World News

Asia
2:24 am
Thu May 16, 2013

Yen's Drop In Value Could Fuel Curency War

Originally published on Thu May 16, 2013 3:16 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Japan's economy is finally getting a lift. The stock market is soaring there. Companies like Toyota and Sony are seeing a surge in profits. And today, Japan's government reported the economy grew a three-and-a-half percent annual rate in the first three months of the year, a significant improvement.

Read more
Parallels
1:02 am
Thu May 16, 2013

U.S. Hands Over Nation-Building Projects To Afghans

Afghan and U.S. officials attend the closing ceremony for the Paktia provincial reconstruction team on April 9 in eastern Afghanistan. NATO created more than 20 teams to help the Afghans rebuild. But now the U.S. teams are winding down their activities.
Sean Carberry NPR

Originally published on Thu May 16, 2013 2:24 am

On a sunny spring day in eastern Afghanistan's Paktia province, Afghan officials and U.S. troops and civilians gather inside the ancient mud fort in the center of Forward Operating Base Gardez. They're attending a ceremony marking the formal end of the work of the provincial reconstruction team, or PRT.

Read more
Middle East
3:32 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Syrian Minister: Removal Of Assad Means Destruction Of Syria

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 5:39 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

The President of the U.N. General Assembly said today that at least 80,000 people have been killed in Syria's two-year civil war, and that most of those casualties were civilians. The assembly also approved a resolution today calling for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step aside. But that vote was largely symbolic; the resolution is unenforceable.

Read more
Parallels
2:20 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Heavy Metal In Kabul? It's The Music, Not The Munitions

Solomon "Sully" Omar performs with the Afghan metal band District Unknown at the third annual Sound Central Festival in Kabul earlier this month.
Courtesy of Ellie Kealey

Originally published on Thu May 16, 2013 7:35 am

When 23-year-old Solomon "Sully" Omar felt the music scene in his native Denver wasn't giving him what he was looking for, he made a radical move. He headed for Kabul, capital of the war-torn country his parents had fled decades ago.

"I came here to continue my education and at the same time see what's in the music scene here and bring some of the skills and abilities that I have to the music scene," says Omar.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:49 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Walmart Has Its Own Plan To Help Bangladesh Garment Workers

A Wal-Mart store in Paramount, Calif. The company announced it would conduct its own inspections at Bangladeshi factories that produce its goods rather than joining an agreement with other Western retailers.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 1:30 pm

Wal-Mart says it has drafted its own plan for improving safety at garment factories in Bangladesh rather than join other Western retailers in a legally binding agreement to pay for improved conditions for workers in the South Asian country.

Read more
Parallels
12:11 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

After Two Years In Hiding, A Bahraini Blogger Escapes

Online activist Ali Abdulemam (right) is greeted in Manama, Bahrain, on Feb. 23, 2011, shortly after anti-government protests began. Wanted by the government, he went into hiding the following month. He escaped from Bahrain after two years underground and made his first public appearance Wednesday in Oslo, Norway.
Mazen Mahdi EPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 12:44 pm

The Arab world was aflame in March 2011. Longtime rulers in Tunisia and Egypt had been toppled. NATO was poised to attack Libyan government forces. The Syrian uprising was just beginning. And on the small island nation of Bahrain, the government was cracking down on pro-democracy protesters.

Across Bahrain, protest leaders were rounded up and some were quickly tried, convicted and sentenced to prison. The writing was on the wall for the leaders of the movement, including Ali Abdulemam.

Read more
Parallels
11:36 am
Wed May 15, 2013

Teaching The Rules Of War In Syria's Vicious Conflict

This image provided by the Syrian Revolution against Bashar Assad and released May 2 shows soldiers loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad standing amid dead bodies at Bayda village, in the mountains outside the coastal city of Banias, Syria.
Anonymous AP

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 1:02 pm

A new video from Syria is shocking even by the standards of a war that keeps setting new standards for brutality.

In the video, a rebel fighter identified as Khalid al-Hamad is shown cutting out and eating the organs of a dead government soldier.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:09 am
Wed May 15, 2013

Pffff: Hong Kong's Six-Story Rubber Ducky's Been Deflated

During deflation, on Tuesday (May 14).
Tyrone Siu Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 11:52 am

That giant rubber duck floating in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor, which we posted about on May 6, is down for maintenance.

And when we say down, we mean it. It's been deflated.

But fans shouldn't despair. Ducky's hosts say it just "needs to freshen up" and will return. It's set to be in Hong Kong until sometime next month.

Read more
Business
4:28 am
Wed May 15, 2013

'Revolutions' Unfold Within Oil Industry

In the stodgy world of global oil, we don't hear the term revolution tossed around very often. But oil analysts are watching dramatic change take place on the supply side of the industry. Things like where the oil is coming from and who is buying it.

Afghanistan
4:19 am
Wed May 15, 2013

Young Afghan Entrepreneur Capitalizes On Opportunities

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 5:28 am

Fahim Hashemi, 33, built a conglomerate from scratch. He owns a TV channel, an airline and supplies the Afghan National Army with boots and fuel. He got his start early in the war as a translator to U.S. and British forces.

