NPR Blogs

The Two-Way
10:10 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Roller Coaster Stops Rolling, Traps Riders High In The Air

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 2:59 pm

A tree branch got in the way of the fun for more than 20 riders who were on the Ninja roller coaster at Six Flags Magic Mountain north of Los Angeles Monday, stranding them above the ground for hours before rescue crews freed them.

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The Two-Way
9:59 am
Tue July 8, 2014

U.N. Urges U.S. To Treat Migrants As Refugees

The U.N. is encouraging the U.S., Mexico and other countries to treat migrant children as refugees, on the grounds that they're fleeing danger. Last week, immigration activists demanded that Mexico protect the rights of minors and families crossing its territory, during a protest outside the Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 2:29 pm

People who enter the U.S. and nearby countries illegally from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras should not be forced to return home and should be treated as refugees, a U.N. agency says. The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees says people from those countries are subject to persecution.

From Geneva, Lisa Schlein reports for our Newscast unit:

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The Two-Way
9:07 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Ukraine And Militants Continue A Standoff In Donetsk

People walk under a destroyed railroad bridge over a main road leading into the city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine Monday. Kiev is calling on pro-Russian militants to disarm before holding peace talks.
Dmitry Lovetsky AP

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 9:54 am

Coming off of two victories this weekend, Ukraine is calling for pro-Russian separatists to lay down their arms in Donetsk before taking part in peace talks. Rebels in the city are reportedly preparing to resist Ukraine's forces.

Plans for talks about a cease-fire are now in limbo, as President Petro Poroshenko and the militants also disagree on the location. From the AP:

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The Two-Way
8:17 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Top Stories: Israel Hits Hamas Sites; Japan's Super Typhoon

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 8:50 am

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The Two-Way
7:59 am
Tue July 8, 2014

The One American On The Field At Today's World Cup Semifinal

Referee Mark Geiger will be the U.S. presence at the World Cup semifinal on Tuesday.
Clive Rose Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 9:35 am

The United States will have a presence at today's semifinal World Cup match between Brazil and Germany. It won't be the U.S. National Team on the field, but American referee Mark Geiger. FIFA selected Geiger to be on the officiating crew of the high-stakes match. It's the first time a U.S. referee has been used this late in a World Cup.

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The Two-Way
7:50 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Powerful Typhoon Whips Japan's Okinawa Islands

A reporter stands next to a wooden house and restaurant that collapsed across a street due to strong winds from Typhoon Neoguri, in Naha city on the island of Okinawa on Tuesday.
Hitoshi Maeshiro EPA/LANDOV

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 11:03 am

Bringing winds that gust higher than 100 mph, Typhoon Neoguri is bearing down on the Okinawa island chain in southern Japan. More than 100,000 households are without power, and over a half-million people have reportedly been asked to evacuate.

As it neared the coast, the storm "weakened from its original status as a super typhoon but remained intense," the Japan Times says, "with gusts of more than 250 km per hour (155 mph)."

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The Two-Way
7:23 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Book News: J.K. Rowling Writes A New 'Harry Potter' Story

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
7:01 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Israel Expands Attacks On Gaza As Rockets Target Israeli Cities

Israeli soldiers stand on their tanks near Israel's border with the Gaza Strip on Tuesday. Israeli warplanes pounded Gaza with more than 50 strikes overnight after Hamas militants fired scores of rockets over the border.
Jack Guez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 5:36 pm

Updates at 5:32 p.m. ET

Israel said Tuesday it is expanding its operations against Hamas "and other terrorist organizations" in the Gaza Strip amid an escalation of violence that saw a barrage of rockets fired from the enclave toward Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and other parts of the country.

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The Two-Way
6:54 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

Washington State To Start Recreational Pot Sales On Tuesday

Amber McGowan, left, and Krystal Klacsan work Monday at Cannabis City in Seattle, a day before the store is to begin legal pot sales on Tuesday. The store will be for now the only one in Seattle to sell recreational marijuana.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 8:46 pm

Legal marijuana sales are set to begin in Washington state as early as Tuesday after authorities began issuing retail licenses to stores.

The state's Liquor Control Board issued Monday the first 24 marijuana retailer licenses, the board said in a statement. The stores can now stock up on marijuana products and begin sales on Tuesday after the mandated 24-hour "quarantine" period.

Here's more from the panel:

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The Two-Way
5:12 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

Bahrain Asks U.S. Diplomat To Leave Over Meeting With Shiite Group

Bahrain's Foreign Ministry has said a top U.S. diplomat "is unwelcome and should immediately leave the country."

Assistant Secretary of State Tom Malinowski oversees democracy, human rights and labor issues. On Sunday, he met with Al Wifaq, a Shiite opposition group. Bahrain's Foreign Ministry said the meeting was "indicative of an approach which discriminates amongst the people of this one nation."

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