Sasha Ingber

Sasha Ingber is a reporter on NPR's breaking news desk, where she covers national and international affairs of the day.

She got her start at NPR as a regular contributor to Goats and Soda, reporting on terrorist attacks of aid organizations in Afghanistan, the man-made cholera epidemic in Yemen, poverty in the United States, and other human rights and global health stories.

Before joining NPR, she contributed numerous news articles and short-form, digital documentaries to National Geographic, covering an array of topics that included the controversy over undocumented children in the United States, ISIS' genocide of minorities in Iraq, wildlife trafficking, climate change, and the spatial memory of slime.

She was the editor of a U.S. Department of State team that monitored and debunked Russian disinformation following the annexation of Crimea in 2014. She was also the associate editor of a Smithsonian culture magazine, Journeys.

In 2016, she co-founded Music in Exile, a nonprofit organization that documents the songs and stories of people who have been displaced by war, oppression, and regional instability. Starting in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, she interviewed, photographed, and recorded refugees who fled war-torn Syria and religious minorities who were internally displaced in Iraq. The work has led Sasha to appear live on-air for radio stations as well as on pre-recorded broadcasts, including PRI's The World.

As a multimedia journalist, her articles and photographs have appeared in additional publications including The Washington Post Magazine, Smithsonian Magazine, The Atlantic, and The Willamette Week.

Before starting a career in journalism, she investigated the international tiger trade for The World Bank's Global Tiger Initiative, researched healthcare fraud for the National Healthcare Anti-Fraud Association, and taught dance at a high school in Washington, D.C.

A Pulitzer Center grantee, she holds a master's degree in nonfiction writing from Johns Hopkins University and a bachelor's degree in film, television, and radio from the University of Wisconsin in Madison.

The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom has released its annual report in the aftermath of attacks on mosques in New Zealand, churches in Sri Lanka and synagogues in the United States.

Sri Lanka has banned its citizens from wearing face coverings under an emergency law, after terrorist attacks at prominent churches and upscale hotels left hundreds dead in the small island nation.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced that she and French President Emmanuel Macron will lead a global effort to stop social media from promoting terrorism in the wake of recent attacks that devastated New Zealand and Sri Lanka.

"This isn't about freedom of expression; this is about preventing violent extremism and terrorism online," Ardern told reporters at a news conference in Auckland on Wednesday.

Sri Lanka held its first mass funerals on Tuesday for victims of the Easter Sunday attacks, a string of bombings at churches and hotels that has left a nation in mourning. The death toll rose to 321 people since the first blasts.

Updated at 1:11 a.m. ET Tuesday:

The Sri Lankan government has blamed the National Thowfeek Jamaath, a little-known Muslim militant group, for the coordinated attacks on churches and hotels that rocked the island nation on Easter Sunday.

Sri Lankan Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne says the small group was aided by an international network.

Updated at 12:53 a.m. ET Monday

Nearly 300 people were killed and hundreds more wounded after explosions tore through Sri Lanka in a series of coordinated blasts that struck three churches and three hotels. It marked the country's worst violence since the end of its civil war in 2009.

Police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekara said Monday the death toll had risen to 290 dead with more than 500 wounded, according to The Associated Press.

Updated at 3:04 p.m. ET

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced he will introduce national legislation to raise the minimum age for people buying tobacco products from 18 to 21. Some anti-tobacco advocates worry that the plan could actually harm children by heading off other regulation efforts.

The United States has become a less safe place for journalists, and the threats they face are becoming the standard, according to a new report by an international press freedom organization.

Reporters Sans Frontières, or Reporters Without Borders, dropped the U.S. to No. 48 out of 180 on its annual World Press Freedom Index, three notches lower than its place last year. The move downgrades the country from a "satisfactory" place to work freely to a "problematic" one for journalists.

A tour bus has crashed in Portugal, killing at least 29 people and injuring dozens, authorities said.

The incident occurred Wednesday evening on the island of Madeira, a vacation destination known as the pearl of the Atlantic. The bus swerved off a winding street in the coastal town of Caniço and then tumbled down a hill. Many of the victims are German citizens, whose identities have not yet been made public.

The New York Post is facing a barrage of criticism after its cover on Thursday featured an image of the World Trade Center, burning in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, below a terse quote by one of the first Muslim women serving in Congress.

"Rep. Ilhan Omar: 9/11 was 'Some people did something,' " the cover read. A caption underneath added, "Here's your something ... 2,977 people dead by terrorism."

Updated at 2:30 p.m.

Police have arrested the son of a Louisiana sheriff's deputy as a suspect in connection with three historically black churches that were torched in recent days.

Officials identified the suspect as Holden Matthews, a 21-year-old white male from St. Landry Parish, a small community about an hour west of Baton Rouge.

Updated at 9:57 p.m. ET

The Justice Department announced Thursday that it is charging Julian Assange, setting the stage for a historic legal showdown with the controversial founder of WikiLeaks.

The unsealing of an indictment dated more than a year ago followed a whirlwind reversal of fortune for Assange, who was ejected from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he confined himself for years, and then hauled into custody by officers of the Metropolitan Police.

The Army and Air Force Exchange Service, one of the largest retailers in the United States which serves millions of active-duty military members and their families, is clarifying a memo sent this week which recommended that stores stop displaying the news on their televisions.

