NPR News

When Gordon Sondland arrived at the Capitol last month to provide what would be pivotal testimony in the Trump impeachment inquiry, a reporter asked the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, "Are you here to salvage your reputation?"

"I don't have a reputation to salvage," Sondland shot back.

Until recently, Sondland, 62, had a pretty low profile outside his hometown of Portland, Ore., where he and his wife, Katy Durant, are big Republican donors and contributors to numerous arts and civic organizations.

Step into one of the nation's top art museums, and most of the works you'll see were made by men.

The Baltimore Museum of Art has decided to make a bold step to correct that imbalance: next year, the museum will only purchase works made by female-identifying artists.

For decades, Bruce Bagley has been regarded as a leading expert on organized crime in Latin America, particularly on money laundering. Now, the University of Miami professor is in trouble for the way he may have applied that knowledge.

Bagley was arrested Monday on charges of laundering $3 million on behalf of corrupt foreign nationals who collected the illicit funds through bribes and by embezzling from a public works project in Venezuela.

Sexual violence against children happens everywhere: in wealthy enclaves, in slums, in suburbs, in rural villages.

Invariably, it happens in secret: in the privacy of family homes, in dark corners of schools and churches, and in murky shadows at neighborhood, community, sporting and scouting events.

Dutch authorities say that a group of 25 stowaways were found in a refrigerated container onboard a cargo ship bound for the U.K. on Tuesday.

The ship, which according to local media is the Britannia Seaways, has returned to port in Vlaardingen. Local authorities said in a statement that the people are receiving medical assistance.

The use and importation of electronic cigarettes will soon be outlawed in the Philippines, according to President Rodrigo Duterte. He criticized vaping devices at a press conference Tuesday, four days after Filipino health regulators saw their first case of vape-associated lung injury.

A days-long tense standoff between protesters and police is grinding on at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. The numbers of protesters barricaded inside the school has dwindled to about 100, and their food supplies are rapidly depleting after police surrounded the campus on Sunday.

Two days after a shooting that killed four men and wounded six at a backyard party in Fresno, Calif., police are seeking at least two gunmen — and the city's large Hmong community is looking for answers.

Police say the two men said nothing as they entered the yard where people were watching football and started firing shots from semiautomatic handguns. "Witnesses only indicated that they saw the muzzle flash from the weapons," said Fresno Police Chief Andy Hall.

In an escalating dispute over how much allies should pay the U.S. to station troops on their soil, U.S. negotiators walked out on talks with South Korea in Seoul on Tuesday, as the two sides staked out vastly differing positions and accused the other side of being unreasonable.

It was a moment of genuine bipartisanship at the House Ways and Means Committee in October, as Democratic and Republican sponsors alike praised a bill called the "Restoring Access to Medication Act of 2019."

The bill, approved by the panel on a voice vote, would allow consumers to use their tax-free flexible spending accounts or health savings accounts to pay for over-the-counter medications and women's menstrual products.

Updated at 3:50 p.m. ET

Four witnesses are testifying in front of the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, starting the second week of public hearings in the ongoing impeachment inquiry investigation.

The morning session features Jennifer Williams, a career State Department staffer detailed to work with Vice President Pence's staff, as well as Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, the Ukraine specialist on the National Security Council. Former U.S. envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker and former Russia director for the NSC Tim Morrison are testifying in the afternoon.

Updated at 5:18p.m. ET

Two correctional officers who were assigned to guard Jeffrey Epstein on the night he died in his cell have been indicted for allegedly ignoring more than 75 mandatory checks on the wealthy financier then fabricating records to cover it up.

Federal authorities charged Michael Thomas and Tova Noel with multiple counts of falsifying records and conspiracy. The two worked as guards at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, a federal facility in Manhattan that is mostly used for defendants awaiting trial.

Toilet Signs Give The Scoop On Pee And Poop

17 hours ago

World Toilet Day — that's today, Nov. 19 — is no joke. (Although clearly the German toilets pictured above have a sense of humor.)

This day in honor of the loo was created by Jack Sim, a Singapore entrepreneur who founded the World Toilet Organization in 2001. In 2013, it was declared an official U.N. day. The aim is to raise awareness about the need for more toilets. And there's a lot of need.

Sweden's deputy director of public prosecutions, Eva-Marie Persson, says she has decided to end her office's investigation of rape allegations against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Persson's office says the evidence "has weakened considerably."

Despite her decision, Persson said in a news conference in Stockholm on Tuesday that she found the account of the alleged victim to be credible.

Doctors are reporting the first evidence that genetically edited cells could offer a safe way to treat sickle cell disease, a devastating, incurable disorder that afflicts millions of people around the world.

Billions of cells that were genetically modified with the powerful gene-editing technique called CRISPR have started working, as doctors had hoped, inside the body of the first sickle cell patient to receive the experimental treatment, according to highly anticipated data released Tuesday.

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