Europe

Islamic State
8:57 am
Sun September 14, 2014

ISIS 'Are Not Muslims, They Are Monsters,' Cameron Says

A frame grab from a video released by the Islamic State shows an IS militant holding a knife before purportedly executing British aid worker David Cawthorne Haines.
Islamic State Video EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Sun September 14, 2014 8:01 pm

Vowing justice for murdered aid worker David Haines, Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron says his killing by extremist group the Islamic State is "an act of pure evil." A video purporting to show Haines' beheading was released Saturday.

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Europe
11:39 am
Wed September 10, 2014

Britain's Cameron Pleads With Scots To Stay In U.K.

British Prime Minister David Cameron speaks during a visit to Scottish Widows offices in Edinburgh, where he made an impassioned plea to keep Scotland part of the union.
Andrew Milligan PA Photos/Landov

Originally published on Wed September 10, 2014 3:49 pm

British Prime Minister David Cameron says he'd be "heartbroken" if Scotland voted to separate from the United Kingdom in an upcoming referendum, calling on independence-minded Scots to look at the future consequences of separation.

"I would be heartbroken ... if this family of nations is torn apart," Cameron told an invited audience at the Edinburgh headquarters of the Scottish Widows insurance firm.

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Europe
10:47 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Russia Reports Troop Deaths In Ukraine, But Calls Them 'Volunteers'

Mothers and wives of Russian paratroopers captured in Ukraine wait for information outside their base in Kostroma, Russia. Russia's military has been challenged to explain an upsurge in dead and missing soldiers from its elite units.
Dmitry Serebryakov AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon September 8, 2014 12:31 pm

Ukraine and the West, including the United States, insist that the Russian army has been fighting in eastern Ukraine, a charge that Russia just as vehemently denies.

But reports from Russia now acknowledge that Russian soldiers are part of the battle — though they are claimed to be volunteers, on leave from their army jobs.

Critics say the Russian military is ordering soldiers into the fight, and covering up the deaths of those who are killed, in an unacknowledged war on foreign soil.

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Europe
7:30 am
Mon September 8, 2014

As Scotland Eyes Independence, Poll Gives Edge To Leaving The U.K.

A display along a country road between Perth and Pitlochry urges Scots to stick with the United Kingdom.
Melisa Goh NPR

Originally published on Sun September 7, 2014 11:21 pm

In less than two weeks, voters in Scotland will decide whether to pursue their independence from the United Kingdom — and for the first time, a poll shows the push to break away now has the edge over the "unity" vote.

The Scottish National Party has been urging people to vote "Yes" in the Sept. 18 vote on splitting with the U.K. The group recently published a video touting Scotland's economic strength and its energy assets. The video closes by urging voters to "put Scotland's future in Scotland's hands."

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NATO
12:34 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Obama: Our Goal Is To 'Dismantle' The Islamic State

President Barack Obama speaks at a news conference at the NATO summit at Celtic Manor, Newport, Wales, on Friday.
Charles Dharapak AP

Originally published on Sat September 6, 2014 12:43 pm

During a press conference to mark the end of a two-day meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in Wales, President Obama said he found "conviction" among U.S. friends and allies that the international community must "degrade and ultimately destroy" the Islamic State.

Obama said the militant Sunni group cannot be contained because it is already causing so much damage.

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Eastern Europe
9:58 am
Fri September 5, 2014

In Ukraine, Cease-Fire Between Government, Separatists Takes Hold

Pro-Russian separatists stand on a road in the village of Novokaterinovka, eastern Ukraine, on Thursday.
Anatolii Boiko AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 1:43 pm

This post was updated at 1 p.m. ET.

The government of Ukraine and pro-Russian separatists in the east say they have stopped fighting, honoring a cease-fire that took effect late Friday afternoon local time.

NPR's Corey Flintoff tells our Newscast unit that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ordered a cease-fire once separatists agreed to peace talks at a meeting in Belarus.

During a televised press conference, Poroshenko said the peace deal was forged based on a phone conversation he had with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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NATO
6:55 am
Fri September 5, 2014

NATO Announces 'Rapid-Reaction Force' Amid News Of Ukraine Cease-Fire Deal

President Obama stands alongside British Prime Minister David Cameron, center left, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, second left, Croatian President Ivo Josipovic, left, Romanian President Traian Basescu, right, and RAF Group Captain David Bentley, second right, during a flypast at the NATO summit at the Celtic Manor Resort in Newport, Wales on Friday.
Jon Super AP

Originally published on Fri September 5, 2014 11:11 am

(This post was last updated at 8:04 a.m. ET.)

