Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 9:44 am
The fallout from revelations about the National Security Agency's spying activities continues: A key European Parliament committee approved new rules strengthening online privacy and outlawing the kind of surveillance the U.S. has been conducting.
NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson says the legislation could also have significant implications for U.S. Internet companies. Here's what she told our Newscast unit:
Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 10:03 am
Greek officials who are trying to determine the origin of a young blond girl found living in a Roma settlement last week have received thousands of calls since releasing her photo. Some callers offer information; others say the girl may be their child. The head of a charity that's now caring for the girl says about 10 missing-children cases are being reviewed.
On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Philip Reeves discusses the Amnesty International report on U.S. drone strikes
Two reports released on the eve of a White House visit by Pakistan's prime minister allege that the U.S. has "violated international law with top-secret targeted-killing operations that claimed dozens of civilian lives in Yemen and Pakistan," as McClatchy Newspapers writes.
What is God? It's one of the eternal questions, and it's front-page news in Malaysia.
A recent court order said the word Allah can only be used by Muslims – and not by members of the country's other faiths. But Malaysian Prime Minister Najik Razak said Tuesday that Christians in the states of Sabah and Sarawak can continue to refer to God as Allah.
Sydney, Australia, is suffering under a blanket of smoke and officials are sounding air quality alerts because of vast wildfires in the area. And it's still early in the fire season. Steve Inskeep talks to Stuart Cohen for the latest.
Candidates for town council Michal Chernovitsky (left) and Adina Ruhamkin campaign in a park in El'ad, or Forever God, a small religious community in Israel. They could be the first women on El'ad's council, and the first ultra-Orthodox women to win public office in Israel.
Voters across Israel choose new mayors and city councilors in local elections Tuesday. In one small town, a handful of ultra-Orthodox Jewish women are defying the norms of their community by running for office.
On a recent day, children mob two women in skirts, stockings and purple T-shirts in a neighborhood park in El'ad, or Forever God. The women are candidates for town council. As part of their get-the-word-out campaign, they're blowing up balloons for kids.
Sunday was supposed to be a day of joy in Egypt at the Church of the Virgin Mary in suburban Cairo. There were four weddings scheduled. But after a drive-by shooting ripped through the celebrations, there were four burials today instead. At least 18 other people were wounded in the attack. It was the latest act of violence in a country experiencing divisions and great crisis. From Cairo, NPR's Leila Fadel sent this report.
A former UBS bank executive who has been a fugitive since being indicted on federal charges in 2008 has been arrested in Italy. Swiss citizen Raoul Weil, the former head of UBS Global Wealth Management International, is accused of defrauding the U.S. government by helping clients evade taxes.
From Rome, NPR's Sylvia Poggioli filed this report for our Newscast unit:
Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 1:22 pm
A member of a U.S.-owned ship whose crew was arrested by Indian authorities earlier this month for allegedly carrying a "huge cache" of illegal arms, has tried to commit suicide in his jail cell, police say.
It's been 20 years today since a small East African country descended into turmoil after the death of its president, and I'm not talking about Rwanda. A year before the genocide in that county, the Hutu president of neighboring Burundi Melchoir Ndadaye was assassinated. Hutus retaliated by slaughtering thousands of their Tutsi neighbors, perhaps as many as 25,000. A decade later, the United Nations International Commission of Inquiry for Burundi called it a genocide.
A worker walks inside the turbine hall of the Sizewell nuclear plant in eastern England in 2006. The U.K. government on Monday announced that French-owned EDF would build the first new British nuclear power station in 20 years.
Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 11:13 am
Britain has approved the construction of the country's first nuclear power station in 20 years.
NPR's Philip Reeves, reporting on the announcement for our Newscast unit, said the move goes counter to a European trend to phase out nuclear power in the aftermath of Japan's Fukushima disaster in 2011.
Alexandra Chen, a specialist in childhood trauma, is on her way from the Lebanese capital, Beirut, to the southern town of Nabatiyeh, where she's running a workshop for teachers, child psychologists and sports coaches who are dealing with the Syrian children scarred by war in their homeland.
"All of the children have experienced trauma to varying degree," explains Chen, who works for Mercy Corps and is training a dozen new hires for her aid group.
