April 13, 2021
President Joe Biden announced a new deadline to pull American troops out of Afghanistan for Sept. 11, 2021. It's an important development in the push to end a nearly 20-year war. And, the tension between Russia and Ukraine continues to build as tens of thousands of Russian troops have amassed along Ukraine's border. Now Ukraine, the US and Europe are on alert. Also, the government of Japan announced on Tuesday plans to release treated radioactive water from the wrecked Fukushima nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean.
April 12, 2021
US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin visited Israel reiterating Washington’s commitment to the country. The visit came coincidently as news of an explosion emerged from Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility. And, voters in Ecuador have elected conservative businessman Guillermo Lasso as their new president. Also, Monday marks 60 years since Russian Yuri Gagarin’s first voyage into space.
April 9, 2021
COVID-19 cases are rising in India as its vaccination drive attempts to keep up. And, since President Joe Biden's first day in office, US-China relations have been both a priority and a concern. This week, Taiwan has been at the center of attention because China has revved up pressure there, with military exercises by air and sea. Also, new research shows Thwaites Glacier in Antarctica may be even more vulnerable than scientists realized.
April 8, 2021
Rioters set fire to a hijacked bus and lobbed gasoline bombs at police in Belfast Wednesday. Tensions have been on the rise since Britain's exit from the European Union. And, New Zealand recently made headlines when its Parliament approved a bill that requires employers to offer three days of bereavement leave for people who miscarry. Also, when pubs reopen fully in mid-May, the UK government is considering a COVID-19 certificate scheme that requires customers to prove they have been vaccinated.
April 7, 2021
Since the arrival of its first batch of COVID-19 vaccines last month, Kenya has been rushing to vaccinate its front-line workers amid a deadly third wave. And, two months after a military coup in Myanmar, troops have killed more than 500 civilians, often simply for demanding the army give power back to elected officials. Also, since its launch in December 2020, the Calma Line has received about 1,300 calls from men in the city of Bogotá, Colombia, where they can speak with a psychologist about their feelings. It's an effort to dismantle machismo — oftentimes linked to domestic violence.
April 6, 2021
The world needs a coronavirus vaccine that can protect people against emerging variants. But this idea — a vaccine to combat multiple strains — is easier said than done. And, the number of transgender people who hide their identity at work has risen sharply in Britain. Also, a few years ago, banning plastic straws was the hot environmental trend. China is on board and banned disposable plastic in restaurants at the beginning of this year, generating a backlash from bubble-tea fans.
April 5, 2021
As Jordan’s royal dispute plays out between two top royals, many Jordanians are just trying to get by. And, the EU has announced a quarter billion euros to fund five new refugee camps on the Greek islands, including Lesbos, but some are worried the new sites will not improve conditions for migrants. Also, in Egypt this weekend, 22 mummies were on the move in a multimillion-dollar parade featuring 18 kings and four queens who were transported from the Egyptian Museum to their new resting place — the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization.
April 2, 2021
Twenty-three years ago on Friday, the Irish and British governments, along with most of the political parties in Northern Ireland signed the Good Friday accords. Former Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern says Brexit has undercut the peace pact. And, migrant women have alleged gender discrimination in US seasonal work. For the first time, they now have a way to file complaints directly with Mexico or the US. Also, as more Venezuelans migrate to Colombia, integration has not been easy. A kickball league in one Colombian border town has eased tensions through cross-cultural communication.
April 1, 2021
Myanmar’s military regime has killed more than 500 unarmed civilians since seizing power in a coup eight weeks ago. But the troops aren't just killing protesters. They’re also shooting at medics, nurses and EMTs who try to save the lives of injured protesters. And, across Africa, new daily cases of the coronavirus are rising at an alarming rate. Also, Apple announced that its iPhone digital assistant, Siri, would not by default be a woman's voice.
March 31, 2021
Brazil’s top military commanders resigned Wednesday following a shuffling of President Jair Bolsonaro’s Cabinet. The political shake-up comes amid a worsening crisis over the coronavirus in the country where emergency rooms are beyond capacity. Also, US President Joe Biden unveiled his $2 trillion infrastructure plan on Wednesday. He framed the eight-year spending plan as a program to create jobs, promote racial equity and tackle the climate crisis. And, while France is locking down to prevent a third wave of the coronavirus, artists are demanding that theaters and live performances return.