Another federal court ruling this week cast more attention on the U.S. Border Patrol. An appeals court said the family of a Mexican teenager can sue the Border Patrol agent who shot and killed their son. The court set aside a claim that U.S. law should not apply since the agent was shooting from the American side of the border while the teen was on Mexican soil. As we heard on the program earlier this year, my colleague Steve Inskeep visited the site of that shooting with the mother of teen victim.
It's 9 a.m. and the Mekong River at this hour is still peaceful: just a few fishermen casting nets into a large pool below the area called Si Phan Don, or "4,000 islands."
It's a popular tourist destination in Laos, where Southeast Asia's most storied river splits into nearly a dozen channels before coming together again below the islands of Si Phan Don, for the journey to Cambodia, Vietnam and the South China Sea. Cambodia is on my left, Laos to the right.
The Obama administration says it will try to speed up deportations of tens of thousands of children who have illegally entered the U.S. from Central America in recent months. It's part of a stronger message the administration is hoping gets back to would-be migrants contemplating coming to the U.S.
But the message isn't getting through, and even those who have recently been deported say they will try again.
Costa Rica entered into the World Cup an underdog, but the team has emerged from group play having beaten three former World Cup winners. Costa Rican fan Ericka Mora speaks with Melissa Block from San Jose about the excitement in the country's capital.
Violence in Iraq has many wondering if the map of the Middle East is being redrawn before the world's eyes. If so, Iraqi Kurds might stand to gain, with an independent Kurdistan finally within reach. Fuad Hussein, a strategist for the Kurdistan Regional Government, joins Robert Siegel to speak about Kurds' hopes and fears.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
And I'm Robert Siegel. Iranian and American diplomats are facing a July 20th deadline to come up with a nuclear agreement. A deal could prevent any Iranian attempt to build a bomb. Failure could bring back the mutual hostility of the past. As NPR's Peter Kenyon reports from Vienna, nuclear fuel, uranium, is the crucial issue.
Tape recording clubs were once a big thing in Britain. People would record all sorts of stuff - sounds of nature, music, plays. And then they'd meet to share their audio treasures. Well, over the years, those clubs have slowly disappeared. Christopher Werth took his own microphone to record what's left of them.
In a sign that China and South Korea are moving closer together, possibly at North Korea's expense, Beijing and Seoul have said they are close to a free-trade deal and issued a joint statement that they firmly oppose nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula.
The announcement on Thursday comes amid North Korean missile tests and a visit to South Korea by Chinese leader Xi Jinping that carries with it an implied snub to Pyongyang: It's his first visit to the Korean Peninsula and the first that a Chinese head of state has stopped in the South before visiting the North.
Aiming for a fresh start in troubled U.S.-India relations, U.S. Sen. John McCain met with newly elected Prime Minister Narendra Modi today in New Delhi. But McCain's two-day visit was overshadowed by reports that the U.S. National Security Agency was granted permission in 2010 to spy on Modi's political party.
Colombia's national men's soccer team is heading to the quarter-finals of the World Cup. That's a first. And as John Otis reports, the team's winning streak is helping the Colombian soccer emerge from a history of disappointment and also drug-fueled violence.
JOHN OTIS, BYLINE: Colombia has handily won all four of its World Cup games.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER: (Shouting in foreign language).
Sunni militants claimed vast swaths of Iraq last month, thanks largely to the collapse of the Iraqi army.
But three weeks later, the army has been able to win back some territory. The gains come after a call to arms by Shiite religious leaders in the holy city of Najaf, where deep emotion and symbolism are inspiring Shiite volunteers.
Najaf is home to the ancient Valley of Peace cemetery, which seems crowded. Miles of desert stretch under blistering sun, the gilded domes of mausoleums pressed up against the dusty headstones of the ordinary dead.
The ferocious charge across much of Iraq by militants now calling themselves the Islamic State has created something almost unheard of in the highly divisive Middle East: international consensus.
The U.S. and its allies, as well as some American rivals, including Russia and Iran, are all opposed to the Sunni group formerly known as ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, noted Rachel Bronson, a Mideast expert with the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.
Drive around the Shetland Islands in the far north of Scotland, and at least one thing is immediately apparent: It's home to a lot of sheep. They're everywhere — wandering along the roadsides and on beaches.
In fact, there are some 400,000 of them in Shetland, where the ovine inhabitants outnumber the human ones 20 to 1.
So if you're invited to someone's home for dinner, lamb will likely be on the table. And if you're wearing a local scarf or mittens, chances are it was made out of Shetland wool.
More than half of 16-year-olds in the United States have tried alcohol. While many of them learn to drink responsibly, some go on to binge on alcohol, putting themselves at risk for trouble as adults. Researchers still aren't sure why that is.
But it may be possible to predict with about 70 percent accuracy which teens will become binge drinkers, based on their genetics, brain function, personality traits and history, according to a study published Wednesday in Nature.
For more on the Palestinian reaction to recent tensions with Israel, Robert Siegel speaks with Mkhaimer Abu Sada, a political science professor at Al-Azhar University in Gaza City. He expresses Gazans' frustrations with the Palestinian Authority and their concerns about another war with the Israelis.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block. Tensions are high in Jerusalem. Yesterday, Israel buried three teenagers killed in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. The country vowed action against the militant group Hamas. Hours later, the body of a Palestinian teen was found in Jerusalem. The Obama administration has condemned the murders. We're going to get a view from Gaza on the increasing tensions, but first Daniel Estrin has this report from Jerusalem.
At an altitude of nearly 3 miles, the Tibetan plateau is an extreme place to live. It's cold, it's hard to grow food, and there's about 40 percent less oxygen in the air than there is at sea level.
Somehow, though, native Tibetans are adapted to it. Their bodies — and their blood in particular — work differently than those of people used to lower altitudes. The Tibetans' advantage might be thanks to an ancient inheritance.