad Haig’s life took a nightmarish turn.

Islamic State (IS) militants captured 63 of his relatives, members of the persecuted Yazidi community, when the extremist fighters overran the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar.

One of the militants notified Haig, who works in the Kurdish capital of Erbil, about the harrowing kidnapping spree by phone.

Only two of Haig’s family members managed to evade capture — his father, who fled to Mount Sinjar, and his 84-year-old grandmother, who was left behind by the militants in the family home with the grim warning that she would be executed if she didn’t convert to Islam.

Here’s her amazing story of survival.

"If this country’s spectacular culinary boom has a birthplace, it is the Lima restaurant Astrid y Gaston," writes GlobalPost senior correspondent Simeon Tegel from Lima, Peru. “For 20 years, owner and chef Gaston Acurio has been spearheading a national movement that has successfully fused Peru’s myriad traditional recipes with mouth-watering modernist creativity. Acurio is so popular, thanks to his championing of humble cooks and farmers, that polls give him areal shot at becoming president, should he ever step out from behind his stove.”

These pictures showcase some of the dozens of plates served in a colorful tasting menu at Lima’s Astrid y Gaston. 

Feast your eyes on more photos of the 29-course special at Latin America’s best restaurant here.

Photos by Simeon Tegel/GlobalPost


Study Estimates 100,000 Elephants Killed in Last 3 Years

The continued demand for ivory from China and elsewhere in Asia has led to a dramatic decline in Africa’s elephant populations in the last decade, according to a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Extrapolating from local population estimates, the authors estimated that 100,000 elephants have been killed in the last three years and that, in central Africa, the regional population has declined by 64 percent in the last decade. Read more about this study on National Geographic’s website.

Reportage photographer Brent Stirton documented the illicit ivory trade, and efforts to combat poachers, in 2011 and 2012. In his resulting story, “God’s Ivory,” Brent vividly illustrated the connection between poaching in Africa and demand for religious and cultural icons made from ivory in Asia.


Top: The largest mass killing of elephants in recent history took place at Bouba Ndjida National Park in North Cameroon close to the Chad and Central African Republic Borders from January through March 2012.

Middle: The preparation for the burning of 5 tons of trafficked Ivory recovered from a seizure in Singapore in 2002, Manyani, Tsavo, Kenya, July 20, 2011.

Bottom: Ivory on sale at government registered White Peacock Arts World, Beijing, China, November 15, 2011.

This man has lost 63 relatives to the Islamic State

On Friday, Assad Haig received a call from his mother’s phone number. On the other end was a militant of the Islamic State. Haig’s family, the man said, were going to be executed.

Haig is 23 years old. He works in the Kurdish capital of Erbil. He comes from Sinjar, a town that was overrun by Islamic State militants on Aug. 3. Almost every relative he has ever known — 63 in total — was in Islamic State custody at the time he got the call. Most of them are, or were, women and small children,” writes GlobalPost’s Tracey Shelton.

Read the full story here

Photo by Tracey Shelton/GlobalPost