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In a hospital in Irbil, Iraq, 4-year-old Hawra' is briefly distracted by a new pink hat and a big stuffed toy. But soon she goes back to calling for her mother — her cries filling the hospital room.

"Your mother is in Mosul getting treatment," her grandmother, Aliya Ali, assures her in a singsong voice. "We'll go there," she tells the little girl, before turning to admit that the only thing she can do is lie.

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In the electoral battle over populism in Western democracies, the score is tied 2-2.

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is on his first official diplomatic visit to Moscow. It comes at a critical time. Both Russia and the White House are talking tough after the U.S. attack on an airbase in Syria last week.

Updated at 6:00 p.m. ET

Three explosions went off near the bus of Germany's Borussia Dortmund soccer team on Tuesday evening in the city of Dortmund, local police say.

The team said on Twitter that one of its players, defender Marc Bartra, suffered a broken wrist and is being treated in a hospital. The injury required surgery.

When 1,700 specialists in global health descended upon Washington, D.C., this past weekend, they brought suitcases full of data and experience.

The Consortium of Universities for Global Health conference offered marathon sessions that covered everything from noncommunicable diseases and breast-feeding to climate science and injury prevention.

The Trump administration has accused former President Barack Obama of "weakness and irresolution" for drawing a red line in Syria then failing to enforce it. In the days before and after last week's cruise missile strike, though, Trump's own team has drawn sometimes blurry and conflicting lines. The administration has sent mixed signals about when and why it will use military force, the future of Syrian President Bashar Assad, and the role it sees for Russia.

1. Use of military force

White House officials say the U.S. intelligence community is confident that Syrian President Bashar Assad attacked his own people with chemical weapons on April 4 — and that an alternative explanation offered by Russia is an effort to deflect blame and "confuse the world community."

Senior administration officials "suggested that the attack may have been motivated by rebel gains in the surrounding area, as rebel forces approached a strategic Syrian air base," NPR's Scott Horsley reports.

As congressional and FBI investigators in Washington explore potential ties between President Trump's 2016 campaign and Russian intelligence services' meddling in the election, they're searching for one particular clue: money.

Loans, payments, sweetheart deals or other transactions are a tried and tested way that Russia's spy agencies get access to or control over people who interest them.

The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, told NPR that evidence of such entanglements are one thing his panel is looking for.

The man accused of slamming a stolen truck into pedestrians before crashing into a Stockholm department store, killing four people and wounding 15 others, will plead guilty, his lawyer said Tuesday.

"The court has decided that I'm not allowed to tell anything about what happened inside court today, or in the questions with the police," defense attorney Johan Eriksson told reporters outside the Stockholm District Court. "So the only thing I am going to say is that he's pleading guilty."

Be it Easter or Eid, holidays in the Levantine region of the Middle East are incomplete without a shortbread cookie called maamoul. Stuffed with date paste or chopped walnuts or pistachios, and dusted with powdered sugar, these buttery cookies are the perfect reward after a month of fasting during Ramadan or Lent.

The dough is made with wheat flour or semolina (or a combination of the two), then pressed into special molds, traditionally carved in wood. And the fillings are fragrant with rosewater or orange blossom.

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This next story begins with a disturbing sound. It's from a video of a passenger being dragged from a United Airlines flight the other day. And it sounds like this.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Screaming).

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It's a disorienting year in many democracies, and we are trying to define this moment. Last week, writer Francis Fukuyama talked about democracy in crisis.

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At a research lab on top of a forested hill overlooking Hong Kong, scientists are growing viruses. They first drill tiny holes into an egg before inoculating it with avian influenza to observe how the virus behaves.

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So much has changed about the Trump administration in just a few days, or at least something changed about how the administration talks.

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What's the best way to bolster your country's bid for the World Cup?

The U.S., Canada and Mexico have settled on an unprecedented answer to that question: just combine forces. The chiefs of the three countries' national soccer organizations broke the news in New York City on Monday, announcing their joint bid to host the 2026 men's World Cup.

After you see a case of elephantiasis, you can never forget it.

People's legs, feet and toes swell up so much that they can't walk. Or move easily. The skin thickens and breaks open, creating ulcers and infections.

"It causes so much pain. So much pain," says epidemiologist Christine Kihembo, at Makerere University School of Public Health in Kampala, Uganda.

Stella Nyanzi, one of Uganda's most controversial academics and activists, appeared in court Monday, after being arrested and charged Friday with cyber harassment and the misuse of a computer, for "shaming" the government.

Nyanzi's latest run-in with the 31-year-old regime of President Yoweri Museveni began with a fight for free sanitary pads for school-age girls.

Prompted by a chemical weapons attack, the U.S. loosed dozens of Tomahawk missiles last week on an air base operated by Syrian President Bashar Assad, the embattled ally of Russia.

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In a statement last week justifying his change of heart on U.S. military intervention in Syria, President Trump spoke about being moved by images of civilians dying in that apparent chemical weapons attack.

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For the second consecutive year, aerial surveys show severe coral bleaching in the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia.

While severe bleaching events have occurred three other times in the past 20 years — in 1998, 2002 and 2016 — this year marks the first time it's known to have happened two years in a row. Scientists say the damage is caused by higher water temperatures due to global warming.

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As this week begins, we have a bipartisan view of the war in Syria. Many lawmakers in both parties praised President Trump for responding to the apparent use of chemical weapons. Trump, as you'll recall, ordered missile strikes on a Syrian airfield.

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This next discussion has a theme sentence - a sentence about the U.S. approach to Syria. It's spoken here by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

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