Julie McCarthy

Julie McCarthy has traveled the world as a foreign correspondent for NPR, heading NPR's Tokyo bureau, reporting from Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and covering the news and issues of South America. In April 2009, McCarthy moved to Islamabad to open NPR's first permanent bureau in Pakistan.

Before moving to Islamabad, McCarthy was NPR's South America correspondent based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. McCarthy covered the Middle East for NPR from 2002 to 2005, when she was dispatched to report on the Israeli incursion into the West Bank.

Previously, McCarthy was the London Bureau Chief for NPR, a position that frequently took her far from her post to cover stories that span the globe. She spent five weeks in Iran during the war in Afghanistan, covered the re-election of Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe, and traveled to the Indian island nation of Madagascar to report on the political and ecological developments there. Following the terror attacks on the United States, McCarthy was the lead reporter assigned to investigate al Qaeda in Europe.

In 1994, McCarthy became the first staff correspondent to head NPR's Tokyo bureau. She covered a range of stories in Japan with distinction, including the Kobe earthquake of 1995, the 50th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, and the turmoil over U.S. troops on Okinawa. Her coverage of Japan won the East-West Center's Mary Morgan Hewett Award for the Advancement of Journalism.

McCarthy has also traveled extensively throughout Asia. Her coverage of the Asian economic crisis earned her the 1998 Overseas Press Club of America Award. She arrived in Indonesia weeks before the fall of Asia's longest-running ruler and chronicled a nation in chaos as President Suharto stepped from power.

Prior to her assignment in Asia, McCarthy was the foreign editor for Europe and Africa. She served as the Senior Washington Editor during the Persian Gulf War; NPR was honored with a Silver Baton in the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards for its coverage of that conflict. McCarthy was awarded a Peabody, two additional Overseas Press Club Awards and the Ohio State Award in her capacity as European and African Editor.

McCarthy was selected to spend the 2002-2003 academic year at Stanford University, winning a place in the Knight Journalism Fellowship Program. In 1994, she was a Jefferson Fellow at the East-West Center in Hawaii in 1994

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1:18pm

Fri May 10, 2013
The Two-Way

Will Imran Khan Shake Up Pakistani Politics This Time?

Originally published on Fri May 10, 2013 2:38 pm

A supporter greets Imran Khan at a campaign rally on May 6, in Multan, Pakistan. Pakistan's parliamentary elections will be held on Saturday, and Khan's party is hoping the large, enthusiastic crowds at rallies will translate into a strong showing at the polls.
Daniel Berehulak Getty Images

After retiring as Pakistan's most celebrated cricket player, Imran Khan has dabbled on the margins of Pakistani politics for nearly two decades, trying to make a mark.

The sportsman turned philanthropist who led a playboy lifestyle in his younger days has attracted endless media attention, but until now neither he nor his movement has had any real impact.

As Pakistanis vote in a crucial parliamentary election on Saturday, could this time be different?

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4:35pm

Thu May 9, 2013
Asia

Pakistani Women Still Struggle For A Voice In Politics

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 5:41 pm

One of the few women competing in Pakistan's parliamentary election on Saturday is Naz Baloch, 33, a first-time candidate. She's the daughter of a politician, but is running for a different party than her father.
Julie McCarthy NPR

Flags of the competing political parties whip in the wind of seaside Karachi. But little else is stirring in this city of 18 million this day.

The MQM, a leading political party in the megacity, has shut Karachi down with a general strike in response to a deadly bombing at its election office. But as soon as the strike ends, the streets spring to life as if nothing were amiss.

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8:37am

Fri May 3, 2013
The Two-Way

Pakistani Prosecutor Investigating Bhutto Death Is Gunned Down

Originally published on Fri May 3, 2013 9:19 am

Pakistani police officials examine the bloodied, bullet-riddled car of slain government prosecutor Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali after an attack by gunmen Friday in Islamabad.
Aamir Qureshi AFP/Getty Images

In Pakistan, police say two unidentified gunmen fatally shot the special prosecutor investigating the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

Friday's attack on Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali in Islamabad deepens the mystery surrounding one of the country's most politically charged cases, which remains open six years later.

