NPR World News

Goats and Soda
5:12 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

Why A Teenage Mom Was Jailed In El Salvador After A Stillbirth

Christina Quintanilla looks out at the lake near her hometown of San Miguel in eastern El Salvador.
John W. Poole NPR

Originally published on Tue September 23, 2014 11:23 am

Christina Quintanilla's nightmare with El Salvador's abortion law began on Oct. 26, 2004.

Quintanilla was 17 at the time, and seven months pregnant with her second child. She was living in her mother's apartment, and that night, she couldn't get comfortable. Her belly was bulging, her back was aching, and her stomach was upset.

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5:58 am
Sun September 21, 2014

U.S., Iraqi Militias Join In Uneasy Alliance

Members of the Mehdi Army militia, which once fought U.S. forces in Iraq, take part in training in the southern Iraqi city of Basra on June 17. The militia's fighters now find themselves allied with the U.S. against the self-declared Islamic State.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 11:15 am

In the Middle East, alliances have a strange way of shifting. And as the United States again becomes deeply involved in the conflict in Iraq, it's found itself making some strange alliances too.

Militias that used to fights American forces in Iraq are now fighting against the Islamic State — on the same side as the U.S. — and all sides involved have reservations about it.

A decade ago in Sadr City, a sprawling Shiite suburb of Baghdad, the Mehdi Army, led by Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, began to fight bitterly against American forces, calling them occupiers.

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10:01 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Over Spain's Objections, Catalonia Plans Referendum On Independence

Pro-independence demonstrators shout slogans outside the Catalan parliament on Friday in Barcelona, Spain. The Catalan parliament has approved rules for a self-determination referendum — which would violate the Spanish constitution.
David Ramos Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 11:16 am

In sultry Barcelona, it was a unexpected gathering of bagpipes, tartan plaid, Scotch and even haggis — the traditional Scottish innards-and-oatmeal dish.

Spaniards turned out en masse to celebrate Scotland's referendum on independence from the United Kingdom.

"For one day, I would like to be Scottish," said Gabriel Herredero, 25, who wore a Scottish kilt out to a bar. "As Catalans, we would be proud also to be able to vote for something we really want."

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Author Interviews
5:11 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Why Afghanistan's 'Underground Girls' Skirt Tradition To Live As Boys

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 11:16 am

In many families of Afghanistan, the birth of a girl is mourned. While boys are seen as blessings, girls are considered burdens and forced to live a strict life of limited options. They can't leave the house alone; they're not educated; and they're dressed in clothes that conceal them and literally restrict their view of the world.

But some young girls find a way to fight that for at least a few years.

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National Security
5:13 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Should The U.S. Pay Ransom For ISIS Hostages?

American Joshua Fattal was released in 2011 from Iran after the Sultan of Oman paid more than $400,000 in ransom. He now says the U.S. should bail its citizens out abroad.
Mohammed Mahjoub AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 6:08 pm

It was three years ago that Joshua Fattal tasted freedom again. Fattal was one of three Americans who were seized as they hiked in Iraqi Kurdistan near the Iranian border. He was held for 26 months by the Tehran government, charged with spying. His release came as then-Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad came to the United States.

"I was released while Ahmadinejad was visiting the U.N. for the U.N. General Assembly, and it was really just a publicity stunt and I could tell what they were doing was a response to pressure," says Fattal.

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