Laurel Wamsley | WGLT

Laurel Wamsley

The sudden outbreak of chickenpox at a North Carolina private school isn't exactly surprising.

At least 36 students have become infected with the disease at Asheville Waldorf School in the city of Asheville — a school that has among the highest rates of parents who received an exemption from the state's vaccination requirements.

Days after the flames swept through Paradise, dense smoke still hangs over this town whose residents are mostly gone. They fled to nearby towns along traffic-choked roads leading away from the small California community that was popular with retirees.

It was a classic high-stakes legal battle between two Dutch makers of herbed cheese spread.

On one side, Heksenkaas. The name means "witches' cheese," and it's a cream cheese spread with fresh herbs that was created in 2007 and sold by a company called Levola.

Editor's note: This story includes graphic imagery and language.

A mocking tweet from the National Rifle Association has stirred many physicians to post on social media about their tragically frequent experiences treating patients in the aftermath of gun violence.

The more archaeologists continue to explore the tombs of ancient Egypt, the more evidence mounts that ancient Egyptians admired cats — and loved mummifying them.

Egypt's Ministry of Antiquities announced Saturday that a team of Egyptian archaeologists excavating a 4,500-year-old tomb near Cairo has found dozens of mummified cats. Also in the tomb were 100 gilded wooden cat statues, as well as a bronze statue of Bastet, the goddess of cats.

Updated at 4:57 p.m. ET

Authorities have identified the suspect who killed 12 people at a country music bar in Thousand Oaks, Calif., as 28-year-old Ian David Long.

Long, who apparently killed himself, was a Marine Corps veteran and was known to local law enforcement.

Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said during a news conference Thursday morning that his department has had "several contacts with Mr. Long over the years" including minor events such as a traffic collision. Long was also the victim of battery at a local bar in 2015.

Nearly 80 children who were kidnapped by armed assailants from a school in northwestern Cameroon have been released by their abductors and are being reunited with their parents.

But it remains unclear who the kidnappers were and why the children were taken. The government has blamed the abductions on separatists, who in turn say the government is responsible.

Updated Nov. 7 at 9:30 a.m. ET

Rescue teams are searching for survivors amid rubble after two buildings collapsed in Marseille, France, on Monday morning.

So far, the bodies of four men and two women have been found, Reuters reports. Authorities initially said there may be up to to eight victims.

Authorities say at least 78 children and their principal were kidnapped from a school by armed men in northwest Cameroon late Sunday night.

The children were taken from a Presbyterian school near the city of Bamenda, which is at the center of an Anglophone separatist movement.

A U.S. soldier was killed Saturday in Kabul, Afghanistan, in what authorities are calling an insider attack. The soldier was Major Brent Taylor, and he was both an officer in the Utah National Guard and the mayor of North Ogden, Utah.

Taylor, 39, had been the town's mayor since 2013, and a member of the city council before that. North Ogden is a town of about 19,000 people, a bedroom community 40 miles north of Salt Lake City.

It's now legal for adults to smoke pot in Canada. But some Canadians have found themselves barred – possibly permanently – if they admit at the U.S. border that they have used marijuana.

Estevan, Saskatchewan, is just 10 miles north of the border with North Dakota. The town's mayor, Roy Ludwig, told the CBC that residents have been turned away at the border for admitting to marijuana use.

Five months after the death of University of Maryland football player Jordan McNair, the university system's board of regents has decided that football coach DJ Durkin and athletic director Damon Evans can both keep their jobs.

University President Wallace Loh, however, will retire in June.

At a press conference in Baltimore on Tuesday, Chairman of the Board of Regents James Brady said that the board had accepted all of the findings and recommendations from an independent commission's study on the culture of the university's football program.

When October Books, a small radical bookshop in Southampton, England, was moving to a new location down the street, it faced a problem. How could it move its entire stock to the new spot, without spending a lot of money or closing down for long?

The shop came up with a clever solution: They put out a call for volunteers to act as a human conveyor belt.

As they prepared to "lift and shift" on Sunday, they expected perhaps 100 people to help.

Updated at 5:05 p.m. ET

The U.S. military will send approximately 5,000 support troops to the U.S.-Mexico border, the Pentagon announced on Monday.

The exact number could be slightly higher or lower, a Pentagon official told NPR. The official said the deployment is being done to support the Department of Homeland Security and Customs and Border Protection.

The uniformed troops are likely to be active-duty Army personnel, with perhaps some members of the Army Reserve and Marines. There are already 2,100 National Guard members deployed to the border.

A white man charged with shooting and killing two African-Americans at a Kroger supermarket in Kentucky last week had first tried to enter a predominantly African-American church, police say.