The message, obtained by NPR, told managers, "News channels should not be shown on common area TVs due to their divisive political nature."

President Trump says he intends to nominate Jovita Carranza, the U.S. treasurer, to lead the Small Business Administration after former pro-wrestling executive Linda McMahon announced last week that she was stepping down.

"I am pleased to announce that Jovita Carranza will be nominated as the new @SBAgov Administrator," Trump said Thursday evening on Twitter. "Jovita was a great Treasurer of the United States — and I look forward to her joining my Cabinet!"

Until this week, sex between unmarried people in Utah was technically illegal, a vestige of earlier times.

That changed Wednesday, when Gov. Gary Herbert signed a bill that decriminalizes sex outside of marriage in the state, spokesperson Anna Lehnardt tells NPR.

Maria Butina, the Russian woman who pleaded guilty last year to working as a clandestine agent in the United States, will be sentenced on April 26, U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan said Thursday.

Butina, 30, sat silently in a green jump suit during the hearing. She faces a maximum of five years in prison but could receive zero to six months because of a plea deal.

She was arrested in July and has been detained ever since, with federal prosecutors arguing that she was a flight risk.

Facebook announced Wednesday that it intends to ban content that glorifies white nationalism and separatism, a major policy shift that will begin next week.

"It's clear that these concepts are deeply linked to organized hate groups and have no place on our services," the company said in a statement.

Updated at 6:52 p.m. ET

An amusement park boat has sunk in Iraq's Tigris River, killing at least 100 people, according to Iraqi state television. The passengers were celebrating Nowruz, a joyous holiday marking the new year at the start of spring.

Video footage showed people being carried away in the water's fast current as onlookers shout from a nearby theme park.

NPR's Jane Arraf reports that many of the dead were children. At least 55 people were rescued.

A woman in Georgia has been arrested and charged with conspiring to provide material support for ISIS.

Kim Anh Vo, 20, was arrested Tuesday morning in the town of Hephzibah.

Federal prosecutors in New York allege that Vo joined an online group called the United Cyber Caliphate, which had sworn allegiance to ISIS and encouraged followers to attack Americans.

On Tuesday, a Bahraini refugee soccer player who was jailed and facing deportation arguably got his biggest goal — citizenship in a foreign country.

Hakeem al-Araibi, 25, was one of about 200 people who became Australia citizens at a ceremony in Melbourne.

Updated at 6:07 p.m. ET

Olympic cycling medalist Kelly Catlin died in her dorm at Stanford University last Thursday, an abrupt end to the 23-year-old's accolade-filled life.

Her family tells NPR that she took her own life.

"Waves of despair come over us," her father, Mark Catlin, says. "She promised us she wasn't going to kill herself."

European Union officials have moved to clarify travel regulations for U.S. citizens, following erroneous reports this week that Americans will soon be required to apply for visas.

A massive power outage has swept across Venezuela, leaving its two leaders at odds over who is to blame for plunging the country into darkness at a time of deep political unrest.

The outage began Thursday evening at rush hour, bringing the subway system in Caracas to a halt. Thousands of commuters returned home on foot, their walks lit only by mobile phones and the stars.

A court in Thailand has voted unanimously to dissolve an opposition political party that nominated a princess as its sole candidate for prime minister, raising concerns about the fairness and legitimacy of the country's elections on March 24.

The desperate shouts for help from gold miners who have been trapped for days under debris on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi have fallen silent, an official said Saturday.

The illegal mine collapsed on Tuesday in Bolaang Mongondow, after soil shifted in the sloping, green terrain and wooden support beams at the site suddenly broke.

Eight miners have died and 20 have been rescued, according to The Associated Press. About three dozen people are thought to still be trapped.

Authorities in Sweden have arrested a person on suspicion of being a Russian agent.

The individual, whose name has not been disclosed, was passing information to Russia since 2017, the Swedish Security Service says. He or she was working in a high-technology sector "on tasks known by our Service to be the type of intelligence sought after by foreign powers," the agency said.

Swedish police officers working with security service agents arrested the suspect on Tuesday evening, in the midst of a meeting in central Stockholm.

Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman says that websites in the country are constantly under cyberattack by the United States, and that shows why Russia is pursuing an autonomous Internet.

Dmitry Peskov told reporters in Moscow on Wednesday that the United States has carried out a number of digital attacks on Russian entities and people. "This is the reality with which we live," he said, according to Russian state news agency Tass.

Updated at 5:30 p.m. ET

Oregon is about to become the first state in the nation to impose rent control on landlords, after lawmakers passed an extensive measure on Tuesday.

Senate Bill 608 sailed through the state's House in a 35-25 vote. It now heads for a signature from Gov. Kate Brown, who has voiced support for the cause.

Two lawmakers in New York City have issued a siren call of sorts, arguing that the shrill sound of police cars, fire trucks and ambulances has got to go.

If passed, the legislation would require all emergency vehicles to change their sirens within two years to an alternating high and low sound similar to that heard in many European countries.

Vice President Pence traveled to Bogotá, Colombia, on Monday and urged regional leaders to support Juan Guaidó, the self-proclaimed interim president of Venezuela, vowing that the U.S. will stand with the opposition leader "until your libertad is restored."

Pence also announced U.S. sanctions against several border-state governors aligned with embattled Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro who are said to be involved in blocking shipments of humanitarian aid from reaching Venezuelans.

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