World News

Animals
1:44 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Elephant Poaching Pushes Species To Brink Of Extinction

Originally published on Wed March 6, 2013 9:18 am

A new study of Central African forest elephants has found their numbers down by 62 percent between 2002 and 2011. The study comes as governments and conservationists meet in Thailand to amend the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.

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Latin America
3:45 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Rivalries And Infighting Could Follow In Wake Of Chavez's Death

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Joining us now to talk about what comes next is NPR's Tom Gjelten. He's covered Latin America for us.

And, Tom, Hugo Chavez, such a dominating figure in Venezuela. What happens now in the immediate aftermath of his death?

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Middle East
3:45 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Syrian-American Returns To Home Country To Help Train, Arm Rebels

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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

For nearly two years, Syrians living in the U.S. have watched their home country fall apart. Groups have organized, formed nonprofits and raised money, and some people have made more life-changing decisions. NPR's Kelly McEvers recently met up in Syria with one Syrian-American gun enthusiast. He used his vacation time to travel from California back to Syria. His plan, to help the rebels bring down the government.

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Remembrances
3:13 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Venezuela's Chavez: An Outsized Personality, A Domineering Figure

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez speaks in a televised address in January 2002 at Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas. Chavez vowed justice for two men who were shot and killed Jan. 3 at a political rally in a battle between Chavez supporters, opposition marchers and security forces.
Miraflores/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:20 pm

A fiery leftist, Hugo Chavez was a steadfast ally of dictators like Cuba's Fidel Castro while loudly opposing the United States. He claimed capitalism was destroying the world and tried to transform Venezuela into a socialist state. Millions of Venezuelans loved him because he showered the poor with social programs.

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Middle East
2:59 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Kerry: We're Trying To Offer Syrian President A Rational Choice

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

As Secretary of State John Kerry wraps up his first official trip overseas, he's walking a fine line on Syria. Kerry says the Obama administration has been stepping up assistance to rebels who are trying to topple the Syrian regime. But the U.S. is also worried about how all of this will play out. NPR's Michele Kelemen spoke with the secretary of State today in Doha, Qatar, and he said he's taking this one step at a time.

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The Two-Way
12:44 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

North Korea Threatens To Nullify Armistice; What Did That 1953 Pact Say?

A North Korean (right) and a South Korean soldier facing each other at the Panmunjom truce village in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) separating the two Koreas in Paju, about 30 miles north of Seoul. (2011 file photo.)
Kim Kyung-Hoon Reuters /Landov

While diplomats move ahead at the United Nations on a package of new sanctions aimed at North Korea in another effort to convince that Stalinist state to give up its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, there's also this news:

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The Two-Way
6:44 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Venezuela's Chavez Takes Turn For the Worse

A "proof of life" photo shows Chavez with his daughters, released Feb. 15 by Miraflores Presidential Press Office.
Uncredited AP

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 7:10 am

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who has been battling cancer for months, is in a "very delicate" condition, with breathing difficulties and a severe respiratory infection, a government statement says.

The statement, read out Monday by Minister of Communications Ernesto Villegas, spells out the 58-year-old socialist leader's decline since his December surgery in Cuba for an unspecified cancer in the pelvic area:

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The Two-Way
6:38 am
Tue March 5, 2013

At The Vatican, 'No Rush' To Set Conclave; And A Fake Bishop Tries To Get In

That's not a real bishop on the left: A man later identified as Ralph Napierski of Germany (at left) posed with Cardinal Sergio Sebiastiana and others on Monday at the Vatican. Napierski was an imposter. He was later escorted from the area by Swiss Guards.
Vincenzo Pinto AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 9:17 am

Roman Catholic cardinals are in "no rush" to set the date for the start of their conclave that will choose the next pope, a Vatican spokesman told reporters Tuesday.

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World
5:05 am
Tue March 5, 2013

U.S.: Diplomats Shouldn't Drink Before Budget Meeting

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep with a call for a reform at the United Nations.

Joseph M. Torsella represents the United States on the U.N. budget committee. He says it's a tough budget process, complicated by diplomats who show up drunk. Ambassador Torsella made, quote, "the modest proposal that the negotiating room should be inebriation-free." He says he wants this, even though sloshed negotiators have provided the U.S. with, quote, "strategic opportunities." It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Sports
3:33 am
Tue March 5, 2013

U.S. Readies For Play In World Baseball Classic

With baseball gone from the Olympics, the World Baseball Classic is the only international professional baseball tournament. Former Yankees and Dodgers manager Joe Torre said he put on a uniform again to manage the U.S. team because it's a privilege.

