President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil was so angry about reports that the National Security Agency was spying on her and others in her country that she recently called off a high-profile visit to the U.S.
The Brazilian leader was still in a fighting mood Tuesday as she used her speech at the United Nations General Assembly to deliver a broadside against U.S. spying. She also called for civilian oversight of the Web to ensure the protection of data.
Kenyans watch Monday as a plume of black smoke rises over the Westgate Mall, scene of a terrorist attack that left more than 60 dead. Kenya is a crossroads in East Africa, has many links to the West and has sent troops into Somalia. For all these reasons, the country was targeted by Somalia's al-Shabab militia group.
Credit Stringer / Reuters/Landov
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta speaks on Sunday about the Westgate shopping mall attack the day before. Kenyatta, who was elected in March, faces charges at the International Criminal Court and is scheduled to go on trial in November.
Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 3:35 pm
Kenya has long been an African success story, a place that's been relatively stable, peaceful and prosperous despite being in a neighborhood rocked by major disasters for decades.
There's been endless civil war in Somalia, genocide in Rwanda and famine in Ethiopia. Yet these calamities have, by and large, not spilled over to Kenya, which has been the crossroads of East Africa, serving as a business, transportation and tourist hub.
Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 11:14 am
(This post last updated at 1:00 p.m. ET)
A strong, 7.7-magnitude earthquake in southern Pakistan on Tuesday has killed at least 45 people, according to Reuters. The U.S. Geological Survey says the initial temblor was followed by several aftershocks — one of them a 5.9-magnitude.
The affected area is reportedly about 145 miles southeast of Dalbandin in Pakistan's western province of Baluchistan.
On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Ari Shapiro on what President Obama will tell the U.N.
Update at 3:07 p.m. ET. Leaders Will Not Meet:
After intense speculation that the United States and Iran were on the verge of making history today by coordinating a meeting between President Obama and new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, there came word this afternoon that the two would not meet during the ceremonies surrounding the opening session of the U.N. General Assembly.
This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm David Greene.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning. Let's talk through President Obama's speech just now at the United Nations. The president addressed the annual meeting of the General Assembly, a big room full of diplomats and world leaders. He called for action to enforce the removal of Syria's chemical weapons, and he also spoke of negotiations with Iran, among other issues. NPR's Michele Kelemen is at the United Nations. She was listening in.
Now, the strike on Nairobi was noteworthy in part because of the group claiming responsibility. As David and Gregory mentioned, al-Shabab is a militant organization from nearby Somalia. Analyst Bronwyn Bruton of the Atlantic Council says a few years ago it would've had little reason to strike outside Somalia's borders. More recently, al-Shabab has been evolving, turned to new purposes by the influence of al-Qaida.
BRONWYN BRUTON: It emerged in 2005 in the wake of international efforts to create a government in Somalia.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
And I'm David Greene. We are going into the fourth day of a siege at a popular mall in Nairobi, Kenya. The Somalia-based al-Shabab militant group has claimed responsibility. At least 62 people have been killed.
We had NPR's Gregory Warner on the line earlier. He told us that the military is still battling terrorists inside the mall, but they claim to have made progress. Do these militants still have any hostages in there?
Scientists and government representatives are meeting in Stockholm this week to produce the latest high-level review of climate change. It's thousands of pages of material, and if it's done right, it should harbor very few surprises.
That's because it's supposed to compile what scientists know — and what they don't — about climate change. And that's left some scientists to wonder whether these intensive reviews are still the best way to go.
Iran's new president addresses the United Nations in New York tomorrow. The speech comes amid near daily signals that Tehran is eager to engage with the West and resolve some long-standing issues. Under moderate cleric Hassan Rouhani, Iran has released political prisoners, launched a new push to resolve questions about its nuclear program and offered to help mediate the conflict in Syria.
NPR's Peter Kenyon has more on this new Iranian image and the hope and skepticism it's stirring.
Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 4:46 pm
The captain of the Costa Concordia says the helmsman of the ill-fated cruise liner failed to properly execute a last-minute corrective maneuver that could have kept the massive vessel off a rocky shoal near the coast of Tuscany.
Capt. Francesco Schettino, who is charged with manslaughter in the deaths of 32 people aboard the ship, which ran aground on Jan. 13, 2012, is also accused of abandoning the liner's 4,200 passengers and crew on the night of the wreck.
When Staci Freeman and her sister Jami Valentine first took in a child ravaged by war in Afghanistan last year, Arefa was a 6-year-old in Hello Kitty shoes, who quickly turned the daily routine of changing her head bandages into a counting game.
When Arefa arrived in Los Angeles from central Afghanistan, three years after being injured, Freeman says, third-degree burns mapped her body, and her head was an open bleeding wound.
