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World News: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
What You Should Know About the Ebola Virus
The disease is caused by infection with Ebola virus, named after a river in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Africa, where it was first recognized in 1976. Since then, Ebola hemorrhagic fever - a severe, often-fatal disease in humans and nonhuman primates - has appeared sporadically.
Understanding the Conflict Between Rwanda's...
The origins of conflict between the Tutsi and Hutu peoples.
Understanding Rwanda's Historical Hutu and...
A history of conflict between the two ethnicities at the center of the 1994 Rwanda genocide.
Why are there two Congos in Africa?
Why two countries in Africa both share the name Congo.
World Cup Winners
A roundup of which countries have won the World Cup over the soccer tournament's history.
Behind the News in Africa
On such a vast continent, the stories coming out of Africa are as rich and varied as the lands and the people occupying this beautiful, unique territory. Here are some background stories to understand the news coming out of Africa.
Top Murder Rates in the World
In October 2011, the Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development released a report studying annual violent death rates around the world from 2004 through 2009, and ranked the most violent countries based on the average rates. The study found that a quarter of all violent deaths happen in just 14 countries. Here are the top 10 countries on the list, with background on what contributes to each nation's high murder rate.
How many U.S. presidents have won the Nobel...
President Barack Obama is the Nobel Peace Prize recipient for 2009. See how often U.S. presidents have taken home this honor.
Is it Burma or Myanmar?
The military junta's name change of the country doesn't sit well with everyone internationally.
Nelson Mandela
A profile of the ANC leader and former president of South Africa.
South Africa
A profile and fact sheet of the country of South Africa, with population figures, national symbols and a brief history, plus links.
Who is the 12th imam?
The president of Iran has wished aloud for the arrival of the 12th imam, who would come forth in a time of world turmoil. Why does this belief frighten many Iran-watchers?
5 of the World's Worst Mining Disasters in...
Mining has always been a risky occupation, especially in developing nations and countries with lax safety standards. Here are the deadliest mine accidents in the world.
The term peshmerga is explained in the World News glossary.
North Korea's 'State of War' Declaration
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The Royal Marriages
William and Kate are bucking for happily ever after, but how has the House of Windsor fared in the marriage department?
Robert Mugabe
A profile of the president of Zimbabwe.
Top 5 Most Deadly Tornadoes in the World
A funnel cloud touching down can pack brutal winds that not only rip away structures but take precious lives. Here are the worst tornadoes on record.
Top 10 News Stories of the Decade
The news stories that shaped the first decade of the new millennium, from terrorism to natural and humanitarian disasters.
Human Rights in Russia
After the fall of the Soviet Union, Russia began the painstaking route to a democratic society. But the road has not been easy and activists charge that in recent years the country has taken steps backwards in ensuring equal rights and the rule of law. Here are some key players and facts in that debate.
The largest country in western Europe, France has a colorful history and is the top tourist destination in the world. Learn more about France.
Is it Iranian or Persian?
Iranian and Persian are often used interchangeably to describe people from Iran, but which is correct?
Enhanced Fujita Scale
When you hear a tornado categorized as, for example, EF-3 or EF-5, it's being ranked on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. Here's how that scale measuring tornado intensity works.
World's Worst Earthquakes
A ranking of the strongest, most devastating temblors in the world.
The British Tabloids
Sleaze is the story of the day in a country where the gossip papers are king.
5 of the World's Worst Avalanches in History
The majestic mountains and cliffs of the Earth's surface can break free and become deadly torrents of mud, rock or ice. Here are the world's worst avalanches.
5 Political Parties in Current-Day Russia
In its post-Soviet Union days, Russia has drawn criticism for a tightly controlled political process in which there's little room for opposition parties. Here is how the political landscape looks in Russia.
World's Worst Wildfires
Whether sparked by Mother Nature or by the carelessness or maliciousness of man, these fires have ripped across the Earth with alarming ferocity and deadly consequences.
Why is there conflict in South Ossetia?