Business
3:21 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Carlos Slim Tops 'Forbes' Billlonaires List

The Mexican telecom magnate and his family are worth $73 billion. Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is ranked No. 2. The list boasts 442 Americans, including the founders of Google, Facebook and Amazon.

Africa
3:18 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Fastjet Brings High-Frequency, Low-Cost Flights To Africa

The first pan-African budget airline took to the skies in late November with a series of flights in Tanzania. Fastjet's aim is to offer a low-cost alternative to passengers accustomed to uncertain and costly air travel.

Asia
3:18 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Chinese Farmers Fight Against Government Land Grab

Smashed and overturned cars are shown Saturday after civil unrest in the village of Shangpu in China's southern Guangdong province.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 7:22 pm

The road that runs along the edge of Shangpu village in south China is littered with the hulks of burned-out cars. Farmers have built tents and simple barricades made of rocks and wire. Police have set up their own cordon in a standoff that is approaching two weeks.

The villagers are demanding free elections following yet another government land grab. They say armed thugs sent by their own village chief attacked the community to pave the way for a new factory on their farmland.

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Middle East
3:18 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Rebels In Syria Gather Momentum

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:35 am

Over the past several days, rebels in Syria have captured a city of more than a million people in one northern province. It the first time rebels captured a provincial capital. The rebels also have taken a step toward setting up a rebel government in another northern province.

NPR Story
3:10 am
Tue March 5, 2013

National People's Congress Opens, Prepares For Leadership Change

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 4:54 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. As he prepares to step down, China's prime minister today delivered his version of a state of the union address. He got a big boost in military funding, one that outpaces expected economic growth.

NPR's Louisa Lim has been gauging the mood of China's new leaders, both inside and outside of the Great Hall of the People.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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The Salt
3:34 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

In Kazakhstan, No Horror At Horse Meat

Signs advertise the type of meat sold in each section of the Green Market in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
Sly06/Flickr

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:24 pm

Though the thought of horse meat in British lasagna or Ikea meatballs may be stomach-churning to some people, in some cultures the practice of eating horse meat is not just acceptable, it's a treat. NPR's Peter Kenyon just returned from the Central Asian republic of Kazakhstan and checked out the meat market at the Green Bazaar in Almaty.

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Africa
3:34 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Kenyan Election Marked But Record Turnout, Limited Violence

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 10:13 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Votes are now being tallied in Kenya's presidential contest. The country has taken strides to avoid the kind of violence that followed the last election back in 2007, but today did not begin well. More than a dozen people were killed in attacks by separatists in Kenya's port city of Mombasa. But elsewhere, long lines and bureaucratic delays under a hot sun were the main obstacles for voters, who turned out in record numbers.

Here's NPR's Gregory Warner.

(SOUNDBITE OF CROWD)

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Religion
3:34 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Catholic Cardinals Meet To Prepare For Election Of New Pope

Roman Catholic cardinals gathered Monday to plan how they will select the successor to Pope Benedict XVI.

Middle East
2:43 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

'Conscience' of Syrian Revolution Faces Challenge from Islamists

Islamists from Jabhat al Nusra stage their own protest in the town. Until recently, the group has been reluctant to appear in public.
NPR

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:00 pm

Kafr Nabl is surrounded by rocky hills covered with olive and fig trees. Located in northwest Syria near the Turkish border, it used to be a sleepy town of about 30,000 people. Then it rose up against the government in early 2011. More than a year later, the town was "liberated" by anti-government rebels who forced out soldiers and police who worked for the government.

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Author Interviews
10:32 am
Mon March 4, 2013

A Multimedia Journey Through 'The Persian Square'

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:51 am

You may be used to hearing about Iran in the news — about its strained relationship with the U.S., or its internal political unrest, or the possible nuclear threat Iran poses.

But you may not hear much about Iran's impact on America's culture — from poetry to Silicon Valley entrepreneurship.

That's why Tell Me More's senior producer, Iran Davar Ardalan, decided to write the new digital book The Persian Square.

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The Two-Way
10:27 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Reports: Snipers Deployed To Kill Tehran's Cat-Sized Rats

Rats aren't only problem in Tehran. These were running free over the weekend in Luton, England.
Barcroft Media Barcroft Media /Landov

Rats have been a problem for many years in Tehran. As the BBC reported in 2000, officials back then launched a poison control program that they hoped would kill many of the estimated 25 million rats in the city.