"When she came, she came crying and in pain and her head hurt," Freeman says.
Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 3:36 pm
Al-Shabab, the Somali group that has claimed responsibility for the attack on a Nairobi mall, began as a group fighting inside its homeland. But it has evolved into an al-Qaida affiliate that draws members from other countries and views Somalia as a front in the war against the West.
Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 9:26 am
Secretary of State John Kerry plans to meet his Iranian counterpart this week for the highest-level face-to-face between Washington and Tehran in six years.
The meeting with Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and representatives of five other world powers — Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany — would come as newly elected Iranian President Hassan Rouhani visits the United Nations in New York. The talks would center on Iran's nuclear program.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. We'd like to start the program today by trying to learn more about the attack this weekend on a popular mall in Nairobi, Kenya. More than 60 people were killed when attackers fought their way into Westgate shopping mall, eventually holding hostages there. In a moment, we'll try to learn more about al-Shabab. That's the group claiming responsibility.
Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 4:38 pm
Less than a week ago, it looked like the America's Cup — yachting's oldest and most prestigious trophy — would sail back to New Zealand after a near blowout of the U.S. defenders, who are sponsored by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison.
Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 11:31 am
Typhoon Usagi, which stormed ashore north of Hong Kong on Sunday evening, has been blamed for at least 25 deaths in south China's Guangdong province. Some 8,490 houses reportedly collapsed in the typhoon's winds, officials say.
"A total of 5.48 million people were affected and 310,000 residents were displaced due to the storm," reports the Xinhua state news agency, adding that the storm has caused an estimated $1.16 billion in direct economic losses.
Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 8:59 am
The trend is good:
"The global number of child laborers has declined by one third since 2000."
That still means there are an estimated 168 million child laborers around the world, and more than half "are involved in hazardous work" involving such things as dangerous machinery and harmful chemicals.
Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 5:49 pm
A court in Egypt has issued a ban on the Muslim Brotherhood, the group that is still protesting the military's ouster of President Mohammed Morsi. The court also ordered the group's assets to be seized.
"The court bans the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood organization and its non-governmental organization and all the activities that it participates in and any organization derived from it," presiding Judge Mohammed al-Sayed said, according to Reuters.
Efforts are underway in Nairobi to remove the militants and others trapped in the high-end shopping mall after it was attack on Saturday. For more on what the situation is like, David Greene talks to an American who works for a non-governmental organization. She asks only to be identified by her first name Lauren.
Kenyan soldiers outside the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi on Monday. Inside, attackers had killed dozens of shoppers, wounded more and it was feared they also had hostages.
Credit Noor Khamis / Reuters/Landov
A police officer's hand, holding a gun, as security personnel pointed people to safety Saturday at the Westgate Mall in Nairobi. Among those in the photo is a friend of Associated Press correspondent Jason Straziuso. It's the man who is clutching his daughter as they run by.
World leaders are convening in New York this week for the United Nations' General Assembly. And among other things, they're facing some potentially dramatic changes in arms control in the Middle East. Syria might give up it chemical weapons. Iran is signaling that it might negotiate with the West over its nuclear plans. From Jerusalem, NPR's Emily Harris looks at how this might affect Israel and its own weapons programs.
On a Monday morning, it's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. The siege of a Kenyan shopping mall was one of several spectacular acts of violence over the weekend. Each act only highlighted a long-running conflict that has continued for years somewhere off in our peripheral vision.
GREENE: The Somali group Al-Shabaab claims responsibility for the attack on a mall in Kenya. Gunshots and explosions continued there today on the third day of the siege.
In Germany, low unemployment and a strong economy translated into a big election victory for Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Conservative political party. This means a third term for the 59-year-old physicist. The win for Merkel was even bigger than predicted by her political party. Merkel's win is all the more impressive as other European leaders have fallen, with voters venting frustration over the continent's financial crisis.
Originally published on Mon September 23, 2013 8:35 am
In Nairobi, the military says it has rescued "most" of the remaining people trapped inside the high-end shopping mall. At least 68 people have been killed and 175 injured. The militant group al-Shabab from neighboring Somalia has claimed responsibility.
In Germany Sunday, exit polls show that Chancellor Angela Merkel has won a third term, with her political party getting the most votes. But one of the key members in her ruling coalition appears to have been voted out of parliament, leaving it unclear who Merkel will partner with in her next government.
In Nairobi Sunday night, Kenyan government forces appear to be preparing for a major push to end the standoff in the Westgate Mall. The government says it has cornered the gunmen who stormed the mall Saturday. NPR's Gregory Warner tells host Arun Rath at least 68 people have been killed.