Scott Neuman | KERA News

Scott Neuman

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.

He brings to NPR years of experience as a journalist at a variety of news organizations based all over the world. He came to NPR from The Associated Press in Bangkok, Thailand, where he worked as an editor on the news agency's Asia Desk. Prior to that, Neuman worked in Hong Kong with The Wall Street Journal, where among other things he reported extensively from Pakistan in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He also spent time with the AP in New York, and in India as a bureau chief for United Press International.

A native Hoosier, Neuman's roots in public radio (and the Midwest) run deep. He started his career at member station WBNI in Fort Wayne, and worked later in Illinois for WNIU/WNIJ in DeKalb/Rockford and WILL in Champaign-Urbana.

Neuman is a graduate of Purdue University. He lives with his wife, Noi, on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.

Updated at 5:35 a.m. ET

An Arkansas federal judge has temporarily blocked three new abortion restrictions, including a requirement that physicians providing the procedure be board-certified — a move that would likely have caused the closure of the state's only surgical abortion clinic.

Cambodia's prime minister has denounced as "fake news" a report in The Wall Street Journal that his country had signed a secret deal to allow Chinese warships to use a naval base in the Gulf of Thailand.

"This is the worst-ever made up news against Cambodia," Hun Sen told the country's pro-government Fresh News on Monday, according to The South China Morning Post.

Updated at 5:10 a.m. ET

Yukiya Amano, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, has died at age 72, leaving a vacancy at the top of the monitoring body just as tensions over Iran's nuclear ambitions appear to be reaching a critical threshold.

The former Japanese diplomat had led the United Nations' nuclear watchdog since 2009. He was integral to the negotiations leading up to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA. The U.S. unilaterally withdrew from the agreement last year.

Exit polls in Ukraine indicate that the party of the country's comedian-turned-president, Volodymyr Zelensky, has won a snap election aimed at strengthening its coalition only months after coming to power.

Zelensky's Servant of the People party is expected to garner about 41 percent of the vote and gain a majority in parliament, but it will not have enough seats to govern without allies, according to the polls released Sunday.

The Apollo program conjures images of Neil Armstrong's first steps on the moon and the massive team effort involved in getting him there. But a fundamental decision that led to the successful lunar landings came largely as a result of one man's determination to buck the system at NASA.

That man was John C. Houbolt.

The House Democratic leadership pushed through a $4.5 billion emergency aid package late Tuesday to help thousands of migrants packed into overcrowded facilities at the U.S.-Mexico border, but it's unlikely to get a hearing in the Republican-controlled Senate.

Illinois has become the 11th state in the country to legalize the recreational use and purchase of marijuana.

Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker, who was elected last year, signed the bill into law on Tuesday, fulfilling a key campaign promise. The state joins 10 others and the District of Columbia in allowing recreational use. The legislation takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

The Federal Aviation Administration issued an emergency order early Friday prohibiting U.S. airlines from flying through a specific part of Iranian airspace, citing an "inadvertent risk" to civilian airplanes after Iran shot down a U.S. surveillance drone.

Gun advocates in New Zealand are angry over a government plan aimed at buying back now-illegal firearms and magazines that were outlawed after a mass shooting in March that killed dozens of worshipers at two mosques in Christchurch.

Details of the plan were released on Thursday at a news conference in the capital, Wellington, after the country's gun laws were amended in April to ban most military-style semi-automatics, magazines that hold more than five rounds of ammunition, and gun parts, such as special sights and silencers.

Updated at 3 p.m. ET

Hours after Iran announced that it had shot down a U.S. drone, President Trump told journalists at the White House, "You'll soon find out" if the U.S. is planning a strike on Iran in retaliation.

"They're going to find out they made a very big mistake," Trump added, in comments that came as he met with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

But Trump also said he suspects that Iran's taking out the drone was not intentional, saying he finds it hard to believe.

A polar bear described as "starving and exhausted" and looking for food has strayed into a city in Russia's northern Siberia, hundreds of miles from the animal's natural Arctic range.

According to Reuters, the female bear who wandered into Norilsk, a major industrial town, was "visibly weak and seemly ill" and "lay despondently on the ground for hours ... its feet caked in mud."

Two members of Hong Kong's Executive Council have followed the territory's chief executive in issuing a public apology for supporting an extradition bill that continues to fuel massive demonstrations despite its suspension.

The remarks come as officials brace for the possibility of further protests in the Asian financial hub, where anger over the bill — which would allow Hong Kong people accused of certain crimes to be tried in mainland China courts — has already sparked clashes between protesters and police.

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has given the green light for a second time to a $5.5 billion pipeline expansion that has attracted strong opposition from environmentalists and some indigenous groups.

Trudeau, an ardent supporter of green energy, has found himself defending the 620-mile Trans Mountain pipeline expansion since his government first approved it in 2016. The project is meant to bring petroleum from oil sands near Edmonton, Alberta, to tanks in Burnaby near Vancouver on Canada's Pacific Coast.

A North Miami police officer has been found guilty of culpable negligence but was acquitted by a jury on two more serious felonies in connection with a 2016 shooting that wounded the caretaker of a man with autism.

Officer Jonathan Aledda was found not guilty of two counts of attempted manslaughter in the shooting of Charles Kinsey, who was caring for Arnaldo Rios Soto, who has severe autism and had wandered away from his group home for mentally disabled adults.