On the second and final day of their meeting in Wales, members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization are expected to announce more aid to Ukraine.

NATO also announced the formation of a so-called rapid-reaction force. As The Associated Press describes it, this consists of "several thousand troops in Eastern Europe that could quickly mobilize if an alliance country in the region comes under attack."

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NATO
8:24 am
Thu September 4, 2014

At NATO Summit, Allies Consider Lethal, Nonlethal Aid To Ukraine

President Obama sits with (from left) French President Francois Hollande; Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko; British Prime Minister David Cameron; German Chancellor Angela Merkel; and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi as they meet about Ukraine Thursday at the NATO summit at Celtic Manor in Newport, Wales.
Charles Dharapak AP

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 11:18 am

President Obama, along with all members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, are in Wales today as a set of international conflicts puts the military alliance back in the spotlight.

At the top of the agenda is, of course, the crisis in Ukraine.

In an interview with NPR's Morning Edition, Gen. Philip Breedlove, NATO's supreme allied commander in Europe, said the allied forces are facing a situation they never thought they would see again in the region.

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Eastern Europe
3:01 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Can NATO Find A Way To Contain Russia?

Pro-Russian rebels prepare their weapons in the eastern city of Donetsk on Aug. 31. Russia's role in Ukraine has raised tensions between Russia and NATO to their highest level since the Soviet breakup more than two decades ago.
Mstislav Chernov AP

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 3:44 pm

Ever since the Cold War ended, the armies of NATO and Russia have been moving warily toward each other while their political positions keep moving further apart.

Twelve Eastern European countries have joined NATO since the Soviet breakup, and NATO is now on the verge of creating a rapid-reaction force for the region. Russia has sent troops into two former Soviet republics, Ukraine and Georgia, that have relationships with NATO, but not membership.

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White House
9:28 am
Wed September 3, 2014

'Justice Will Be Served,' Obama Warns The Islamic State

President Obama speaks during a press conference with Estonia's president at the Bank of Estonia in Tallinn on Wednesday.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 12:42 pm

Speaking in Estonia today, President Obama issued a warning to the extremist group that took responsibility for beheading two American journalists: "We will not be intimidated," Obama said, according to Time. "Those who make the mistake of harming Americans will learn that we will not forget, and that our reach is long, and that justice will be served."

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Europe
7:40 am
Wed September 3, 2014

Russia, Ukraine Distance Themselves From News Of A Cease-Fire Deal

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (left) welcomes Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjorn Jagland during a meeting Monday.
Mykhailo Markiv AP

Originally published on Wed September 3, 2014 1:01 pm

The morning started on a hopeful note: The office of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that in a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the two had agreed on a "permanent cease-fire."

But that was short-lived. As the state-funded Russia Today reports, the Russians quickly pointed out that they had reached no such agreement, because "Russia is not party to Ukraine conflict."

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Eastern Europe
8:31 am
Tue September 2, 2014

NATO To Create New 'Spearhead' Force For Eastern Europe

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen on Monday.
Yves Logghe AP

Originally published on Tue September 2, 2014 7:12 am

NATO leaders are expected to set up a rapid-response force to deploy quickly to eastern Europe to defend against potential Russian aggression at their meeting in Wales later this week.

The force of about 4,000 troops will be ready to move on 48 hours notice from a station in a member country close to Russia, The New York Times reported.

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Ukraine/Russia Conflict
2:05 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

White House Says "Continuation," Murphy Says "War"

Sen. Chris Murphy on WNPR's Where We Live in December, 2013.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

As the conflict between Ukraine and Russia continues to escalate, Democratic U.S. Senator Chris Murphy wants to call it what it is: a war.

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Europe
11:43 am
Fri August 29, 2014

Britain Raises Terror Alert Level, But Cites No Specific Threat

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron speaks at a news conference in London on Friday after the U.K. raised its terror alert level.
Paul Hackett PA Photos/Landov

Originally published on Fri August 29, 2014 1:07 pm

British Prime Minister David Cameron is warning that the threat to the U.K. from international terrorism is "greater and deeper" than ever before, as London raised its terror warning level in response to what it said were plans by the Islamic State and other extremist groups to attack the West.

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Ukraine
7:53 am
Fri August 29, 2014

Ukrainian Prime Minister Says Government Will Seek NATO Membership

A pro-Russian rebel walks in a passage at a local market damaged by shelling in Petrovskiy district in the eastern Ukrainian town of Donetsk.
Mstislav Chernov AP

Originally published on Fri August 29, 2014 1:17 pm

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk says his government has sent parliament a bill that allows Ukraine to open a path toward membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

"The main and only goal of Ukraine's foreign policy is to join the European Union," Yatsenyuk said in a statement.

