Edward Snowden May Soon Come Home: VICE News Capsule, March 4

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The VICE News Capsule is a news roundup that looks beyond the headlines. Today: NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden could be in talks to return to the U.S., Bolivian authorities find tons of cocaine packaged as tea, Kenya’s president destroys $30 million in confiscated ivory, and Syrian pharmacists look to herbal remedies to treat patients as supply shortages continue.

RUSSIA
Lawyer Says Edward Snowden Ready to Return to U.S.
The NSA whistleblower has reportedly agreed to face trial in the United States, if it’s fair.

BOLIVIA
Tons of Coca Leaves Disguised as Tea Shipment
The packages were bound for Lebanon, and could have been used to produce more than 200 pounds of cocaine.

KENYA
President Torches Millions in Confiscated Ivory
On the occasion of World Wildlife Day, President Ihuru Kenyatta said his commitment to fighting the illegal trade is stronger than ever.

SYRIA
Herbal Remedies Help Soothe Supply Shortages
It is hard to find basic medicines and surgical supplies in Aleppo, so some pharmacists are using natural treatments to allow patients to stay healthy despite the war.

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Freezing and Fighting for Aid: Syrian Refugees in Lebanon

As Syria’s civil war has raged over the past four years, more than a million refugees have fled into neighboring Lebanon. The Bekaa Valley, which serves as the main passageway between Damascus and Beirut, is now home to the largest concentration of Lebanon’s Syrian refugees.

Currently in Lebanon there is one Syrian for every four Lebanese citizens — a population growth that has created a strain on the small villages and towns that bear the responsibility of hosting the refugees. Al Marj, a small city of about 15,000 in the southern end of the Bekaa Valley, is home to a refugee camp where approximately 400 families are living.

VICE News traveled to the Bekaa Valley to see how the refugee population is faring as winter fully sets in, and found that the freezing temperatures are only one of their problems.

Watch “The War Next Door (Full Length)” – http://bit.ly/1we4sbb

Read “Is Lebanon’s Hezbollah Sending Fighters to the Iraqi Frontlines?” – http://bit.ly/1LCYA5q

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Turkish Soldiers Relocate Ottoman Tomb: VICE News Capsule, February 25

The VICE News Capsule is a news roundup that looks beyond the headlines. Today: More than $1 million in knockoff shoes destroyed in the Philippines, Turkish soldiers relocate medieval tomb of Suleyman Shah to Syrian border village, Germany bans Dutch biker gang over its alleged organized crime links, and Spanish police arrest four suspected of recruiting Muslims to join militant groups.

SYRIA
Turkish Soldiers Relocate Medieval Tomb Following Extraction Mission
The mausoleum of Suleyman Shah was moved from militant-controlled territory in a secret night-time mission over the weekend. The temporary tomb is located in a village on the border with Turkey.

PHILIPPINES
Authorities Destroy Counterfeit Footwear Worth Over $1 Million
Fake Nike, Adidas, and Converse shoes manufactured in China were among the more than 150,000 pairs shredded by customs officials on Tuesday.

GERMANY
Dutch Biker Gang Banned For Criminal Activities
Satudarah Motorcycle Club members have been linked to drug trafficking, extortion, murder, and other crimes.

SPAIN
Police Nab Four Suspected Islamist Recruiters
The men are believed to have run websites and Facebook pages to promote extremist agendas and lure Muslims to join groups such as the Islamic State.

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Freezing and Fighting for Aid: Syrian Refugees in Lebanon (Trailer)

As Syria’s civil war has raged over the past four years, more than a million refugees have fled into neighboring Lebanon. The Bekaa Valley, which serves as the main passageway between Damascus and Beirut, is now home to the largest concentration of Lebanon’s Syrian refugees.

Currently in Lebanon there is one Syrian for every four Lebanese citizens — a population growth that has created a strain on the small villages and towns that bear the responsibility of hosting the refugees. Al Marj, a small city of about 15,000 in the southern end of the Bekaa Valley, is home to a refugee camp where approximately 400 families are living.

VICE News traveled to the Bekaa Valley to see how the refugee population is faring as winter fully sets in, and found that the freezing temperatures are only one of their problems.

Watch “The War Next Door (Full Length)” – http://bit.ly/1we4sbb

Read “Is Lebanon’s Hezbollah Sending Fighters to the Iraqi Frontlines?” – http://bit.ly/1LCYA5q

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PKK Youth Fight for Autonomy in Turkey

On January 6, a 14-year-old Kurdish boy named Ümit Kurt was shot dead by Turkish special forces in the Syrian border town of Cizre in southeast Turkey.

Ümit Kurt was killed as he walked home through an area controlled by the Patriotic Revolutionary Youth Movement (YDG-H), the militant youth wing of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). The YDG-H has been acting as a paramilitary force in Cizre for the past few months and has closed off several Kurdish neighborhoods with their armed checkpoints and patrols.

VICE News gained exclusive access to members of the YDG-H, mostly in their teens and early twenties, who give their story on why gun battles broke out between them and the Turkish security forces, leading to some of the worst fighting in Cizre since the 1990s.

