Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

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Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

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Editor's note: This report contains accounts of rape, violence and other disturbing events.

Sex trafficking wasn't a major concern in the early 1980s, when Beth Jacobs was a teenager. If you were a prostitute, the thinking went, it was your choice.

Jacobs thought that too, right up until she came to, on the lot of a dark truck stop one night. She says she had asked a friendly-seeming man for a ride home that afternoon.

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America's Cup Death Raises Concerns Over High-Tech Race Boats

May 17, 2013

America's Cup, the oldest and most prestigious sailing competition, has hit some choppy water.

The death last week of British sailor and gold medal Olympian Andrew "Bart" Simpson when the boat he was crewing capsized and broke up during a practice run off San Francisco, has prompted tough questions about safety.

Simpson reportedly drowned after being trapped for 10 minutes underneath the stricken boat belonging to Sweden's Artemis Racing, which hopes to challenge defender Oracle Team USA in July.

As NPR's Richard Gonzales reports, despite the tragedy and an ongoing investigation, America's Cup organizers insist the cutting-edge 72-foot catamarans are safe.

"The America's Cup will go ahead this summer," Tom Ehman, vice commodore of the Golden Gate Yacht Club, said in a statement earlier this week. "We will see the world's best sailors racing at the highest level on one of the most iconic race tracks in sport."

While a U.S. team exploited a loophole in the design rules to sail a catamaran in the 1988 competition, after that, race organizers tweaked the rules to make sure traditional monohulls returned.

That is, until the competition three years ago, when, in an effort to shake up things giant multihulls were introduced. This Cup's AC72 catamarans are much faster but also much harder to control, and they are changing the competition in ways that have not been universally popular within the sailing community.

And last week's deadly capsize is not the first time one of these boats has run into trouble. In October, Oracle's AC72 also capsized, seriously damaging its 13-story-tall, multimillion-dollar wing-like sail. The crew of a dozen sailors narrowly escaped serious injury.

"The real question right now is, and even before this terrible accident, were these boats too much for the sailors, even for these sailors?" asks John Rousmaniere, who has written extensively about sailing and the history of the America's Cup.

"The evidence is that their safety is really questionable and when you have a death involved, that's serious business," Rousmaniere tells Gonzales from New York.

But Anthony Sandberg, president of OCSC, a sailing and adventure company in Berkeley, thinks the high-tech boats that seem to cheat disaster at every moment, have invigorated the 162-year-old race.

"Fundamentally, you just have an incredible dance," Sandberg says. "Like an elephant dancing on the head of a pin, I just think it's pretty amazing. At 40 miles an hour — and they can even go to 50 [mph]. We don't know the limits of how fast they can go."

"I've described these boats as Indy cars without brakes," he says. "You really can't stop them."

Kimball Livingston, who is senior editor for Sail magazine, agrees.

Livingston tells Gonzales: "These boats are prototypes and until you are beyond the edge you don't know where it is."

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