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Drug Cartel Leader Captured In Mexico's Michoacan State

Mexican authorities have arrested one of the top drug cartel leaders in the western state of Michoacan. Federal forces recently moved into the state to disarm civilian vigilantes who have been fighting to reclaim their communities from the cartel.
NPR

Broad Issues Galvanize Ukraine Protesters' Stand

The political unrest in Ukraine is spreading. Steve Inskeep talks to Steven Pifer, senior analyst at the Brookings Institution and former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, about the issues behind the upheaval in Ukraine.
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What's At Stake In El Salvador's Presidential Election

Salvadorans will vote Feb. 2 for a new president, with absentee ballots cast for the first time by expats. We explore the impact on Washington's big Salvadoran community.

NPR

No Surprises: Egyptian Military Endorses Its Chief For President

Out of Cairo on Monday came new indications that Egypt's military chief, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, will run for president in an election expected within the next three months. The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, Egypt's highest military body, disseminated a message praising Sisi and endorsing him for a presidential bid.
NPR

The Doctor At The Heart Of The U.S.-Pakistan Rift

Prickly relations between the U.S. and Islamabad are becoming even thornier because of one issue: the case of Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who helped the CIA find Osama bin Laden in 2011. Afridi is seen as a hero by many Americans, but that didn't deter Pakistan from jailing him for alleged militant ties. The U.S. Congress is withholding $33 million in aid to Pakistan until the doctor is freed. But Afridi's lawyer fears this tactic will antagonize Islamabad. He urgently wants Afridi freed, warning that the doctor is at severe risk of being killed by fellow prisoners.
NPR

Alleged Gang Rape In India Draws Spotlight On Village Justice

Allegations that a young woman in India was gang-raped on the orders of an informal "Village Council" have sparked outrage across India. The woman was apparently punished for having relations with a man from outside her community. Critics have called for a crackdown on village councils, saying that they are based in a traditional and outdated concept of morality and that they undermine India's established law.
NPR

At Syria Talks, Sides Meet In Person — But Don't See Eye To Eye

At the Syrian peace talks, government and opposition representatives held their first face-to-face discussion about a political transition — but by the end of the day, UN mediator Lakhdar Brahimi had no progress to report. He urged both sides to focus on the desperate humanitarian situation facing Syrians in several besieged cities.
NPR

On Different Frequencies, Two Sides Of Syrian Media Clash

For the first time, the Syrian peace conference brought the rival sides together, while Syria's competing media delegations faced off at even closer range. Pro-government and pro-rebel journalists reported on the same events for the first time, side by side. They sparred, traded insults and even threw some punches in a media war that is as hot as the fighting on the ground.
NPR

In Ukraine, Protesters Declare Corruption The Problem

Attempts by Ukraine's president to quell anti-government protests — including an offer to install opposition leaders in a reshuffled cabinet — seem to have failed. The protests grew over the weekend and spread beyond the capital, Kiev. The protestors say they are determined to force the president's resignation and end what they call a corrupt and dictatorial regime.
NPR

For Taiwanese News Animators, Funny Videos Are Serious Work

The studio responsible for bizarre viral videos featuring 3-D animations of the news is more serious than you'd think. Go behind the scenes at the Taipei-based Next Media Animation to find out why this fast-moving — and controversial — company says it's charting the future of news.

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