The World

News & Information: Mon • 1pm-2pm
  • Hosted by Marco Werman

PRI’s The World pioneered the new global journalism in America. Its unique editorial voice combines coverage of the day’s news, worldwide, with interviews and sound-rich features that examine the lives of people around the globe, and their connections to life in the U.S., giving listeners a global context for understanding America’s day.

Last summer, the passage of burkini bans by several French beach towns made international news. In France, they dominated the headlines for months, fed by a polemical presidential campaign in which Islam has been a major topic. But noticeably absent from the French media is the perspective of the women who might wear a burkini.

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Siegfried Modola/Reuters

As Adama tells me her story, the motivation for her fight, she pounds on her chest proudly.

She has an enormous smile and a stylish shock of short hair. Adama is 23, originally from The Gambia. When she was a little kid there, her mother told her: "You’re going to go visit your aunt, and when you come back, we’re going to take you to school." 

"That’s how it happened," Adama recalls.

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Courtesy of Sona Hosseini

This is a story about what happens when you finally get to touch the light you’ve longed for your whole life.

Sona Hosseini passes through the doors of Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles. She exits the stairwell, and stands beside a dome that holds one of the observatory’s telescopes.

“It feels like home,” she says. And not just here — she’s at home anywhere associated with outer space.

“It’s been a long friendship between me and astronomy,” Hosseini admits.

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Arthur Nazaryan/PRI

It was just two years ago that Liban Adam found himself in the shrublands in northern Somalia, crouched over a giant bowl of camel’s milk. The camel herder who gave it to him watched from behind, amused, as the 24-year-old timidly tasted the sour drink for the first time.

These are sleepless nights and worry-filled days for many undocumented immigrants brought to the US as children.

"Every single day, when I leave my home I pray to God that I'm going to come back home to see my mother," says Martha Zavala Perez, an immigrant with DACA status living in Oxnard, California. DACA is short for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a 2012 Obama administration executive order that offered temporary protection and work permits to immigrants who arrived in the US as children.

US President Donald Trump hasn't won any friends in South Korea this week.

A firestorm has erupted on South Korean social media after Trump said during an interview with The Wall Street Journal, “Korea actually used to be a part of China.”

The Wall Street Journal published the story on April 12, but it gained traction in South Korea this week.

An official with the foreign ministry in Seoul responded Wednesday by saying the Trump comment was “historically untrue” and “not worthy of a response.”

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Zaidee Stavely

A colorful mural on the wall at the University of California, Davis’ immigration law clinic shows letters from immigrants behind bars and chains turning into quetzal birds: a metaphor for the students' work.

Chicano studies students painted the mural and “chose the quetzal over the dove because it represents freedom,” explains the clinic's co-director, Holly Cooper. “In the Mayan mythology it’s believed that if a quetzal is brought into a cage, it will die.”

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Rebecca Rosman

After his father died when he was only a teenager, Yassine Mazzout started working nights at the landfill next to his home near Morocco’s capital Rabat, salvaging items that could be recycled or sold from the mountain of filth.

“At 15, I should have spent my evenings playing with other kids,” said Mazzout. “But I spent all of my free time [at the landfill] to make money for my family.”

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Amy Bracken 

On a bright Sunday morning, the Suchiate River bustles with makeshift rafts loaded with people. It’s a popular place to cross from Guatemala to Mexico. And crossing is easy. There’s no wall, and no border patrol in sight.

It's known as Paso del Coyote, or “Coyote Pass.” 

Luis Fernando Pérez operates a raft here, and for years he’s brought across passengers — and migrants, many from Central America.

But lately he’s seen a change.

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Jason Redmond/Reuters

The Trump administration has been a huge windfall for the private prison industry. Two of the largest companies have seen their stock price more than double since Trump’s election in November.

But private detention centers are also taking a hit in the courts and in the media.

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Peter Pereira

The traffic blockade was ready. The vans and buses were standing by. The agents told the mayor and the Department of Social Services. And then they stormed the factory.

It was March 6, 2007, in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Immigration officials raided the Michael Bianco leather factory, a defense contractor that hired hundreds of undocumented workers to sew belts and backpacks for the US military.

The agents arrested 362 workers, most of whom were deported to Guatemala.

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Elijah Nouvelage/Reuters

Some day in the future, you’ll hail a cab, then a few minutes later, a driverless, autonomous vehicle will pull up to the curb.

You’ll hop into the back seat and off you go, leaving the driving to the computer.

Not so fast.

Driverless cars are indeed coming. Automakers are already road testing them in select US cities with standby drivers ready to take control of the steering wheel if anything goes haywire.

The last time The World talked with Irish singer Imelda May, she had a rockabilly look and sound. But now, six years later, that's all gone.

"As you get older you change. And as a woman you change," she says. "I had a child, been married forever and then getting divorced and things change. And I just felt that wasn't me anymore."

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Edgard Garrido/Reuters

Missing San Diego activist Hugo Castro has received medical attention and is stable after being found wounded Tuesday on a street called Avenida San Rafael in Tlalnepantla de Baz, a city in the State of Mexico, Mexico's attorney general said in a press release.

Investigators at the office of the special prosecutor for disappeared persons had received an anonymous phone call describing his location.

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Caren Firouz/Reuters

In Pakistan, the lynching of a journalism student by classmates over alleged blasphemy offenses has caused national soul-searching. 

At the start of this year, Mashal Khan was a 23-year-old with his whole future ahead of him. He was known for having a liberal outlook, including relatively secular views on religion and society. Those views had already made him unpopular on the campus of the Abdul Wali Khan University, in the city of Mardan, where he studied journalism, according to other students the BBC interviewed.

Every year, the survivors gathered on the last night of Passover to tell the story of their own miraculous escape from bondage to freedom.

Their story doesn’t take place in the desert of Egypt but in the killing pits of Lithuania.

Shortly after the Nazis invaded Lithuania in June 1941, they started bringing groups of Jews from the nearby city of Vilnius, known as the Jerusalem of Lithuania, to the Ponar forest. The Nazis lined them up, shot them at close range, and tossed the bodies into pits.

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Greg Locke/Reuters

Residents of coastal villages in Newfoundland, Canada, always have pretty amazing views out their windows. The blue North Atlantic ocean fills most of the frame.

But recently, some massive new stunners floated into view.

Icebergs.

“The iceberg was there and everybody was taking photographs,” says Adrian Kavanagh, the mayor of Ferryland. The town sits at the southern tip of Newfoundland and Labrador, on the Avalon Peninsula, and is home to just over 450 residents. But Vikings and migratory fishermen have been visiting these waters for centuries.

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Maria Murriel/PRI

It’s Friday afternoon, and about 30 snow-flecked workers are crammed into the human resources office of Sid Wainer & Son, a gourmet food wholesaler in New Bedford, Mass., demanding to speak to the owners.

They have all been fired — unfairly, they feel. They’re employees of a temp agency Sid Wainer just ended its contract with. Most of them are undocumented. And yet, here they are in the management’s offices, making demands.

Gerard Fesch didn’t learn that his father was a notorious murderer until he turned 40. Gerard grew up in foster care, with his records sealed. All he knew about his history was his mother’s first name: Thérèse.

“Every time I tried to look into my past, I would come up with possible theories as to why I’d been abandoned. I suspected I might uncover something unpleasant,” Fesch says, “but I never imagined this.”

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Amy Bracken

For migrants, whether moving through Europe or Latin America, certain spots become known along the way for welcoming people.

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