Watch “Istanbul’s Kurdish Riots” – http://bit.ly/1zSpoKY

Read “Kurdish Anger Simmers as Turkey Accused of Killing Unarmed Teenagers” – http://bit.ly/1AjKzaJ

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Death Boats to Greece (Part 1/2): Europe Or Die (Episode 2/4)

Since 2000, more than 27,000 migrants and refugees have died attempting the perilous journey to Europe. With an unprecedented number of people breaking through its heavily barricaded borders in 2014, the EU continues to fortify its frontiers.

VICE News presents Europe or Die, a new four-part series that documents the efforts of those risking their lives to reach Europe, and the forces tasked to keep them out.

In episode two of our series, VICE News correspondent Milène Larsson travels to the border between Greece and Turkey, where Syrian and Afghan refugees are paying large sums of money to take “death boats” to Greece.

Watch “Storming Spain’s Razor-Wire Fence: Europe Or Die” – http://bit.ly/1uQfFz9

Read “Six Dead After Migrant Boat Sinks Off Moroccan Coast” – http://bit.ly/1CQEtO5

Read “Dozens of Migrants Bound for Malaysia Feared Dead as Trawler Sinks in Bay of Bengal” – http://bit.ly/1K1InG4

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Aftermath of Syrian Airstrike Near Damascus: This Just In

A Syrian government airstrike struck the town of Hamouriyeh in the Eastern Ghouta region near Damascus on Friday. At least 32 people were killed by the attack, which occurred shortly after Friday prayers, according to local activists and the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights.

Watch “The War Next Door” – http://bit.ly/1we4sbb

Read “Islamic State Shows Off Downed Syrian Drone in New Video” – http://bit.ly/1Cmcgy9

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VICE News Daily: Beyond The Headlines – January 22, 2015

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The VICE News Capsule is a news roundup that looks beyond the headlines. Today: Anti-government demonstrations grow in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, amateur video appears to show aftermath of Syrian air strikes on village controlled by the Islamic State, U.S. law enforcement agencies are using a radar that can detect if you’re home through the walls, and Crimea’s water shortage has zoo animals parched.

D.R. CONGO
Demonstrations Continue Against Proposed Electoral Law
The powerful Catholic Church has condemned the reform, which the opposition claims would only serve to extend President Joseph Kabila’s rule.

SYRIA
Aftermath of Government Raid on Militant-Controlled Territory
Medics say at least 65 people are dead after an air strike on a cattle market in the northeast village of Khansaa.

U.S.A.
Police Radar Used by 50 Agencies Can ‘See’ Inside Homes
Using radio waves, the Range-R device can detect the slightest of movements. Privacy advocates aren’t pleased.

CRIMEA
Water Shortage Threatens Zoo Animals
Reservoir levels on the peninsula have fallen and have left lions, tigers, and bears are at risk of going thirsty.

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VICE News Daily: Beyond The Headlines – January 12, 2015

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The VICE News Capsule is a news roundup that looks beyond the headlines. Today: Syrian rebels launch attack in northern Lebanese city of Tripoli, Afghan and Pakistani Taliban fighters pledge allegiance to the Islamic State, tens of thousands rally against racism in eastern Germany as anti-Islamic movement grows, and an oil deal with the U.S. could help boost Mexico’s ailing economy.

LEBANON
Syrian Rebels Carry Out Suicide Attacks in Northern City of Tripoli
Double suicide bombing targeted a neighborhood mainly populated by Alawites, who are staunch supporters of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

PAKISTAN
Taliban Fighters Pledge Allegiance to the Islamic State
Video purports to show dozens of Afghan and Pakistani Taliban expressing their support for the militant group.

GERMANY
Tens of Thousands Protest in Dresden Against Racism
Nearly 35,000 participated in a rally to call for unity as the right-wing movement PEGIDA continues to spread anti-Muslim sentiment.

MEXICO
State-Run Oil Company Proposes First Crude Exchange with U.S.
​The deal would boost Mexican oil production, ​which dropped for a 10th consecutive year in 2014.

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A Syrian Fighter in an Israeli Hospital (Excerpt from ‘The War Next Door’)

In August, al Nusra Front jihadists took control of Syria’s side of the border crossing with Israel and kidnapped over 40 United Nations peacekeepers — who have since been released.

But al Nusra Front, an al Qaeda-affiliate, isn’t Israel’s only threat from Syria. President Bashar al-Assad’s military, in a possible effort to bait Israel into its civil war to shore up Arab sympathies, has been lobbing mortars across the border. Just a few weeks ago, the Israeli military shot down a Syrian plane flying over the Golan Heights — the first time it has done so since the 1980s.

In this excerpt, VICE News correspondent Simon Ostrovsky visits the Ziv Medical Center in Safed, Israel, which is unique for its proximity to the international borders with Lebanon and Syria, and for treating victims of hostilities and soldiers injured on both sides of the border.

Watch the full length “The War Next Door” – http://bit.ly/14dmPqf

Watch the extra scene “Bird-Watching in a War Zone” – http://bit.ly/1A0haMN

Read “The Explosive End of Israel’s ‘Quietest Border'” – http://bit.ly/1xcm7DB

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