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3:28pm

Sun April 21, 2013
The Two-Way

Outrage Erupts In India Over 5-Year-Old Girl's Rape

Originally published on Sun April 21, 2013 10:28 pm

Activists from India's main opposition party jostle with police outside Sonia Gandhi's residence on Sunday.
AP

"What has changed?" That is the question echoing through Delhi on Sunday. Public frustration over sexual crimes against women is erupting again, this time over a gruesome sexual assault of a 5-year-old girl.

The protests are smaller than those that swept over the capital in December with the fatal gang-rape of a 23-year-old woman, but the incident has revived debate over the startling state of sexual violence in India.

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10:56am

Tue April 9, 2013
The Two-Way

Purging Candidates Offers Pakistan A Bit Of Comic Relief

Originally published on Tue April 9, 2013 12:05 pm

Pakistani vendors in Lahore fix posters of candidates taking part in the upcoming May parliamentary elections. Pakistani officials have provoked both laughter and criticism in recent days as they vetted potential candidates in the country's upcoming national elections with questions that veered between the controversial and the bizarre.
K.M. Chaudary AP

The culling of candidates in the run-up to Pakistan's May 11 election is providing the country some badly needed levity.

The "Pakistani Inquisition," as it's been dubbed, has election commission officials grilling office-seekers on their Islamic bona fides.

Many have stumbled badly, only to be disqualified.

But not Mussarat Shaheen, who performed impeccably. The former dancer — fabled for her Pushto films — was asked by an official in the city of Dera Ismail Khan to recite a verse of the Holy Quran, to test her mettle as a candidate for the National Assembly.

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12:28pm

Fri March 29, 2013
The Two-Way

In Court, Former Pakistan President Faces A Flying Shoe

Originally published on Fri March 29, 2013 1:09 pm

Former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf (center) arrives in court in Karachi on Friday. An angry lawyer threw a shoe at Musharraf, who was not hit. He faces legal charges following his return to the country after four years in self-imposed exile, police said.
Fareed Khan AP

Former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf suffered only a blow to his dignity when a lawyer hurled a shoe at him Friday as he entered the High Court in the southern city of Karachi.

The shoe missed its target but made its point. Many in Pakistan's legal fraternity still harbor anger toward the former president for a number of actions he took against the judiciary during his military rule from 1999 to 2008.

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5:47am

Thu March 28, 2013
Asia

On India's Trains, Seeking Safety In The Women's Compartment

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 8:26 pm

Passengers travel in a train car reserved for woman in Mumbai on March 8. The cars are offered in New Delhi and other places as well. Women say they like the security that the cars offer, but say men's attitudes need to change.
Rajanish Kakade AP

Headlines in India's national newspapers tell the story of the state of women in the country. A sampling of what readers in New Delhi encounter makes for sober reading:

"Woman Alleges Gang Rape In Lawyer's Chamber."

"More Shame: Five Rapes In Two Days."

"Woman Resists Molestation, Shot Dead."

India's media have been zealous about exposing the pervasive sexual violence in the country since the gruesome gang rape and subsequent death of a 23-year-old woman in December ignited an international outcry.

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11:50am

Fri March 8, 2013
Asia

U.S. To Honor India Gang-Rape Victim

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It is International Women's Day. To mark that occasion, First Lady Michelle Obama joins of Secretary of State John Kerry to recognize women around the world who have shown exceptional courage, as they put it, in advancing women's rights. The nine honorees include the 23-year-old Indian woman whose brutal gang-rape last December inspired a movement to end violence against women in India.

From New Delhi, NPR's Julie McCarthy reports.

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5:03pm

Wed March 6, 2013
The Two-Way

Loved Or Loathed, Hugo Chavez Was The Ultimate Showman

Originally published on Wed March 6, 2013 6:26 pm

Always a showman, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who died Tuesday, sings folk songs with a mariachi group in the capital, Caracas, in 2005.
Andrew Alvarez AFP/Getty Images

I first encountered Hugo Chavez in Caracas, starring in his own television show, Hello, Mr. President. I couldn't take my eyes of the program, which began at 11 a.m. and ended after 7 p.m.

It was an endurance test for even the most die-hard sycophants and terrific entertainment for a first-time viewer. While the camera would pan droopy-eyed Cabinet members seated in the front row, El Presidente showed no signs of flagging.

At the seven-hour mark, he chirped, "Bueno!" and declared, "It's early! Let's keep talking."