Russian forces battle Georgian troops for control of this breakaway region.
The Basics Behind the Arab-Israeli Conflict
How did the conflict in the Middle East begin, and what is the future for Israel and the Palestinian Authority?
Apartheid defined in the World News glossary.
The function of NGOs can vary widely, from service organizations to human-rights advocacy and relief groups.
What's the Story Behind All the 'Stans?
Why there are all those countries with the suffix
Read About the World's Most Wanted Nazis
The Simon Wiesenthal Center updated its list of most wanted Nazis on April 1, 2008. Find their profiles here.
OPINION: Nine Years Later, the Attacks Continue
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Results of the Arab Spring
One man's self-immolation in protest of how he was being treated by his government led to a wave of rebellion across North Africa and the Middle East. Here's how the Arab Spring has played out.
Goodluck Jonathan
A profile of the president of Nigeria and commander of the armed forces since 2010, a southern Christian in a country wracked by Islamist insurgent violence.
Osama bin Laden's Wives
Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was gunned down by U.S. forces in Pakistan at the age of 54 on May 2, 2011. His youngest wife, a Yemeni woman, was hiding with him in the Abbottabad compound. Here is a rundown of the terror leader's wives.
Understanding Iran
Iran promises to be in the headlines well through this decade as the world watches its nuclear program and the fervor of the Arab Spring continues to stir a youthful opposition movement years in the making. Here are some of the key issues to understand about the Islamic Republic of Iran.
A Primer on Syria
Inspired by other Arab Spring movements, protests began against the brutal rule of Bashar al-Assad on Jan. 26. 2011. The ongoing protests escalated to an uprising in March 2011, with thousands taking to the streets in numerous cities to demand the ouster of Assad. The protests have been met with brutal government force, including tanks and sniper fire, with thousands killed. Here is a primer behind the headlines in Syria.
Bashar al-Assad
A profile of the president of Syria, who took power in 2000 after the death of his father, Hafez al-Assad, and leader of the Ba'ath Party.
Arab and Muslim Country Leaders
Profiles of various leaders throughout Arab and Islamic nations, ranging from Northern Africa to the Hindu Kush.
World's Worst Tsunamis
When an ocean or other body of water experiences a displacement of water due to an earthquake, volcano, underwater explosion, or other altering event, giant deadly waves can rocket toward shore. Here are the worst tsunamis in history.
After the Arab Spring
One man's self-immolation in protest of how he was being treated by his government led to a wave of rebellion across North Africa and the Middle East. The death of Mohamed Bouazizi and subsequent struggle against dictatorship and extremism has stretched far beyond the 2011 protests and rebellions and promises to be a continuing struggle stretching through many springs, summers, falls and winters.
Darfur defined in the World News glossary.
INTERPOL defined in the World News glossary.
World's Worst Natural Disasters
Mother Nature has dealt the deadliest blows around the globe with these tragic disasters.
Khaled Mashal
A profile of the exiled political leader of Hamas.
World's Worst Passenger Ship Disasters
People around the world have long taken to the seas for transportation and, more so in recent days, for pleasure cruising. But no sea voyage is without risk. Here are the worst tragedies to befall passenger ships.
World's Worst Mass Shootings
Learn about the killers who have terrorized their communities and captured international headlines by going on shooting rampages.
Hutu defined in the World News glossary.
Tutsi defined in the World News glossary.
Malala Yousafzai
Malala Yousafzai, 15, was a longtime foe of the Taliban as an advocate for girls' education in her country's conservative Swat valley. She blogged about her fight, did TV interviews, demonstrated for her rights. Then in October, a Taliban assassin put a bullet through her head and wounded two of her friends as the girls were coming home from school. She survived and is continuing her fight.
World's Worst Air Show Crashes
Air shows are an amazing way to see aeronautical talent of pilots maneuvering the greatest historical aircraft and the newest technology. Sometimes, though, these days of family fun have turned into horrible tragedy when accidents occur. Here are the worst of those air show incidents.
