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World Story of the Day: Episodes

Alassane Ouattara, a former IMF official and prime minister, takes over a country riven by a bloody and protracted post-election standoff. But many in Ivory Coast still question his origins, blame him for a brief civil war and say he's too close to the former colonial power, France, and the West.
Cyberattacks, assassinations and defections are among the black operations that have replaced, at least for now, all talk of launching military attacks on Iran's suspect nuclear facilities. And covert operations are increasingly being viewed as the most effective approach, analysts say.
In recent years, Iran has seen defections, assassinations of nuclear scientists and bombings in ethnic areas. Whether it's an orchestrated campaign or a set of unconnected acts is unknown, but there is no doubt it is contributing to the destabilizing of Iran's government.
For years, the United States has been trying to stop Iran's nuclear program and change what it says is Iran's bad behavior in the Middle East and beyond. While the U.S. has had little success with economic sanctions and military threats, it has made headway with cyberattacks and other covert activities.
It's only the third time in the kingdom's history that a nationwide vote is taking place. Only men can vote and only men can serve on the councils. But few people are signing up to vote, and some Saudis are dismissing the upcoming elections as a gimmick.
The death of Osama bin Laden has sparked fevered speculation in Afghanistan about whether it might help or hurt efforts to negotiate with the Taliban. On Thursday, about 2,000 people gathered in Kabul to show their opposition to a deal.
As the civil war in Libya drags on, optimism in the rebel stronghold has waned. Weapons given to rebels to fight Gadhafi forces are being used for other purposes. At times no one knows who is shooting, or why. The dangerous streets — and closed schools — are forcing many families to stay inside.
A group of women in Saudi Arabia told NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson they feel they have the least freedom or fewest rights of any women in the world. So when the government recently reneged on a promise to grant them the ability to vote in municipal elections this fall, they'd had enough.
The soldiers at Combat Outpost Charkh in Afghanistan's Logar province have seen some of the fiercest combat of the war in the past six months. They say they have made gains, but the insurgent attacks still come every evening, like clockwork.
Long believed to be hiding on the Afghan-Pakistan border, Osama bin Laden was hunted down in Abbottabad, near Pakistan's elite military academy. Many residents were shocked that the world's most wanted terrorist lived in the town. Others said the U.S. should leave the region now that it has achieved its goal.
St. Peter's Square in Vatican City was packed Sunday for the beatification of Pope John Paul II. The ceremony puts the late pope on the brink of sainthood.
The UN Human Rights Council voted Friday to investigate Syria's bloody crackdown on protesters. The action gives the Obama administration a reason to argue the council was worth joining, despite critics who say it's not worth the effort.
Iran's government supported the protests in Bahrain, Yemen and Egypt, but it fears losing an ally if Syrian President Bashar Assad falls. Among other benefits, the Syrian connection is crucial for Iran's relationship with Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Palestinian officials are preparing to seek a resolution from the U.N. General Assembly declaring statehood. Israeli officials have criticized the idea — and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said there will be no hope for peace with a Palestinian government that includes Hamas.
The border between Israel in Syria at the Golan Heights has been quiet for nearly 40 years, but some worry political instability and the popular uprising in Syria could threaten the peace. For the moment, Israel's government is saying little about the unrest.
After living in the U.S. for nearly 40 years, University of Washington Economics Professor Ali Tarhouni left the comfort and safety of Seattle to return to Libya to help the rebels in their fight against leader Moammar Gadhafi. "It was almost surreal, in a sense that — as a matter of fact even up ...
Much like its neighbors, Algeria faces high unemployment, corruption and poverty. However, a bloody and brutal civil war during the 1990s has left Algerians hesitant to take to the streets and call for change. They say they're tired of upheaval and violence.
The tiny but influential Arab nation was the first Arab state to join the allied effort to stop the bloodshed in Libya. A third of its fighter-jet fleet is now on the Souda air base on the Greek island of Crete. The Qataris, working alongside the French, are helping enforce the NATO-led no-fly zone over Libya.
The ruling party in Yemen has agreed to a deal that could end the presidency of Ali Addullah Saleh. The deal comes after months of mass protests against the man who has ruled Yemen for 32 years and so far has resisted all calls for his resignation. Linda Wertheimer talks to NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson ...
In Syria, it was the bloodiest day yet in five weeks of anti-government protests, with many dead after security forces opened fire. Anti-government groups called this day "great Friday" — an escalation of the challenge to the rule of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
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