Originally published on Mon October 21, 2013 2:53 pm
Hurricane Raymond has been upgraded to a Category 3 storm in the Pacific Ocean, as it moves slowly northward toward Mexico's southwest coast. Forecasters at the U.S. National Hurricane Center say it could gain more strength before it begins to weaken Tuesday.
Monday morning, the Hurricane Center said that Raymond had maximum sustained winds of 120 mph, with stronger gusts recorded. The storm is moving northward at a 2 mph pace from its current location about 165 miles west-southwest of Acapulco. It was some 100 miles from the coast.
The World Health Organization is investigating a cluster of possible polio cases in an eastern province of Syria.
If the cases are confirmed, they'd be the first ones in the war-torn nation in more than a decade. The country eliminated polio in 1999.
Syria used to have one of the highest polio vaccination rates in the region. If the virus has returned, it would be a high-profile example of the ramifications of the collapse of Syria's once-vaunted public health system.
<em>Le Monde</em> <a href="http://www.lemonde.fr/technologies/article/2013/10/21/les-services-secrets-americains-tres-interesses-par-wanadoo-et-alcatel-lucent_3499762_651865.html">has the scoop</a> on allegations about NSA spying on French phone calls.
Most people associate the Nile with Egypt, but the river also flows through South Sudan, where much of it is bordered by jungle. That makes it a excellent destination for rafting and wildlife enthusiasts, says travel guide author Max Lovell-Hoare.
Originally published on Sun October 20, 2013 6:02 pm
Before landing a role opposite Tom Hanks in the film Captain Phillips, Barkhad Abdi had never acted.
"This was my first time acting, or even thinking about acting," Abdi tells NPR's Arun Rath.
Captain Phillips is based on a true story: the hijacking of the cargo ship Maersk Alabama. Hanks stars as the title character, Capt. Richard Phillips, and Adbi plays Muse, the man who leads the charge against ship and crew.
Meteorologist Eric Holthaus has made his career monitoring the Earth's climate, and he's alarmed at what he sees. After reading a new, bleak international report on climate change, Holthaus has decided one important way to reduce his carbon footprint is to give up airplane travel for good.
Glenn Greenwald, who broke the story about the U.S. government's massive surveillance program, is quittingThe Guardian. He's leaving the British daily and joining a journalism startup with eBay founder and billionaire philanthropist Pierre Omidyar.
Known for quiet diplomacy, Saudi Arabia is taking an unusual and very public step to protest the international community's failure to resolve the crisis in Syria and other issues that interest Riyadh.
On Thursday, Saudi Arabia was elected to become a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, which the Saudi ambassador to the U.N. initially called a defining moment in his nation's history.
Four months have passed since former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden began spilling secrets about the NSA's surveillance programs, but many Americans still don't know what to think about the disclosures.
For good reason. The surveillance programs are highly technical, involving the bulk interception of huge volumes of communication data as they traverse multiple links and networks. The laws governing what the NSA can do are complex and open to conflicting interpretations.
This violin is said to have been played by bandmaster Wallace Hartley during the final moments before the sinking of the Titanic. It's thought he put the instrument in that leather case. Hartley's body and the case were found by a ship that responded to the disaster. Now the violin has been sold.
An anonymous buyer on Saturday paid about $1.6 million for a violin believed to have been played by one of the musicians who famously stayed aboard as the Titanic sank in the icy waters of the North Atlantic in April 1912.
The Associated Press writes that "the sea-corroded instrument, now unplayable, is thought to have belonged to bandmaster Wallace Hartley, who was among the disaster's more than 1,500 victims."
Originally published on Sat October 19, 2013 10:07 am
"An interior ministry investigation into the controversial deportation of a Roma schoolgirl from France has found that her deportation was lawful, but said police could have used better judgment in the case," France 24 is reporting.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. In the United States, a Tweet or YouTube video that goes viral can make a career. In China, that can be dangerous. Last month, the Chinese government issued a new edict forbidding the spreading of rumors against the Chinese government. People who intentionally post what the government considers a rumor violate the law if they get 500 or more reposts or 5,000 or more views.
The political instability over funding the U.S. government and raising the debt ceiling could have international financial implications. Host Scott Simon speaks with Matthew Goodman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies about how emerging economies view the dollar after the current debt crisis.