Week in Review

Jan 30, 2014, 1:31 PM EST
gay rights activist takes part in a “March against Hatred” rally in St. Petersburg, on November 2, 2013.
AFP/OLGA MALTSEVA

-- Russia's controversial law banning gay "propaganda" found its first legal victim: journalist Alexander Suturin. Lara Vergnaud takes a look at what this means for Putin, and for Russia's LGBT community after the spotlight shining on Sochi gets shut down. 

-- Mobile health is going to see a major expansion in the United Arab Emirates, with a deal struck between the Ministry of Health and telcos Etisalat and du -- a move aimed at beginning to curb the Emirates' growing problem with obesity. 

--  Bitcoin, favorite currency of libertarians and money launderers worldwide, has hit another bump (and it's a big one) on the road to its putative legitimacy. Juliana Kenny probes the arrest of BitInstant CEO Charlie Shrem and the black eye it gave to the Winklevoss brothers. 

-- South Africa's insurgent politician Mamphela Ramphele has, more or less, crossed the Rubicon: she's joined forces with the Democratic Alliance, a party seen as representing the interests of the country's white minority. A bold move from Ramphele -- and possibly a toxic one. 

-- Cuba's Port of Mariel, from which in 1980 issued a massive boatlift of U.S. bound immigrants, might be serving yet again as the Carribean nation's point of access to the world, assuming some crucial trade embargoes get lifted. 

--  Kenya, a nation known for the prowess of the middle- and long-distance runners, may have made a serious blunder by trying to legislate a tax hike on their earnings. Especially when you consider the history its top runners have of switching citizenship.

-- Egyptian political activist Alaa Abdel Fattah pens a beautiful and moving but ultimately futile letter to his sisters from the nation's infamous Tora prison. The document, Lora Moftah argues, illustrates on a small scale the failures of Egypt's revolution

-- On BAI, porcelain jewelry designer Shu-Lin Wu get the spotlight -- her work bears influences from both Europe and Asia, and her new colelction focuses on an ancient metalworking technique, mokuke gane, adapted to deal with her chosen medium. 

-- Also from BAI, an look into Mexico City's upcoming Material Art Fair, featuring work from Alain Guthard, Clifton Benevento and others. 

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