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The Two-Way
9:10 am
Mon March 4, 2013

French Commander Cautious About Al-Qaida Leaders' Deaths

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 10:10 am

There's uncertainty over the supposed death of two top al-Qaida-affiliated leaders reportedly killed in West Africa.

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The Two-Way
7:52 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Queen Elizabeth II Leaves Hospital

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II as she left King Edward VII hospital in London on Monday.
Bogdan Maran EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 8:24 am

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II was just seen leaving London's King Edward VII hospital, where she had been admitted over the weekend to be treated for symptoms of gastroenteritis.

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The Two-Way
7:38 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Dennis Rodman's Take On The North Korean Regime

"This Week" host George Stephanopoulos interviews former NBA star Dennis Rodman, just back from a visit to North Korea.
Lorenzo Bevilaqua Associated Press

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 9:06 am

If former NBA star Dennis Rodman's read on Kim Jong Un is correct, the CIA and State Department might be in need of a major overhaul in their assessments of the North Korean leader.

Rodman, the only American to have met and talked with Kim, appeared on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos to talk about his two-day visit to North Korea last week.

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The Two-Way
7:08 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Prayers, Oaths Of Secrecy As Catholic Cardinals Meet

Some of the cardinals as they arrived for today's meeting in Vatican City.
Claudio Peri EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 9:35 am

As they begin the process that will lead to selection of the next pope, the Roman Catholic Church's cardinals must first decide just when to officially start deciding, NPR's Sylvia Poggioli reminds us from Rome this morning.

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Religion
3:01 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Cardinals At Odds Over When To Begin Choosing Next Pope

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

The College of Cardinals is holding its first official meetings at the Vatican on Monday. The top agenda item is choosing which day to start the closed-door conclave that will elect the new pope. With no clear front-runner, the conclave outcome is unpredictable.

The papal resignation has put the cardinals in an unprecedented situation in modern history.

"The real mood is of shock and disappointment — this resignation desacralized the figure of the pope," says Massimo Franco, author of several books about the Vatican. He says a pope cannot be treated like a company CEO.

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NPR Story
2:56 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Ethnic Violence Haunts Kenya's Presidential Election

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 11:02 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Kenya votes for a new president today for the first time in five years. It's an important election, in part because the country is still haunted by the ethnic violence that bloodied the last presidential election in 2007. More than 1,200 people were killed and the violence only ended after the international community stepped in. NPR's Gregory Warner is out visiting polling stations and talking to people in Nairobi. He joins us to talk about the election. Good morning, Greg.

GREGORY WARNER, BYLINE: Good morning, Renee.

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Middle East
1:27 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Palestinians Still Feel The Squeeze Of The Restrictions On Gaza

A Palestinian laborer works at the site of a residential construction project funded by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, on Mar. 21, 2012.
Said Khatib AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun March 10, 2013 6:43 am

The streets of Gaza are busy, but they are also crumbling.

Since Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip in 2007, Israel has maintained tight limits on shipments of anything that could be used for military purposes. That includes basic building materials that could be used for bunkers and rocket launching sites.

Ask businessman Ali Abdel Aal what's the toughest thing for him to find, and he'll tell you "cement and gravel."

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Environment
10:52 pm
Sun March 3, 2013

After Keystone Review, Environmentalists Vow To Continue Fight

Demonstrators carry a mock pipeline as they pass the White House to protest the Keystone Pipeline, in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 18, 2012.
Rod Lamkey Jr. The Washington Times /Landov

Originally published on Mon March 25, 2013 12:33 pm

Environmentalists have a hope.

If they can block the Keystone XL pipeline, they can keep Canada from developing more of its dirty tar sands oil. It takes a lot of energy to get it out of the ground and turn it into gasoline, so it has a bigger greenhouse gas footprint than conventional oil.

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Energy
2:20 pm
Sun March 3, 2013

Turning It Down: Cities Combat Light Pollution By Going Dim

This summer Paris will start dimming its streetlights, though major landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, will not be affected.
Mike Hewitt Getty Images

Originally published on Sun March 3, 2013 2:35 pm

Bright lights are part of a city's ecosystem. Think of Times Square or the Las Vegas Strip or right outside your bedroom window.

Electric lighting is ubiquitous in most urban and suburban neighborhoods. It's something most people take for granted, but appreciate, since it feels like well-lit streets keep us safer. But what if all this wattage is actually causing harm?

"We're getting brighter and brighter and brighter," warns Paul Bogard, author of the upcoming book, End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light.

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