Philip Reeves

Philip Reeves is an award-winning veteran international correspondent based in Islamabad, Pakistan. Previous to his current role, he covered Europe out of NPR's bureau in London.

Reeves has spent two decades working as a journalist overseas, reporting from a wide range of places including the former Soviet Union, the Middle East and Asia.

A member of the NPR team that won highly prestigious Alfred I. duPont–Columbia University and George Foster Peabody awards for coverage of the conflict in Iraq, Reeves has been honored several times by the South Asian Journalists Association.

In 2010, Reeves moved to London from New Delhi after a stint of more than seven years working in and around South Asia. He traveled widely in India, taking listeners on voyages along the Ganges River and the ancient Grand Trunk Road. He also made numerous trips to cover unrest and political turmoil in Pakistan.

Reeves joined NPR in 2004, after spending 17 years as a correspondent for the British daily newspaper, The Independent. During the early stages of his career, he worked for BBC radio and television after training on the Bath Chronicle newspaper in western Britain.

Over the years, Reeves has covered a wide range of stories - from the Waco siege, to the growth of the Internet, Boris Yeltsin's erratic presidency, the economic rise of India, and conflicts in Gaza and the West Bank, Chechnya, Iraq, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.

Graduating from Cambridge University, Reeves earned a degree in English literature. He and his wife have one daughter. His family originates from New Zealand.

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6:29am

Fri November 28, 2014
Asia

In Pakistan, Political Oratory Is Flourishing

Originally published on Fri November 28, 2014 7:16 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

5:08pm

Tue November 25, 2014
Goats and Soda

In Pakistan, A Self-Styled Teacher Holds Class For 150 In A Cowshed

Originally published on Tue November 25, 2014 7:26 pm

Aansoo Kohli is running a makeshift class in a cowshed for children who have no access to school.
Abdul Sattar for NPR

Every day, shortly after breakfast, more than 150 noisy and eager-eyed kids, coated in dust from top to toe, troop into a mud cowshed in a sun-baked village among the cotton fields of southern Pakistan. The shed is no larger than the average American garage; the boys and girls squeeze together, knee-to-knee, on the dirt floor.

Words scrawled on a wooden plank hanging outside proudly proclaim this hovel to be a "school," although the pupils have no tables, chairs, shelves, maps or wall charts — let alone laptops, water coolers or lunch boxes.

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5:32am

Sat November 22, 2014
Parallels

Wealthy Arabs Descend On Pakistan To Kill The Bustards

Originally published on Mon November 24, 2014 10:13 am

Winter is creeping down on northern Pakistan from the Himalayan Mountains. The skies are cloudless and bright blue. The air is as cool and refreshing as champagne.

This is the season for swaddling yourself in a big woolen shawl. And it's also the season when Pakistanis try not to ... let the bustards get them down.

I'm talking about the Houbara bustard. It's a bird, about half the size of a turkey, and with the same rotten luck this time of year.

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5:06pm

Mon November 17, 2014
Asia

Diplomacy Through Cricket? It's All In How You Spin It

Originally published on Mon November 17, 2014 9:59 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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1:17pm

Wed November 5, 2014
Parallels

Christian Couple Killed By Mob In Latest Pakistan 'Blasphemy' Case

Originally published on Wed November 5, 2014 4:57 pm

Pakistani Christians in Islamabad protest the killing of a Christian couple who were burned alive for alleged blasphemy. Pakistan has had multiple cases of vigilante killings against people accused of blasphemy against Islam.
Sohail Shahzad EPA /Landov

In the latest vigilante attack based on an accusation of blasphemy, a young Christian couple in Pakistan was beaten by a mob and then incinerated at a brick factory.

There have been multiple cases in recent years in which Pakistanis are accused — often with little or no evidence — of committing blasphemy against Islam.

The police officer in charge of the investigation, Inspector Maqbool Ahmed, says he was told by local residents that the couple was still alive when they were shoved into a brick kiln.