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Ukraine
5:13 pm
Thu August 28, 2014

Obama Blames Russia For Violence In Ukraine; Calls Moves 'Incursion'

President Obama said at a White House news conference Thursday that Russia is to blame for the violence in eastern Ukraine.
Larry Downing Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri August 29, 2014 10:26 am

Updated at 4:47 p.m.

President Obama blamed Russia for the violence in Ukraine and said its "incursion" into the former Soviet state will only carry additional costs.

"Russia has deliberately and repeatedly violated the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and the new images of Russian forces inside Ukraine make that plain for the world to see," Obama said at a White House news conference on Thursday.

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Retail Apology
9:38 am
Wed August 27, 2014

Fashion Retailer Zara Pulls Kids Shirt Resembling Concentration Camp Uniform

A kids shirt that was for sale on Zara.com.
Zara.com

Originally published on Wed August 27, 2014 11:30 am

The clothing retail giant Zara is apologizing and has pulled a kids' shirt from its stores after hearing complaints that it resembled the uniform worn by prisoners in Nazi concentration camps.

In a tweet, Zara said the shirt was "inspired by the sheriff's stars from the Classic Western films."

Reporting from Spain's Canary Islands, Lauren Frayer tells our Newscast unit that this isn't the first time the Spanish retailer has gotten into trouble. She filed this report:

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Europe
8:38 am
Wed August 27, 2014

Report Details 16 Years Of 'Horrific Abuse' Of Children In U.K. Town

Alexis Jay, author of a report released Tuesday that documents the abuse of 1,400 children in Rotherham, England, says local authorities were aware of the problem for years and did nothing.
Dave Higgens PA Photos/Landov

Originally published on Tue August 26, 2014 8:07 pm

An investigation out on Tuesday documents the abuse of more than 1,400 children in Rotherham, England, and says local authorities were aware of the problem for years and did not respond.

Alexis Jay, who authored the report, used to be chief inspector of social work in Scotland.

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Eruption
12:17 pm
Sat August 23, 2014

Iceland Ups Aviation Warning As Volcano Rumbles

A warning sign blocks the road to Bardarbunga volcano, some 12 miles away, in the northwest region of Iceland's Vatnajokull glacier, on Tuesday.
Reuters/Landov

Iceland today raised an aviation alert level to reflect growing concern over underground rumblings at its Bardarbunga volcano in the central part of the island nation.

A sub-glacial eruption caused Icelandic authorities to raise the aviation alert level to red, indicating "significant emission of ash into the atmosphere," The Associated Press reports.

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Europe
1:42 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Paris Heist: Gunmen Take $335,000 From Saudi Motorcade

The Four Seasons George V hotel is seen in Paris. Armed robbers held up a convoy of Saudi diplomatic vehicles that was bound for a Paris airport from the hotel, with about $335,000 in cash.
Iam Langsdon EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Mon August 18, 2014 2:07 pm

The motorcade of a Saudi prince was hit by thieves Sunday night, as armed men burst from two BMWs and carjacked a vehicle that contained 250,000 euros (about $335,000). The motorcade had been headed from a luxury hotel in Paris to an airport; police suspect the gunmen had inside knowledge.

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Iraq
7:41 am
Wed August 13, 2014

Iraq Update: France Will Arm Kurds; More Refugees Leave Mountain

Iraqi children from the Yazidi community wave to Kurdish peshmerga forces near Dohuk, the Kurdish region of autonomous Kurdistan in Iraq. The children fled with their families from their hometown, which was attacked by Sunni militants from the Islamic State.
Ahmad Al-Rubaye AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 13, 2014 7:50 pm

Citing the persecution of religious minorities in Iraq, France says it will deliver weapons to Kurds fighting the extremists of the Islamic State. The news comes as thousands of Yazidi refugees have escaped their plight on Mount Sinjar, crossing into a Kurdish-controlled portion of Syria.

Here are the developments we're seeing today out of Iraq:

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Flight MH17
2:38 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Dutch Call Off Search For Additional Remains In Ukraine

Visitors look at a memorial at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport on Monday.
ROBIN VAN LONKHUIJSEN AFP/Getty Images

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has called off the search for additional remains at the site of the downed airliner in Ukraine.

At a news conference in The Hague on Wednesday, Rutte said the search has become too dangerous.

As we reported yesterday, Russia has stationed more than 30,000 troops near its border with Ukraine for military exercises.

