Scott Neuman

Scott Neuman works as a Digital News writer and editor, handling breaking news and feature stories for NPR.org. Occasionally he can be heard on-air reporting on stories for Newscasts and has done several radio features since he joined NPR in April 2007, as an editor on the Continuous News Desk.

Neuman brings to NPR years of experience as an editor and reporter at a variety of news organizations and based all over the world. For three years in Bangkok, Thailand, he served as an Associated Press Asia-Pacific desk editor. From 2000-2004, Neuman worked as a Hong Kong-based Asia editor and correspondent for The Wall Street Journal. He spent the previous two years as the international desk editor at the AP, while living in New York.

As the United Press International's New Delhi-based correspondent and bureau chief, Neuman covered South Asia from 1995-1997. He worked for two years before that as a freelance radio reporter in India, filing stories for NPR, PRI and the Canadian Broadcasting System. In 1991, Neuman was a reporter at NPR Member station WILL in Champaign-Urbana, IL. He started his career working for two years as the operations director and classical music host at NPR member station WNIU/WNIJ in DeKalb/Rockford, IL.

Reporting from Pakistan immediately following the September 11, 2001 attacks, Neuman was part of the team that earned the Pulitzer Prize awarded to The Wall Street Journal for overall coverage of 9/11 and the aftermath. Neuman shared in several awards won by AP for coverage of the December 2004 Asian tsunami.

A graduate from Purdue University, Neuman earned a Bachelor's degree in communications and electronic journalism.

What year was the Constitution written?

Who was president during World War I?

If you couldn't answer one or both of the above, you might not be able to pass a civics test given to candidates for U.S. citizenship. Or (starting in 2017) graduate from high school in Arizona.

On Thursday, Gov. Doug Ducey signed a bill making a high school diploma in the state contingent upon students passing the same test given to candidates for U.S. citizenship. The class of 2017 will be the first to have the new requirement.

Speaking to one of Asia's fastest-growing populations, Pope Francis issued what is being described as his strongest defense yet of the Catholic Church's opposition to artificial contraception, urging that Philippine families be "sanctuaries of respect for life."

When we brought you the news last week that Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa had been defeated in nationwide elections, reports were that Asia's longest serving leader willingly handed over the reins to his rival.

Rajapaksa, who had ruled since 2005, even tweeted that he looked forward to a "peaceful transition of power" to erstwhile ally Maithripala Sirisena, who won by just under 4 percent of the vote.

One day in 1990, A.K. Verma went on what you might call "extended" leave from his job as a senior bureaucrat at India's Central Public Works Department.

He's been a no-show ever since. And it finally caught up to him: Verma was sacked for his absence — on Jan. 8.

Blame (or credit) India's tough labor laws: They are some of the most pro-worker in the world and make it nearly impossible for employers, including state and local governments, to fire for anything short of criminal misconduct.

Update at 11:50 p.m. ET

Divers have retrieved the flight data recorder from AirAsia QZ8501's "black box," Reuters reports.

Efforts continue to find the cockpit voice recorder, says Bambang Soelistyo, the head of Indonesia's search and rescue agency.

Our previous post continues:

Swedish-born actress Anita Ekberg, who became an international sex symbol best known for her role as Sylvia in the 1960 Federico Fellini film La Dolce Vita, died in Italy today at age 83, her lawyer confirmed.

Updated at 1:40 p.m. ET

A video has surfaced of the now-dead suspect in the attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris claiming allegiance to the self-declared Islamic State.

In the video, what appears to be Amedy Coulibaly, 32, is seen seated next to a Kalashnikov rifle with the symbol of the Islamic State behind him. He is wearing a white tunic and bandana.

George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer acquitted in the 2013 shooting death of Trayvon Martin, was arrested in Florida late Friday and has been charged with aggravated assault with a weapon.

Hundreds of thousands of people participated in vigils and rallies around France today to voice support for the 17 victims of days of violence this week that began with a deadly attack on the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

The mangled tail section of an AirAsia A320 that went down in the Java Sea last month has been lifted to the surface, but the "black boxes" searchers hoped to find in the debris were not immediately located.

The flight-data recorders that might tell investigators what caused Flight QZ8501 to crash, killing all 162 aboard, appear to have separated from the tail section recovered today, officials say.

Michael Sullivan, reporting for NPR from Thailand, says search teams took advantage of a break in the weather to bring the tail of the plane to the surface.

SpaceX has successfully launched another resupply mission to the International Space Station months after a competitor in the private space-launch business suffered a catastrophic lift-off that resulted in the unmanned rocket's destruction.

Updated at 4:20 p.m. ET

At least three assailants are alleged to have carried out the two separate attacks in and around Paris this week, and French intelligence has begun to draw strong links among them as well as to al-Qaida and its affiliates and offshoots in the Middle East.

Updated at 4:55 p.m. ET

Authorities in France are trying to determine the whereabouts of a 26-year-old woman who is believed to be linked with one of three assailants killed during multiple attacks around Paris.

