tv Global 3000 PBS May 27, 2017 12:30am-1:01am PDT
is off to uganda, where chess is transforming the lives of slum children. in denmark, we meet an imam offering a woman's take on islam. but first we head to pakistan, where protecting a family's honor is becoming a common excuse for murder. pakistan is a nation overshadowed by inequality. a few are super rich. most are desperately poor. the population is booming. there are now around 200 million, mainly young people, in pakistan. the ministry of education says around 22 million children -- most of them girls -- don't go to school.
not even half the female population is literate. women are generally treated more harshly than men. life in the countryside is particularly tough for them. many flee to the cities, but even there, they're not safe. reporter: this is qandeel baloch's final resting place. she was murdered at the age of 26. her life and brutal death shocked pakistan and left her family broken. mr. baloch: qandeel means flower, and she was one. some people have said bad things about her. her brother believed that nonsense. he murdered her for the family honor, but that's not in the koran. allah will punish him for what he did. reporter: the balochs' world collapsed around them. their daughter is in her grave and their son is in prison. qandeel baloch grew up in this village in the heart of pakistan.
but she felt restricted there and decided to move away. ♪ she thrust herself into the limelight online. her music videos and shows challenged pakistan's social taboos. every click of her page brought qandeel money. her fame fed off viewer curiosity. how far would she go? but it was that fame that led to her death. qandeel baloch, the online star, was strangled by her brother. his confession left no doubts about why he decided to end his sister's life. >> i don't regret it. my sister tarnished the family's honor with her internet videos. reporter: the act has torn the baloch family apart. qandeel's parents have been left trying to find an explanation for the inexplicable.
mr. baloch: people incited my son to violence. they told him over and over again that qandeel was shaming him and his family, that he should think of our honor. that fueled his anger, leading him to do what he did. reporter: qandeel's brutal murder, one of many so-called honor killings. official figures show more than 1000 take place every year -- an average of three women are killed every day. but the real figure could be much higher. compared to many western countries, women in pakistan have fewer rights. they are often regarded as property -- treated as if they have no will or opinions of their own -- and kept largely invisible. deeply conservative gender roles are particularly entrenched in rural areas.
saba shezadi lives behind these walls. she doesn't leave the confines of her home and has to move house frequently. she chose her husband herself and decided not to accept the man her family had chosen for her -- her brother-in-law. ms. shezadi: my uncle and my father were lying in wait for me. they shot at me twice. another time, they put me in a sack and threw me in the canal. but i survived. reporter: these images were taken three years ago, just after her attempted murder. ms. shezadi: they thought i was dead, but i managed to free myself. reporter: saba told the media and the police. her father and uncle were sent to prison for the crime. but there seems to be no end to saba and her husband mohammed's nightmare. mr. qaiser: in a few weeks time, her father and uncle will be
released. we don't know how long we can hide for. sooner or later they'll find us and they'll kill us. reporter: pakistan's largest city, karachi, is considered far more modern and progressive. some even call it western. internet star qandeel baloch was drawn to the metropolis. she made many of her videos here. she felt free in the city -- able to live the way she wanted. this woman -- saba khalid -- goes to the same cafes and hotels that baloch frequented. there are many parallels between their lives. she moves in the same circles, but the women never met. saba explains that qandeel's death made her feel guilty. ms. khalid: it could have been me, it could have been me. it's just that i'm lucky that i have a father who supports me, whose honor does not depend on me, and i did not choose that
father, i was just born in that household. i could have been born in another household and things could be completely different for me. reporter: spurred on by quandeel's death, saba is setting up an internet platform dedicated to the rights of pakistani women. the aim is to inform, advise and discuss rights, which is urgently needed in the country. but a long and winding road full of risks lies ahead. ms. khalid: i want to be able to tell them, but at the same time do it slowly and strategically because the moment you start talking about women's rights, you become a target, you become a foreign agent. so the fact that i am sitting here talking about it and talking to people who are outsiders, not pakistani, that kind of puts me in a vulnerable light. reporter: honor and morality -- these two concepts often appear to be defined in inhuman terms in pakistan. are tradition and islam being invoked to justify cruelty and
brutality? at any rate, breaking social norms is a risky endeavor -- in the worst of cases, even leading to death. host: men rule the roost in spiritual traditions, too. the world's five main religions -- islam, christianity, hinduism, buddhism, and judaism, are dominated by men. the protestant church is exceptional in officially encouraging female priests. in copenhagen though, we met a female imam, one of a growing number of muslim women prayer leaders. ms. khankan: it's because men have dominated religion within time, over history, and this is also why many interpretations of religion are patriarchal in their interpretation. so i do believe that it is important.