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12:19pm

Fri March 1, 2013
The Two-Way

Violent Street Clashes In Bangladesh Leave Dozens Dead

Originally published on Fri March 1, 2013 1:34 pm

A truck burns on a street outside Bangladesh's capital, Dhaka, on Thursday. Violence erupted, and dozens have been killed, after a court sentenced an Islamist leader to the death penalty for crimes dating to the country's 1971 war of independence.
AFP/Getty Images

A wave of violence has rocked Bangladesh after a special war crimes tribunal Thursday imposed the death penalty on an Islamist leader for his role in the country's 1971 war of independence from Pakistan.

Demonstrators for and against the convicted leader clashed with security forces, leaving dozens of people dead, including police.

The violence demonstrates the deep sensitivities that remain over the war of independence that played out more than 40 years ago.

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10:43am

Thu February 21, 2013
The Two-Way

In A Swirl Of Humanity, A Chance Encounter With A Saint

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 6:49 am

Gyanesh Kamal, a Hindu saint, attends the Kumbh Mela on the banks of the Ganges River in the northern Indian city of Allahabad. The gathering is the largest religious festival in the world.
Anoo Bhuyan NPR

Kurt Vonnegut once said, "What makes life worth living are the saints. ... They can be longtime friends or someone I meet on a street. They find a way to behave decently in an indecent society."

And so it is with Gyanesh Kamal, a man I met at India's Kumbh Mela, one of the oldest festivals on Earth. To the uninitiated, this spiritual spectacle is a discombobulating din of prayers, loudspeakers and pilgrims so ceaseless it disorients the senses.

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7:15pm

Tue February 12, 2013
Asia

Seeking A Glimpse Of Immortality In The Waters Of India's Holy Rivers

Originally published on Mon February 25, 2013 1:19 pm

A Hindu devotee prays after a holy dip at the Sangam, the confluence of three holy rivers — the Ganges, the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati --” during the Kumbh Mela festival in Allahabad, India, on Sunday.
Rajesh Kumar Singh AP

The Hindu gathering known as Kumbh Mela is on a scale difficult to fathom: The world's largest religious festival is millions of feet shuffling, millions of mantras chanted, countless sales of firewood to ward off the night cold. Millions of incense sticks will be burned and bells rung in devotional rituals called aartis.

Jet-setting swamis, naked holy men and foreigners fascinated by Eastern mysticism joined tens of millions of pilgrims for a dip in river waters believed to be holy.

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3:20am

Fri February 8, 2013
Asia

Outside The Big City, A Harrowing Sexual Assault In Rural India

Originally published on Fri February 8, 2013 8:58 pm

Roopa, the pseudonym for a gang rape victim in rural India, is shown at her home in the state of Haryana. Police were reluctant to investigate initially and the community has ostracized her. But her family has stood by her as she presses the case.
Julie M. McCarthy NPR

It began as an innocent Sunday outing to see the movie The Life of Pi. By the time the night was over, it had become a grisly gang rape that shocked the world.

Five men went on trial this week, charged with the rape and killing of a 23-year-old woman who died of the injuries she suffered when she was attacked on a bus as it moved through the streets of Delhi — an assault that ignited public outrage over the violence against women in the Indian capital.

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11:05am

Tue January 22, 2013
The Two-Way

India's Supreme Court To Hear Venue Appeal In Notorious Rape And Murder Case

Originally published on Tue January 22, 2013 6:55 pm

The scene at a candle light vigil earlier this month in New Delhi. Those gathered want the men accused in a brutal rape and murder to be punished, and they want violence against women in India to stop.
Harish Tyagi EPA /LANDOV

India's Supreme Court will hear a petition Wednesday on behalf of one of the defendants in the New Delhi rape and murder case that has provoked mass protests in that nation. One of the accused, Mukesh Singh, has asked to remove the case from the capital on the grounds that the atmosphere is too charged to ensure a fair trial.

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9:28am

Wed January 9, 2013
The Two-Way

India, Pakistan Trade Accusations Over Border Killings

Wednesday in Rajouri, India, officers paid their respects at the coffin of one of two Indian soldiers killed Tuesday in a skirmish with Pakistani troops.
AFP/Getty Images

India reacted angrily today at what it called the "inhumane treatment" of one of two soldiers killed Tuesday in a skirmish along the de facto border with Pakistan.

Pakistan challenged the Indian army's allegations and said it is prepared to hold an investigation through the United Nations Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) into recent ceasefire violations along what is known as the Line of Control (LOC).