Who's Who in the Royal Family
A guide to the House of Windsor.
Khmer Rouge
On April 17, 1975, Phmon Penh, Cambodia, fell to the Khmer Rouge. Just days later the communists began their deadly experiment of forced agrarian revolution.
Manmohan Singh
An economist and longtime politician with experience as finance minister, minister of railways, minister of external affairs, deputy chairman of the planning commission, and governor of the Reserve Bank of India.
China's Military Might
The People's Republic of China may be renowned for growing into an economic power, but Beijing has never lost sight of building the communist nation into a military giant.
Aishwarya Rai
A profile of Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai.
African Leaders
Here are some of the key names in the news on the African continent.
What is the power structure in Iran?
How does the power structure in the Islamic Republic really work?
How does religion influence the law in Pakistan?
Blasphemy is addressed in Pakistan's penal code, and has been since British colonial laws in the mid 19th-century. The addition of capital punishment or life in prison as a penalty came under hardline Islamist dictator Gen. Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.
Women's Rights in Saudi Arabia
Much attention has been drawn to the plight of women in Saudi Arabia thanks to both social media campaigns waged in order to attain greater rights and by King Abdullah's efforts to buck the more conservative religious elements by incrementally allowing women more rights. But what is women's place in Saudi society as deemed by law and custom?
The Political Situation in Pakistan
President Pervez Musharraf's future is on the line as opposition lawmakers form a coalition and vow to oust the former general. But will the instability allow fundamentalist forces to gain ground?
Zimbabwe News - The Headlines from Zimbabwe
A roundup of the latest headlines out of Zimbabwe.
Crime in the World
It's a phenomenon that knows no country, a problem that plagues every culture and region of the world: crime. Here are some of the crimes -- and crimefighters -- that have made international news.
Malath Aumran
Malath Aumran is the alias for Rami Nakhle, a Syrian pro-democracy activist who has waged a cyber campaign of dissent against the regime of Bashar Assad. Learn more about this campaigner for Syrian freedom.
Hutu and Tutsi
The bloody history of Hutu and Tutsi conflict stained the 20th century, from the slaughter of 80,000 to 200,000 Hutus by the Tutsi army in Burundi in 1972 to the 1994 Rwanda genocide in which Hutu militias targeted Tutsis, resulting in a 100-day death toll between 800,000 and 1 million.
A profile of the African country once known as Rhodesia.
Pakistan News
Pakistan has held a key place in the headlines since the decade's war on terrorism began, and now the world anxiously watches to see what the post-Musharraf era holds in this critical juncture of the West and the Muslim world.
IMF defined in the World News glossary.
Dictators, Autocrats and Theocrats
Some are still in power (and seek more), some have been toppled, some are no longer living. All have ruled with a heavy hand and suppressed the rights of their people to further the goal of what they think is the correct way to govern.
Iran News
Here are some key headlines to emerge from the Islamic Republic.
Jamahiriya defined in the World News glossary.
Charles Taylor
The former president of Liberia from 1997 to 2003, the year he was indicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity for his involvement in the Sierra Leone Civil War.
World's Tallest Hotels
Many in the world have their minds on pinching pennies and fiscal austerity, but the global hospitality industry is consistently searching for ways to be better -- and bigger -- than the competition. You can literally see more of the world in these high-rises that reach daringly into the sky and give a penthouse suite new, impressive meaning.
World's Worst Hurricanes
The powerful storms that have shaken the globe.
Ayman al-Zawahiri
A profile of the most wanted terrorist on the FBI's list, the longtime second-in-command to al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden who took over control of the organization after bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces on May 2, 2011, in Pakistan.
Palestinian Militant Groups
A roundup of the different militant groups operating out of the Palestinian territories.
All about the horn blown by fans making such a ruckus at World Cup matches.
A profile of the country in southeastern Asia that shares a southeastern border with Vietnam, a northern border with Laos, and a northwestern border with Thailand.
