AFP Features and Focus Advisory

We will shortly move the following features and focus pieces:

+ Descendants of Stalin officials bear witness in theatre show

+ Basketball girls back on 'Sharia Square' in Mali's Gao

+ Mission to save jaguar exposes big cats' plight in Brazil

+ Tough law sees acid conviction rate triple in Pakistan

Russia-history-Stalin-theatre-USSR, FEATURE


His grandfather ran a Gulag prison camp, but he is "not ashamed'", the grandchild of a Stalin official tells the hushed audience to whom he is narrating his relative's life. Sixty years after Joseph Stalin's death, descendants of officials who were part of the dictator's regime testify in a theatrical show staged at a Moscow human rights museum.

610 words by Marina Lapenkova-Maximova. Picture by AFP Photo/Act2 Polyarnaya

Mali-conflict-sport-women, FOCUS

GAO, Mali

As night falls on 'Sharia Square' in Gao in northern Mali, a score of youths are practising on a basketball court, closely watched by their coach. Now that armed Islamist extremists have left, several girls in shiny tracksuit bottoms and low-necked tops have joined the boys.

590 words by Anne Le Coz. Picture by Joel Saget. Video

Brazil-environment-animals-jaguar, FEATURE


It was late at night at the Preto Velho ranch when the unsuspecting jaguar approached the trap, took the bait -- and was downed by a tranquilizer dart. This was no common hunting scene, but an experiment aimed at saving the Americas' biggest cat.

770 words by Yana Marull. Picture by Evaristo Sa. Video

Pakistan-social-women-crime-acid, FEATURE


Few have much faith in the Pakistani courts, but campaigners say the conviction rate for acid attacks has tripled since tough new penalties were signed into law in late 2011. Dozens of people, mostly women, but also men and children, are disfigured every year by one of the most brutal forms of domestic violence.

935 words by Jennie Matthew. Picture by Farooq Naeem. Video