i do believe that with the spreading of female imams, it will help in creating a more progressive spiritual approach to the interpretation. my father, he always -- he introduced me to scholars who have a feminist, spiritual approach to the understanding and interpretation of islam. and the way he practiced islam and the way he defines his interpretation, to me, it's a feminist, spiritual approach. reporter: sherin khankan's father is a syrian, who fled political persecution in his homeland. her mother is finnish and came to denmark for work. sherin was born in denmark, and knew from an early age she wanted to establish a mosque. her goal is to present islam's enlightened tenets to counter the perception of islam as a violent faith. today, she is speaking with
students from the u.s. the mariam mosque takes its name from the virgin mary, a figure she feels signifies religious unity. she and her fellow female imams at the mosque also see themselves as unifiers. they've overseen religious services, lectures, weddings, and divorces. she and her colleagues are followers of sufism, an islamic sect. ms. khankan: sufism is being practiced and defined very differently. sufism can be defined as mysticism, as music, as dancing dervishes. it could be spiritual practices, it could be a specific islamic theology. to me, sufism is understanding a theological subject or understanding things at a deeper level, where you also listen to the heart.
reporter: jesper peterson is researching islamic feminism and worldwide efforts to legitimize it. after reading an article about sherin khankan in one of denmark's major newspapers, he asked her to speak at his institute. mr. petersen: the mosque here is the first one in scandinavia. but islamic feminism exists in the whole world. it's quite big, especially in toronto, california -- there are many cities in the u.s. that have mixed gender mosques, also lbtq-friendly mosques. islamic feminism is a minority, but it's a bigger minority than jihadism in the western context. reporter: to counter growing islamophobia, sherin speaks openly with international media outlets. she cites the teachings of learned islamic mystics like ibn 'arabi, who spoke about gender equality more than 800 years ago.
following this example, sherin wants to empower women. on fridays, she offers prayer services for women only. ms. khankan: women come to this mosque, they listen to the khutbah, they will go home, they will have discussions with their husbands. so, slowly you will change the structure of the family. so what happens in the mosque goes way beyond the mosque -- it affects the families. reporter: sherin khankan is convinced her efforts are working -- that however slowly, society is beginning to change. host: and now in global snack, we find out what people around the world love to eat. reporter: in the evening, there's not a lot to do on the island of koh klang in southern thailand.
>> most days we play boules, eat roti, and drink coffee. evening is the time to have fun and chill with your friends. reporter: you can get a roti just round the corner. roti is a flat, unleavened bread made with flour, egg, butter, condensed milk, salt, and water. the ingredients have to be constantly kneaded. only that way does the dough become sufficiently elastic, so it can be stretched into wafer-thin sheets. >> we have crispy roti, roti with lime, roti with an egg inside, banana roti, and plain ones. reporter: they taste best with ice-chilled coffee or tea. the most popular roti are fried until they're crispy
before being doused in condensed milk, a bit of extra sugar doesn't hurt. they're not exactly healthy, but >> it's crispy, it's tasty, it's really good because it's so crispy. reporter: what better way to round off a day? a pleasure for big and small. host: when walt disney bases a movie on a true story, it's guaranteed to be a rather extraordinary tale. like that of the first jamaican bobsled team, which qualified for the winter olympics in calgary. or the moving portrayal of a girl from a ugandan slum, where
daily life is all about survival. reporter: dreams don't often come true in a place like this. here in the heart of katwe -- a sprawling slum in the ugandan capital kampala -- the som chess academy teaches children how to play the game. some are so poor, they don't go to school because their parents can't afford exercise books or pencils. phiona was one of them. [film clip] >> what is your name? >> phiona. reporter: the nine-year-old was poorer and dirtier than the others. when teased, she fought back. an unusual, courageous girl.
[film clip] >> hey, a fighter. welcome. this is a place for fighters. ms. mutesi: i was so hungry, so i just followed my brother to the chess program to get a meal. i didn't have any idea, any picture, of chess, how it looks like. it was my first time to see it. so, it looked strange for me. i just wanted to enter, and i touched the pieces to feel them. reporter: now, a decade or more later, phiona is a heroine for the children at the chess academy. robert katende taught her the game and the ideas behind it -- thinking ahead and looking for solutions to problems, even when things are looking hopeless. mr. katende: we try to integrate the values and the principles of the game into our lifestyle, to do problem-solving. if you consider what you don't have, you can't make it. now he has to consider what he has on the board -- how can i still i achieve my goal using
the resources that i do have? [film clip] >> in chess, the small one can become the big one. reporter: for phiona, that was a fascinating idea. what clever move might free her from this life of misery? she practiced endlessly, and at the age of eleven she won the ugandan junior championship. [film clip] >> check mate. >> this year's gold medalist, phiona mutesi. reporter: the young champion travelled the world. at 14, she represented uganda at the chess olympiad in siberia. ms. mutesi: it was a new life. it was all strange. i didn't know how to use flushing toilets, nothing. i didn't know how to sleep in bed by myself. i didn't know how to use a shower. so, everything.
it was our coach who used to teach us everything. yeah, it was now beyond the chess board and life skills. reporter: robert katende also organizes chess seminars for the children of katwe. he wants them all to have the opportunity to extend their horizons. donations to his som chess academy benefit the children. katende has so far paid for 80 children to go to school. with her prize money, phiona bought a house in the country with a garden, where her mother grows fruit and vegetables. >> i am so proud of my daughter. we used to live on the street. sometimes we had nothing to eat for days on end. but now i have my own house and my own crops. i can even give a little to others. reporter: for phiona, the chess academy is a home away from home, and its students are like her family.