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11:03am

Mon January 7, 2013
The Two-Way

Amid Pandemonium, Court In Indian Rape Case Is Closed To Public

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 11:08 am

Inside the courthouse in New Delhi today, there were chaotic scenes leading up to a hearing for men accused in the rape and death of a young woman. Outside, Indian police stood watch.
Sajjad Hussain AFP/Getty Images

The five men accused in the rape case that has reverberated around the world were brought before a New Delhi magistrate for the first time today — but only after she sealed the proceedings.

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10:02am

Thu January 3, 2013
The Two-Way

In India, Five Charged With Rape And Murder In Crime That Shocked Nation

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 4:27 pm

Protests continue, such as in New Delhi today.
Prakash Singh AFP/Getty Images

In India today, the public prosecutor formally charged five men with murder and rape in the case of a 23-year-old student whose December assault and death has united the country in anger and sorrow.

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5:55am

Mon December 31, 2012
Asia

Six Men Charged In India's Fatal Gang-Rape

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 9:55 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In India, protestors are vowing to keep up their fight until there is justice for the young victim of a gang rape. The young woman died this weekend after injuries she suffered in the vicious attack. The incident has renewed demands for action against sexual violence. Delhi police say the accused will be formally charged with murder. From New Delhi, here's NPR's Julie McCarthy.

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3:10pm

Sat December 29, 2012
The Two-Way

Anger Swells As Indians Mourn For Rape Victim

Originally published on Sun December 30, 2012 8:49 pm

Protesters hold candles during a rally in New Delhi late Saturday following the death of a woman gang-raped on a bus.
Sajjad Hussain AFP/Getty Images

By Saturday evening, more than 1,000 candles glowed at a somber scene in a central Delhi park as India mourned the death of the young woman whose gang rape two weeks ago shocked the country.

What began 13 days ago with a handful of well-wishers holding a hospital vigil for the rape victim swelled into thousands as a young generation of Indians demanded an end to the culture of violence that produced more than 24,000 cases of rape last year alone.

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7:41am

Tue December 25, 2012
Asia

In India, All Religions Join In 'The Big Day'

Originally published on Tue December 25, 2012 5:43 pm

Carolers from St. Columba's School in New Delhi stage their annual Christmas program, where the student body is Catholic, Sikh and Hindu.
Julie McCarthy NPR

India, the birthplace of Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism, marks the birth of Jesus with a national holiday.

Indians call Christmas bara din, or the Big Day.

Chef Bhakshish Dean, a Punjabi Christian, traces the roots of Christianity in India through food.

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4:30pm

Tue December 18, 2012
Asia

Rape Case In India Provokes Widespread Outrage

Originally published on Thu December 20, 2012 3:16 pm

Indian women and children in New Delhi stage a protest Tuesday to condemn the gang rape of a 23-year-old student on a city bus.
Anindito Mukherjee EPA/Landov

The gang rape of a young woman on a bus in Delhi has touched off outrage and soul-searching in the increasingly unsafe Indian capital.

Spontaneous protests have erupted, while anguished members of Parliament decried the attack.

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12:24pm

Wed December 12, 2012
The Two-Way

Wal-Mart's Lobbying In U.S. To Be Probed By Indian Government

Originally published on Wed December 12, 2012 1:12 pm

September 2012: Employees celebrate the opening of a Best Price Modern store in Hyderabad, India. Bharti Enterprises manages that and other such stores, which Wal-Mart has invested in.
Noah Seelam AFP/Getty Images

India's government has approved an inquiry into Wal-Mart's lobbying activities in the U.S. as a heated debate over the retail giant's plans for stores in India moves into a new phase, NPR's Julie McCarthy tells us from New Delhi.

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12:41pm

Fri December 7, 2012
The Two-Way

India's Legislature Paves Way For Big-Box, Multinationals Like Wal-Mart

Indian leftist activists rally in front of a Best Price store, owned by Wal-Mart and its Indian partner, Bharti, in Hyderabad in November. The rally was organized to protest foreign direct investment in India's retail sector.
Noah Seelam AFP/Getty Images

(Reporting from New Delhi, NPR's Julie McCarthy sends along an update on a story that aired on Morning Edition Wednesday. Essentially, Indians were considering whether to allow big-box stores like Wal-Mart into the country.)

