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President Obama sets off for Asia this week. He'll be visiting four countries - Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines. The trip is part of the president's long-term strategy to refocus America's attention towards Asia, something that's proving a little bit hard to do.
NPR's Scott Horsley joins us now to talk about the trip. Good morning.
Over the weekend, someone tried to kill the most famous television anchorman in Pakistan. Hamid Mir hosts a television show on politics on Pakistan's popular Geo News channel. He can be outspoken and confrontational. And now gunmen have confronted him and opened fire, wounding Hamid Mir as he was being driven from the airport to his office in the giant city of Karachi. NPR's Philip Reeves is covering this story. He's on the line. And Phil, first, who you explain who Hamid Mir is? A very distinctive figure.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep.
We begin this part of the program by meeting a woman in limbo. She is searching for her sister who was a passenger on a South Korean ferry. Her story underlines the human cost of a ferry sinking in which more than 60 people died, more than 240 remain missing, people with connections to places around the world, including the United States.
It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR West. I'm Arun Rath. It has been a grim Easter Sunday for relatives of passengers who were on the ferry that capsized off the coast of South Korea on Wednesday. The death toll from that disaster is now over 50, with about 240 people still missing, most of them high school students. Today, divers started retrieving bodies from inside the vessel.
Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 4:56 am
For more than 40 minutes as their ship foundered last Wednesday, crew members of the South Korean ferry Sewol spoke with local maritime traffic services about a possible rescue. The conversation centered on getting help to the ship and on getting its passengers off the ferry, according to a transcript released Sunday.
At St. Elie Armenian Catholic Church in downtown Beirut, Zarmig Hovsepian lit three candles and slowly mouthed silent prayers before Easter Mass. After reciting "Our Father," she added a prayer of her own: "For peace, for Lebanon and the region," she said, underscoring the deep sense of apprehension beneath the surface of otherwise festive Easter celebrations.
Originally published on Sun April 20, 2014 4:04 pm
A shootout at a checkpoint killed at least two people in eastern Ukraine Sunday, according to multiple reports. The violence comes on the heels of an agreement between Ukraine, Russia and the West that calls for armed groups to disband; that pact led officials to announce a truce for this Easter weekend.
April is National Poetry Month here in the United States. But in Japan, poetry is also big this time of year when a popular poetry contest sweeps the country. It offers modest prizes and absolutely no fame whatsoever. Entries are by pen name only, but the event is as closely watched as a celebrity sighting or a speech by the prime minister. Competitors use a style of verse that is virtually unknown outside Japan. Lucy Craft looked for rhyme and reason behind the country's love affair with this special style of poetry.