World News

Animals
3:47 pm
Sat September 14, 2013

In France's Camargue, Bulls Are A Passion And A Way Of Life

The black, long-horned Camargue bull is just one of two breeds of fighting bulls in Europe. The bulls are shown here at the Roman arena in Arles, southern France.
Eleanor Beardsley NPR

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 6:00 pm

Amid streaks of lightning and startling thunder claps on a recent day, I head out into the middle of the marshy wetlands known as the Camargue. I'm with a group of tourists, piled on hay bales in the back of a flatbed trailer pulled by a massive tractor.

The delta in southern France where two branches of the Rhone River meet the sea, the Camargue is the biggest Mediterranean delta after the Nile. The stunning ecosystem is home to pink flamingos, rice paddies and salt, which has been harvested here since the Middle Ages.

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The Two-Way
3:17 pm
Sat September 14, 2013

Costa Concordia Salvage Operation To Begin Monday

Work at the wreckage of the Costa Concordia continues through the night Sept. 14, off the Italian island of Giglio. The Costa Concordia is due to be righted, in a project set to begin Monday.
Marco Secchi Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 4:25 pm

A complicated salvage operation is set to begin Monday at the site of the Costa Concordia, the luxury cruise ship that ran aground off Italy in 2012. Even if it succeeds, it will be a long time before things return to normal on the island of Giglio, where the ship wrecked last January.

A large team has gathered to try to move the wreck of the ship, which measures 952 feet in length and weighs more than 114,000 tons. NPR's Sylvia Poggioli filed this report for our Newscast unit:

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Parallels
3:11 pm
Sat September 14, 2013

Cold War Flashback? Vienna Villa Alleged To Be NSA Post

The villa that allegedly belongs to the NSA in Vienna. News outlets, the government and opposition parties are battling it out over allegations that the stately villa in a leafy Vienna district served as a sophisticated a U.S. intelligence listening post keeping tabs on most of Vienna.
Hans Punz AP

For fans of Cold War-era spy stories, Vienna carries a certain allure — as seen in this YouTube video with scenes from the classic film The Third Man.

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The Two-Way
11:51 am
Sat September 14, 2013

Japan Uses Laptops, Cost-Cutting To Launch Rocket Into Space

Japan's new solid-fuel rocket lifts off from the launch pad at the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Uchinoura Space Center in Kimotsuki, Kagoshima prefecture, on Japan's southern island of Kyushu Saturday.
Jiji Press AFP/Getty Images

Japan has sent a space telescope into orbit, as its new Epsilon rocket delivered its payload Saturday. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency says the successful launch is a step toward its goal "to lower hurdles to space" by simplifying rocket launches and making them more affordable. The launch was reportedly done via laptop.

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The Two-Way
6:13 am
Sat September 14, 2013

U.S. And Russia Form A Plan On Syria's Chemical Weapons

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced a plan to eliminate Syria's chemical weapons arsenal from Geneva on Saturday.
Larry Downing AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 11:06 am

Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart have reached a deal that calls for Syria to destroy all of its chemical weapons. The plan, which Kerry announced in a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva on Saturday, gives Syria a week to detail its chemical arsenal.

"The world will now expect the Assad regime to live up to its public commitments," Kerry said. "And as I said at the outset of these negotiations, there can be no games, no room for avoidance, or anything less than full compliance by the Assad regime."

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Middle East
5:47 am
Sat September 14, 2013

Syrian Militants Battle For Christian Village

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 10:50 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Middle East
5:47 am
Sat September 14, 2013

U.S., Russia Reach Agreement On Syria

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 9:28 am

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Saturday they have reached an agreement on a framework for Syria to destroy all of its chemical weapons. Michele Kelemen speaks with host Scott Simon.

Latin America
5:47 am
Sat September 14, 2013

Striking Teachers Forced Off Mexico City Plaza

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 9:28 am

Federal police removed thousands of protesting teachers Friday from the main downtown plaza where they had camped out for weeks. The teachers are angry about a new education law that takes power away from their union.

