A close look at a photo of the Nagqu horse festival in northern Tibet at the National Museum of China in Beijing reveals a gaggle of surprising "spectators" at the traditional Tibetan event: Chinese paramilitary police (see enlargement).
Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 1:33 pm
Delegates to an international species conservation conference in Bangkok, Thailand, this week have agreed to limit the trade of shark fins and meat.
NPR's Christopher Joyce reports that government representatives to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES, have agreed to put the porbeagle, oceanic whitetip, three kinds of hammerhead shark and two kinds of manta ray on its Appendix II list, which places restrictions on fishing but still allows limited trade.
Saying that the action was required because a confidential email that was leaked to the news media "threatened the privacy and due process afforded students," Harvard University administrators on Monday issued a statement explaining why they last year authorized searches of 16 resident deans' email accounts.
Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 11:28 am
There is one bit of news from last week's Kenyan elections that's just now getting international attention: Malik Obama, President Obama's older half brother, suffered a crushing loss in his bid to become governor of Siaya.
Dr. Ben Carson is known for blazing trails in the neurological field — including breakthrough work separating conjoined twins. Now he's making waves for his political views. Host Michel Martin talks with Carson about the current state of health care in America and his upcoming speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference.
In her new book, Frankenstein's Cat:Cuddling up to Biotech's Brave New Beasts, science journalist Emily Anthes talks about how the landscape of bioengineering has expanded since Dolly the Sheep was cloned in 1996. Scientists, she says, are now working to create pigs that can grow organs for human transplant, goats that produce valuable protein-rich milk, and cockroaches that could potentially serve as tiny scouts into danger zones for the military.
Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 4:37 pm
Risa Hirai is a Japanese artist who paints detailed images of bonsai trees and Japanese meals. But instead of using paint on a canvas, she works with icing on a cookie.
The 23-year-old is a senior at Tama Art University in Tokyo whose mouthwatering works will be exhibited at Gallery Tokyo Humanite all this week. Assistant director Maie Tsukuda tells The Salt it's the gallery's first cookie exhibit and notes that it's not an ordinary medium for artists.
An Afghan policeman stands guard near the scene of a suicide attack in Kabul, Afghanistan, Feb. 27
Credit Sean Carberry / NPR
The U.S. military is increasingly focused on helping the Afghan government and security forces become self-sufficient. Here, U.S. Army 1st Lt. Phillip Baki visits with an Afghan police officer, Abdul Karim, at a checkpoint overlooking the Dahla Dam in the southern province of Kandahar.
Credit Sean Carberry / NPR
District government officials in Kandahar province meet to discuss security and governance challenges as NATO troops draw down.
The NATO campaign is now in a new phase. After years of fighting the Taliban and bolstering anemic local governance, NATO troops are handing those responsibilities over to the Afghans. NPR's Sean Carberry recently embedded with U.S. troops in the southern province of Kandahar as they worked on this new mission.
The fertile Arghandab Valley in Kandahar province is considered one of Afghanistan's breadbaskets. For years it was also a valley of death for NATO troops.
Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 12:57 pm
Iran and Pakistan are moving closer to completion of a nearly 1,000-mile natural gas pipeline linking the two countries, despite U.S. objections that it could become a source of hard currency for Tehran in defiance of international sanctions.
Monday marks the beginning of construction on Pakistan's part of the pipeline, which will consist of a 485-mile run. Iran has already completed most of its 760 miles of the link, which will stretch from Assaluyeh along Iran's Persian Gulf coast to Nawabshah in Pakistan's Sindh province.
As NPR's Louisa Lim reported Monday on Morning Edition, a week of inflamed rhetoric from North Korea — including talk of a preemptive nuclear strike on the U.S. — is being followed by word that the North has carried through on its threat to annul the 1953 armistice that ended open warfare on the peninsula and has stopped answering calls on the telephone hotline to the South.
Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 12:52 pm
Authorities have pulled more than 2,800 dead pigs out of Shanghai's main source of tap water — the Huangpu River. And they're still counting, according to reports on Monday.
The discovery has raised fears of drinking water contamination in China's most populous city, although state media reports that officials have run tests and determined that so far there's nothing to fear.