The new British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her cabinet today.

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

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


Pope's Visit To Brazil Seen As 'Triumphant Homecoming'

Jul 21, 2013
Originally published on July 21, 2013 7:25 pm

When Pope Francis arrives in Brazil on Monday, he'll begin a trip of firsts.

He's the first Latin American pope, and it will be his first trip abroad as pontiff. And he'll be visiting a country with more Catholics than any other.

Francis, who is gaining a reputation for his simple ways, is expected, The Miami Herald writes, to:

" ... walk the streets of a shantytown, visit young prisoners and greet hundreds of thousands of pilgrims this week during World Youth Day celebrations in Brazil ..."

Rocco Palmo, who writes the Catholic blog Whispers in the Loggia tells NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday that Francis, whose papacy has energized Latin American Catholics, can expect an especially warm reception: "It's going to be a triumphant homecoming," he says.

The pope is expected to eschew the glass-encased "pope mobile" in favor of an open-topped car.

"It sends a message of not being afraid, but it also sends a message of wanting to be close to people," Palmo tells Weekend Edition host Rachel Martin.

The papal visit, which begins in Rio de Janeiro, comes barely a month after massive street protests in Brazil were staged to protest corruption, government largess, poor education and substandard medical care in the country.

The New York Times quotes Fernando Altemeyer Jr., a theologian and philosopher at the Pontifical Catholic University in São Paulo, as saying it's a "crucial moment for the church, the nation, society and the people."

"Brazil has changed and things are bubbling, but there is no clarity. Everything is new and unknown, in the country and the church, even for the bishops," Altemeyer says.

Blogger Palmo says Francis is deeply aware of the situation in Brazil.

"But at the same time, I don't think he's going to wade into [the politics] outside of just general principles," he says. "The Church speaks about the principles, the morals, but the practicals are for the politicians to decide."

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