Middle East
5:47 am
Sat September 14, 2013

The Ins And Outs Of Securing Chemical Weapons

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 9:28 am

What it would take to identify, inventory and destroy Syria's chemical weapons? How can the U.S. tell if Syria is lying, and whether this solution bestows an unintended legitimacy to the Assad regime? Host Scott Simon asks Former United Nations weapons inspector Charles Duelfer.

NPR Story
5:22 am
Sat September 14, 2013

Diplomats Sing For Peace

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 9:28 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

In the midst of international crisis and consternation this week, five U.N. diplomats stepped onto the stage at the United Nations headquarters to sing.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG)

CHORUS: (Singing) Many people, one world...

SIMON: From Romania, Canada, Cape Verde and Costa Rica, we've got the singing ambassadors with us to tell us about their new CD, "Ambassadors Sing for Peace." Thank you very much for being with us.

AMBASSADOR GUILLERMO RISHCHYNSKI: Our pleasure.

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Technology
5:00 am
Sat September 14, 2013

New Computer School Makes French Students Teach Themselves

Xavier Niel, the French Internet billionaire and founder of the Internet provider Free, reacts after delivering his speech in January 2012. Niel has founded a new computer school in Paris named 42.
Jacques Brinon AP

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 11:25 am

A new computer school in Paris has been overwhelmed by some 60,000 applicants.

The school, called 42, was founded by a telecom magnate who says the French education system is failing young people. His aim is to reduce France's shortage in computer programmers while giving those who've fallen by the wayside a new chance.

In the hallways of 42, suitcases and sleeping bags are piled, and people are stretched out on mattresses in some of the corners. There are showers and dozens of colorful bath towels.

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Middle East
2:54 am
Sat September 14, 2013

In Syria Debate, Obama's Internal Dialogue Becomes Audible

President Obama's speeches about Syria have at times seemed to reveal his own internal struggle on the topic.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 4:21 pm

A surprise agreement between the U.S. and Russia, announced Saturday, calls for Syria to destroy all of its chemical weapons by mid-2014. The deal follows a chaotic week of seat-of-the-pants foreign policy.

Performing on the international stage, Obama and his Cabinet secretaries have offered up one plot twist after another, though it often seems as if the actors are working without a script.

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The Two-Way
4:12 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Judge Rules 'Ikea Monkey' To Remain In Animal Sanctuary

A still from news video of Darwin's great escape in December.
ABC News

Darwin the 'Ikea monkey' will no longer be hitting the superstores with a Canadian woman who calls him her son after a judge in Ontario ruled that the primate is not a pet and should remain at an animal sanctuary.

As we wrote in December, Darwin, a Japanese macaque dressed in a heavy shearling coat, attracted considerable attention when he escaped from a locked crate in owner Yasmin Nakhuda's car in Toronto. He made his way through rows of parked cars and ended up inside a nearby Ikea store before staff there cornered him and called in animal control officials.

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Asia
4:04 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Men Convicted Of Gang Rape, Murder In India Sentenced To Die

The four men convicted of rape and murder in an Indian court were sentenced to death in New Delhi Friday. Last December, the men lured a young woman onto a bus, and then raped and tortured her before throwing her off the vehicle. She died of her injuries two weeks later. The death sentences were greeted with approval by the victim's family, and there have been widespread calls for the men to hang ever since details of their crime became known.

Parallels
4:04 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Is Brazil Ready To Step On The World Stage?

An under-20 soccer team trains on the beach in Recife, Brazil.
Melissa Block/NPR

As Brazil readies to host next year's World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics, All Things Considered host Melissa Block is in the country reporting on how it's all coming together.

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Europe
3:05 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Off The Tuscan Coast, Raising The Ill-Fated Costa Concordia

An aerial view taken on Aug. 23 shows the Costa Concordia as it lies on its side next to Giglio Island. The wrecked cruise ship will be rolled off the seabed and onto underwater platforms.
Alessandro Bianchi Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 6:29 pm

Weather permitting, one of the largest maritime salvage operations ever attempted will get underway Monday in the waters off of an Italian island.

