World News

Latin America
2:59 pm
Fri November 30, 2012

Far From Mexico, Students Try Saving Aztec Language

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 4:44 pm

The descendant of the ancient Aztec language is one of many endangered indigenous languages. Although there may still be a million speakers of Nahuatl, it is not being transmitted to a new generation. But there is an attempt to revive Nahuatl in New York City, and students eager to connect to their heritage are taking classes.

The Salt
1:38 pm
Fri November 30, 2012

Some Restaurants In Israel Declare A Kosher Rebellion

Israelis eat at a kosher McDonald's restaurant in Tel Aviv.
David Silverman Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:41 am

The Carousela cafe in West Jerusalem is one of a handful of restaurants and cafes in Israel staging a bit of a rebellion by defying Jewish religious authorities who claim they are the only ones who can certify restaurants as kosher, or in compliance with Jewish dietary laws.

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Middle East
1:28 pm
Fri November 30, 2012

In Istanbul, A Byzantine-Era Fleet Surfaces Again

Archaeologists call an excavation site on Istanbul's southern shore the world's largest shipwreck collection. The area, unearthed during construction of a railway station, was once a Byzantine-era port that harbored cargo and military vessels, and received goods from around the Mediterranean.
Gokce Saracoglu for NPR

Originally published on Mon December 3, 2012 6:24 pm

In Istanbul, major public transit projects are back under way after years of paralysis. The problem wasn't a lack of financing, but the layer upon layer of ancient artifacts that turned up every time the earthmovers started their work.

The excavation began eight years ago on projects intended to ease Istanbul's notoriously clogged traffic.

The job included building a tunnel under the Bosphorus Strait and linking it to a rail and subway network. When the dig was stopped several years ago, eyes rolled and shoulders shrugged.

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The Two-Way
12:54 pm
Fri November 30, 2012

Free-Speech Debate In India Heats Up

The case against Shaheen Dhada has set off a free-speech debate in India. Her father, Farooq Dhada, shown here with her, says in India, freedom of speech "exists only on paper."
Julie McCarthy NPR

Originally published on Sat December 1, 2012 10:37 am

It looks like the case in India against two young female Facebook users has been dropped. But the debate over free speech in India is still heating up.

As we've reported, two young women were arrested last week for a Facebook comment that criticized the shutdown of the city of Mumbai for the cremation of a controversial political leader.

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Faith Matters
10:26 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Catholic Nun At Center Of Mexico's Drug War

Sister Consuelo Morales puts her faith into action in a very dangerous place. She heads a human rights group in Monterrey, Mexico, where she pressures authorities to investigate killings, disappearances and other drug-related violence. She and Nik Steinberg of Human Rights Watch speak with host Michel Martin.

The Two-Way
9:26 am
Fri November 30, 2012

'Anonymous' Vows To Shut Down Syrian Government Websites

Anonymous takes aim at Assad.
https://twitter.com/YourAnonNews

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 11:43 am

The news that someone has shut off the Internet (and cellphone service) across Syria has led Anonymous to vow it will "shut down Syrian government websites around the world," as Reuters' Anthony DeRosa puts it.

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The Picture Show
8:53 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Portraits of Albinism: Letting An Inner Light Shine

Zawia Kassim, 12, of Kigoma Region, would like to be a teacher someday.
Courtesy of Jacquelyn Martin

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 9:09 am

Photographers look for beauty in unexpected places. And in parts of Tanzania — a society that gravely mistreats albinos — photojournalist Jacquelyn Martin set out to show how beautiful she thinks they are.

Tanzanians with albinism endure a particularly cruel fate. Not only do they suffer from sun sensitivity and vision problems, but they are also hunted by witch doctors who believe their body parts can be used for magic.

Since 2006, more than 71 albinos have been killed in Tanzania so their bodies could be made into potions.

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Africa
8:48 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Tanzania's Albinos Face Constant Threat Of Attack

Angel Salvatory, 17, buys cloth at a market in Kabanga village in Tanzania. Albinos living in a nearby protection center are allowed to go to the local market as long as they travel in a group for their own safety.
Jacquelyn Martin for NPR

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 4:44 pm

Life is hard for albinos throughout Africa, but especially in the East African nation of Tanzania. At best, they face raw prejudice; at worst, they are hunted for their flesh, the results of superstitious beliefs.

Albino killings have been reported in a dozen African countries from South Africa to Kenya, but they are worse in Tanzania than anywhere else.

