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2:33 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

5 Things To Know About Syria's Rebels

Syrian rebels take part in a battle Thursday in the northwestern town of Maaret al-Numan. The U.S. says it will begin providing arms to the rebels, who have been losing ground recently to the Syrian army.
Daniel Leal-Olivas AFP/Getty Images

Now that President Obama's administration says it's prepared to arm Syria's rebels, this raises a question relatively few people can answer: Who exactly are these guys?

The rebels have been fighting President Bashar Assad's regime for about two years, and more than 90,000 people have died in Syria's civil war. But in the U.S. and elsewhere, the rebels have not established a clear identity.

Here are five things worth knowing about the rebels:

1. How Are The Rebels Doing On The Battlefield?

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NPR Story
1:49 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

Moderate Wins Iran's Presidential Election

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 4:40 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The Iranian interior minister has announced on state TV that Hasan Rowhani has won that country's presidential election. Mr. Rowhani reportedly won 53 percent of the vote. He's considered a moderate on Iran's political spectrum. Karim Sadjadpour is a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and joins us. Thanks very much for being with us.

KARIM SADJADPOUR: Thank you.

SIMON: How do you read this election result?

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The Picture Show
1:04 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

Pakistani Photographers Take A Personal Picture Of Pakistan

A young man stitches decorative seat covers and curtains in Rawalpindi, where he works for more than 12 hours a day.
Noor Za Din

Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 10:35 am

Last year, National Geographic offered a photo camp for emerging Pakistani photographers to explore the tribal areas of their country.

Seventeen photographers spent six days around Islamabad learning to tell stories with photos.

And just this week, a selection of those photos were on display at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C., in an exhibit called Pakistan Through Our Eyes.

A few of the photographers joined NPR's Jacki Lyden to discuss their experiences.

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The Two-Way
12:12 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

Riot Police In Turkey Move To Quash Protests

Turkish mothers wave the national flag during a vigil on Friday in memory of those killed during recent demonstrations in Istanbul's Taksim Square.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 3:15 pm

(This post last updated at 2:45 p.m. ET)

Turkish riot police backed by armored vehicles sealed off Istanbul's Taksim Square, firing tear gas and water cannons to dislodge protesters after two weeks of anti-government demonstrations.

The police moved into the square hours after an ultimatum issued by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan that security forces "know how to clear" the area. Erdogan had given the demonstrators until Sunday, but police made their move late Saturday.

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The Two-Way
11:25 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Facebook, Microsoft Reveal Requests For User Data

Facebook says it received 9,000 to 10,000 requests from government agencies during the last six months of 2012.
Lionel Bonaventure AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 2:08 pm

Facebook and Microsoft Corp. say the government has given them permission to reveal orders they've received to hand over user data, but that they are still prevented from giving anything other than very broad figures.

Facebook says it received 9,000 to 10,000 requests during the last six months of 2012, while Microsoft says it got 6,000 to 7,000 requests, affecting as many as 32,000 accounts.

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The Protojournalist
11:13 am
Sat June 15, 2013

The Love Song Of Ollie Cantos

Linton Weeks NPR

Originally published on Fri February 21, 2014 10:08 am

Ollie Cantos – blind his whole life – has a law degree and has worked in the White House. He's overcome self-doubts, prejudices, naysayers and countless unforeseen – and unseen – obstacles to get to this point. Not content, he's hoping to adopt teenage triplets — Leo, Nick and Steven — also blind. "My whole life has changed. I live for these guys," says Ollie, 42, who lives in Arlington, Va., and works for the federal government.

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The Two-Way
10:36 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Firefighters In Colorado Gaining The Upper Hand On Blazes

A U.S. Army helicopter releases water onto the Black Forest fire outside Colorado Springs, Colo., earlier this week.
U.S. Army handout Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 2:17 pm

Firefighters near Colorado Springs say that a surprise rainstorm and cooler weather have rallied their efforts to push back devastating wildfires that have destroyed at least 473 homes in recent days. Two people have been killed.

Authorities say that some evacuations of residents in the Black Forest, Colo., area have been lifted and that the largest of the fires is about one-third contained.

On Friday, several thousand people were allowed back into their homes, but an estimated 30,000 are still being told to stay away.

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The Two-Way
9:51 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Coordinated Attacks Rock Southwestern Pakistan

Pakistani police officers and volunteers gather at the wreckage of a bus destroyed in a bomb blast in Quetta, Pakistan, on Saturday.
Arshad Butt AP

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 5:55 pm

A bomb ripped through a bus in southwestern Pakistan on Saturday, killing at least 14 students from a women's university in Quetta. Shortly afterward, militants burst into a nearby hospital that was treating the injured. Pakistani security forces stormed the hospital and regained control after a five-hour standoff.

Our original post continues:

A bomb on a bus in Pakistan has killed at least 11 female university students and teachers, and hurt 20 others. Militants later attacked the hospital where the victims were taken.

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The Two-Way
9:20 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Source: Obama Considering Releasing NSA Court Order

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 4:00 pm

NPR has learned that the Obama administration, under pressure to lift a cloak of secrecy, is considering whether to declassify a court order that gives the National Security Agency the power to gather phone call record information on millions of Americans.

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Fresh Air Weekend
9:03 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Fresh Air Weekend: Rogen, Goldberg, '20 Feet From Stardom' And 'Much Ado'

Jo Lawry, Judith Hill and Lisa Fischer are three of the backup singers profiled in the new documentary 20 Feet From Stardom.
RadiusTWC

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 11:25 am

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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