Twenty months ago, in January 2012, the Costa Concordia luxury liner smashed into a jagged reef, killing 32 people. Since then, the vessel has being lying on its side — an unsightly wreck visible for miles around.

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Africa
12:45 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

What A Chatty Monkey May Tell Us About Learning To Talk

The gelada monkey, found only in the highlands of Ethiopia, is known as the bleeding heart baboon for the splash of red on its chest. Males of the species have a remarkable vocal agility greater than that of any nonhuman primate.
Gregory Warner NPR

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 12:04 am

The gelada monkey, also known as the bleeding heart baboon, makes a gurgling noise or wobble sound that scientists say is close to human speech — at least in how much facial coordination it requires.

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The Two-Way
11:00 am
Fri September 13, 2013

37 Killed In Fire At Russian Psychiatric Hospital

In a photo released by Russian officials in Novgorod, firefighters work at the site of a fire at a psychiatric hospital in the village of Luka on Friday.
AP

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 3:23 pm

A fire at a dilapidated Russian psychiatric facility that broke out early Friday morning has killed at least 37 people, including a nurse who tried to guide patients to safety, officials say.

The fire in the town of Luka, about 120 miles southeast of St. Petersburg, was the second such blaze in recent months. In April, a similar blaze at a psychiatric hospital near Moscow killed 38 people.

In the latest incident, authorities had long warned that the mostly wooden building dating to the 19th century was unsafe, according to The Associated Press.

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Parallels
10:20 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Like Anthony Weiner, German Politician Gives One-Finger Salute

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 3:15 pm

If two politicians on different continents both give an upthrust middle finger to the camera in the same week, is that enough to call it a global trend?

Perhaps we need one more, but here's what we have so far.

First there was failed New York mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner, who, in a rare display of impulsive behavior, expressed his feelings toward a reporter as he left his election night party Tuesday.

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Asia
8:58 am
Fri September 13, 2013

No Deal On Bangladesh Garment Factory Compensation Fund

A Bangladeshi woman holds a photograph of a relative missing in the Rana Plaza building collapse, as she participates in a protest in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on Friday. Protesters demanded a minimum monthly salary of $103 and compensation for the victims and injured in the building collapse in April that killed more than 1,000 people.
A.M. Ahad AP

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 9:20 am

Families and survivors of the Rana Plaza garment factory disaster in Bangladesh in April who are waiting for compensation from Western companies will have to wait a little longer.

A meeting Thursday of retailers and brands in Geneva, Switzerland, facilitated by the U.N.'s International Labor Organization, ended with only one company announcing measures for the victims: Primark said it would give the families of victims three months' salary.

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The Two-Way
7:13 am
Fri September 13, 2013

He's Down, Not Up: Trans-Atlantic Balloonist Forced To Land

Jonathan Trappe lifted off Thursday from Caribou, Maine. He had to give up his trans-Atlantic trip about 350 miles later.
Mark McBreairty AP

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 8:09 am

Before we even had a chance to tell you he was up, Jonathan Trappe is down.

"Hmm, this doesn't look like France," says the American aviator on his Facebook page.

Trappe left from Caribou, Maine, on Thursday on a bid to fly across the Atlantic in a small boat hanging beneath about 300 helium-filled balloons. Think Up.

No one's ever made that trip using a "cluster balloon" rig.

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The Two-Way
5:19 am
Fri September 13, 2013

As Talks Continue, CIA Gets Some Weapons To Syrian Rebels

A Free Syrian Army fighter looks through the scope of his sniper rifle at an area controlled by forces loyal to President Bashar Assad in Aleppo.
Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 2:13 pm

  • On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Tom Bowman talks with host Steve Inskeep about the crisis in Syria

It's Day Two of talks in Geneva between Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who are seeing if they can come to an agreement on Russia's suggestion that Syria hand over its chemical weapons to international monitors — and thus avert a possible strike by the U.S. military.

