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Lyse Doucet

Lyse Doucet Chief international correspondent

Come here for my thoughts on places in the headlines, people who live behind or beyond front lines and who live ordinary lives in extraordinary ways

Political temperature rises in Baghdad amid IS threat

The last time I came to Baghdad, it was its hottest day on record - a blistering 51C in August 2011.

The political temperature was a scorcher too. I flew into the Iraqi capital with then US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen, who was making his last trip to try to convince Iraq's leaders to keep some American troops on the ground.

All the troops went home.

Three years on, American warplanes are back in the skies above Iraq, and British jets are joining Iraq's new US-led coalition to tackle the major threat posed by fighters from the Islamic State militant group.

And Iraq's politics haven't lost their heat either.

Lightening advance

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Tumultuous birth of Afghanistan's power sharing accord

  • 24 September 2014
  • From the section World
Afghan rival presidential candidates Abdullah Abdullah (L) and Ashraf Ghani shake hands after signing agreements for the country's unity government in Kabul (21 September 2014)
There are fears the deal between Abdullah Abdullah (L) and Ashraf Ghani may set a dangerous precedent

In the end, news of a long-awaited Afghan deal arrived in the wake of Scotland's impressive referendum, and just as World Peace Day began.

Afghanistan's power-sharing accord marks a defining moment in a tortuous process meant to bring more democracy, as well as peace, to a nation worn down by war.

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Shanghai Co-operation Council emerges as rival to West

  • 11 September 2014
  • From the section Asia
Russian President Vladimir Putin welcomed by Tajik women on his arrival in Dushanbe airport. 11 Sept 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin was welcomed by Tajik women on his arrival in Dushanbe

A week ago, on Welsh golfing greens, President Obama stood with Nato family and friends to announce the formation of a "core coalition" to tackle the growing threat posed by Islamic State (IS) fighters in Iraq and Syria.

Then, on the day he announced the shape of his new strategy, leaders in another alliance were gathering in a presidential pine forest in Dushanbe for the annual summit of the Shanghai Co-operation Council (SCO).

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Israelis along the Gaza Border keep calm and carry on

Raz battery on the Israeli border with the Gaza Strip
Israel's military equipment - such as this Raz battery - is clear to see along the border

For Dov Hartuv, 78, the Gaza border is so close - only 800m from his home on the Israeli kibbutz of Nahal Oz. And the year 2000 seems so far away.

"My wife and I went on a guided tour of Gaza in 2000 with a Gazan guide," he recalls, with obvious warmth, when we meet in his dusty desolate community which emptied of residents when this latest war began.

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No place to hide for children of war in Gaza and Syria

The conflicts in Syria and Gaza are having a a devastating impact on the lives of children. The BBC's Lyse Doucet who has been following the lives of six Syrian children, and who has just returned from reporting in Gaza, reflects on how war will shape the futures of young people there for decades to come.

"When you see it on TV, it's not like it is in real life."

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Gaza crisis: Shejaiya assault defines grimmest day

Every day, for 12 days, the tally of casualties was grim, the details often grisly.

Every day, the rockets kept soaring in a trail of white vapour out of Gaza and Israeli air strikes pounded this blighted sliver of land along the Mediterranean.

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Karzai rules out Iraq scenario in Afghanistan

  • 18 June 2014
  • From the section Asia

Both Iraq and Afghanistan were the target of major US-led wars, both are besieged by strong insurgencies, and both are still struggling to establish solid institutions.

In Kabul this week, Afghans kept bringing up the dramatic developments unfolding in Iraq, where radical Islamist fighters stunned many with their lightning sweep into key cities.

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Afghan elections: Voting for a better future

  • 14 June 2014
  • From the section Asia
Posters of candidates and their supporters
Both candidates have made surprising transformations during the contest

As Afghanistan stands at a crucial turning point that will determine its political future, its past still stubbornly lingers.

"We met nearly 30 years ago, during President Najibullah's time," a smiling police officer reminds me as we approach the main command centre in the heavily fortified Interior Ministry in Kabul.

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The women reporters determined to cover World War Two

Mary Welsh, Dixie Tighe, Kathleen Harriman, Helen Kirkpatrick, Lee Miller, Tania Long, London, England 1942’ Unknown Photographer, Lee Miller Archives, England 2014. All rights reserved.
Women correspondents accredited by the US Army: Mary Welsh, Dixie Tighe, Kathleen Harriman, Helen Kirkpatrick, Lee Miller, and Tania Long

Seventy years ago, a group of American women journalists made history when they covered the greatest story of their generation. They called them the D-Day Dames.

"It is necessary that I report on this war," writer Martha Gellhorn fumed in an angry letter to military authorities. "I do not feel there is any need to beg as a favour for the right to serve as the eyes for millions of people in America who are desperately in need of seeing, but cannot see for themselves."

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About Lyse

Lyse has been reporting for the BBC for nearly 30 years, with posts in Abidjan, Kabul, Islamabad, Tehran, Amman and Jerusalem. In 1999 she joined the BBC's team of presenters but most of her time is spent going back to regions where she lived, and also discovering new ones too.

Lyse often presents from the field for BBC World News, and the BBC World Service's flagship Newshour programme, as well as the News Channel. She works as a correspondent too, reporting across the BBC's global and domestic TV and radio outlets. She also writes for BBC online and posts - judiciously! - on Twitter and Facebook.

Lyse feels at home in many places but is still Canadian. She was educated in Canada, at Queen's University, and the University of Toronto, and has been awarded several honorary doctorates as well as major journalism awards.

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