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Russian Forces
3:20 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

U.S.: Russia-Based Artillery Targeting Ukrainian Troops

Ukrainian troops camouflage their multiple rocket launcher at a checkpoint in Kryva Luka, in eastern Ukraine, earlier this month. The U.S. says Russia is planning to provide similar systems to the rebels.
Evgeniy Maloletka AP

The U.S. says it has "new evidence" that Russian forces have been firing artillery across the border to attack Ukrainian military positions, and that Moscow is planning to ship powerful rocket artillery to the rebels it backs in the country's east.

"We have new evidence that the Russians intend to deliver heavier and more powerful multiple rocket launchers to the separatist forces in Ukraine, and have evidence that Russia is firing artillery from within Russia to attack Ukrainian military positions," State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said during a daily briefing.

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Flight MH17
2:27 pm
Sat July 19, 2014

Ukraine Accuses Rebels Of Destroying Evidence At MH17 Crash Site

With pro-Russian separatists standing guard, investigators from the OSCE arrive at the crash site of the Malaysia Airline jet near the village of Hrabove in Eastern Ukraine on Friday.
Dmitry Lovetsky AP

Originally published on Sat July 19, 2014 11:45 pm

Updated at 4:35 p.m. ET.

International investigators say armed rebels have limited their inspection of the Eastern Ukraine site of the downed Malaysian Airlines flight that killed nearly 300 passengers and crew, as Kiev accused pro-Russian separatists of destroying evidence at the scene.

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Netherlands
1:13 pm
Sat July 19, 2014

Dutch Premier Decries 'Utterly Disrespectful Behavior' At MH17 Crash Site

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte during a news conference at the Ministry of Safety and Justice in The Hague, The Netherlands, on Friday. Rutte says he's shocked by the behavior of pro-Russian rebels at the MH17 crash site.
Bart Maat EPA/Landov

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 9:02 am

Updated at 3:10 p.m. ET.

Netherlands Prime Minister Mark Rutte is expressing shock and anger over the chaotic scene at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, where nearly 200 Dutch citizens were killed, saying Russia has "one last chance" to use its influence with Ukrainian rebels to provide access to the scene.

Reuters quotes Rutte as saying he had a "very intense" conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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White House
5:46 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

U.S. Sanctions Major Russian Banks And Energy Companies

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk visits forces stationed near the small city of Izyum on Wednesday.
Sergey Bobok AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 17, 2014 8:18 am

President Obama outlined a new package of sanctions against Russian firms and individuals on Wednesday.

"These sanctions are significant but also targeted," Obama said. "Russia will see that its actions in Ukraine have consequences."

The administration targeted large banks, as well as energy and defense firms. The sanctions stopped short of covering entire sectors of the Russian economy.

Obama said they were designed to inflict pain on Russia without harming U.S. companies or the nation's allies.

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Courts
2:56 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

UK Man Sentenced for Taliban Support

Babar Ahmad.
Credit BBC

A British citizen imprisoned in Connecticut for supporting terrorism was sentenced in federal court in New Haven today.

Babar Ahmad was given 12 and half years in prison, with credit for the ten years he’s already served.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
6:00 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Germany: Who Are You Now?

Credit MomentCaptured1 / Creative Commons

Two snapshots: The first from the publication American Bazaar, right after the German World Cup win. "In the city of Leipzig, a solitary car scuttled along, with the flag attached to the roof. Waving the flag has yet to catch on. Jan Hoffman, who works in Frankfurt, was in New York when 9/11 happened.  'I had never seen so many flags in my life. Here, there are hardly any, although we won football's greatest tournament.

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Religion
12:58 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Church Of England Will Allow Women To Serve As Bishops

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, shown here in Kenya last October, supported the decision to ordain women as bishops.
Ben Curtis AP

Originally published on Mon July 14, 2014 1:44 pm

The Church of England voted Monday to ordain women as bishops.

Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the church's spiritual leader, said before the vote that the public would find it "almost incomprehensible" if the church's General Synod did not approve the change.

A similar proposal was narrowly defeated in 2012. A revised proposal had been put to a vote and approved in 43 of the church's 44 dioceses, according to the BBC.

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Tour de France
11:56 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Another Former Champion Abandons Tour De France After Crash

Spain's Alberto Contador abandons the Tour de France after crashing during the 10th stage Monday.
Christophe Ena AP

Originally published on Tue July 15, 2014 8:49 am

These are not good days to be a former Tour de France champion on the roads of France. Spain's Alberto Contador left the race after suffering a heavy crash in a wet and foggy portion of Monday's mountain stage, five days after defending champion Chris Froome abandoned the race.

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