Gregory Bush, 51, was charged with killing Maurice Stallard, 69, and Vickie Lee Jones, 67, at the supermarket in Jeffersontown, Ky., a suburb of Louisville.

As more information about the Wednesday attack and its alleged perpetrator have emerged, there are indications that Bush chose his targets because of the color of their skin.

In what may be the most significant tech acquisition of the year, IBM says it will acquire open-source software company Red Hat for approximately $34 billion.

Under the terms of the deal announced Sunday, IBM will acquire Red Hat for $190 a share — a premium of more than 60 percent over Red Hat's closing price of $116.68 on Friday.

Updated Oct. 31 at 4:34 p.m. ET

Eleven people were killed on Saturday when a gunman entered Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue and opened fire on the congregants. The victims ranged in age from 54 to 97; eight were men, three were women. Two of them were brothers, and two were a married couple.

Chuck Diamond was a rabbi at Tree of Life until about a year ago, and he remains a member of the community, living just around the corner from the synagogue. He knew many of the victims.

In the not-too-distant future, fully autonomous vehicles will drive our streets. These cars will need to make split-second decisions to avoid endangering human lives — both inside and outside of the vehicles.

Ethiopia's parliament has made Sahle-Work Zewde the country's first female president. And while the role is largely ceremonial, her appointment carries power in what it signifies.

A superior court judge in San Francisco has upheld a jury verdict against Bayer's Monsanto, maker of the weedkiller Roundup, but slashed the punitive damages by more than $200 million.

The jury had awarded $250 million in punitive damages and $39.25 million in compensatory damages to Dewayne Johnson, a groundskeeper and pest-control manager at a Northern California school district who contracted cancer.

Updated at 5:15 pm ET

A memo that has reportedly been circulating at the Department of Health and Human Services aims to narrow the federal government's definition of "sex" under Title IX — a change that could leave transgender people without a number of the legal protections that have become standard in recent years.

The memo reported on by The New York Times has not been released publicly. NPR has not seen it, and HHS says it does not comment on "alleged leaked documents."

In Japan, the springtime bloom of cherry blossoms is an annual rite of celebration, accompanied by picnics and parties under the flowering canopy.

But this week, an odd thing happened: Some of the trees bloomed again. In autumn.

It's the end of an era on Sesame Street: The man who has given voice and life to Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch for nearly 50 years is hanging up his big orange legs.

Updated Oct. 18 at 11 a.m. ET

A student went on a shooting rampage and then shot and killed himself at a technical school in Crimea, which also was hit by an explosion, Russian authorities said Wednesday.

At least 20 people were killed and 50 injured in the gunfire and the blast, which officials told Reuters went off in the school cafeteria. Ten of the injured were in grave condition, Russian news agency TASS reported.

It was a no-news-is-good-news kind of milestone: For the first time in at least 25 years, New York City just had a weekend with no shootings.

"A city of 8.6 million people — not a single shooting for three days," Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday, according to CNN. "Let's thank the NYPD for what they've achieved."

In the city's five boroughs, no shootings were reported from Friday to Sunday.

Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi is still missing, nearly two weeks after he entered the Saudi Arabian Consulate in Istanbul. And questions continue to swirl about his disappearance. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was dispatched to Riyadh, while in Istanbul, a team of investigators searched the consulate.

President Trump told reporters on Monday morning that he had just spoken with Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, who he said "firmly denied any knowledge" of what happened to Khashoggi.

But Trump had a theory.

The British royals announced today that Meghan Markle and her husband, Prince Harry, are expecting their first child, due in the spring.

For immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, it can be difficult to get a valid identification card. Now there's one very old organization trying to make it easier: the Catholic Church.

The Archdiocese of Baltimore announced Wednesday that its parishioners will now be able to get an ID card that shows name, address and data of birth, accompanied by the parish logo. While the cards clearly state they aren't government-issued IDs, the city of Baltimore and its police department say they will recognize the cards as an official form of identification.

More than a week has passed since Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi vanished after visiting the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul. Turkish authorities are telling journalists what they think happened, citing released video footage: that Khashoggi was targeted and murdered.

President Trump said Wednesday that he has spoken to the Saudi government "at the highest levels" about the situation.

Updated 4:55 p.m. ET

Nikki Haley is resigning as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and will leave the Trump administration at the end of the year, she said Tuesday.

It is not immediately clear what prompted the move. She informed her staff Tuesday, NPR's Michele Kelemen reports.

Haley appeared with President Trump on Tuesday morning at the Oval Office, where he called her a "fantastic person" and said Haley had told him six months ago that she might take time off at the end of the year.

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