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

Obama Would Veto House's Farm Bill, White House Says

Jun 17, 2013
Originally published on June 18, 2013 3:12 pm

President Obama will be advised to veto a multi-year farm bill slated to be discussed in the House this week, the White House says. The administration issued a statement on the legislation Monday afternoon, criticizing it for cutting food programs for the poor.

At more than 575 pages, the bipartisan bill was introduced by Reps. Frank Lucas, R-Okla., and Collin Peterson, D-Minn., the chairman and ranking member of the House Committee on Agriculture.

When it was released in early May, Rep. Lucas called the bill, officially titled the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, "a responsible and balanced bill that addresses Americans' concerns about federal spending and reforms farm and nutrition policy to improve efficiency and accountability."

The Obama administration doesn't agree, saying today that the "bill makes unacceptable deep cuts in SNAP, which could increase hunger among millions of Americans who are struggling to make ends meet, including families with children and senior citizens."

The White House added that if the bill's sponsors want to make budget cuts, they ought to reduce federal subsidies, such as crop insurance.

"Rather than reducing crop insurance subsidies by $11.7 billion over 10 years, as proposed in the President's Budget," the statement reads, "H.R. 1947 would increase reference prices for farmers by roughly 45 percent and increase already generous crop insurance subsidies at a cost of nearly $9 billion over 10 years to the Nation's taxpayers."

A summary of the bill released by the House Agriculture Committee says the legislation will "eliminate or consolidate over 100 programs," in addition to enacting the "first reforms to SNAP since the welfare reforms of 1996, saving more than $20 billion."

Among those changes, Republicans say, are two moves to keep states from adding more people to the food program than the law was meant to allow. Earlier today, Lucas tweeted a photo of a chart listing those reforms.

When the farm bill was released, Rep. Peterson said he believes "there are more responsible ways to reform nutrition programs," but he added that "the bottom line is that this is the first step in the process and it is past time to pass a five-year farm bill."

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