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.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

2 hours ago
Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Pages

Beer Fridge Blamed For Cellphone Network Blackout

Jun 4, 2013

Faced with reports of a "black spot" that interfered with the mobile network in several neighborhoods, technicians at Australian cellphone provider Telstra say they recently found the source of the problem: a man's beer fridge in his garage. The refrigerator was tracked by "software robots" and workers wielding special antennas.

"I'm amazed something like that could knock out part of the network," Craig Reynolds of Wangaratta, northeast of Melbourne, tells the Herald Sun. "You're certainly going to stop and wonder. I'm going to run and see if my fridge is all right next time there's a problem with the network."

The beer fridge's motor was blamed for causing the disturbance, with Telstra engineers saying that an electric spark evidently created enough radio frequency noise "to create blackouts on the 850mHz spectrum that carries our mobile voice calls and Internet data," according to the Herald Sun.

Telstra's Greg Halley tells the newspaper that technicians used directional "Mr. Yagi" antennas (aka the Yagi-Uda antenna, named for its inventors) to track the precise location of the disruption. In the past, they've found ATM machines and illegal signal boosters to be culprits. As you might expect, the engineers deal with hundreds of such cases each year.

"The sources vary — it can be domestic equipment, it can be [TV] masthead amplifiers, it can be electric or plastic welding stuff in industrial estates, it can be illegal repeaters," Telstra manager Richard Henderson told iTnews.

"There's no particular focus now on beer fridges," he added.

The incident has sparked discussion on Slashdot, where comments ranged from discussion of "how dodgy does a motor have to be" to disrupt the network, to a more pressing question: What did Craig Reynolds do with his beer?

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.