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The Two-Way
6:10 am
Fri November 30, 2012

In Egypt: Draft Of Constitution OK'd; Protesters Return To Tahrir Square

A protester shouts early Friday in Cairo's Tahrir Square.
Gianluigi Guercia AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 6:25 am

Protesters have streamed into Cairo's Tahrir Square again today, correspondent Merrit Kennedy tells our Newscast Desk.

She says they're there both to demonstrate again against President Mohammed Morsi's decree giving himself sweeping new powers and to express concern about a draft constitution passed early today by Egypt's constitutional assembly.

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Middle East
3:04 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Damascus Remains Cut Off By Fighting

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 5:05 am

For a second day, the Syrian capital, Damascus is cut off from the outside world, with the international airport shut, the Internet down and mobile phone lines working sporadically. There are reports of fierce clashes around the capital and heavy airstrikes in the capital's suburbs and in the northern city of Aleppo.

Middle East
3:04 am
Fri November 30, 2012

U.N.'s Palestine Vote: Symbolic Or Game-Changer?

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:41 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And a very different emotion on the West Bank, where Palestinians are reveling today in their new status as a non-member observer state in the United Nations. What that change means depends on who's talking. NPR's Philip Reeves was in the West Bank city of Ramallah, as the vote was announced.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC, CROWD CHATTER)

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NPR Story
3:04 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Golf's Storied St. Andrews Old Course Gets Facelift

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 5:05 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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NPR Story
3:04 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Egypt's Constitution Vote Mired In Controversy

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 5:05 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And in Egypt, a panel of Islamist lawmakers has approved a new draft constitution, but what should have been a welcome step in the country's transition to democracy is instead mired in controversy. NPR's Leila Fadel has our story from Cairo.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

PRESIDENT MOHAMMED MORSI: (Foreign language spoken)

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Middle East
3:37 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

Flights Into Syria Cancelled As Rebels Make Gains

At least two international airlines have cancelled flights to Damascus amid reports of heavy fighting along the Syrian highway that links the airport to the capital. There were also reports on Thursday that the Internet was down virtually throughout the country. Some land lines have also been cut off. Melissa Block talks to Kelly McEvers.

Middle East
3:37 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

Palestinians See U.N. Status Vote As A Game Changer

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:40 am

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

There was celebration in Palestinian territories tonight after Palestinians won an upgrade in their status at the United Nations. The U.N. General Assembly voted today overwhelmingly in favor of making Palestine a non-member observer state. That's the same status as the Vatican. The vote was 138 in favor, nine against, with 41 abstentions. The U.S. and Israel argue this will make peace negotiations even more difficult. The Palestinians say it's simply a move toward a more level playing field. NPR's Michele Kelemen reports.

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Media
3:37 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

U.K. Judge: British Press Needs Powerful Watchdog

An eight month investigation into phone hacking and other abuses by British newspapers has concluded that the industry needs a powerful new watchdog with some legal powers to wield carrots and sticks.

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Africa
3:37 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

Egypt Rushes To Pass Draft Constitution Amid Protest

A new draft constitution will be unveiled in Cairo on Thursday, but it is far from clear whether the move will help resolve or deepen the crisis between President Mohamed Morsi and Egypt's judges. Robert Siegel talks with Leila Fadel, who is in Cairo.

Middle East
3:37 pm
Thu November 29, 2012

Widespread Internet Outages Reported In Syria

Early Thursday morning, the Internet in Syria went dark. Technology analysts suspect the Syrian government was behind the action, perhaps as part of an effort to blunt advances by rebel forces. Governments in recent years have become more mindful of the potentially subversive power of the Internet and also more knowledgeable about how to shut it down. The outage in Syria underscores the importance of current disputes over who should control the global Internet. That issue is the focus of a major international conference next week in Dubai.

World
11:26 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Obama's Foreign Policy, Take Two

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:40 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan with a special broadcast today from the Joseph H. and Claire Flom Auditorium at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington, D.C. Today's show is part of a project called The National Conversation, a joint production of the Wilson Center and NPR.

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History
11:26 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Learning From The Cold War, Avoiding The Next One

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 12:19 pm

For decades, the U.S. and U.S.S.R. were locked in a checkmate that brought the countries to the brink of nuclear war. Now, a new multipolar landscape exists where at least nine countries have nuclear weapons and China is projected to become the world's largest economy.

The Two-Way
10:50 am
Thu November 29, 2012

In Syria: Battle Rages Outside Damascus Airport, Internet Goes Down

CIA World Factbook

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 3:39 pm

Syria's Internet services went down all across the country on Thursday and heavy fighting was reported near the airport in the capital Damascus, which led a number of airlines to suspend flights.