Business
4:19 am
Wed May 15, 2013

Wal-Mart Won't Sign Pact, Has Own Way To Protect Workers

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 4:35 am

Following a factory collapse in Bangladesh that killed more than 1,000 people, Wal-Mart has declined to join a multi-company factory safety accord to try to prevent future disasters. Instead, the world's largest retailer announced its own set of inspection and safety measures.

The Two-Way
4:17 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Road Crew In Belize Destroys Ancient Pyramid

What's left of the Nohmul pyramid after a construction crew virtually destroyed the 2,300-year-old Mayan structure.
Jaime Awe Associated Press

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 4:53 pm

A construction crew in search of gravel to use as road filler used its backhoes to level one of Belize's largest Mayan pyramids.

"It's a feeling of incredible disbelief because of the ignorance and the insensitivity ... they were using this for road fill," Jaime Awe, the head of the Belize Institute of Archaeology, said of the destruction at the 2,300-year-old Nohmul pyramid, located in the Orange Walk/Corozal area.

"It's like being punched in the stomach. It's just so horrendous," Awe said Monday of the destruction thought to have occurred last week.

Read more
Middle East
2:57 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

A Sign of Disunity? Iranian Candidates Jockey For Position

Etrat Kazemi (center) registers her candidacy for the upcoming presidential election in Tehran, Iran, last week. More than 700 people have registered to run in the June 14 election.
Ebrahim Noroozi AP

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 5:15 pm

Nearly 700 presidential hopefuls have thrown their names into the ring for Iran's June 14 presidential elections. But two last-minute entrants have altered the shape of the already-chaotic race: a former president once dismissed as a has-been and Iran's chief nuclear negotiator.

Read more
Parallels
2:27 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

For Palestinians, Google's Small Change Is A Big Deal

Internet giant Google has recognized the Palestinians' upgraded U.N. status, placing the name "Palestine" on its search engine instead of "Palestinian Territories."
Ahmad Gharabli AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 8:38 am

The webpage Google.ps used to read "Google: Palestinian Territories." On May 1, the company quietly changed that regional search page to say "Google: Palestine."

Google didn't announce the name change, but it didn't have to. In a place where small gestures can carry great symbolism, Palestinians noticed right away.

"Everybody knows about it and they screenshot [and] post on Facebook: 'Yay Google, thank you,' " says Mohammad Kumboz, a 22-year-old graphic designer and computer programmer who lives in the Gaza Strip.

Read more
Energy
2:17 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

India, China Could Soon Demand More Oil Than U.S. And Europe

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 5:15 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

For years, we've understood the global oil landscape in fairly simple terms: Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries were the big producers of oil, the United States and its allies were the big oil buyers. But a report today from the International Energy Agency shows a different picture. Turns out the U.S. has become a star oil producer, as NPR's Tom Gjelten reports.

Read more
Europe
2:17 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Russia Orders Alleged U.S. Spy To Leave Country

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 5:15 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And now to Russia, where a U.S. Embassy employee has been ordered to leave the country, this after Russian authorities nabbed him in a highly publicized arrest. They charge the American as a CIA agent who was caught trying to recruit a Russian spy.

NPR's Corey Flintoff tells us more.

Read more
Environment
2:17 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

'Ice Shove' Damages Some Manitoba Homes Beyond Repair

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 5:15 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

In northern lakefront vacation spots such as Ochre Beach, Manitoba and Lake Mille Lacs, Minnesota, ice happens even in May. But what happened this past weekend was like something out of a science fiction movie.

(SOUNDBITE OF WIND)

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is the sound from a video recorded as constant strong winds pushed huge sheets of ice off a lake and onto the shore. Fingers of ice creeped farther inland and farther. It's as if the ice is alive.

(SOUNDBITE OF ICE SHOVE)

Read more
Africa
1:33 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

The Enemy Inside: Rhino's Protectors Sometimes Aid Poachers

Mike Watson (left), CEO of Kenya's Lewa Conservancy, and conservationist Ian Craig identify the carcass of a 4-year-old black rhino named Arthur, whom poachers had killed the night before. The well-armed, well-informed poachers very likely used night vision goggles and a silencer on an AK-47.
Gregory Warner NPR

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 6:19 pm

It says a lot about the state of the war against poachers in Africa that the Lewa Conservancy, a private sanctuary in Kenya with 12 percent of the country's rhinos, recently appointed a CEO who has never studied zoology or biology. Instead, Mike Watson is an ex-captain in the British army.

His training has already come in handy. Take, for instance, a visit to a crime scene earlier this year: a rhino carcass splayed out in the mud.

Read more
World
1:28 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Living On The Border, Driven — Literally — Underground

Abimael Martinez, who was deported from Riverside, Calif., sits next to the hole he dug to live in beneath the banks of Tijuana's fetid river canal.
Amy Isackson for NPR

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 5:15 pm

After living underground in the United States — figuratively speaking — some undocumented immigrants deported to the Mexican border city of Tijuana are living in holes. These migrants have dug bunkers along Tijuana's sewage canal to protect themselves from police who routinely burn down their makeshift homes.

