The World

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A one-hour, weekday radio news magazine offering a mix of news, features, interviews, and music from around the globe.

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Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Ahilan Arulanantham was filing papers for a case he was working on, to provide counsel for children facing deportation, when the MacArthur Foundation called him.

His phone rang three or four separate times before he picked up.

“It was a very busy day,” says Arulanantham. “I was just wondering who this pesky caller was.”

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Mission Asset Fund

One of this year's recipients of the MacArthur Foundation's "genius grants" is Jose Quinonez.

He's being recognized for his work connecting low-income immigrants to mainstream financial services.

Sounds a little bland, but it's an absolutely critical service, and his is an absolutely genius solution. (Disclosure: The MacArthur Foundation also funds PRI.org reporting.)

Be like Norway. Do taco Friday.

Sep 23, 2016
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Alejandro Acosta/Reuters

If you need an idea for dinner this Friday night, The World has a Norwegian dish for you: Tacos. 

Yes. Tacos. Norwegians are crazy about them.

And every Friday night is taco night in Norway. People invite friends over and share a meal.

It's huge, as The Norwegian American reports

It started out with stickers installed over street signs in Toronto, Canada. 

Printed on those stickers were indigenous names, either for the streets themselves or the area the streets run through. For three years, members of the Ogimaa Mikana project posted these informal reminders of what the First Nation peoples called these places long ago.

They created billboards, street signs and plaques to make the city's indigenous history and residents more visible. None of it was officially sanctioned.

Friday's Google Doodle was a tip of the hat to El Santo, the late professional wrestler who was known as the star of lucha libre in Mexico.

And even though he's been dead for over 30 years, El Santo remains an icon for many Mexicans. So here's what you need to know.

The name "El Santo" means "The Saint." For four decades he always wore a silver mask, and refused to reveal his identity. Legend has it he even wore the mask at home, and had a special one made so he could eat more comfortably.

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Bridgette Burkholder

Humans have been eating meat since, well, before we were human.

But there are so many of us now eating so much meat that raising all those animals is having a big impact on the global environment, including the climate.

That has people around the world scrambling for meat substitutes, but something better than those dry and pasty veggie burgers.

Patrick Brown, founder and CEO of Impossible Foods, thinks he's hit the jackpot. His company invented a veggie burger that claims to taste, feel and even bleed like the real thing.

On September 15, at sunset in Arizona, a crowd gathered at the corner of a Chevron gas station called the Mesa Star. Like every year since 2002, Rana Sodhi hosted a memorial here for his brother, Balbir Singh Sodhi. Balbir was shot while planting flowers in front of his store on September 15, 2001 — four days after the 9/11 attacks.

A pro-Trump Egyptian's thoughts on the US election

Sep 23, 2016
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Wikimedia Commons

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi made headlines Wednesday when he declared that he has "no doubt" that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump would make a strong leader. But how do regular Egyptians feel?

Sisi, who has been criticized for his authoritarian leanings, met with both Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in New York on Monday.

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Caren Firouz/Reuters

The Afghan government has reached a peace deal with one its oldest enemies: Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and his Hezb-e-Islami group.

But Hekmatyar’s name is one that brings terror to many Afghans.

“His name, to me, means: blood,” says Qais Akbar Omar, author of "A Fort of Nine Towers: An Afghan Family Story."

Mohammed Badran was forced to flee his home in Syria when he was 19. But don't feel bad for him.

Earlier this week, Badran was a guest at the United Nations' Summit for Refugees and Migrants, where he made clear something that gets lost in coverage of the refugee crisis: A person fleeing their home is not a victim forever. Being a refugee isn't an identity, he says.

The central Italian town of Amatrice is still a mess of toppled buildings and rubble. Buried there are centuries worth of art and artifacts.

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Reuters/U.S. Air Force/Staff Sgt. Joely Santiago/Handout 

The completion of a US weapons deal with Israel worth $38 billion clears the way for two of Israel's Arab neighbors to buy US fighter jets.

Qatar wants to buy 36 Boeing F-15 fighter jets. Kuwait has been waiting to buy 24 F/A-18E/F Super Hornets. “Those have been on hold for years now,” says journalist Dan De Luce, who follows defense matters for Foreign Policy.

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Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters

For more than 50 years, Cuba was an enemy of the United States. But not every American has seen Cuba as a threat.  

“You know, I tell folks all the time, I wake up every morning worried about something, but being invaded by Cuba is not one of them,” says Larry Wooten, president of the North Carolina Farm Bureau.

