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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A Sharper Abortion Debate After Gosnell Verdict

May 14, 2013

The murder conviction in Philadelphia of abortion provider Dr. Kermit Gosnell in the deaths of three babies and one of his female patients is likely to further inflame the already heated abortion debate.

Both sides of the abortion divide have been gearing up for what comes next for some time now.

The irony of this case is that those on both sides of the debate were hoping for a conviction. That's because what Gosnell means to the abortion debate really comes down to this: Was he an exception? Or are there more abortion providers like him who just haven't been discovered yet?

Abortion rights backers insist he's an outlier.

"The fact is that what he did was illegal — unethical, unscrupulous, illegal," says Jodi Jacobson. "And it bears no comparison to safe abortion care or even late abortion care, because he performed abortions post-viability on women without indications for such, so they were illegal."

Jacobson, who runs RH Reality Check, an online daily news service about reproductive rights and sexual politics, says most states already have laws that bar abortions late in pregnancy — except when there are medical reasons.

"If you have a late abortion situation in the third trimester, you are facing either a threat to the life or the health of the mother, or a fetus with anomalies incompatible with life," she says.

Abortion opponents, however, say Gosnell is anything but an exception.

"The tentacles of this type of approach to abortion are all over the country," says Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List. "He is not an outlier. You just have to do a Google search and you'll find in the last several months many other examples" of rogue abortion providers, she said.

But whether or not there are more doctors like Gosnell, anti-abortion forces say they'll try to harness the public outrage created by this trial to further their cause.

Republicans on the House side of Capitol Hill have already launched a series of efforts. Leaders of the Energy and Commerce Committee are asking state public health officials to provide "details on state licensing of abortion clinics and providers, information on revoked licenses, state inspections of clinics" and other details about regulation of abortion providers. The deadline for responses is May 22.

Meanwhile, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., has asked every state attorney general "if state and local governments are being stymied in their efforts to protect the civil rights of newborns and their mothers by legal or financial obstacles that are within the federal government's power to address."

Dannenfelser says she hopes the case will help efforts to pass legislation to ban abortions after a certain point in pregnancy.

"The question would be, is there a point where the civil rights of the unborn child comes into play? And there is a solid majority that says that late in pregnancy, that point exists," she says. "Anywhere from 18 to 20 weeks, there is a good 60, 70, 80 percent support for that type of measure."

Both 18 and 20 weeks, however, are well before fetal viability, and thus would challenge the current Supreme Court holding for when abortion should be generally legal.

Abortion rights groups, meanwhile, are using the Gosnell case, too. They're making the case that as abortion becomes more and more restricted, women will have fewer and fewer options, and will end up turning to sketchier providers like Gosnell.

"He was acting wholly outside the law, and the fact that that is the case really suggests the reason why we need to make sure that we have good providers, that abortion has to be safe and legal and accessible," says Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights.

One thing is clear coming out of the Gosnell case. It is likely to once again shift the emphasis of the abortion debate. Until recently, it's been on birth control, where abortion-rights groups enjoy broader public support. Now it's likely to swing back to later abortions, where abortion opponents have the public-opinion edge.

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