Ali Khamenei
The ayatollah is the last word on all dealings in the Islamic Republic, even the confirmation of an elected president, and an international mouthpiece for the Islamic Revolution as the second ayatollah to serve as the conservative figurehead since 1979.
Who are the Syrian opposition?
Syrians have spilled out into the streets, risking their lives and sometimes paying with their in the process, to protest the tyrannical rule of Bashar al-Assad. But how is the opposition categorized and characterized, and is there enough organization to avoid a power vacuum if Assad is successfully ousted from office?
Richter scale
Richter scale as defined in the World News glossary.
Murdoch Media Empire
Rupert Murdoch entered the media business with one newspaper in Adelaide, South Australia. The media mogul, ranked as one of the wealthiest, most powerful and influential people in the world, has expanded his empire in the United States, United Kingdom and Asia. Here are the holdings for the chairman and CEO of News Corporation.
Why is there rioting in London and beyond?
The London summer of 2011 heated up with the eruption of flames and spread of mob violence across the city. But what was behind the eruption of rioting?
President Obama's Remarks at the End of the...
The text of President Barack Obama's address to the United States at the conclusion of combat operations in Iraq on Aug. 31, 2010.
Uncovering the Facts in the Boston Bombing
On April 15, two bombs exploded at the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three people and injuring 264. After several days with a city on edge and
What does Hugo Chavez mean by a Bolivarian...
A primer on the philosophy by which Venezuela's ruler governs and wants to spread to other Latin American nations.
Many countries around the world still have a monarchy, whether functional or mostly ceremonial. Here are some of the houses of royalty around the globe.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
A profile of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, president of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Where is it?: A group of islands east of China, across the Taiwan Strait and resting in the China Sea
PKK defined in the World News glossary.
What They're Saying About Cyprus
Starting with exposure to the Greek debt crisis, Cyprus faced a downgrading to junk status and a troubled financial sector. A 10 billion Euro bailout was offered to Cyprus including austerity measures and a directive to close the country's second largest bank while putting levies on uninsured deposits at other banks as well. Protests erupted in Nicosia and outside banks as limits were placed on how much customers could withdraw and take out of the country.
Israel Newspapers
A gathering of websites representing Israel's key newspapers.
Hugo Chavez
A profile of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.
Can a North Korean missile hit the U.S.?
North Korean is saber-rattling by test its missiles and nuclear devices, but can they reach far enough for America to be worried?
The U.N. Peacekeeping Mission in the Congo
The history of MONUC, the storied United Nations' peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Enrique Peña Nieto
Governor of Mexico state from 2005 to 2011 and president-elect of Mexico, succeeding Felipe Calderon.
Trayvon Martin Shooting
On Feb. 26, 2012, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was walking through his father's gated community in Sanford, Fla., returning from 7-Eleven with Skittles and iced tea. Soon afterward, he was dead from a gunshot wound to the chest, but his killer was not arrested. The details and controversy behind this case.
A profile of the South American country of Chile.
Vatican: Don't Expect Heavy Reforms Too Soon
Pope Francis has made clear that he wants to reform many things at the Holy See, but the Vatican is cautioning that expectations shouldn't get too high too
What is causing Pakistan's flooding?
Pakistan is awash in devastation over the summer 2010 flooding that has killed at least 1,600 and left some 4 million homeless. What is causing the calamity that has surpassed the humanitarian aid scope of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, Pakistan's 2005 earthquake and the 2010 Haiti quake?
The definition of Hmong from the World News glossary.
OPINION: Hugo Chavez's Great Distraction
Venezuela's bluster with Colombia draws focus away from mounting troubles on the home front.
Garry Kasparov
A Russian chess grandmaster who retired from competitive chess in 2005 to focus on political activities and writing.
What are U.N. sanctions?
What it means when the United Nations levies sanctions on a country.
Freedom Fighters
Here are profiles of those who have labored for the causes of freedom and democracy in their countries.
