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

1 hour 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

North Korean Sends Special Envoy To China Amid Tensions

May 22, 2013
Originally published on May 23, 2013 7:54 am

North Korea has sent a special envoy to China, hoping to patch up relations between the two countries that have been on rocky ground over Pyongyang's nuclear program and its recent seizure of a crew of Chinese fishermen.

North Korea's Vice Marshal Choe Ryong Hae, the head of the army's political bureau, is reportedly in Beijing.

As The Christian Science Monitor put it: "Neither side made any official comment on the subject of their discussions. But Beijing has made little secret of its growing frustrations at North Korea's recent behavior."

According to the Monitor:

"Top Chinese leaders have also issued unprecedented public warnings to the young North Korean leader, who has been in power for 18 months. Last month, at the height of Pyongyang's saber rattling, Chinese President Xi Jinping declared pointedly that 'no one should be allowed to throw a region, and even the whole world, into chaos for selfish gain.' "

Choe's trip, The New York Times reports, "is North Korea's first serious dabbling in diplomacy after months of bellicose pronouncements, including threats to launch nuclear strikes at the United States and its allies. It also comes as Japanese officials set off fears of a policy discord with allies by signaling a willingness to open a greater dialogue, including possible summit talks, with North Korea."

Choe is the first senior North Korean official to go to China since August, the newspaper says.

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