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India's Planned Mars Mission Irks Critics

India turned 65 on Wednesday, and amid the great pomp and ceremony of National Day celebrations, the prime minister announced plans for a mission to Mars. India plans to send a research satellite to the Red Planet in November next year — at a cost of $82 million. Critics say the money would be better spent on the nation's creaky infrastructure, and connecting the 400 million Indians who are not on the national electricity grid.
NPR

Japan Looks For Ways To Keep Communities Intact

Japanese officials are experimenting with ways to help people displaced by last year's earthquake and tsunami. One idea is to create parallel towns where everyone from the dog-catcher to the schoolteacher can shift to one town while their old village is being rebuilt. It's a way of keeping communities intact. But after more than a year, many of the affected communities have already scattered.
NPR

Saving Lives In Africa With The Humble Sweet Potato

In Africa, a nutrition success story: Swapping orange sweet potatoes for white ones is improving the health of children by boosting vitamin A levels. Researchers are now trying to duplicate their success with other crops.
NPR

From All Sides, Iran Under Siege

Iran is facing its most serious challenge since the war with Iraq in the 1980s. Abroad, the Syrian uprising is threatening to oust the Assad regime, Iran's sole Arab ally. At home, the EU oil embargo and U.S. banking sanctions are hurting the economy. And domestic criticism is growing.
NPR

On Denmark's Summer Nights, Tivoli Gardens Beckons

It opened in the middle of the 19th century and has a wooden roller coaster that's nearly a century old. Set in the center of Copenhagen, the amusement park is still a favorite with the Danes.

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