Red Banned Around Valentine's Day in Saudi Arabia
The religious police go out to gift shops and florists to ensure that nobody sees red for a week.
Dmitry Medvedev
A profile of Dmitry Medvedev, the technocrat whom Vladimir Putin is counting on to continue his legacy.
Taliban defined in the World News glossary.
King Abdullah
A profile of Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, king of Saudi Arabia.
Armenian Genocide
The Armenian Genocide refers to the killing of some 1.5 million Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Empire beginning in 1915 -- and still ignites impassioned conflict that threatens diplomatic relations to this day.
Sharia defined in the World News glossary.
Top 10 Stories to Watch in 2013
2012 had some unforgettable headlines with stories ranging from massacres to the re-election of a president. But what are the stories to watch going into 2013? Here are some to keep an eye on in the new year.
Sebastián Piñera
A profile of the incoming president of Chile, Sebastián Piñera.
Joseph Kony
A Ugandan guerrilla known for sending his troops into villages after dark to kidnap children to serve in his army or serve his battalion as sex slaves or porters; those who resisted have been usually viciously maimed with a machete.
OPINION: Syria: Home of the Brave
Despite a daunting track record on human rights, and a brutal crackdown on this year's pro-democracy demonstrations, protesters keep pouring into the streets demanding a better life. It isn't easy to see a post-Assad Syria through the smoke of the vicious government assaults, but the Syrian people have not given up.
Fake World Leader Twitter Feeds
Political parody has become rampant on Twitter as protesters have taken to the streets in many repressive regimes to demand their freedom, using the social media tool as a rallying point. Here are some of the faux world leader Twitter feeds that have sprung up.
Aung San Suu Kyi's Nobel Acceptance Speech
In 1991, Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Her sons had to accept the award for her in Oslo, as Suu Kyi would spend 15 out of the next 21 years under house arrest for her efforts to bring democracy to Burma. On June 16, 2012, released from house arrest and elected to parliament, she traveled to Norway to accept the peace prize.
What the World is Saying About Syria Uprising
Inspired by other Arab Spring movements, protests began against the brutal rule of Bashar al-Assad on Jan. 26. 2011. The ongoing protests escalated to an uprising in March 2011, with thousands taking to the streets in numerous cities to demand the ouster of Assad. The protests have been met with brutal government force, including tanks and sniper fire, with thousands killed. Here is what the international community has been saying in response.
Dalai Lama
A profile of the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, the spiritual leader of Tibet and longtime leader of the Tibetan government in exile.
Yulia Tymoshenko
Profile of the former prime minister of Ukraine and co-leader of the 2004-05 Orange Revolution, now targeted by the current Ukrainian government.
Women in World News
Learn more about many of the powerful women making headlines in the world, and about the women's issues being brought to the forefront.
TIME Person of the Year
Each year, TIME magazine bestows its Person of the Year honor on the individual or group who "for better
Were the Russian Meteor and Passing Asteroid...
On Feb. 15, just as denizens of Earth were waiting for a large asteroid to make a safe flyby past the planet later in the day, a meteor burst in the sky over Chelyabinsk Oblast in Siberia, Russia. The shock wave shattered glass and damaged buildings, injuring nearly 1,500 people to varying degrees. It's believed to be the largest object to enter Earth's atmosphere since the 1908 Tunguska event that leveled forests in Siberia, and had a force at least 20 times more powerful than the Hiroshima or Nagasaki atomic bombs. Just coincidence, or were the passing asteroid and Siberian meteor related?
Libya Top Stories
After the fall of regimes in Libya's neighbors, Tunisia and Egypt, protests against the four-decade iron-fisted rule of Moammar Gadhafi began on Feb. 15, 2011.
Morgan Tsvangirai
The leader of the Movement for Democratic Change presents the strongest challenge to Robert Mugabe's iron grip on rule.
Alexander Lukashenko
President of Belarus and overseer of what many call the last dictatorship in Europe.
