The World

Monday-Thursday 7PM, Friday 6PM
  • Hosted by Lisa Mullins, Marco Werman

PRI's "The World" brings one-of-a-kind international stories home to America. Each weekday, host Lisa Mullins guides listeners through major issues and stories, linking global events directly to the American agenda.

Alvin Baez/Reuters

In Puerto Rico, students are protesting austerity measures and the lack of potable water on the island. In the Puerto Rican diaspora, there's another big story: The National Puerto Rican Day Parade in New York City is losing sponsors. A lot of them.

First, it was Goya Foods, the largest Latino-owned food company in the United States. Goya had been a sponsor of the Puerto Rican Day Parade since the beginning, 60 years ago, until it pulled sponsorship last week.

Andres Martinez Casares/Reuters

This week, nearly 60,000 immigrants awaited a Department of Homeland Security decision that would either allow them to stay in the US or end their temporary legal status. 

After a period of anxiety, this week DHS announced the status would be extended.

The temporary protected status (TPS) program allows immigrants from countries in crisis to live and work in the US legally. Haitians were initially granted TPS in 2010, when the island was hit by a massive earthquake.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters/TPX Images of the Day 

From the moment Air Force One touched down on the runway at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport, President Donald Trump and his wife Melania, as well as their hosts, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, provided Israelis with seemingly endless opportunities for giggles, laughs and snark.

For most leaders, and in most countries, red carpet affairs are fairly staid and uneventful, following set protocols. But to state the obvious, neither Trump nor Israel's leaders are like most.

Now here's a picture Trump probably wants to go viral

May 26, 2017
Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

The photos from President Donald Trump's overseas trip have been the gift that keeps on giving.

Take this shot of Trump, his wife Melania and daughter Ivanka standing next to Pope Francis at the Vatican. Trump looks stoked. The pope looks like someone stole his ice cream cone. 

REUTERS/Jose Cabezas

Ana Riva was at work one day in 2015 when she got an urgent call from her 16-year-old nephew, Juan. It was a moment that she had always feared would come, since she took over raising Juan after his mother left for the US.


Now, here it was. A local gang had him surrounded, insisting he join.

"They demanded money when they threatened him. They wanted him to pay them a sum of money immediately," says Riva. "He called me totally scared. I mean, they had guns to his head."

Neil Hall/Reuters

The suspect in the Manchester bombing, Salman Abedi, wasn’t unknown to UK counterterrorism officials. In fact, members of the Libyan community where Abedi lived had reported him before, worried about some of the views he was expressing.

That kind of keeping an eye out, as a community, is exactly what the “Countering Violent Extremism” program wants to encourage in the US.

Otura Mun was born Mark Underwood, the son of a Mennonite family in the small town of Goshen, Indiana.

He's also black, which he says made it hard to feel like part of the community there when he was growing up in the 1980s. "There were eight black students in the high school including my sister. So, it was just a really rough place to grow up. I was used to being an outsider for sure," he says.

But when he moved to Puerto Rico in 1999, he found his place. 

In Mumbai, Uber must compete with vibrant taxi roofs

May 26, 2017

In Mumbai, any commute is an adventure. No journey is without a traffic jam. The roads are an obstacle course of potholes and pedestrians. Google Maps often can't tell if the highway it's recommending is closed for repairs, yet again. 

If you need to take a taxi, cross your fingers. Mumbai's 58,000 metered taxis (or kaali-peelis as the black-and-yellow fleet is affectionately called) are driven by a temperamental species. They refuse short-distance rides. They're picky about out-of-the-way destinations. They're simlpy grouchy — even on a good day. 

Jasmine Garsd/PRI

A couple of months ago, a friend of mine reached out. It was about her grandmother, Frances. Grandma Frances is 85. And my friend told me her grandma says she has a story she needs to tell someone.

So, I headed to their house.

Grandma Frances is tiny and thin, with a shock of white hair and brown eyes that are always smiling, even when she isn’t. She talks with that loud, Queens accent that sounds like she’s chewing on the words before she speaks them.

Lauren Holt/PRI

Zainab Abdo studied in her bedroom. It became too dangerous to attend school. Her desk faced the window and it was here she spent most of her days, reviewing for exams.

One of the great cycling races, the Giro d'Italia, or Tour of Italy, concludes its 100th edition on Sunday in Milan.

Riders race across the island of Sicily, cross over to the mainland and then follow Italy's boot from the heel to the top.

Eighty years ago, an Italian named Gino Bartali won the race. In all, the renowned cyclist won the Giro d'Italia three times (1936, 1937 and 1946) and the Tour de France twice (1938 and 1948). Those victories alone place him in the international pantheon of great cyclists.

The phrase "world music" was first coined as a marketing term about 30 years ago. Initially it was just a way to organize music from around the globe so people could find it and buy it. Since then, a lot of people have developed a dislike for the term; critics say it ghettoizes foreign music, dividing musical genres into a small "us" and a very broad "them."

Feisal Omar/Reuters 

It hasn't happened since the infamous Black Hawk Down battle in 1993. 

Last month, a US soldier was shot and killed fighting in Somalia. Reports indicate the Navy SEAL was serving alongside his Somali counterparts — not advising from the operating base — as they battled al-Shabab militants.

New York Times correspondent Jeffrey Gettleman has covered Somalia for more than a decade, and writes about it in his new memoir, “Love, Africa.”

Monday’s bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester was, sadly, not a new experience for the UK city.


Manchester has been the target of various bombings since the 1970s. But perhaps the most infamous occurred in June 1996, when a 3,300-pound bomb was detonated in the center of the city. The attack was carried out by the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA), and left about 200 people injured.

The world is importing labor more than ever before. According to the UN, more than 244 million people globally have left their home countries in search of opportunities.

