international politics

The Colombian government and the FARC rebel group have spent four years negotiating a peace deal to bring an end to more than 50 years of war.

Terms were agreed on, a deal was finalized, the accord was signed — and then, in a stunning turn of events, the people of Colombia voted against the agreement in a national referendum Sunday.

So. What now?

Osman Mohamed, of Somalia, and his three daughters, ages 2, 4 and 5. Osmon hoped to find paradise in Seattle, but in his first year, his family witnessed a shooting and he was hit by a car.
KUOW Photo/Mike Kane

For many refugees, the first year can feel like a race against the clock to set up a new life.

You get a little cash up front and a few months of help from a social worker.

Then, you’re mostly on your own.

Recently inaugurated Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is "expressing regret" for his comments at a fiery press conference, in which he called President Obama a "son of a bitch" or "son of a whore" (depending on how you translate the Tagalog) and threatened to swear at him in a planned bilateral meeting.

The White House canceled the meeting shortly after Duterte's comments.

"We ... regret [the remarks] came across as a personal attack on the U.S. president," Duterte's office said in a statement issued Tuesday.

José Cabezas/Reuters

Millions of Salvadorans, including many in the country's poorest neighborhoods, have cellphones. 

But when those impoverished Salvadorans are victims of abuse at the hands of police, few dare to use their mobile devices to record the misconduct. 

Why not?

Salvadoran American youth advocate Susan Cruz asked young residents of the heavily policed San Salvador suburb of Soyapango if they would use their phones to document police wrongdoing. 

Kenneth Bae spent two years in a North Korean prison
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

After a year in the North Korean prison, Kenneth Bae softened toward his guards.

Despite controlling Myanmar's newly sworn-in parliament, the party led by Aung San Suu Kyi can't name her as a presidential candidate because she's ineligible under constitutional rules. Conceding that point Thursday, Suu Kyi wrote an apology to her supporters.

A photo of Nestora Salgado from her website. The caption says it is a photo of her as the leader of the community police.
Courtesy of

The case of a Renton woman who is jailed in Mexico is getting new attention.

Nestora Salgado was arrested 30 months ago, detained because of her involvement in a community-based police force in the Mexican state of Guerrero.

There is a joke circulating in San Salvador these days: "Instead of using a condom, use a mosquito net! That should at least keep the mosquitoes from biting your privates."

The joke is a dig at the unusual suggestion made by the governments of El Salvador and various other Latin American countries. Brazil, Colombia and Ecuador (as well as Jamaica) have advised that women hold off on getting pregnant. El Salvador went as far as to urge women to hold back on having children until 2018.

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Alexei Nikolsky/Reuters

On Russian state television, the Russian military campaign in Syria is portrayed as one success after another — terrorists targets destroyed through precision airstrikes, the Syrian army counterattacking against ISIS, and ever new surprises up Moscow's sleeve.

While American officials have disputed the accuracy of those strikes, Vladimir Ryzhkov, a prominent opposition politician, says the Russian campaign, which began in late September, is in fact showcasing effective military reforms carried out under Putin in recent years; this is the new improved Russian army.

Updated at 3:10 p.m. ET

Germany's interior minister confirmed Sunday that his country would impose temporary controls on its border, halting trains between Austria and Germany for a 12-hour period to stem the flow of refugees flooding into Munich.

"The aim of these measures is to limit the current inflows to Germany and to return to orderly procedures when people enter the country," Thomas de Maiziere said at a news conference.

Flickr Photo/@PaulDCocker (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman gets reactions from Scottish-born locals  Joyce Denton, David McCann and Andrew McDiarmid after the results of Thursday's referendum on Scotland's independence from the United Kingdom.

When Nimco Ali was 7, she thought her family was going on vacation. They flew from their hometown in Manchester, England, to Djibouti on the Horn of Africa.

Ali doesn't remember the exact location. But she clearly remembers what happened there.

The young girl found herself in a dingy room, with a woman dressed in all black, standing over her. She didn't know what was going on at the time. But she fell asleep. And when Ali woke up, she was confused.

The woman had mutilated her genitals.

Update on Aug. 5 at 6:25 p.m. ET: More On Quarantines

Photographer Tommy Trenchard discussed more about what he has seen in Freetown, Sierra Leone, with NPR's Audie Cornish on All Things Considered.

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa is spreading at an alarming rate. The death toll rose Monday to 900 when the World Health Organization reported 61 new deaths across four countries.

A new law in Bolivia allows children as young as 10 to work legally, and has led to sharp criticism from many international human rights groups who note that it goes against a United Nations convention setting a minimum age of 14.

But supporters of the legislation say that the law guarantees legal protections and fair wages for children, who have been working regardless of laws against it.