Anders Behring Breivik
A right-wing extremist detonated a powerful bomb outside the prime minister's headquarters in Oslo, Norway, on July 22, 2011, and then two hours later killed teens gathered for a Labor Party summer camp on Utoya island. Learn more about the confessed attacker, Anders Behring Breivik.
Roma defined in the World News glossary.
President Obama and Immigration Reform
On Jan. 29, 2013, a day after the U.S. Senate announced a bipartisan framework to move forward with immigration reform, President Obama traveled to Las Vegas, Nev., to highlight his own blueprint for what he has called one of the biggest failures of his firs term: immigration reform. Page 2.
World in Conflict
From armed forces pitted against each other, to political forces entrenched in warfare, the world is constantly in a state of conflict. Read about some of these conflicts here.
Leaders in the Arab Spring Era
Old autocrats fell, new rulers sprang forth, and everyday citizens were instrumental in bringing about change. Here are some of those names associated with the Arab Spring.
The Game to Succeed Hugo Chavez
If you haven't checked in with the race to succeed Hugo Chavez lately, it's a pretty nasty one. Interim leader Nicolas Maduro, handpicked by Chavez to run with
Abdullah Abdullah
A profile of the former foreign minister who came to challenge his onetime boss for the presidency of Afghanistan.
Religion in World News
Here are some stories about the religious establishments that play a key role in world news.
Bhutan: The World's Newest Democracy
Bhutan residents headed for the polls to pick a parliament, trading a century of royal rule for democracy -- at the behest of the king.
Angela Merkel
The first female leader of a major continental European power and the first woman to lead Germany since it was born as a modern nation-state in 1871. She is also the first former citizen of East Germany to lead the country since reunification, and the youngest chancellor since World War II.
News Satire Sites
These outlets whip up all the news that's fit to mock.
Muslim Brotherhood
In the wake of protests in Egypt and the possible ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, many have expressed concern about the banned Muslim Brotherhood waiting in the wings to take a greater role in ruling Egypt. But just what is this group?
WikiLeaks Diplomatic Document Dump
More than 250,000 diplomatic cables and directives from the U.S. State Department were leaked by the document-dumping website WikiLeaks on Nov. 28, 2010. Dig deeper into some of the information that captured much of the attention of media outlets.
Venezuelan Presidential Election 2013
The race to succeed Hugo Chavez culminates in a quickie election on April 14. Venezuela faces a choice to go forward with the socialist path Chavez carved out for the country in his nearly 14 years of rule or to steer a new route for the nation that has been plagued by high crime and isolationism. Based on free-speech and fraud track records of the past, observers are already concerned about whether the country can have a free and fair election.
Prominent Women in Afghanistan
After the fall of the Taliban in 2001, Afghan women slowly came out from under the burqa and seized a greater role in society. But there have been challenges in the traditional patriarchal society as extremists try to keep girls from getting an education and a female contestant dancing on a televised singing competition nearly created a national scandal. In the face of these hurdles brave women have risen to try to make life better for all Afghans.
Country Profiles
Take a trip around the globe and learn more about some of the countries making the headlines in world news content.
Iran-Saudi Arabia Relations
To anyone who has followed the tenuous relationship of Iran and Saudi Arabia, the alleged 2011 plot to kill the Saudi ambassador would seem plausible from the standpoint of a hearty helping of motive: There is no love lost between these two countries.
Nearly 78 million people live in Iran. The largest ethnic group is Persian, with 61 percent of the population, and the official religion is Shiite Islam.
Can WikiLeaks be prosecuted for leaking...
The third large release of documents from the shadowy website WikiLeaks on Nov. 28, 2010, shared more than 250,000 sensitive diplomatic cables and directives from the U.S. State Department, and followed large dumps of documents from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. The leak sparked furor among lawmakers and government officials, but can anything be done to punish WikiLeaks?
Barack Obama
The 44th president of the United States and the first African-American to be elected to that position.
African National Congress
African National Congress defined in the World News glossary.

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