During all my visits to Kurdistan –four so far- I have always been impressed by the people’s hospitality. Their gratitude after a week’s work – I am training local journalists through the Independent Media Centre of Kurdistan – is humbling. But when you visit the Asais, the security services, to extend your tourist visa you enter the world of the infuriating Iraqi red tape. All of a sudden you feel...
The grey London skies can get to you, but the sandy clouds dusting Erbil in a yellowish shade can be far worse. If the wind picks up and blows from the south the sand storms can be so bad that you can’t see a thing and can’t drive, my friend Ahmed tells me when we’re driving to a restaurant. He assures me I haven’t seen anything yet, when I’m asking...
Dutch journalist Maaike Veen writes about British politics and economics and the quirky habits of the British people, which after five years in London continue to fascinate her. She works as a freelance UK correspondent for Dutch national newspaper Trouw (www.trouw.nl), Flemish paper De Standaard (www.standaard.be) and Elsevier (www.elsevier.nl), the leading current affairs weekly in the Netherlands. She also writes for business weekly FEMBusiness and on the Dutch pension market for NPN, a trade publication of the Financial Times Group.