Read more
Asia
12:23 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

The Legacy Of Gen. Ridgway And America's War In Korea

Originally published on Wed May 15, 2013 10:07 am

The ongoing conflict between North Korea and South Korea is the legacy of the Korean War, which can help explain relations between the two countries. In a new book, historian Victor Davis Hanson discusses how the strategies of U.S. Gen. Matthew Ridgway helped to turn around what appeared to be "a lost war."

Hanson, author of The Savior Generals, tells NPR's Neal Conan that although the three-year war "ended right where it began," it did allow for South Korea to flourish as a democracy.

Read more
World
11:58 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Guatemalan Dictator's Genocide Conviction A First

Last week's guilty verdict makes former dictator Gen. Efrain Rios Montt the first head of state to be convicted of genocide by a national court in the country where the crimes took place. American University law professor Diane Orentlicher examines the significance of Montt's conviction.

Parallels
10:42 am
Tue May 14, 2013

American Doctors Reach Out To Syria

Dr. Zaher Sahloul, a Syrian-American physician in Chicago, heads a group of U.S. doctors providing help to those injured in Syria's civil war.
Amy Ta NPR

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 12:34 pm

The civil war in Syria feels far away for many Americans. But it hits close to home for one Chicago doctor and has pulled him, and many of his colleagues, to the front lines.

Tell Me More host Michel Martin spoke with Dr. Zaher Sahloul, a practicing critical care specialist in Chicago and president of the Syrian American Medical Society.

Sahloul says that for safety reasons, local physicians in Syria have established an underground health care system.

Read more
Parallels
8:11 am
Tue May 14, 2013

As Gamblers Gather, Thailand's Child Boxers Slug It Out

Chai Lorlam is a 9-year-old, 50-pound boxer in northeastern Thailand. The young fighters go through intense training for fights that are held for the benefit of gamblers who often wage large sums on the outcome. Chai is shown here at a recent match.
Morgan Hartley for NPR

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 2:33 pm

Under the fluorescent lights of the boxing ring, the boy can barely see out beyond the elastic ropes that surround the fighting stage. The crowd and the festival that press in around him are shadowy outlines. But the boy can hear them.

"Chai Lorlam, 9 years old, 22.9 kilograms [just under 50 pounds]," the announcer says.

Read more
Europe
2:49 am
Tue May 14, 2013

France Proposes Technology Tax To Pay For Culture Content

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:19 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

If you live in France, you might be paying more, soon, for smartphones and tablets, like the iPad. If the government moves ahead with a new tax proposal, the move could worsen an already tense climate between the Socialist government in France and some technology giants.

Here's NPR's Eleanor Beardsley.

Read more
Afghanistan
2:49 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Younger Generation Poised To Lead Afghanistan's Future

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:19 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne, in Kabul, Afghanistan.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep, in Washington, with David Greene.

Read more
Asia
2:49 am
Tue May 14, 2013

In Response To Tragedy, Bangladesh May Alter Labor Laws

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:19 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Read more
Middle East
2:49 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Plans Proceed For Another International Meeting On Syria

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 11:19 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

President Obama got a warning this week about Syria. It's a warning that the country's civil war seems unlikely to end very soon on its own.

Read more
Parallels
3:41 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

A Pricey In-Flight Bed Gives Netanyahu Political Nightmare

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads the weekly Cabinet meeting in his office in Jerusalem on Monday. He's facing criticism for spending $127,000 of public money to outfit an El Al jet with a double bed plus a wall around it so he and his wife could rest well (and privately) on a flight to London last month.
Uriel Sinai AP

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 8:37 am

First it was ice cream, now a good night's sleep.

Read more
Parallels
3:15 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

As Stigma Eases, Single Motherhood In Mexico Is On The Rise

Maria Carlotta Santa Maria is a single mother in Mexico and is the sole wage earner in her household. Women like her are becoming more common there, and the stigma once associated with having children out of wedlock is fading.
Carrie Kahn NPR

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 5:25 pm

On her daily route delivering laundry in her working-class neighborhood in southern Mexico City, Maria Carlotta Santa Maria, or Mari, as she is known, seems to know everyone: the mailman, the woman on the corner selling salty nuts, and her favorite greetings are for the guys at the corner gas station.

Mari is the kind of person that can make this inhospitable and overwhelming megacity seem almost small and friendly. But as a single mother, she says raising her 10-year-old daughter Jimena alone hasn't been easy.

Read more
The Two-Way
2:33 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Western Retailers To Fund Upgrades At Bangladesh Factories

Relatives on Sunday attempt to identify the bodies of loved ones following from the collapse of Rana Plaza in Savar, on the outskirts of Dhaka.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 13, 2013 9:37 pm

Four retailers who represent the largest purchasers of clothes produced in Bangladesh announced Monday that they have will help finance safety upgrades at apparel factories in the South Asia country after the collapse of a garment complex killed more than 1,000 workers.

The news comes as the death toll in the April 24 collapse of the eight-story Rana Plaza near Dhaka rose to at least 1,127, according to officials.

Read more

Pages