World

World
5:14 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

In Istanbul's Taksim Square, Cue The Piano Man

Amid the protests and clashes in Istanbul's Taksim Square, a pianist has been hauling in his instrument at night to entertain the crowds. Each time he does, the raucous crowd stills itself while he plays. In between tunes, chants rise up and he stands on his piano bench to conduct the crowd.

Middle East
5:03 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

Obama's Dilemma: Arming The Syrian Rebels

Originally published on Sat June 15, 2013 6:19 pm

The White House is taking its first tentative steps toward arming Syrian rebels. Host Jacki Lyden speaks with James Fallows, national correspondent with The Atlantic, about the U.S.' ongoing struggle to determine when is the right time to intercede. They also discuss moderate candidate Hasan Rowhani's victory in the Iranian presidential election.

The Two-Way
3:51 pm
Sat June 15, 2013

Google's 'Looney' Internet Balloons Invade New Zealand

A Google balloon sails through the air with the Southern Alps in the background, in Tekapo, New Zealand, on Monday.
Jon Shenk AP

Google has launched — quite literally — a new idea to bring the Internet to some of the world's remotest places.

The tech giant's engineering hothouse, Google X, is testing the use of 12-mile-high helium balloons to get coverage in areas where it's impractical to put in conventional infrastructure.

Google said Saturday that it has 30 of the balloons, or "high-altitude platforms" (HAPS), flying over New Zealand as part of something called Project Loon. They will hover at about twice the altitude of a passenger jet.

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Parallels
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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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
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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NPR Story
8:00 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Are The Protests In Turkey Really About A Park?

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

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

We have to remind ourselves now, the nationwide protests in Turkey began with a small group of people who were protesting the government's plans to pave over a small park in Istanbul. Elif Shafak is an award-winning writer who divides her time between Istanbul and London. We spoke with her yesterday, and asked her how what began as a kind of modest stand to protect a city park broadened into nationwide protests.

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NPR Story
8:00 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Islamabad Reservoir Cools Pakistanis

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

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Most people look forward to summer, but perhaps not in Pakistan. NPR's Philip Reeves has been out and about in its capital city, and sent us this letter from Islamabad.

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NPR Story
8:00 am
Sat June 15, 2013

Turkish Protesters Refuse To Leave Gezi Park

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

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Protesters who were camped out in Istanbul's Gezi Park say they won't pack up and go home despite a government offer to avoid bulldozing the park without court approval and a public referendum. Protest organizers say that other demands such as releasing detained protesters have not been met.

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NPR Story
7:35 am
Sat June 15, 2013

How U.S. Arms Will Reach Syrian Rebels

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

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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