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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

In February 2020, Norm Carson was attending a trade show in Amsterdam, when news about the coronavirus hit.

"We went in that day thinking we'd see some customers, do some training and it'd be a regular day. And then before you knew it, they had announced the name," he says.

Stolen Beehives Devastate French Beekeepers

23 hours ago

In France, beekeepers are waking up to find their hives stolen. There's been an increase in thefts across the country, with beekeepers blaming a possible international network of beekeeper thieves.

Last year, 400 hives were stolen. But already in 2021, that number is more than 600, says Frank Alétru, president of the French national beekeeping union.

"It's a very big problem for us in France," Alétru tells Scott Simon on Weekend Edition. He says the thefts are happening in several countries in Western Europe.

Blinken To Head North On Arctic Trip

23 hours ago

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The World Health Organization says that the COVID-19 pandemic that's killed so many people around the world and continues to do such harm is a, quote, "preventable disaster" and adds, global political leadership was absent. That's the judgment of an independent WHO panel in which David Miliband served. Of course, he's the former foreign minister of Great Britain and currently president of the International Rescue Committee. And he joins us now. Thanks so much for being with us.

DAVID MILIBAND: Thank you, Scott.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The World Health Organization says that the COVID-19 pandemic that's killed so many people around the world and continues to do such harm is a, quote, "preventable disaster" and adds, global political leadership was absent. That's the judgment of an independent WHO panel in which David Miliband served. Of course, he's the former foreign minister of Great Britain and currently president of the International Rescue Committee. And he joins us now. Thanks so much for being with us.

DAVID MILIBAND: Thank you, Scott.

President Biden continues to get good marks for his handling of the most pressing issue of the day — the coronavirus pandemic. He also remains on average above 50% for his handling of the economy, which is closely tied to COVID-19.

As Hamas rockets have rained down on Israeli cities, Israeli airstrikes and artillery have crumbled buildings in the Gaza Strip, and violent mobs have attacked one another in Israel's streets, President Biden has remained mostly muted about the escalating crisis.

Complaints about airlines refusing to pay refunds for canceled flights during the pandemic soared more than 5,500% over the previous year. Some customers are still trying to fight airlines for refunds, while others, who got credit or vouchers for future travel instead, are finding that those credits may soon expire.

And that's outraging some consumers who as taxpayers came to the rescue of the industry when airlines lost billions during the pandemic.

For four decades, David Taylor has relied on a ventilator to breathe, the whoosh, whoosh of the machine part of the background metronome of daily life. Then, on the night of Feb. 14, an Arctic blast began to overwhelm the Texas power grid. The next morning, the electricity flickered out in the Fort Worth home that the 65-year-old shares with his mother.

Editor's note: The fight against disinformation has become a facet of nearly every story NPR international correspondents cover, from vaccine hesitancy to authoritarian governments spreading lies. This and other stories by correspondents around the globe focus on different tactics to combat disinformation, the impacts they've had and what other countries might learn from them.

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