Host Marco Werman and his team of producers bring you the world's most interesting stories that remind us just how small our planet really is.
Host Marco Werman and his team of producers bring you the world's most interesting stories that remind us just how small our planet really is.
Elon Musk’s satellite internet Starlink goes live in El Salvador
Last month, Elon Musk’s satellite internet, Starlink, went live in El Salvador. The government hopes this will revolutionize internet access in the region. But many worry that the cost of the service will keep it out of reach for many people. Also, being a doctor in Ukraine brings great risk. There have been more than 700 attacks on health care facilities since the war there began. And, a tattoo artist in Jerusalem is carrying on a 700-year-old Christian tradition. Plus, Turkish voters head to the polls again. We have a preview of the upcoming runoff presidential election. School is out for the summer! But we have one more assignment for you. If you are a student or a recent graduate from an American university, we’d like to know why you chose to study in the US. Was it what you hoped for? What do you like, what do you not like? When you graduate will you return home? Record a voice memo with your story. Include your name and location and email the voice memo to email@example.com. We might feature your story on the program.
China braces for new COVID wave
The latest wave of COVID-19 infections to hit China could see as many as 65 million cases per week by the time the surge peaks at the end of June. It’s being fueled by omicron XBB, a subvariant that’s been found widely in the US. Plus, Greek authorities have made some 200 beaches water accessible to people with disabilities. And the "Queen of Rock 'n' Roll," Tina Turner, has died at the age of 83. The iconic musician spent the last few decades of her life in Europe. What prompted that choice?
Tunisia's democracy continues to deteriorate
Tunisia's democracy continues to deteriorate with the arrests of opposition politicians, including the main opposition leader. Now, the children of these politicians are mounting pressure on the government by filing a case against them in the African Court of Justice. Plus, women who once worked for NGOs in Afghanistan speak out against the Taliban's ban. And, the global impact on markets as the US hits its debt ceiling.
Ukrainians start over in France
The US isn't the only country that's created a "debt ceiling." Denmark has one, too. But Danes don't play politics when it comes to paying their debt. Also, millions of Ukrainians fled their country after Russia's full-scale invasion last year. While many have returned, some can't or won't. We meet Ukrainians who are starting over in France. And, Filipinos have a message for Taylor Swift: "Come back!"
Chinese govt protests 'anti-China' sentiment at G7 summit
Beijing is not happy. As the G7 meeting in Hiroshima, Japan, wrapped up, the Chinese government is protesting what it sees as the "anti-China" tenor of the summit. Also, the Biden administration says it will support an effort to train Ukrainian pilots learning how to operate F-16 warplanes. Plus, Angelique Kidjo, the musician and activist from Benin, is one of three recipients at this year's Polar Prize for music in Stockholm. She takes her responsibility seriously "for our world to be a better place."
Greece heads into a general election this Sunday
For more than a decade, Greece was seen as the "sick man of Europe." But in the last couple of years, its economy has performed better than many of its EU neighbours. So, the center-right government should be feeling pretty confident heading into a general election this Sunday. But it's not that clear-cut. Also, a shared religious site in Jerusalem is among the most contentious. A worst-cast scenario was avoided last month during overlapping religious holidays. Security is back to normal. But what does "normal" look like? And, China's population is on the decline. A lot of young people don't want to get married and have kids. But Beijing is rolling out a new initiative to try and reverse this trend. Plus, The World concludes its series looking at waste pickers across the globe. Today, it's off to Japan, where garbage picking has been turned into a choreographed performance.
Japan set to host G-7 summit in Hiroshima
Japan is set to host the G-7 summit in Hiroshima, the site of one of the only two nuclear attacks in history. Also, a comedy group in China is being heavily fined for a viral joke that made light of a Chinese military slogan. And, a longtime ban on dreadlocks at elementary schools in Malawi has been lifted. Plus, we hear the second part of report on how a Sudanese warlord rose to power, while operating with impunity.
The fight for control in Sudan
The fight for control of Sudan. It's a match between two generals. One's been accused of committing war crimes. He also claims to be one of the richest men in Africa. Also, the arrest of controversial influencer Andrew Tate last December turned a spotlight on Romania's adult webcam industry. And, the megacity of Mumbai, India, generates an astonishing amount of trash. An informal network of recycling scavengers make it livable. A look at Mumbai's chaotic, yet effective, recycling program.
Zelenskiy's appeal brings in more military support to Ukraine
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy's recent appeal to European leaders has brought in more military aid for the country's defense against Russia. It's an indication that Western officials believe Kyiv’s forces could reclaim significant swaths of territory. Also, in southern Mexico, droughts are getting worse. That's forcing farmers to adjust and adapt. And, with the end of the pandemic-era rule known as Title 42 last week, the rules for seeking asylum at the US border have changed dramatically. They can be confusing. So, just how does the process work? Plus, across Ghana, waste picking is crucial for building a "circular economy" to eliminate waste. It's also a vital survival strategy for many. But it's a dangerous, undervalued job.
Turkish presidential elections head to a runoff
When polls opened in Turkey on Sunday, opposition candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu seemed poised to unseat Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who has been in power for 20 years. Now, the two are headed to a runoff. And, US ambassador to South Africa Reuben Brigety said the South African government sent arms to Russia in December 2022 aboard a ship under US sanctions. Also, the United Kingdom's schemes to help settle Ukrainian refugees helped house over 170,000 Ukrainians since last year. Now, one of the creators is calling on the UK government to support a similar scheme for Sudan. Plus, the UN marks the 75th anniversary of the "Nakba" for the first time, when hundreds of thousands of Palestinians became refugees.
