The World on WLRN

Weekdays at 3:00pm

A one-hour, weekday radio news magazine offering a mix of news, features, interviews, and music from around the globe.

http://www.theworld.org/

During their historic summit last month inside the demilitarized zone, Korean leaders Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in grasped hands over the demarcation line that divides their countries.

Inspired by this gesture and the promise of long-awaited peace with their northern neighbor, some South Koreans are now reenacting that handshake at a replica of the Joint Security Area (JSA).

When an anti-LGBTQ candidate won the first round of presidential elections in Costa Rica, Vincenzo Bruno took to Facebook to denounce him.

“We are completely against Fabricio Alvarado, He doesn’t represent us, he doesn’t represent anyone in the LGBTQ community,” Bruno told his followers in Spanish. “No! No more abuse, no more hate, we reject him!”

Curly hair is beautiful. That may not sound like an especially revolutionary or bold statement but it is for many women in Egypt. That's because they've been told all their lives to straighten their naturally curly hair, sometimes by perfect strangers. But that societal stigma against curly hair seems to be easing up now. The World's host, Marco Werman, caught up with the BBC's Dina Aboughazala, who is Egyptian and curly-haired herself.

Marco Werman: Why have Egyptian women been pressured for so long to straighten their hair? 

The visuals were stark: On Monday, as US officials opened the new US embassy in Jerusalem, thousands of Palestinians were injured at the Israel-Gaza border fence as dark smoke filled the sky.

Israeli forces killed 60 Palestinians on Monday, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry, and injured more than 2,200 by gunfire or tear gas. The violence continued Tuesday as Israeli forces killed one man, while thousands of Palestinians turned out for funerals.

On Nov. 20, 1975, Mari Carmen Egurrola Totorica, gathered her six children around the TV in the living room of their suburban Idaho home to watch the evening news. Longtime Spanish dictator Francisco Franco was finally dead.

“Drink this. I want you to remember this night,” she told her kids as she handed them coffee mugs filled with shots of champagne.

It’s Groundhog Day again on Cape Cod in Massachusetts. Last summer was rough for restaurants, hotels and other tourist shops that couldn’t find enough seasonal workers.

Most businesses there rely on foreign workers who come to the US on H-2B visas — those are temporary, non-immigrant visas given to seasonal employees. The US government issues 33,000 such visas each year for summertime workers and 33,000 for the winter months. With record demand, it’s proving to be not nearly enough.

A Mother's Day to end all wars

May 11, 2018

If you haven’t heard, Mother’s Day is this weekend.

And at this point, maybe you’re panicking and trying to find same-day delivery for decadent chocolates and fragrant flowers. Or maybe you’re steeped in the semi-patriotic proclamation of the holiday's origin.

In some ways, it was a relief for Hua Qu when President Donald Trump announced the United States’ withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. She had been closely watching the news.

“To wait for his speech, to wait for that uncertainty to fall down on the ground, to be settled so that I can think through what I can do going forward,” Qu says.

Lisa Kum has an endless list of tasks every day. The 41-year-old from Cottage Grove, Wisconsin, has a 19-month-old daughter and a high school-aged son. She’s also tending to her health after undergoing elbow surgery earlier this year.

Arab governments are in conflict over an island paradise in the Indian Ocean that few people have ever seen. Socotra, the largest island in the Middle East, is one of the most isolated places on Earth, home to an ancient culture and some of the world's strangest-looking plants.

About 700,000 Rohingya refugees to date have fled a brutal military crackdown in Myanmar.

They're an ethnic minority in the country, and since last year, there have been reports of hundreds of Rohingya villages being burned, and widespread rape and murder.

The American labor movement is in trouble.

Twenty Egyptian policemen in plainclothes broke into the home of a young satirist on Sunday morning in the suburbs of Cairo. Authorities whisked away vlogger Shadi Abu Zeid and confiscated his computers, cash and electronics. But he was neither taken to a local police department nor charged in a civilian court. His whereabouts remained unknown for more than a day, until Monday evening, when his sister posted online that he had appeared at a state security prosecutor’s hearing in Cairo. 

Halfway through the flight, the officers took off Omar Blas Olvera’s handcuffs. He asked why. They had entered Mexican territory, an immigration agent told him. It was July 26, 2017. After they landed in Mexico City, he looked out the window and saw the airport’s signs in Spanish.

Jack Wang remembers an odd new rule written at the bottom of the his high school writing exam in China: no Internet words.

"It's just natural right when we use it," he said. "It's the youth way of expressing ourselves."

What may seem like the petty irritation of an old-fashioned teacher might actually be something bigger. More than 500 million people are online in China. They are microblogging, instant messaging and texting.

And the Chinese language is changing as a result, says David Moser, an American linguist who lives in Beijing.

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