Speed Reads

Let's talk about sex

Pakistan has a popular, taboo-breaking call-in sex advice TV show

A new show on the Pakistani television channel Health TV appears to be doing the near-impossible: Talking more or less openly about sex, sexually transmitted diseases, and other sex-related problems in a conservative Muslim nation where such talk is generally prohibited in public and, often, avoided in private. Dr. Nadim Uddin Siddiqui hosts the weekly hour-long call-in show, blandly named "Clinic Online," AFP reports, and Pakistan appears to be tuning in.

"Sex is a very difficult matter in Pakistan — here it is very difficult to talk in open forum, in media, in any seminar," Siddqui tells AFP. "So whenever you talk about sex you should be very careful." His show and others on the network avoid controversy — and censorship — by focusing on medical disorders rather than sex, and using religious language and Muslim clerics. Watch AFP's report on Pakistan's Dr. Ruth below. --Peter Weber