when she was really down, this is where she found support and encouragement. and now she is helping other children as she herself was helped. [film clip] >> you could be the best in all of uganda. >> good. >> where is that for you? it's not the place you belong. you belong where you believe you belong. you have a mother who never gave up on you. reporter: phiona's story is like a fairytale, but it is really true. host: and now to our global ideas series, where we meet people committed to protecting the natural world. kosovo is home to a very rare species of large cat. but its habitat is under threat. our reporter cornelia borrmann went to find out more about a project aiming to help both the animals and the people who live there. cornelia: the balkan lynx is a
master of disguise, and pads through the forest silently, often unnoticed. it's one of the rarest species of big cat in the world, and it is in great danger of extinction. azem ramadani wants to protect the lynx, though he has never seen one in the wild. he's a photographer, but now he runs an ngo called finch, an organization for protecting wild birds and other animals in kosovo. and he is working in the sharr mountains with the international balkan lynx recovery program. despite the bad weather, the environmentalists are here to try to find out how many lynxes live in the area. mr. ramadani: historically, the number of lynxes has been always
small, minimal. but still, several decades ago we have information that the number of lynxes was higher, in that we are based on the sightings of people. cornelia: a number of people living in nearby villages say they have sighted lynxes. so the researchers set up a camera trap. it will remain in place all winter. they are not worried about it getting damaged or stolen -- hardly anybody will come by. the camera takes pictures of anything that is warm and moves. mr. ramadani: it's not only important for us to get the lynx, also the prey species, because that gives us a lot of information about the lynxes. cornelia: they head for prizren, kosovo's second city, to study the results.
lynxes prey on just a few species, including deer and chamois. but their numbers are declining fast because of environmental degradation and hunting. that in turn puts the lynxes' life in danger. but the photos do show animals the big cats would be happy to eat, so perhaps they will soon catch a glimpse of the lynx, too. colleagues in macedonia have been working with the rare felines since 2006. dime melovski has fitted some with transmitters so the researchers can track their movements via gps. mr. melovski: that's the idea -- to make a suitable habitat for new lynxes to conquer new territories and to expand. not only north towards kosovo and montenegro, but also south towards greece because greece also offers a lot of suitable habitats. cornelia: but settling lynxes in
new places requires the help of local people in conserving nature. ramadani and his colleagues visit schools to talk to the children. their enthusiasm for the beautiful animals is evidently contagious. they are working on a new brochure for school students, and a lynx quiz, written by the team in macedonia. the teaching materials have proven effective there. now they are being translated for distribution in kosovo. the small country is one of the poorest in europe. many people in the countryside depend directly on what they find in nature to survive. they also leave a lot of trash in the wild -- they dump it illegally, even in the remotest areas. a lot is washed away and
dispersed along the many streams. even in conservation areas like sharr national park. illegal logging is also a big problem. people fell trees for heating and cooking. and as more of the forest is destroyed, the lynxes' habitat shrinks. kosovo has natural treasures in abundance that are becoming rare elsewhere, such as the cowslip. its flowers and roots are much in demand for medicinal purposes. cowslips are a source of income for sheribane blakaj and her family. she and other gatherers have learned how to harvest the valuable plants sustainably, so that the stocks will not decline. the german government development aid organization giz helped develop the gathering and distribution system. sheribane blakaj brings the plants she's gathered to a collection point in her village. there are 53 of them across the
country. the pickers are all paid the same fee. the plants are dried there, too. sheribane has been a cowslip collector since 2003. before that, she worked in a garment factory, until it was destroyed in the kosovo war in 1999. ms. blakaj: life after the war was hard. my husband and i didn't have any work. the children were small and our house had been damaged. once we had started gathering plants and herbs, the first thing we did was to repair it. cornelia: later, they added a second story. as money comes in, they continue with the construction work. the gathering of plants also
benefits the project to protect the balkan lynxes -- indirectly. because it helps people to learn to appreciate the value of nature. mr. ramadani: we feel like pioneers, actually, of this cooperation, of bringing countries together, bringing people together in raising awareness. because after all, we all have the same goal, which is nature preservation. cornelia: so that future generations will also be able to enjoy the beauty of nature in kosovo. host: that's all for today. we're back next week. until then, do get in touch. check out our facebook page -- dw global society -- or mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. bye for now. ♪ [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
- [voiceover] this program is made possible in part by the town of marion, historic marion virgina, home of the wayne henderson school of appalachian arts. celebrating 21 years as a certified virginia main street community. the ellis family foundation. the general francis marion hotel, the historic general francis marion hotel and black rooster restaurant and lounge, providing luxurious accommodations and casual fine dining. the bank of marion. the bank of marion, your vision, your community, your bank. wbrf, 98.1 fm. bryant label, a proud supporter of our region's musical heritage. (upbeat bluegrass music)