An Italian newspaper reports that the Vatican's commission on sainthood has recognized the 1980 assassination of Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero as martyrdom, paving the way for his eventual sainthood.

Romero was archbishop of San Salvador at the start of El Salvador's 1979-1992 civil war. He was gunned down while celebrating Mass in March 1980 after denouncing a crackdown on leftist opponents of the country's military government.

A judge in Florida has sentenced former Florida A&M University student Dante Martin to six years in prison for manslaughter and felony hazing in the 2011 death of his fellow band member, drum major Robert Champion.

Radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, who was convicted eight months ago of federal terrorism-related charges in New York, has been sentenced to life in prison.

Updated at 12:40 p.m. ET

Boko Haram extremists, who seized a northern garrison town in Nigeria less than a week ago, have reportedly carried out a massacre of its inhabitants, with Amnesty International saying as many as 2,000 have been killed.

Updated at 10:40 a.m. ET

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who presided over the end of a prolonged and brutal civil war that divided the country for decades, has suffered a narrow election defeat at the hands of a former ally and Cabinet minister, Maithripala Sirisena.

Sirisena, who defected from the ruling party in November to challenge an increasingly unpopular Rajapaksa, won 51.2 percent of the vote in national elections in the island-nation.

Updated at 9:50 a.m. ET

The U.S. economy added 252,000 jobs in December, capping a 12-month stretch of job growth unmatched since 1999, according to the Labor Department. In a separate survey, the department says that the unemployment rate dipped to 5.6 percent from 5.8 percent the previous month.

The Pentagon announced a plan on Thursday to save a half-billion dollars annually in a major scaling back of the U.S. military presence in Europe — including a withdrawal from an airbase in the U.K. and handing back 14 other sites to NATO allies.

It also said that its presence at one British airbase would be beefed up as part of a planned deployment of the F-35 fighter aircraft.

The U.S. has more than 60,000 troops stationed primarily in Britain, Germany and Italy. The changes would affect mainly the Army and Air Force.

Some 2,000 traffic cops in the Philippine capital are being asked to wear adult diapers during next week's visit by Pope Francis to the predominately Roman Catholic country.

So, some of them will no doubt feel relieved that they've got a place to go during what promises to be a particularly long and grueling stint at their posts. Others might prefer to just hold it.

Either way, the army of traffic enforcers, as they are known in the Philippines, should probably go easy on the morning coffee during the pontiff's January 15-19 visit.

More than a dozen United Airlines flight attendants who were fired for their insistence on additional screening measures after discovering "menacing" graffiti scrawled on an airplane have filed a federal complaint against their former employer.

Updated at 4:40 p.m. ET

The bells of Notre Dame cathedral in Paris tolled, public transport was halted and many in France stood in the rain today for a minute of silence observed on behalf of the eight journalists and two others killed in a deadly attack at the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

In a further sign that Pope Francis is intent on shaping a Church that looks like the world, the pontiff announced today the selection of 20 new cardinals from 18 different countries, including several from Asia, Africa and Oceania.

The National Catholic Reporter says:

Islamist Boko Haram militants seized a military base used by a multinational force in Nigeria's northeastern Borno state, officials and witnesses say.

The town of Baga is the unofficial headquarters of the multinational troops drawn from Niger, Nigeria, Chad and Cameroon.

The longtime host of ESPN's SportsCenter, Stuart Scott, died today at age 49 after a prolonged battle with cancer, according to the cable network.

Scott was famous for his enthusiasm and a bevy of catchphrases he mined in his commentary, including "Boo-Yah!" and "As cool as the other side of the pillow."

Updated at 12:50 noon ET

Thousands of police officers from across the country paid their respects to NYPD detective Wenjian Liu, one of two patrolmen who were gunned down last month in an unprovoked attack in a Brooklyn neighborhood.

Liu's widow, Pei Xia Chen, said "he is my hero." The couple had been married only a few weeks when the officer was killed on Dec. 20.

North Korea has lashed out at the U.S. for the latest sanctions imposed on the hard-line regime in response to its alleged hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Updated at 9:40 a.m. ET

Four more bodies and a fifth large piece of debris have been recovered from the Java Sea near the crash site of AirAsia Flight QZ8501, which went down a week ago with 162 people aboard.

The BBC quotes search-and-rescue chief Bambang Soelistyo as saying today that:

"Singapore navy vessel RSS Persistence had recovered one body, while US navy ship USS Sampson had brought three more back to the Indonesian town of Pangkalan Bun.

Updated at 8:40 p.m. ET

Former Massachusetts Sen. Edward Brooke, the first African-American to be popularly elected to the U.S. Senate, died Saturday at age 95, a family spokesman said.

Brooke, a Republican who had been Massachusetts attorney general, was first elected in 1966, defeating former Massachusetts Gov. Endicott Peabody. Brooke served until 1979. He died at his home in Coral Gables, Fla., surrounded by his family.

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