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3:06pm

Fri November 30, 2012
The Two-Way

Free-Speech Debate In India Heats Up

Originally published on Sat December 1, 2012 12:37 pm

The case against Shaheen Dhada has set off a free-speech debate in India. Her father, Farooq Dhada, shown here with her, says in India, freedom of speech "exists only on paper."
Julie McCarthy NPR

It looks like the case in India against two young female Facebook users has been dropped. But the debate over free speech in India is still heating up.

As we've reported, two young women were arrested last week for a Facebook comment that criticized the shutdown of the city of Mumbai for the cremation of a controversial political leader.

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5:00am

Thu November 29, 2012
Asia

Facebook Arrests Ignite Free Speech Debate In India

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 9:54 pm

Shaken by the reaction to his daughter's Facebook post, Farooq Dhada (shown here with Shaheen) says in India, freedom of speech "exists only on paper."
Julie McCarthy NPR

Shaheen Dhada is an unlikely looking protagonist in the battle under way in India to protect free speech from government restrictions in the new media age.

Slight and soft-spoken, Dhada perches on the edge of her bed in a purple-walled room that has been her own for the past 20 years. Outside, police officers are posted for her protection in the town of Palghar, 2 1/2 hours outside Mumbai.

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7:44am

Wed November 21, 2012
The Two-Way

India Executes Mumbai Attack Gunman

Originally published on Wed November 21, 2012 12:42 pm

Nov. 26, 2008: Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, during the attack, in Mumbai's Chatrapathi Sivaji Terminal railway station. He was executed today.
Sebastian D'Souza AP

Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving gunman from the three-day attack on Mumbai in November 2008 that killed more than 160 people, has been hanged in India.

NPR's Julie McCarthy reports from New Delhi that the execution took place in secret inside a high-security jail in the Indian city of Pune, just days before the anniversary of the Mumbai siege:

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1:41pm

Thu October 18, 2012
Shots - Health News

With An Army Of Vaccinators, India Subdues Polio

Originally published on Thu October 18, 2012 8:31 pm

An Indian child receives the oral polio vaccine. Twice a year, an army of 2 million volunteers fans out across India to administer the vaccine. India has not reported a single case of polio in more than a year-and-a-half.
Julie McCarthy NPR

All this week, we've been examining the world's last remaining pockets of polio, a disease for which there is no cure. India marked a milestone when the World Health Organization struck it from the list of polio-endemic countries in February after no new cases were reported for more than a year. From Delhi, NPR's Julie McCarthy reports on how, despite poverty and poor sanitation, the world's second-most populous country is eradicating the disease.

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6:31am

Tue October 9, 2012
Asia

U.S., India Try To Boost Economic Ties

Originally published on Tue October 9, 2012 11:25 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a passage to India.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

INSKEEP: Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner meet their counterparts in India today. The U.S. wants to boost economic ties with the country that it on its way to becoming the most populous in the world. Talks have been pushed forward by India's new liberalizing economic reforms.

NPR's Julie McCarthy reports from Delhi.

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5:06am

Wed September 26, 2012
Animals

Tourists Banned From India's Tiger Reserves

Originally published on Wed September 26, 2012 2:27 pm

A tiger is seen in June 2008 at Sariska Tiger Reserve in the western state of Rajasthan, India, after being shifted from Ranthambore National Park. In an attempt to help revive western India's tiger population, a female tiger was airlifted to join a male at the national reserve.
AP

Can tigers and tourists coexist? The debate is rumbling through India, where the Supreme Court has temporarily banned tourism in core areas of the country's 41 tiger reserves. The unexpected and controversial ruling is aimed at protecting the last of India's 1,700 tigers.

Up until the late 1960s, big game hunters trod the forests of Rajasthan's Ranthambore National Park, part of a sprawling tiger reserve southwest of Delhi. Under the court's recent ban, spotting one of India's big cats — a tiger or the more elusive leopard — inside the park is forbidden.

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6:23am

Tue September 4, 2012
Asia

Generators Power Through India's Blackouts

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 5:30 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. Good morning.

The blackout that recently disrupted electricity across northern India is said to have affected more people than any previous power outage ever. It covered an area that's home to some 670 million people; that would be roughly 10 percent of the world's population. Still, large numbers of Indians living in the blackout zone barely noticed it happened. From New Delhi, NPR's Julie McCarthy explains.

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