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/.

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WVAS Local News

Jun 26, 2013

The U.S. Supreme Court has struck down a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act.  The measure grants legally married same-sex partners the same federal benefits as heterosexual couples.  Several justices dissented in a 5 to 4 vote.  Alabama is one of 35 states that have law banning same-sex marriage.  The state's first openly gay public official says in light of the ruling, she and her partner will file lawsuits challenging Alabama's ban on same-sex marriage.  State Representative Patricia Todd says she and her partner Jennifer Clarke have hired an attorney and are seeking others who wish to participate in the suit. 

Gay Marriage Opposed

Alabama's GOP chairman says the U.S. Supreme Court decisions favoring gay marriage are an affront to Christian principles and hurt taxpayers.  Republican Party chair Bill Armistead says the decisions will put Alabama taxpayers "on the hook" for funding federal benefits to homosexual couples. 

Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless has announced that its high-speed 4G LTE Network has been substantially completed in Alabama just two years after being launched in Montgomery and Mobile.  To celebrate, the phone giant officials say they are awarding four grants worth a total of $100,000 dollars to four Alabama organizations.