These developments come after a series of rebel victories in recent days and suggest that President Bashar Assad's government is facing increased pressure from the rebels in an uprising now 20 months old.

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Africa
9:54 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Message Behind African Heaters For Norway Spoof

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 10:03 am

An online video, urging Africans to save Norwegians from frostbite, has gone viral. The tongue-in-cheek spoof features South Africans singing about sending radiators to Norway. The filmmakers hope to take on stereotypes of Africa that are reinforced by charities and the media. Host Michel Martin speaks to Erik Evans, one of the video's creators.

Africa
9:54 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Is The World 'Getting Somalia Wrong?'

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 10:03 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, a video that's going viral on the Internet is urging Africans to dig deep to help Norway. We'll find out what that's all about, in a few minutes.

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Media
7:18 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Report Proposes Tougher Oversight For British Press

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In Britain, Brian Leveson, the judge who has spent eight months probing tabloid news excesses, has just issued his suggestions for reigning in Britain's sometime-rambunctious press. Prime Minister David Cameron ordered the wide-ranging inquiry in the wake of revelations of illegal phone-hacking at the Murdoch-owned News of the World and other newspapers. The victims included actors Hugh Grant and Sienna Miller, as well as the parents of a murdered teenager and other crime victims.

Journalist Vicki Barker joins us from London.

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The Two-Way
6:15 am
Thu November 29, 2012

What Will A U.N. Upgrade Mean For Palestinians?

In the southern West Bank city of Hebron today, supporters of Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas gathered in anticipation of today's vote at the U.N.
Hazem Bader AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:39 am

  • NPR's Philip Reeves, reporting on 'Morning Edition'

At the United Nations this afternoon, the General Assembly is expected to overwhelmingly approve a resolution that would shift the status of Palestinians from that of a "non-member observer entity" to a "non-member observer state."

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Middle East
5:43 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Palestinians' Abbas Goes To U.N. Seeking New Status

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:38 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning.

The United States is strongly against it. So even more strongly is Israel, but this will not deter the Palestinians from going to the United Nations today to secure a vote formally upgrading Palestine's U.N. status. There's little doubt the vote will pass easily, securing what the Palestinian leadership considers a significant diplomatic victory.

NPR's Philip Reeves reports.

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Middle East
5:43 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Is Iran Ready For A New Round Of Nuclear Talks?

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 6:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

There are increasing signals from Iran that it's open to a new round of talks on its suspect nuclear program. The last round was held in Moscow in June. And with the American campaign season over, new diplomatic efforts are being explored.

But domestic politics - this time in Iran - may still limit what can be achieved at the negotiating table, as NPR's Peter Kenyon reports from Istanbul.

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Asia
3:00 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Facebook Arrests Ignite Free Speech Debate In India

Shaken by the reaction to his daughter's Facebook post, Farooq Dhada (shown here with Shaheen) says in India, freedom of speech "exists only on paper."
Julie McCarthy NPR

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 7:54 pm

Shaheen Dhada is an unlikely looking protagonist in the battle under way in India to protect free speech from government restrictions in the new media age.

Slight and soft-spoken, Dhada perches on the edge of her bed in a purple-walled room that has been her own for the past 20 years. Outside, police officers are posted for her protection in the town of Palghar, 2 1/2 hours outside Mumbai.

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The Two-Way
3:28 pm
Wed November 28, 2012

Despite Protection Efforts, Rhino Poaching Soars

Miles Lappeman (left) and his son Marc with the carcass of a rhino that was killed for its horn at their Finfoot Lake Reserve on Nov. 24 in South Africa. This was one of eight rhinos slaughtered by poachers.
Nicolene Olckers Foto24/Gallo Images/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 28, 2012 3:52 pm

Just a few years ago, rhino poaching appeared to be more or less under control.

Shootings were relatively rare, and about 75 percent of the world's rhinos lived in South Africa, a country that has taken extensive efforts to protect them.

Just 13 rhinos were reported killed worldwide in 2007. But the figure has been surging in recent years and has already hit 588 so far this year, according to conservation groups.

An estimated 25,000 rhinos remain in Africa.

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Middle East
2:55 pm
Wed November 28, 2012

The Middle East: A Web Of 'Topsy-Turvy' Alliances

After a week of recent fighting between Israel and Hamas, an Israeli soldier stands on top of a mobile artillery unit in a position near the Israel Gaza border.
Ariel Schalit Getty Images

Writing for the New York Review of Books at the beginning of November, Robert Malley, the program director for the Middle East and North Africa with the International Crisis Group, and Hussein Agha described the current situation in the Middle East:

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