For women, that often means jobs in child care and the service industry. But what they sign up for is often not what they get.

Candidate Donald Trump called NATO “obsolete,” demanded allies step up their defense spending and threatened to back out of the alliance.

President Trump has since walked back his remarks. He’s meeting with NATO leaders for the first time in Brussels on Thursday, and some member countries are still bracing for another unexpected pivot from a man who’s become known for his impulsive comments and decision-making.

Neil Hall

Britain has raised its official terror threat level to "critical," the highest possible level used for occasions when an "imminent attack" is possible. 

In addition, hundreds of troops have been deployed to guard key landmarks and possible targets, including Downing Street and Parliament, in order to reduce pressure on the police. 

Parth Sanyal/Reuters

The numbers are depressing: Every 8 minutes a girl goes missing in India. Most of these girls are trafficked for sex, beggary or domestic labor.

Unofficial counts put the number of victims of sex trafficking in India at 16 million — not counting the girls from neighboring Nepal and Bangladesh who end up here. Mumbai, where I live, is the second-most frequent destination for these girls.

Sister Rosemary is a one-woman army in the fight against trafficking

May 24, 2017
Edward Echwalu

When Sister Rosemary Nyirumbe was first assigned to be director of Saint Monica’s Girls' Vocational School in 2002, a Catholic mission in the northern Ugandan city of Gulu, she was a little worried. She was supposed to teach tailoring to 300 girls and, frankly, she didn’t know the first thing about sewing. When she got there, she found that sewing was the least of her concerns.

How to talk to your kids about terrorism

May 24, 2017

As a parent, I can’t begin to imagine the fear, sorrow and nerve-racking anguish families felt during the Manchester attack. It is gut-wrenching to know that parents of children in civil-war-torn Syria face similar horrors, as do the families of ISIS victims in many Muslim-majority nations. No matter where, violence is unconscionable, unjustifiable and makes no sense. For parents, the loss of a child has to be the hardest of trials.

There are two conflicting narratives emerging from the Philippines, where ISIS-style black flags now wave over parts of a provincial capital.

One is that ISIS has totally overrun Marawi, a city roughly the size of Akron, Ohio — a stunning victory for insurgents hell-bent on establishing the caliphate’s Asian outpost.

The other story, propagated by the Philippine military, is that “the armed men we are dealing with are not ISIS” but rather “a local terrorist group.”

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

As he concluded his visit to the Middle East on Tuesday, US President Donald Trump championed the Gulf states and pitted himself as the world’s chief antagonist against Shiite Iran and its proxies, ISIS, Hezbollah and Hamas.

The Israeli diplomats and officials invited to hear the speech live in Jerusalem were delighted, rewarding Trump's remarks at the Israel Museum with frequent applause and numerous standing ovations.

Suzanne Plunkett/Reuters

Monday’s terrorist attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, has been dubbed an attack on many things, including freedom of expression.  

Pakistani American writer Rafia Zakaria says it was also an attack on culture.

Tony Gentile/Reuters 

The differences between Donald Trump and Pope Francis are stark. And at times, those differences have erupted into a full public display.

But don’t expect fireworks when the two world leaders finally get together at the Vatican on Wednesday morning for their first one-on-one meeting.

“Pope Francis isn’t a confrontational or fireworks kind of guy,” says Meghan Clark, an assistant professor of moral theology at St. John’s University in New York.

“The disagreements are known,” Clark says.

Richard Hall/The World

More than 50,000 migrants have tried to cross the Mediterranean to Europe this year. It's a deadly journey but many survive thanks partly to all the seaborne humanitarian personnel patrolling these waters.

They saved more than 1,600 migrants in the Mediterranean on Tuesday alone.

Save the Children took aboard 635 migrants from different boats that needed help after launching from Libya — the organization's biggest single-day rescue since it started patrolling the Mediterranean last August, reported The World's Richard Hall from aboard Save the Children's Vos Hestia ship. 

Survival is what Yemenis think about every day

May 23, 2017

Bushra Aldukhainah is 7,000 miles from home this week. But Yemen is always with her, as she tells Americans about the war that is tearing her country apart. And she's asking for their help.

"I will try to give hope to the people," she says, "that we're trying to reach our voice out, so people can help us." Aldukhainah, who runs CARE International's northern Yemen operation, speaks with authenticity. She is both an aid worker in the middle of Yemen's war and a Yemeni woman who has seen her country slip from troubled to imperiled.

The possible motives behind the Manchester attack

May 23, 2017
Toby Melville/Reuters

How does anyone think blowing up teenage girls at a concert helps their cause? 

That's the question people are wrestling with after a suicide bomber detonated a device at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, on Monday. The attack killed at least 22 people and wounded dozens more. Most of the victims were young teenage or preteen girls. Responsibility for the attack was claimed by ISIS via their news site, Amaq. 

When he was 11, a group of rebel soldiers came into Kenneth Banya’s village.

They told Kenneth that they were lost, and they asked if he could show them the way out of town.

Kenneth’s father said no, he can’t give you directions. Kenneth’s father knew exactly how that would end.

Millions of immigrants in the US are under some sort of supervision by the Department of Homeland Security.

They regularly report to deportation officers about updates to their immigration court cases, the status of their foreign passports, perhaps a changes of address. Sometimes they have nothing to report. Sometimes they are told to wear ankle monitors so the federal government can track their whereabouts.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

Saudi Arabia plans to invest a huge sum of money in a company founded by an adviser to US President Donald Trump.

Blackstone Group said over the weekend that Saudi Arabia had signed a nonbinding agreement committing $20 billion to upgrade existing infrastructure in the United States.  

Blackstone also plans to raise another $20 billion from other sources for its infrastructure fund.