Israelis are closely following the US election, but in newspapers read by ultra-Orthodox Jews, there are no photos of Hillary Clinton — and some editors say that won't change, even if she becomes president.

Beni Rabinovich, a staff writer at the Yated Neeman newspaper, says publishing pictures of Clinton just isn’t done at his daily.

“If we write about Clinton and Trump, it’s much easier to run a picture of Trump,” Rabinovich says.

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Courtesy Project Runway

Fashion designer Roberi Parra is familiar with widespread shortages of food, supplies, and medicine. But as a contestant on this season's "Project Runway," he's a world away from his hometown of Caracas, Venezuela. 

The show's first episode featured a surprise challenge: The hosts of the series welcome the designers at a launch party. The designers are then a bit startled to learn that the decor for the party will also serve as materials for their looks.

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BBC/Wietske Burema

The BBC’s Lyse Doucet has covered the war in Syria since it began five long years ago. So when happenstance found Doucet in her native Canada, she heard about a picnic being held for re-settled refugees from that savage conflict.

The picnic, on Sunday, was in a park in the Leslieville neighborhood of Toronto. Doucet went along with her team, and was doing interviews when a child ran up and asked her name. As soon as she did, a group of children started calling out to her.

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Giorgos Moutafis/Reuters

Late Monday night, a detention center established by the EU to process refugees arriving to Europe erupted in fire.

The Moria camp on the Greek island of Lesbos is one of the country’s biggest centers for refugees, and was one of the most troubled even before the flames.

“No one wants to burn his own home,” said a refugee who was among the 4,000 who had evacuated the site and were huddled along the road with their belongings.

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Baz Ratner/Reuters

Some of Donald Trump’s supporters living in Israel don’t want to take any chances. They see the Jewish State as a potentially important battleground in the US election. 

If the choice in November comes down to a tight contest in a state like Florida or Ohio, they want to grab every possible vote they can to put the Republican nominee over the top. 

Activists for Trump have opened several campaign offices in Israel, including what is said to be the first-ever campaign office for a US presidential candidate in a Jewish settlement in the West Bank.

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Naomi Gingold

The day after Sept. 11, 2001, Rana Singh Sodhi and his older brother, Balbir, were out running some errands in and around Phoenix. Rana remembers that they started getting harassed.

“People yell to us, using [the] F-word, and ‘Go back to your country!’” he recalls.

But they were in their country. The brothers had immigrated to the US more than a decade before.

The Sodhis belong to the Sikh faith. In Sikhism, men don't cut their hair; they wear it in turbans and have beards. And Rana says, after 9/11, the Sikh men he knew were all having similar problems.

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Chris Keane/Reuters

Political scientist David McClennan has noticed something unusual at Trump rallies in North Carolina this election cycle. “It’s loud, raucous crowds, but you don’t see people who appear to be current or former military.”

As the three US presidential debates near, will the moderators finally ask a question concerning issues that affect women, who make up more than half the electorate?  

Thus far, the presidential campaign has rolled out like a reality TV show — with undue media interest on optics, hair styles, large border walls and Pneumonia Truthers. Voters are clamoring for more substantive discussion, and smarter questions that reflect all voters. That includes questions about women. 

Chaos in Congo after elections are postponed

Sep 20, 2016
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Reuters/stringer

There's been a second day of violent unrest in Kinshasa, the capital of Congo, in central Africa. Dozens have died.

Unrest erupted after authorities announced a delay of the presidential elections.

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Adeline Sire

We all know Paris can be romantic, but it can also be — noisy.

Vehicles of all kinds clog the narrow congested streets, which makes scooters and motorbikes some of the best ways to get around.

Every day, 120,000 of them crisscross the city. 

Now a startup is adding some clean, quiet ones to the mix: electric scooters.

Vincent Bustarret of CityScoot explains the company’s system doesn’t use any dedicated stations for its fleet.

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Omar Sanadiki/Reuters 

Row upon row of collapsed concrete apartment buildings — this seems to be one of the most common images of the destruction caused by Syria's war.

It's what the streets look like in Homs, a city in western Syria where Marwa al-Sabouni lives.

She's a young architect, born and raised there. And she's done a lot of thinking about the buildings Syrians live in, and how architecture might have fueled the civil war.

Climate change is just the latest of many threats to the traditional culture of the pastoralist Maasai people of East Africa. But for many, it's the one that's finally forcing them to abandon their old ways, as repeated bouts of extreme weather lead them to give up their cattle.


From PRI's The World ©2016 PRI

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