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12:48pm

Sat November 1, 2014
Middle East

A Taliban Hostage's Story: Educating Children Who Have No Teachers

Originally published on Mon November 3, 2014 1:02 pm

Professor Ajmal Khan was held captive in South Waziristan, the Pakistani tribal area bordering Afghanistan where the Taliban holds power.
B.K. Bangash AP

A compelling Facebook photo shows an old man wearing spectacles and a shawl. He's standing in front of a cracked mud wall. Most of his face is filled by a huge, dusty-looking white beard. He looks tired and sad.

Only the man's family and friends would know that he is not, in fact, a weather-beaten mountain tribesman, but the vice chancellor of one of the most distinguished universities in Pakistan.

This picture of professor Ajmal Khan, posted on the Web by his supporters, was printed by a newspaper when he was freed, after spending four years as a hostage of the Taliban.

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11:19am

Wed October 22, 2014
Parallels

The Crime That Has Shocked Pakistan

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 12:53 pm

Abdul Sattar Edhi, 86, is an iconic figure in Pakistan who founded and runs the country's best-known charitable group. The Edhi Foundation was robbed of more than $1 million on Sunday, a crime that has provoked outrage.
Rizwan Tabassum AFP/Getty Images

The man whom some revere as Pakistan's greatest living philanthropist wears a long white beard, simple robes fashioned from coarse dark-blue cotton, and an air of calm authority that contrasts strikingly with the raucous port city that is his home.

Abdul Sattar Edhi is sitting in the ramshackle building that serves as both his house and the headquarters of his giant charitable foundation that has, for decades, been saving lives among the helpless, lost, abandoned, abused and destitute of one of the world's toughest, roughest towns — Karachi.

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5:21am

Fri October 10, 2014
Asia

Pakistani Teen Shares Nobel Peace Prize

Originally published on Fri October 10, 2014 8:05 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

12:46pm

Sun August 31, 2014
Parallels

Gaza's Shattered Airport, Once A Symbol Of Sovereignty

Originally published on Sun August 31, 2014 7:23 pm

The destroyed and deserted main gate of the Gaza international airport in the southern city of Rafah.
Thomas Coex AFP/Getty Images

It's hard to imagine a more compelling monument to the rise and fall of the Palestinian dream of statehood than the bombed-out ruins that the 1.8 million people of Gaza call their international airport.

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4:45pm

Tue August 26, 2014
Middle East

Decimated Tower Remains As Monument To Gaza War

Originally published on Tue August 26, 2014 8:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Hours before that cease-fire was announced, a tall office and apartment building in Gaza was hit in an Israeli airstrike. It was mostly destroyed, but not entirely. NPR's Philip Reeves reports that it's now a prominent emblem of the devastation there.

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4:10pm

Thu August 21, 2014
Middle East

Israel Unrolls New Series Of Strikes Against Hamas Leadership

Originally published on Thu August 21, 2014 6:24 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

10:45am

Thu August 21, 2014
Middle East

Hamas Senior Leaders Killed In Predawn Israeli Airstrike

Originally published on Thu August 21, 2014 1:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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5:27pm

Tue August 19, 2014
Middle East

Blocked At The Border, Gaza Man's Hopes Of Escape Fade

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 7:38 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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4:09pm

Fri August 15, 2014
Middle East

Massive Rallies Descend On Islamabad, As Authorities Dig In Trenches

Originally published on Fri August 15, 2014 8:02 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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12:24pm

Thu August 14, 2014
Parallels

Pakistan's Mixed Message: Celebrations Amid A Security Lockdown

Originally published on Thu August 14, 2014 12:45 pm

Members of the Pakistani navy march at the mausoleum of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, founder of Pakistan, to celebrate Independence Day in Karachi. Security was heavy in the capital Islamabad as the government braced for protests in addition to the ceremonies and celebrations.
Fareed Khan AP

It is Independence Day in Pakistan, an occasion traditionally celebrated with military parades and grandiose speeches, with poetry and prayers, and with a great deal of flourishing of the national flag.

But 67 years after this nation was carved out of the subcontinent at the end of British colonial rule, the capital is spending the day gripped by anxiety, and partially paralyzed by a government-enforced lockdown.