Ukraine military gains ground in embattled Bakhmut
After months of stalemate, Ukraine’s military says it’s gaining ground in the embattled southern city of Bakhmut. We hear from US Ambassador Bridget Brink about the current situation on the ground. And, angry and exhausted, Turkish voters head to the polls on Sunday, as President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan faces a robust challenge from six opposition parties who have united behind candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. Also, fighting continues for a third day this week between Israel and the Palestinian militant faction, Islamic Jihad, in the Gaza Strip. Plus, celebrating Mother's Day around the globe.
Migrants in Mexico rush to cross US border as Title 42 lifts
Shelters in cities like Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, are emptying as many of them have decided to surrender to US authorities before Title 42 ends on May 11. Some fear that stricter rules might prevent them from coming after the pandemic-era policy expires. And, the Saudi government began talks to broker a peace deal between leaders of the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces paramilitary group, which have been fighting for control of Sudan's capital since April 15. Also, across Europe, prosecutors have been nabbing suspects involved in the drug trade for the Italian mafia group, Ndrangheta. Plus, Russian artists in exile create new work — and identities.
Migration across Darien Gap transforms local economies
As the number of people trying to cross the jungle on their way to the United States increases, transporting migrants and leading them on treks across the rainforest has become the main industry in Capurgana, a small village on the southern edge of the Darien Gap in Colombia. And, the Pentagon announced $1.2 billion in additional military aid for Ukraine this week as the country prepares for a major counteroffensive against Russia. Also, this weekend, 64 million Turkish voters will choose their next leader. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan moved the elections up by a month after facing criticism for his response to devastating earthquakes in February. Plus, a Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen takes home the coveted Best in Show award at Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
US braces for increased migration as Title 42 lifts
Migrants from South America, Africa and Asia are crossing the Darien Gap between Colombia and Panama at record rates. As the US prepares to lift Title 42 on May 11, many migrants believe their chances of getting into the US will increase. And, early Tuesday morning, the Israeli army targeted senior leaders of the militant group, Islamic Jihad, in an operation it says killed three senior leaders in Gaza. Also, amid ongoing fighting in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, many are still trapped at home, with limited supplies. Neighborhood committees have formed to bring in food and water, and check on people's welfare. Plus, legendary opera singer Grace Bumbry dies at the age of 86.
Israelis continue to protest 'judicial coup'
More than 100,000 people turned out in central Tel Aviv, Israel, on Saturday to say no to the government's plans for judicial reform, for the 18th consecutive week. For now, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is holding off on the judicial overhaul. And, in 2021, the United Nations Human Rights Council established the International Independent Expert Mechanism to Advance Racial Justice and Equality in the context of Law Enforcement. Their most recent trip brought the international experts to the United States. Also, the humanitarian crisis continues to deteriorate in Sudan as the fighting intensifies. The UN estimates 19 million people will be food insecure in the coming months. Plus, get ready for Eurovision, kicking off soon in Liverpool.
WHO ends global COVID emergency
After three years, and the death of millions of people, the World Health Organiziation's Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced an end to the emergency. He made clear that the pandemic is not over and measures to prevent COVID-19 spread need to remain in place. And, a government app encourages Iraqis to report immoral behavior on- and offline. Also, in Serbia, two separate shooting sprees in two days have left 17 people dead in the Balkan country where gun violence is rare. Now, Serbia's president wants "practical disarmament" of the country, which has some of the most guns per citizen of any country in the world. Plus, how a group of Cuban female musicians claimed a once-forbidden drum.
Foreign interests complicate fighting in Sudan
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt have all made investments in Sudan and consider the Red Sea country an important location. These interests further complicate the ongoing fighting on the ground. And, scientists believe only a fraction of the potential 2 million marine species in our oceans have been identified. A new Ocean Census project aims to change that by identifying 100,000 new species in just 10 years. Also, US officials are dismissing Russian accusations that it "masterminded" Wednesday’s drone attack on the Kremlin. Plus, Copenhagen's mayor urges the "Danish capital of America" to support the LGBTQ community.
Drones hit Kremlin, Ukraine denies role
Videos apparently show two drones exploding over the Kremlin early Wednesday morning. Moscow claims the drones are from Ukraine and an attempt to assassinate Russian leader Vladimir Putin. But Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has denied any involvement in the attack. And, the capture of the Niovi, a Greek-owned vessel in the Strait of Hormuz, is the second-such capture by Tehran in recent days. We hear about the potential impact on shipping, and what it says about the safety of vessels passing through the waters off Iran. Also, The Writers Guild of America is on strike for better wages and royalties. How might this impact international series? Plus, some animals are able to adapt to climate change— so far.
A new generation of militants in the West Bank
In the Palestinian city of Nablus, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, there’s a new group of national heroes. They’re part of an upstart militant group called the Lions’ Den. And, how is AI helping to protect against sushi sabatoge? That's the latest TikTok trend where young pranksters in Japan are contaminating sushi served on conveyer belts in restaurants. Also, Ukrainians believe that the future of the democratic world will be determined by whether the Ukrainian military can break a stalemate with Russia and drive the country backward— perhaps even out of Crimea — for good. Plus, the sound baths of French artist Anthony Gonzalez and his electronic ensemble, M83.
Fighting in Darfur as battle for Sudan continues
Fighting in Khartoum between Sudan's army and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces is spreading throughout Sudan. Violence in the western Sudanese region of Darfur threatens to revive the civil war and genocide that engulfed that region 20 years ago. And, there's no May Day parade this year in Cuba due to an acute fuel shortage crisis on the island. Also, pollution from the Tijuana River to the Pacific Ocean have long plagued swimmers and surfers on both sides of the US-Mexico border. We hear about how a recent court settlement is bringing hope for cooperation. Plus, a new book, "Winnie and Nelson: Portrait of a Marriage," explores a fraught political partnership.