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Armed men reportedly attacked a jail in the Philippines, killing a guard and allowing more than 150 prisoners to escape.

The attack took place at the North Cotabato District Jail in Kidapawan, a city on the island of Mindanao, just after 1 a.m. local time on Wednesday, according to the BBC. It added that "authorities suspect the gunmen are linked to Islamist separatist groups."

English-language newspaper The Philippine Star reported that the strike was carefully planned:

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Desmond Tutu, South Africa's former Anglican archbishop and a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, recently celebrated his 85th birthday with an interesting message: He wants the option of an assisted death.

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To South Korean now and the impeachment trial that could put an end to the presidency of Park Geun-hye. NPR's Elise Hu has the latest in this political drama.

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Brazil's government is relocating gang bosses tied to a weekend prison riot that left 56 inmates dead and is the country's deadliest in nearly 25 years.

The inmates believed to be responsible for a riot in the Anisio Jobim Penitentiary Complex in Manaus will be transferred to high-security institutions as they await prosecution for the 17-hour standoff, The Associated Press reports.

Beijing's sky appears blue at the beginning of the 13-second video. Then it completely disappears from view, blotted out by a cloud of brown smog.

The time-lapse video shot Sunday by Chas Pope, a British citizen, dramatically illustrates the extent of China's pollution problem. Pope says the thick haze moved into Beijing over the course of 20 minutes.

Dozens of Chinese cities have suffered heavy smog for nearly a month.

South Korea's beleaguered president, Park Geun-hye, refused to testify at her impeachment trial Tuesday, days after she publicly denied allegations of corruption.

The country's Constitutional Court was forced to delay the start of oral arguments because of Park's absence. She was asked to testify on Thursday, according to The Associated Press, when several of her current and former aides are scheduled to testify.

The AP says the court "cannot force her to appear but can proceed without her if she refuses twice to appear at the hearings."

Syrian rebel factions say they are freezing their participation in peace negotiations, citing breaches of the cease-fire agreement brokered by Russia and Turkey.

This casts doubt on rebel participation in planned talks in Kazakhstan's capital, Astana, later this month.

"A cease-fire has technically been in place across Syria since Friday, and violence is lower than usual," NPR's Alice Fordham reports from Beirut. "But the opposition says the regime has pressed offensives in the suburbs of Damascus and a river valley northwest of the capital in violation of the agreement."

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From time to time, NPR reassigns its international correspondents to new countries, and our colleague Philip Reeves has arrived in Brazil to cover South America from our bureau in Rio. Phil sent us this postcard with a few of his first impressions.

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OK, let's turn now to the latest in Syria where a ceasefire brokered by Russia and Turkey is in place - well, at least in theory. Rebels say President Bashar al-Assad's forces are violating that cease fire, and NPR's Alice Fordham tells us where.

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Updated at 1 p.m. ET

Turkish authorities made multiple arrests Tuesday as they search for the person who attacked an Istanbul nightclub in the early hours of New Year's Day, killing at least 39 people.

A lone gunman shot his way into the Reina nightclub, which was packed with holiday revelers.

Turkey has announced eight detentions in connection with Sunday's shootings at an Istanbul nightclub. The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack that left 39 dead and 69 wounded. An intensive police search is under way for the gunman, who was not among those picked up Monday.

The Istanbul nightclub attack is the first time ISIS has claimed an attack on civilians in Turkey. In the past, Turkey turned a blind eye to ISIS. But now, it's increasingly becoming a political and security issue for Turkish authorities.

Omer Taspinar, professor at the National War College and senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, speaks with NPR's Audie Cornish about the changing dynamics of Turkey's relationship with ISIS.

In November, India's government declared all high-value currency invalid and withdrew them from circulation. Starved of cash, the economy seized up.

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A Jewish farming couple from Canada says it has shepherded the sheep of the bible back to the Holy Land after centuries in exile.

With donations from Jewish and Christian supporters, and some help from the Israeli government, Jenna and Gil Lewinsky have airlifted 119 furry members of the Jacob Sheep breed from their farm in Abbotsford, British Columbia, to Israel.

On a September day in 1940 while much of Europe was engulfed in war, four teenagers were walking through a forest in southern France when their dog fell down a hole.

As they called for it they heard an echo. Crawling in to rescue the dog, the boys discovered a cave with hundreds of prehistoric animals painted across its walls and ceiling. It turned out to be one of the world's best examples of prehistoric art.

Dozens are dead in Baghdad after bombs were detonated across the city on Monday. ISIS has claimed responsibility for the bombings.

The death toll from the attacks is still climbing.

NPR's Alice Fordham reported on the bombings, telling our Newscast Unit:

Erica Abad glides down the ancient canals of Xochimilco, a borough of Mexico City, on her gondola-like boat. Her cousin, Efren Lopez, steers their boat — called a chalupa — by pushing against the canal floor with a long wooden pole, while Abad flips a sizzling quesadilla on a steel griddle fitted into the boat. When a group of people on a nearby barge signal to them to order some quesadillas, Lopez navigates the boat toward them. And Abad places a few more quesadillas on the griddle for their customers.

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