The World

M-F 3-4pm

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

Like many people with roots in the rural parts of Montana, Drew Taylor didn’t like the idea of Muslim Syrian refugees settling in Missoula. And so, when a pro-refugee group held a demonstration downtown, Taylor joined the counter-demonstration and held up a sign that said “Americans first.”

“I personally thought they wanted to bring radical jihad Muslims to Missoula. That’s the original impression I got from things I was reading. That upsets me,” she says.

Carlos Barria/Reuters  

For years after US forces left Vietnam, following a conflict that had killed millions in Southeast Asia, the two countries didn't speak.

Diplomatic relations were finally restored in 1995 by President Bill Clinton, but on Monday President Barack Obama went a step further: During a visit to Hanoi, he announced he was lifting the embargo on US companies selling arms to Vietnam, 41 years after the fall of Saigon.

Noor Khamis/Reuters

In East Africa’s most prosperous economy, the average city resident pays up to 16 bribes per month, according to Transparency International. Locals have dubbed Kenya “ya kitu kidogo” — the land of the “little something” — a kind of homeland of the bribe. And on the streets of Eastleigh, Nairobi, the victims of those bribes point their finger at one perpetrator.

“If you look at the police who are meant to protect them,” says local activist Abdullahi Mohamed, “they just arrest them to extort cash.”

Ozan Kose

“The greatest humanitarian crisis of our lifetime.”

That's how the United Nations is describing the current global situation. It says 125 million people around the world are currently in need of some form of humanitarian help.

But how do you actually deliver that help on such a huge international scale? That is what they are trying to figure out at the World Humanitarian Summit, which started in Istanbul on Monday. 

David Mdzinarishvili/Reuters

World military expenditure had been declining since the beginning of this decade until 2015, which saw a 1 percent increase.

Global governments spent a total of $1,676 billion on defense, and more than one-third of that came from the US, the world's top military spender, according to new figures from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

William Wigley

More than 80 percent of the Earth's urban residents are breathing unhealthy air. They're living in cities with lots of cars, trucks and fossil fuel-burning power plants. Think Peshawar in Pakistan, the Saudi capital Riyadh, or Delhi, India.

But a newly updated database from the World Health Organization also pinpoints urban spots where air is the cleanest. 

Imagine you're a political activist from Sudan. Your medium: cartoons. Your goal: fighting for human rights across the Arab and Muslim world. But each day brings ever more depressing news: 

The so-called Islamic State is enslaving women, bombs in Baghdad are killing scores of innocent people; Syria's civil war has left the country in ruins and it continues to hemorrhage refugees; the Egyptian and Turkish governments are cracking down on the free press. Where do you go for inspiration?

Edgard Garrido/Reuters

On a bad day, you cannot see forever in Mexico City.

That's how it has been lately, ever since the city government rang the alarm bells over its air pollution, as it surpassed the recommended ozone limits set by the World Health Organization. It was the first time such alarms went off in more than a decade. The city banned cars, old and new, from roads once a week, along with other measures that will continue until June and perhaps longer.

It all raises the question: Will Mexico City risk the gains it made in the 1990s and return to its image as a pollution-choked city?

South Africa’s national broadcaster, SABC, is introducing a new quota system that requires 90 percent of the music on its stations to be the work of "local" musicians.

The quota is meant to promote local artists and celebrate South Africa’s culture, including the country’s 11 different languages. But what exactly is "local"? That's hard to say.

More than 30 million people tune in to one of the 18 different radio stations that SABC operates. The quota doesn’t apply to the country’s commercial radio stations.


The Trevi fountain in Rome was lit up in rainbow colors Wednesday night. 

That's because the Italian parliament passed a bill approving civil unions for gay couples.

Until now, Italy had been the last major Western democracy not to legally recognize same-sex partnerships of any sort.

“We’ve been waiting for 30 years to have such a law,” said Vladimir Luxuria, a transgender politician and activist who still goes by her birth name but identifies as a woman.