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1:50pm

Thu June 26, 2014
Parallels

In A Remote Corner Of Pakistan, A Mass Exodus

Workers prepare to distribute food Wednesday to civilians fleeing a Pakistan military operation against the Pakistani Taliban in North Waziristan, near the border with Afghanistan. Close to a half-million residents have fled their homes in recent days.
A Majeed AFP/Getty Images

The people of Pakistan are all too familiar with the tidal waves of humanity that can roll across the landscape with the outbreak of war.

Living in their midst are some 1.6 million Afghan refugees who, over the last 35 years, moved eastward to escape the violence that periodically engulfs their own unstable country.

Now Pakistan is soaking up another human tsunami, this time from the North Waziristan tribal area, an oblong of land slightly larger than Rhode Island, set amid the forests and mountains along its turbulent north-west frontier.

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6:52am

Thu June 26, 2014
Asia

Airlines Suspend Flights To Pakistani City After Shooting

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 2:19 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

The largest airline in the Middle East says it has suspended flights to a city in Pakistan. Emirates says it will no longer fly to Peshawar, at least for now. This is after someone opened fire on a Pakistani passenger jet that was coming in to land there. NPR's Philip Reeves reports on a blow to Pakistan at a time of crisis.

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4:20pm

Fri June 20, 2014
Middle East

Down From The Mountains, Pakistanis Flee Military Offensive

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 7:08 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel. Pakistan is seeing a flood of people pouring out of North Waziristan in the mountains abutting Afghanistan. The exodus began after Pakistan began a major ground offensive against the Taliban and foreign militias there. Some 200,000 people are believed to have left since Sunday. Pakistan's military is calling it an organized evacuation. But as NPR's Philip Reeves reports, some fleeing the area describe a frightening chaos.

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11:58am

Fri June 13, 2014
The Salt

Pakistani Juice Drink Packs A Sweet And Spicy Punch

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 6:54 pm

A man drinks aloo pokhara, a heart-comforting prune juice in Islamabad.
Abdul Sattar NPR

You don't often see a man cheerily quaffing from a half-pint mug on a street corner in Pakistan's capital, Islamabad.

But the drink in this gentleman's hand is as innocent as a newborn kitten.

It's called aloo bukhara juice, and contains tamarind and dried plums, or prunes, if you prefer.

Summer's reaching a punishing peak here - it's 104 degrees Fahrenheit - so I assumed he was just drinking to keep cool.

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5:37am

Tue June 10, 2014
Asia

Taliban Claim Credit For Another Attack In Karachi

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 12:25 pm

Militants are attacking a security training facility near the Karachi airport. The incident comes less than two days after a deadly attack on the Karachi airport itself.

4:13pm

Fri June 6, 2014
Middle East

Who Shot Pakistan's Star News Anchor? Some Point To Spy Agency

Originally published on Fri June 6, 2014 7:29 pm

Pakistan's biggest media house and the country's spy agency, Inter-Services Intelligence, have been embroiled in conflict recently. Geo TV alleged that ISI tried to kill the network's anchor, who was shot and badly injured in April. Now, government regulators have intervened, banning Geo for two weeks.

5:46pm

Thu June 5, 2014
Parallels

How One Man's Arrest In London Shut Down Pakistan's Megacity

Originally published on Fri June 6, 2014 11:09 am

A Pakistani man reads a newspaper at a closed market in Karachi on Wednesday following the arrest of Altaf Hussain. For more than two decades, Hussain has wielded control over his party — and, by extension, parts of the city — from half a world away in London.
Asif Hassan AFP/Getty Images

The city of Karachi, on the edge of the Arabian Sea, has fizzed with life since Alexander the Great was strutting around Asia's deserts on his horse.

This chaotic and ruthless trading metropolis of more than 20 million is the giant turbine that drives Pakistan's creaking economy, providing the largest part of the national revenues.

Yet by midafternoon Thursday, Karachi's shopkeepers began hastily hauling down their steel shutters and heading home, suffering for a third consecutive day from an acute case of the jitters.

