Most talked about Voice of America stories

Scientists Warn of Threat to Coastal Reefs — Scientists Warn of Threat to Coastal Reefs American scientists are warning of a threat to the world's coral and rocky reefs. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has identified four reasons for the threat. They are human population growth, the warming of Earth's atmosphere, pollution and overfishing - catching too many fish.

A Special Edition of On the Line: Talk to America - Racial Justice — ON THE LINE Special Edition Talk to America - Racial Justice Three unarmed black men and boys killed at the hands of US police. Their deaths with no legal repercussions as yet sparked protests across the country. Americans are asking hard questions about justice and law enforcement: Are some police officers guilty of racial bias and using excessive force?

US: Sony Cyberattack is ‘Serious’ National Security Matter — U.S. officials are treating a cyberattack on Sony Pictures as a "serious national security matter," with the National Security Council considering a proportionate response, the White House said Thursday. Evidence shows the attack against Sony was carried out by a "sophisticated actor," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said.

Survey: No Consensus How to Curb Eroding Online Privacy — A new survey says that as online privacy continues to erode, governments, technology workers and individuals will struggle to respond. The report titled " The Future of Privacy ", sponsored by the Pew Research Center and Elon University's "Imagining the Internet Center," was released Thursday and explores the future of digital privacy over the next decade.
Dec 18, 2014

Remember #privacy? Might just kiss it goodbye now. Survey: No Consensus How to Curb Eroding Online Privacy…

Kenyan MPs Pass Controversial Security Measures — Chaos broke out on the floor of Kenya's national assembly in Nairobi, as the chamber gathered to consider controversial security amendments that have divided lawmakers. Members of parliament came to blows several times Thursday during the course of the final reading of the bill, which would grant sweeping authorization to security forces to arrest and detain terror suspects.

2014 Deadliest Year Ever for Migrants — The International Organization for Migration (IOM) reports 2014 is the deadliest year on record for migrants fleeing conflict, political persecution and economic hardship. As the world marks International Migrants Day, IOM is calling for urgent action to save the lives of migrants and to stop smugglers from exploiting these vulnerable, desperate people.

Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries — Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

South African Brewer Tackles Climate Change — Governments failed to come to a breakthrough agreement at last week's climate summit in Peru. But South African mega-brewer SAB Miller sent delegates to the talks, and says it is one of many private companies taking their own steps to fight climate change.

Putin Addresses Russia Amid Economic Crisis — President Vladimir Putin struck an optimistic chord at his end-of-year news conference Thursday, telling Russians the country's economy will rebound and the ruble will stabilize. He said the current crisis could last two years at most, but the economy could recover faster if external factors change for the better.

Tanking Ruble Hits Russian Tourists, Thai Hotels — Russia's plunging currency is creating serious concerns for Thailand's multi-billion dollar tourism industry, already suffering for the past year because of political upheaval that culminated in the May 22 bloodless military coup. With the ruble crashing to record lows against the U.S. dollar and other currencies, Russians are cutting back on spending, including overseas travel.

Ebola Threatens Millions With Food Insecurity — Ebola continues to attack Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone on several fronts. While infections and deaths rise, the disease is posing a greater threat to food security. U.N. agencies warn that more than one-million people could be food insecure by March unless action is not taken now.

Rights Groups Criticize Use of Dog Skin in China — Dog skin produced by Chinese factories is used to make gloves, shoes and other products destined for export, footage provided to Reuters by an animal rights group shows. China has faced criticism for its treatment of animals, including bears, whose bile is used in traditional medicines.
Dec 18, 2014

PETA says dog skin produced by Chinese factories is used to make gloves, shoes destined for export.

In South Sudan, Lots of Anger But No Protests — Refugee Michael Deng Gaduel is one of about 50,000 who have sought safe haven from the fighting at a United Nations site near Bentiu - a strategic town near some of South Sudan's most important oil fields. It has changed hands many times during the year-old conflict.

Zambia's Acting President Rejects Call to Step Down — Zambia's Cabinet passed a vote of no confidence in interim president Guy Scott on Wednesday and asked him to resign, intensifying a power struggle within the ruling party ahead of an election next month.

Zambia Cabinet Ministers Demand Presidential Resignation After No-Confidence Vote — Zambia's cabinet ministers have demanded that acting President Guy Scott step down from office, a day after they approved a vote of no confidence against him, according to information minister Joseph Katema.
Dec 18, 2014

Zambia Cabinet Ministers Demand Presidential Resignation After No-Confidence Vote…

North Koreans Toil for Little Pay Overseas — In the heat of Qatar, nearly 3,000 North Koreans labor on construction sites, under harsh conditions. The laborers and local construction managers tell VOA that they work very long hours and that most of their pay is confiscated by North Korean officials.

EU Court: Remove Hamas From Terror List — A European court has ruled that the Palestinian militant group Hamas must be removed from a European Union list of designated terror groups. The General Court of the European Union said Wednesday that the EU improperly included Hamas on the basis of information it got from the media and the Internet.

Obama Announces Historic Revamp of US-Cuba Relations — Cuba has released American aid worker Alan Gross after five years in prison, a U.S. official said on Wednesday. Cuba arrested Gross, now 65, on December 3, 2009, and later convicted the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) subcontractor to 15 years in prison for importing banned technology and trying to establish clandestine internet service for Cuban Jews.

Elated Gross Speaks About Prison Release — After flying home for Havana on a United States government plane, a visibly weary but elated, newly-freed Alan Gross thanked all those who worked tirelessly for his release from a Cuban jail Wednesday. "Your prayers and actions have been comforting, reassuring and sustaining, " Gross said during a press conference at his attorney's office in Washington.