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These are nervous times for the international community. There are serious tensions between Ukraine and Russia, with a constant risk of a miscalculation in the situation. The actions of a single “hot head” could have dire consequences for the region as a whole, and the possibility of the breakup of the Ukraine is certainly not out of the question. But what is the British perspective on the situation?

Today Mongolia is attractive to foreign investors in many sectors of the economy, the most dynamic of which are tourism and the development of mining for gold and other precious metals, and the center of attention for this is the Gobi Desert.

There is a place in the Mongolian Gobi desert called the Turquoise Hill. It gets its name from the rich copper deposits that give it its distinctive greenish color. It has long been known to have these copper deposits, along with quantities of gold and silver, but was considered too small to be worth mining commercially. Then around a decade ago a team of geologists was sent to the area to conduct new investigations. What they discovered was astonishing. The Turquoise Hill turned out to be the tiny visible tip of one enormous iceberg. 

SHOPSKA-U-LIKE

It is funny the way particular types of salad can spread from one culture to another. For instance, the French introduced the Russians to one type, which became known as Salad Olivier in their honour. The Russians in turn introduced this to the Bulgarians where it was a hit, so it’s known in Bulgaria as Russian Salad. Whilst it is undoubtedly popular in Bulgaria, it is not the most popular. No, the number one king of salads there is the Shopska.

Take a look at the Bulgarian flag. Three bands of colour. Red, green and white. Not the most exciting looking flag ever invented yet it symbolises the real Bulgaria in many different ways.

March 17th is the most important say of the year for the Irish and for Irish communities all around the world. It is the official day of the Patron Saint of Ireland, St Patrick. But these days it is famous not so much for religious reasons, than for the party atmosphere it heralds, when vast quantities of stout are consumed (a traditional dark Irish beer, the most famous of which is Guinness) in celebration of the man who is considered to have converted the pagan Irish Celts to Christianity.