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4:27pm

Thu May 29, 2014
World

Pakistani Woman Beaten To Death By Her Family As Police Stand By

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 11:16 am

Pakistan is reeling from the latest so-called "honor killing." A pregnant woman was stoned to death just feet from a courthouse for marrying a man against her family's wishes. Police stood by as family members, including a woman, took part in the killing.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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5:17pm

Mon May 26, 2014
Asia

At Indian Prime Minister's Inauguration, A Historic Pakistani Presence

Originally published on Mon May 26, 2014 5:43 pm

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was among the guests at Narenda Modi's inauguration. It's the first time the leader of one of the archrivals has attended the swearing-in of the other.

8:07am

Sat April 26, 2014
Music

A Millionaire Saves The Silenced Symphonies Of Pakistan

Originally published on Sat April 26, 2014 11:30 am

Izzat Majeed address a crowd in New York during a collaborative concert between Sachal Studios musicians and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. The Lahore-born philanthropist founded a recording studio and provided opportunities for musicians in Pakistan.
Hiroyuki Ito Getty Images

4:50pm

Wed April 16, 2014
Technology

Man Reaches For The Sun For A Solution To Pakistan's Gas Crisis

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 10:46 am

Pakistani motorists wait in line at a refueling station in the outskirts of Islamabad on Jan. 20, 2013. Waits of up to four hours have become a way of life since Pakistan decided to switch to compressed natural gas about a decade ago.
Farooq Naeem AFP/Getty Images

Spring has crept up to the foothills of the Himalayas and, in Islamabad, Pakistan's purpose-built capital, the air is full of the scent of roses and the yelling of birds.

Yet, even in this most stately of South Asian cities, it is impossible to escape the realities of an unstable nation that has yet to figure out how to meet some of the basic needs of its 200 million or so citizens.

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5:19am

Thu April 10, 2014
Asia

2 Pakistani Musicians Gain Fame Singing Political Satire

Originally published on Thu April 10, 2014 7:54 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

There's also anxiety in Pakistan because it is a country where you can get into big trouble because of what you say. Recently, gunmen there opened fire on a prominent journalist who's a critic of Islamic extremism, killing his driver. Twenty-five journalists have been killed over the last decade. Non-journalists like the young activist Malala Yousafzai have been attacked. NPR's Philip Reeves went to see two young Pakistanis who think they're better off singing about their political views than talking. He sent this postcard from Lahore.

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5:47am

Sun February 9, 2014
Parallels

The World's Most Optimistic Law: Banning Graffiti In Karachi

A man walks past one of the many graffiti-covered walls in Karachi, Pakistan, on Dec. 27, 2013. Provincial lawmakers have voted to ban graffiti, but few expect the measure to be enforced.
Athar Hussain Reuters /Landov

If there was a competition to find the world's Most Optimistic Law, then here's a promising contender.

A law has just been introduced in Pakistan that bans people from scrawling graffiti on the walls of Karachi, a vast, chaotic port city on the shores of the Arabian Sea.

It is impossible to drive through Karachi without being struck by the manner in which the city's walls yell at the passersby.

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4:46pm

Fri February 7, 2014
Middle East

Pakistan And Taliban Come To The Negotiating Table

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 9:04 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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1:32pm

Wed February 5, 2014
Parallels

In Pakistan, Another Bhutto Joins The Risky Family Business

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 10:23 pm

Bilawal Bhutto Zardari (left), son of assassinated Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, arrives for a festival at Moenjodaro in southern Pakistan on Feb. 1. The event was seen as a political coming-out party for Bhutto, whose family has prominently featured in Pakistani politics for decades.
Waqar Hussein EPA/Landov

His grandfather was hanged by a military dictator. His mother was assassinated. One of his uncles was slain by the police. Another died in a mysterious poisoning.

His father spent eight years in jail, yet later served a full term as president of Pakistan.

The Bhutto family history is a roller coaster ride, veering from prison, exile and corruption scandals to wealth, fame and power.

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