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Future

Drink From The Sea: From Iran To Australia, Desalinization Aims To Go Mainstream

Both economic and ecologic constraints weigh on the expansion of efforts to access endless sources of drinking supply by treating water from the seas and oceans. But progress is being made, and many still dream of solving a global water shortage with a fl

Getting H2O to Gaza (Middle East Children's Alliance)
Getting H2O to Gaza (Middle East Children's Alliance)
Martine Valo

Drink a splash of seawater? More and more countries are turning to desalinization to supply their water needs, even though the process is expensive and can also come with an environmental price to pay.

On April 16, the Iranian government announced the construction of a desalinization plant that would supply the northeast city of Semnan, whose 200,000 inhabitants live at the edge of the desert.

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Russia

When Mom Believes Putin: A Russian Family Torn Apart Over Ukraine Invasion

Sisters Rante and Satu Vodich fled Russia because they could no longer bear to live under Putin — but their mother believes state propaganda about the war. Her daughters are building a new life for themselves in Georgia.

A mother and her daughter on a barricade in Kyiv

Steffi Unsleber

TBILISI — On a gloomy afternoon in May, Rante Vodich gets the keys to her new home. A week earlier, the 27-year-old found this wooden shed in Tbilisi, with a corrugated iron roof and ramshackle bathroom. The shed next door houses an old bed covered in dust. Vodich refers to the place as a “studio” and pays $300 per month in rent. She says finding the studio is the best thing that’s happened to her since she came to Georgia. It is her hope for the future.

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Her younger sister Satu Vodich is around 400 kilometers further west, in the city of Batumi on Georgia’s Black Sea coast, surrounded by Russian tourists, Ukrainian flags, skyscrapers with sea views and the run-down homes of local residents.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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