Updated 9:30 a.m. ET

Law enforcement in Dallas on Monday shot and killed a masked gunman carrying a military-style rifle and 150 rounds of ammunition. Authorities later identified the man as 22-year-old Army veteran Brian Isaack Clyde of Fort Worth.

No one else was seriously hurt in the shootout, which took place outside the Earle Cabell Federal Building and Courthouse around 8:40 a.m. ET. However, some glass panes on the building were shattered.

Four people were wounded in Toronto when gunfire broke out at a rally to honor the newly minted NBA champion Raptors.

The shootings, which occurred midafternoon, sparked a stampede from Nathan Philips Square, near City Hall, where tens of thousands of fans had gathered to celebrate the hometown professional basketball team.

A former Guatemalan first lady is the front-runner following Sunday's presidential election in the Central American country, where the electorate is hoping to find a candidate who can tackle its high unemployment, violence and corruption.

The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party has lost its first mayoral contest, handing embattled Chancellor Angela Merkel's center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU) a solid victory.

In the small eastern town of Goerlitz, near the border with Poland, Octavian Ursu, a 51-year-old Romanian immigrant and classical musician, easily won Sunday's runoff vote against AfD's Sebastian Wippel, 36, who stood on an anti-immigrant platform.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has rejected the U.S. accusations, tweeting that the Trump administration "immediately jumped to make allegations against Iran [without] a shred of factual or circumstantial evidence."

In an earlier tweet, Zarif hinted at a conspiracy, noting that the tankers, one owned by a Japanese firm, occurred as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was meeting with Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. "Suspicious doesn't begin to describe what likely transpired," he wrote.

A top Hong Kong adviser says he is recommending a reevaluation of the government's fast-track approach to a controversial extradition bill that has sparked mass protests and the territory's worst violence in years.

Meanwhile, authorities in the city prepared for more demonstrations planned over the weekend.

In a radio call-in program on RTHK on Friday, Executive Council convener Bernard Chan, who advises Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam, acknowledged that he had underestimated opposition to the measure, particularly from the business community.

The man accused of killing 51 people in mass shootings at two New Zealand mosques in March has pleaded not guilty to terrorism, murder and attempted murder.

Brenton Tarrant, who appeared via video link from a maximum security prison in Auckland, smirked but did not speak and showed little other emotion as his lawyer entered not guilty pleas on multiple counts.

Audible gasps could be heard in the courtroom as the not guilty pleas were entered.

Updated at 10:18 p.m. ET

The Pentagon's Central Command says U.S. aircraft saw a Revolutionary Guard patrol boat and other Iranian vessels "in the vicinity" of the motor tanker Altair, one of two oil tankers attacked in the Gulf of Oman Thursday.

Another crew, from the motor tanker Kokuka Courageous, abandoned their ship, according to the statement, after discovering "a probable limpet mine on their hull following an initial explosion." Central Command says the Iranian patrol boat later approached the craft and was recorded removing an unexploded mine.

The World Health Organization is considering whether to declare the current Ebola outbreak in central Africa a global health crisis after new cases spread to Uganda from neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo, where the disease has already killed nearly 1,400 people.

Updated at 6:05 a.m. ET

Authorities in Hong Kong closed government offices in the city's Central district after violent clashes between police and protesters brought the bustling financial hub to a standstill.

The Southern Baptist Convention has voted to make it easier to expel churches that mishandle claims of sexual abuse.

Delegates representing some 47,000 Southern Baptist churches gathered at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex in Birmingham, Ala., approved an amendment allowing individual churches to be expelled from the Convention if they mishandle or cover up sexual abuse cases. Delegates also established a special committee to evaluate abuse claims against churches.

Updated at 1:50 p.m. ET

Riot police in Hong Kong fired rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons at protesters Wednesday, trying to break up demonstrations that blockaded the city's Legislative Council. The unrest forced lawmakers to delay debate on a controversial extradition bill that critics say would expose Hong Kong residents to China's judicial system.

There are few world leaders past or present we know less about than North Korea's reclusive, nuclear-armed bad boy, Kim Jong Un.

Even Stalin was arguably less opaque. While guarded and secretive, the brutal Soviet strongman was at least recognized as one of Lenin's henchmen before muscling his way to the top.

Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, the founder of Infowars, has agreed to pay a $15,000 legal settlement to the creator of Pepe the Frog, a cartoon character appropriated by the "alt-right" that is now widely used in racist Internet memes.

Jones signed the settlement on Monday with Matt Furie, the California-based artist who created Pepe some 15 years ago. The lawsuit alleged that Jones used the character without permission as part of a promotional poster also featuring images of himself, President Trump and far-right provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos.

Former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz was shot in the back Sunday at an outdoor bar in the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo. He was reportedly in stable condition after undergoing surgery.

Ortiz, a native of the Dominican Republic, was at the bar in the capital at about 8:50 p.m. when a man on a motorcycle approached and shot him from behind, according to Dominican National Police Director Ney Aldrin Bautista Almonte.

Ortiz's father, Leo Ortiz, told local reporters that his son, 43, was "fine" after surgery and that the bullet did not hit any vital organs.

A construction crane in Dallas came crashing down Sunday on an apartment building, killing at least one person and injuring five others, local fire officials said.

The crane was slammed by sudden high winds as high as 70 mph, causing it to buckle and fall onto the five-story Elan City Lights building.

The body of a woman, who was not identified by officials, was found inside the building after the collapse, fire officials said.

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