World

Shots - Health News
5:37 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Russia's Love Affair With Vodka Lures Many To An Early Grave

Shoppers check out vodka in a street kiosk in Moscow in 2008.
Alexander Nemenov/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 3, 2014 6:48 am

Vodka is our enemy, the Russian proverb goes, so we'll utterly consume it. This embrace of the enemy has a lot to do with the country's abysmal life expectancy rates, with one quarter of Russian men dying before age 55. But when the drinkers start cutting back, death rates drop almost immediately, a study finds.

"High mortality absolutely is caused by hazardous alcohol consumption," says Dr. David Zaridze of the Russian Cancer Research Center of Moscow, who with his colleagues tracked Russian drinking habits for a decade.

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Parallels
4:32 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Scarlett Johansson's Middle East Flap ... Over Soda

Scarlett Johansson recently became SodaStream's spokeswoman and appeared at an event at the Gramercy Park Hotel on Jan. 10 in New York City. The actress soon found herself engulfed in controversy because of her affiliation with a company that has a factory in a Jewish settlement in the West Bank.
Mike Coppola Mike Coppola/Getty Images for SodaStream

Originally published on Sat February 1, 2014 8:55 am

When celebrities get drawn into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, wittingly or not, controversy is sure to follow.

American actress Scarlett Johansson is the latest to discover this ironclad law of Middle East politics. And the issue is soda.

Johansson has for the past eight years been the celebrity representative for Oxfam International, the global aid organization.

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Middle East
4:32 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Syrian Opposition Group Treads New Territory In Geneva

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 7:00 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The first round of the Syria peace talks is set to adjourn tomorrow. The opposition delegation is expecting to leave Geneva without progress toward its top goal: a transitional government that ends the tenure of President Bashar al-Assad. The opposition began these talks with a reputation as a fractious and ineffective group.

And NPR's Peter Kenyon reports the delegates have been surprised and pleased to see messages of support beginning to come from inside Syria.

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Middle East
4:32 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Is The U.S. Leaving A Leadership Void In The Middle East?

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 7:00 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. In this part of the program, we're going to address a question that keeps bubbling up in news stories and commentary from the Middle East. It's a question President Obama addressed indirectly in his State of the Union speech Tuesday night.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: In a world of complex threats, our security, our leadership, depends on all elements of our power, including strong and principled diplomacy.

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The Two-Way
4:20 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Amanda Knox Guilty Verdict Reinstated By Italian Court

Amanda Knox speaking during a taped interview with ABC News' Diane Sawyer in New York in April.
Ida Mae Astute AP

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 7:52 am

An Italian court has reinstated the original guilty verdict against U.S. student Amanda Knox and her ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito for the 2007 murder of her British roommate.

In 2009, Knox was found guilty of murdering 21-year-old Meredith Kercher, but the verdict was overturned two years later. Last year, Italy's Court of Cassation overturned the acquittal and sent the case back to an appeals court in Florence.

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Parallels
3:57 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Report: Syrian Government Has Demolished Entire Neighborhoods

The complete demolition of the Masha' al-Arb'een neighborhood in the Syrian city of Hama. The group Human Rights Watch says the Syrian government army destroyed at least seven neighborhoods since the middle of 2012 because they were opposition strongholds.
DigitalGlobe

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 4:58 pm

As the Syrian government and opposition forces try to make peace in Geneva, the group Human Rights Watch has issued a new report that accuses the regime of demolishing entire neighborhoods that were considered opposition strongholds.

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Music
1:41 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

'Spirit Of Family' Unites Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Darren Phillip Jones

Originally published on Mon February 3, 2014 10:58 am

For fans of world music, South Africa's Ladysmith Black Mambazo needs no introduction.

The group has been singing a capella together for 50 years, brought together by Joseph Shabalala, a young farmhand turned factory worker from the town of Ladysmith. He had a dream of tight vocal harmonies and messages of peace.

That dream developed, and the band came to the attention of Paul Simon, who had it record "Homeless" on his album Graceland. It introduced the group to the world.

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The Two-Way
11:05 am
Thu January 30, 2014

U.S.: Syria Behind Schedule On Dismantling Chemical Stockpile

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 12:05 pm

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel says the U.S. is "concerned" that Syria is behind schedule in removing its chemical stockpiles.

Hagel, speaking during a visit to Poland, says Syria "is behind in delivering these chemical weapons precursor materials on time with the schedule that was agreed to."

White House spokesman Jay Carney, speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, added: "It is the Assad regime's responsibility to transport those chemicals to facilitate removal. We expect them to meet their obligation to do so."

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Africa
10:38 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Egypt: 'A Very Divided Nation Right Now'

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 1:37 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Today, we want to focus on events in Egypt, which as you probably know, has seen some of the region's most dramatic change since the beginning of the Arab Spring when longtime President Hosni Mubarak agreed to relinquish power.

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The Two-Way
9:18 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Oh Toronto! New Accusation For Mayor And New Charge For Bieber

There was quite a commotion Wednesday night in Toronto when pop star Justin Bieber (center) arrived at a police station to be charged in connection with the alleged assault on a limo driver.
Alex Urosevic Reuters/Landov

Before we start this post, we'll point to one from earlier this week:

Rather Than Joking About Justin Bieber, Watch This Video

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