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World
5:07 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Serious But Funny Discoveries Win Prizes

The lg Nobel Prize honors discoveries that are very scientific yet humorous. Winners include researchers who showed dung beetles navigate using the Milky Way. Other scientists proved that people who are drunk think they're more attractive.

The Two-Way
4:28 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Death For 4 Men Convicted In Indian Gang Rape And Murder

Outside the courthouse in New Delhi on Friday, demonstrators gathered to call for — and then celebrate — the death sentences handed down for four men convicted in the December gang rape and murder of a young woman.
Roberto Schmidt AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 7:44 am

The four men convicted for December's notorious gang rape and murder of a young woman in New Delhi, India, were given the death penalty on Friday.

"It took all of 90 seconds" for the judge to announce his decision and then leave the courtroom, NPR's Julie McCarthy reports from New Delhi. One of the four convicted men "shrieked and slumped," while outside a cheer went up when spectators heard the news, she adds.

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Middle East
2:59 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Saudis At Odds With U.S. Over Egypt

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 4:56 am

Saudi Arabia and other Gulf Arab states are stepping in with billions of dollars for Egypt's military as it attempts to neutralize the Muslim Brotherhood as a political force. The exception is Qatar, which along with Turkey, is left to condemn the ouster of Egypt's Islamist president last month. The rift poses new challenges for U.S. policy in the region.

Middle East
2:58 am
Fri September 13, 2013

An Unlikely Refuge: Some Wounded Syrians Treated In Israel

A wounded Syrian, suffering skull, stomach and pancreas injuries from an explosion, in intensive care at Ziv Medical Center in Israel. Hospital staff asked that faces and names not be included to protect the safety of the Syrian patients who could get in trouble with Syrian authorities if it were discovered that they were in Israel.
Daniel Estrin For NPR

Originally published on Sun September 15, 2013 8:40 am

At about 2 p.m. on a recent day, hospital personnel at Ziv Medical Center in northern Israel got a text message from the Israeli army: We're on our way with four wounded Syrians. Half an hour later, two army ambulances pulled up to the emergency room.

Two soldiers carried in the injured Syrian, his hands covering his head. Then, another was brought in on a wheelchair.

Teams of army paramedics and hospital doctors huddled around the Syrians, asking their ages, tearing away their clothes and quickly assessing their injuries.

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Middle East
2:58 am
Fri September 13, 2013

U.S. And Russia Hammer Out Plan For Syria's Chemical Weapons

Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov resume meetings in Geneva on Friday. The talks are aimed at working out the details of a program in which Syria's Bashar Assad would give up his chemical weapons.

Middle East
2:58 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Fit For A Novel: U.S., Russia Differences Over Syria

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 3:32 am

The past couple of weeks have sometimes felt like an international thriller as American and Russian leaders moved their chess pieces around the board. Renee Montagne talks to Washington Post columnist and novelist David Ignatius about the strategies involving Syria.

Middle East
2:58 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Are Weapons Getting To Syrian Rebels?

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 4:13 am

We're going look more closely at whether the United States is providing arms to Syria's rebels. The commander of the Free Syrian Army General told Morning Edition on Thursday that his group was not receiving weapons. But American officials contend they are providing weapons to the rebels.

Parallels
3:00 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

As The Revolution Fades, Tunisia Begins To Splinter

People gather outside the Constituent Assembly headquarters during a protest to demand the ouster of the Islamist-dominated government, in Tunis, Tunisia, on July 28.
Anis Mili Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 7:35 pm

For Tunisia's ruling Islamist party, Ennahda, what happened this summer in Egypt is a cautionary tale and a constant reminder of the risks it faces as it navigates through its own political crisis.

In Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood easily dominated all post-revolutionary elections, only to be ousted by the military in July. Brotherhood supporters now carry yellow placards, a reminder of the military crackdown, and that same placard now hangs on Ennahda's headquarters in the Tunisian capital, Tunis.

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