In the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, hundreds of people are still camped out in Independence Square known as the Maidan. They say they'll stay, at least through next month's presidential elections, to push for greater reform. In February, violent protests in the Maidan toppled the president and left dozens dead. Today, though, the cloud of black dust over the square was from dozens of brooms sweeping. NPR's Ari Shapiro reports.
Despite warnings from the Taliban that they would disrupt the poll with violence, voter turnout in Afghanistan has been good and the day mostly peaceful. NPR's Kelly McEvers speaks with reporter Sean Carberry about the presidential elections.
France's ban keeping stores from being open late at night does not run afoul of the country's constitution, a top court has ruled. Cosmetics retailer Sephora had hoped to keep its flagship Paris store open until midnight. Instead, the shop must observe the traditional closing time of 9 p.m., according to the ruling.
Paul Rusesabagina is a figure from history — a terrible history.
He was the manager of the Diplomat Hotel in Kigali, Rwanda, 20 years ago, when the genocide of Rwanda's Tutsi people began. More than 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus would be killed in just three months.
A Chinese Coast Guard ship has detected an ultrasonic pulse on a frequency used by black box recorders, according to China's state news agency, fueling new hope that searchers might be closing in on a beacon from the Malaysia Airlines jetliner that vanished weeks ago. The ship found the pulse signal in the south Indian Ocean, Xinhua says.
Iran's reported decision to name Hamid Aboutalebi as its ambassador to the United Nations has ignited anger in the U.S. That's because the diplomat was part of the student group that held Americans hostage in 1979. Now, dozens of lawmakers are urging the Obama administration to deny him a visa.
It's the latest sign of just how difficult it will be for Washington and Tehran to overcome decades of mistrust.
Afghan Election: NPR's Sean Carberry Reports From Kabul
Millions of Afghans lined up to vote for a new president Saturday, despite warnings of violence from the Taliban.
Saturday's historic vote begins what would be the first democratic transfer of power for Afghanistan; President Hamid Karzai has served for two terms and is not allowed to run for a third under the country's constitution.
The Taliban launched a number of attacks that killed dozens in the weeks before the election, but no major violence was reported after polls opened Saturday.
McDonald's, citing the "evolving situation" in Crimea, said Friday it was closing its three restaurants on the Black Sea peninsula, but the move has prompted one prominent Moscow politician to call for the fast-food giant to be booted from all of Russia.
"Due to operational reasons beyond our control, McDonald's has taken the decision to temporarily close our three restaurants in Simferopol, Sevastopol and Yalta," a spokeswoman said.
It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.
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U.S.-Russia relations have deteriorated since Russia's annexation of Crimea and there are still questions over Russian President Vladimir Putin's agenda in Ukraine and Eastern Europe. Targeted sanctions, political isolation and NATO's plans to beef up its presence in Eastern Europe haven't persuaded Putin to change course.
NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson has more from Moscow.
To Afghanistan now, where tomorrow voters will choose a successor to President Hamid Karzai who was barred from running again. The election will mark the country's first democratic transition of power. The Taliban have been calling the election a Western-backed sham and have been waging a campaign of violence to disrupt the vote.
A few decades ago, inequality started rising in countries around the world. That came as a shock to many economists who originally thought inequality tended to go down overtime. They wondered how inequality could rise in so many different places at once. Well, now a new book by one of the world's leading experts on the topic suggests an answer to that mystery. Jacob Goldstein of our Planet Money team reports.
JACOB GOLDSTEIN, BYLINE: The book is called "Capital in the Twenty-First Century." Here's the author.
The recent oil and natural gas boom in the U.S. is paying major dividends for Washington's geopolitical clout. Thanks to hydraulic fracturing, the U.S. is awash in domestic energy, which is having a ripple effect globally.
If you want to gauge one effect of this newfound energy wealth, you don't have to look any further than the current crisis between Russia and Ukraine, says Michael Levi, a senior fellow for energy and the environment at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Frustrated by obstacles encountered in talks between Israel and the Palestinians, Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday that the White House was re-evaluating its role in the process, and that the time had come for a "reality check."
Speaking at a news conference in Rabat, Morocco, Kerry said the dialogue that the U.S. has been mediating is "not an open-ended effort, it never has been.