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Examine the dangerous rivalry that has plunged the Middle East into sectarian war

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Climbers Pete Athans and Jake Norton excavating and photographing the Samdzong Sky Tombs, Upper Mustang, Nepal.

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2017 Movies for Grownups Career Achievement Award Honoree Helen Mirren. Mandatory Photo Credit: Giles Keyte.

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Three executions were scheduled. Two were called off.

If the death sentences in Alabama, Texas and Florida had all gone ahead on Thursday night as originally planned, it would have marked the first time in eight years that three convicted killers were executed on the same day.

However, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott granted clemency to Thomas Whitaker, 38, commuting his sentence to life in prison. And late Thursday, the execution in Alabama of Doyle Lee Hamm was postponed after last minute legal wrangling pushed late into the evening.

Australia's beleaguered deputy prime minister has announced his resignation over allegations of sexual harassment that followed on reports earlier this month of an adulterous affair with a former staff member who is now pregnant with the couple's child.

At a news conference on Friday, Barnaby Joyce said he would step down Monday "as leader of the National Party and deputy leader of Australia."

It's been a painfully slow start to the ski season in the Western U.S. Some places have seen record warm temperatures and record low snowfall, prompting resorts to open late. Those that cranked out fake snow had trouble attracting avid skiers who prefer the real stuff. And all this means an economic hit.

Updated at 8:32 p.m. ET

A federal grand jury unveiled new charges on Thursday against Donald Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his business associate Rick Gates, accusing them of a broader range of financial crimes.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

This afternoon in Missouri, Republican Governor Eric Greitens was arrested and booked on a charge of felony invasion of privacy. He was released without having to post bail. St. Louis Public Radio's Rachel Lippmann joins us now. Hey, Rachel.

State legislators in Florida came together on Wednesday — the same day student activists gathered outside the House chamber in Tallahassee to demand stricter gun laws, one week after the school massacre in Parkland — to pass a measure related to schools, but not guns.

NPR's senior management and board members faced skepticism as they sought to rebuild trust with the network's workforce following the release of a report on the network's failure to curb inappropriate behavior by former top news executive Michael Oreskes.

On Thursday, NPR board members faced tough questions from NPR employees at an open Board of Directors meeting and then a tense all-staff meeting.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

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