World

The Two-Way
11:40 am
Mon January 20, 2014

U.S., EU Lift Some Iran Sanctions After Assurances On Uranium

An IAEA team checks the enrichment process inside the uranium enrichment plant Natanz in central Iran on Monday.
Kazem Ghane EPA/Landov

Originally published on Mon January 20, 2014 4:46 pm

This post was updated at 11:40 a.m. ET.

The United States and European Union say they will lift some sanctions against Iran after reports from international inspectors that Tehran has suspended high-level enrichment of uranium under an interim pact to scale back its nuclear program.

The Associated Press reports:

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The Two-Way
10:41 am
Mon January 20, 2014

U.N. Rescinds Offer For Iran To Take Part In Syrian Peace Talks

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the media during a news conference at U.N. headquarters in New York on Sunday.
Jason Szenes EPA/Landov

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 6:06 am

This post was updated at 4:35 p.m. ET.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has withdrawn an invitation to Iran to participate in Syrian peace talks after groups opposing President Bashar Assad's regime threatened a boycott of the discussions if Tehran got a seat at the table.

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Parallels
7:30 am
Mon January 20, 2014

Low Hopes, High Stakes For Syria Peace Conference In Geneva

In Istanbul on Saturday, Syrian National Coalition President Ahmad Jarba announces the opposition group will attend the upcoming peace conference in Geneva.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 20, 2014 2:00 pm

Can a meeting in Switzerland, known as Geneva-2, solve the crisis in Syria?

The expectations are low. The warring parties are reluctant. Some of the most important players, including powerful armed rebel groups, are not on the invitation list.

The superpower hosts, the U.S. and Russia, fully back the peace conference, set for Wednesday. They hope to kick-start a political process and end the armed conflict that has ravaged Syria and destabilized the region.

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Middle East
5:26 am
Mon January 20, 2014

Iran's Invitation To Syria Peace Talks Causes Diplomatic Stir

Originally published on Mon January 20, 2014 8:04 am

Syrian opposition groups threatened to skip the talks on ending Syria's civil war after the United Nations invited Iran to attend. The U.S. is also trying to figure out if Iran would agree to terms calling for an end to the Assad regime. Renee Montagne talks to Rami Khouri, director of the Fares Institute at the American University of Beirut.

Middle East
5:26 am
Mon January 20, 2014

As Iranian Nuclear Deal Starts, Second Round Of Talks Loom Large

The reactor building of the Bushehr nuclear power plant just outside the southern city of Bushehr, Iran, in 2010.
Majid Asgaripour AP

Originally published on Mon January 20, 2014 1:03 pm

Day one of a six-month period of reduced Iranian nuclear activity and a slight easing of economic sanctions begins Monday. The interim accord may be a high-water mark for nuclear diplomacy, but soon negotiators must begin to fashion a comprehensive nuclear accord in the face of widespread skepticism.

Each side is sniping at the other's interpretation of the relatively modest steps agreed to thus far.

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Africa
5:19 am
Mon January 20, 2014

Examining Vicious Cycle Of Ethnic Violence In South Sudan

Originally published on Mon January 20, 2014 8:04 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In South Sudan, the fighting that began in December continues between groups loyal to two powerful rivals: President Salva Kiir and Riek Machar, his former vice president. The conflict, which has left thousands dead, and forced hundreds of thousands from their homes caught many by surprise. It was just a short time ago - 2011 - that South Sudan became an independent nation after a decades-long rebellion against Sudan.

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Afghanistan
5:19 am
Mon January 20, 2014

Attack On Kabul Restaurant Prompts Security Review

Originally published on Mon January 20, 2014 8:04 am

Non-governmental organizations and restaurants are raising security protocols in the Afghan capital Kabul after last week's attack on a popular Lebanese restaurant. Twenty-one people, mostly foreigners, were killed. Some members of the international community say they anticipate more violence as elections draw closer.

NPR Ombudsman
10:01 pm
Sun January 19, 2014

Fairness In Covering Israel And The Palestinians: The End Of An Accounting

Palestinians protest in the center of the West Bank city of Ramallah against the continuation of negotiations with Israel, and demand that Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas not meet with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Jan. 15, 2014.
Abbas Momani AFP/Getty Images

A quarterly review over the past 11 years of NPR's coverage of Israel and the Palestinians—a self-assessment that may be unique in the annals of American journalism—comes to an end with the attached last report that finds lack of completeness but strong factual accuracy and no systematic bias.

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Animals
6:20 pm
Sun January 19, 2014

Profiting From Rhinos, Far From Their Habitat

Originally published on Sun January 19, 2014 6:42 pm

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Rhinoceros horns now sell for more on the black market than cocaine or heroin. Demand from Southeast Asian consumers is primarily to blame. In order to cash in, thieves have begun targeting a different kind of rhino habitat: museums. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with journalist Adam Higginbotham about the so-called "Rathkeale Rovers," a gang suspected of several thefts.

Middle East
6:20 pm
Sun January 19, 2014

Iran To Take First Step Toward Long-Term Deal

Originally published on Sun January 19, 2014 6:42 pm

On Monday, the nuclear deal between six world powers and Iran officially kicks in. But this agreement is just a first step in a long negotiation process. NPR's Arun Rath talks to Karim Sadjadpour, senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, about what to expect from additional disarmament talks.

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