Pilgrims, Palestinians Celebrate Christmas Eve in Bethlehem

Pilgrims come from around world to participate in festivities and worship at ancient Grotto of the Nativity, where tradition says Jesus Christ was born More

Four to Watch in 2015 US Politics

Will 2015 bring more political gridlock in the US? Who will emerge as frontrunners for the 2016 election? Here's a look at some key political players for 2015. More

Featured Story

People walk past a TV screen showing a poster of Sony Picture's "The Interview" in a news report,  at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea.

Is North Korea Really Responsible for Sony Hack?

The FBI says it has proof North Korea is behind that cyber-attack, but some analysts aren't so sure More



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Syrian Refugees in Lebanon Fight to Survive Water Crisisi
Heather Murdock
December 24, 2014 10:03 PM
In a region choking from dwindling water supplies, Lebanon has long been regarded as one of the few places where there is enough. But in recent years, half the people in the country have faced severe shortages. And the more than 1 million Syrian refugees in Lebanon are hit the worst by the water crisis, making the country's most vulnerable people increasingly impoverished and sick. Heather Murdock reports for VOA in the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon.

Video Syrian Refugees in Lebanon Fight to Survive Water Crisis

In a region choking from dwindling water supplies, Lebanon has long been regarded as one of the few places where there is enough. But in recent years, half the people in the country have faced severe shortages. And the more than 1 million Syrian refugees in Lebanon are hit the worst by the water crisis, making the country's most vulnerable people increasingly impoverished and sick. Heather Murdock reports for VOA in the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon.

Video 2014 Medical Breakthroughs Promise Better Treatments

Medical researchers reported interesting new advances and even breakthroughs in 2014 -- in the use of modern technology to help patients suffering from different diseases and injuries. VOA’s George Putic looks back at some of the most important developments.

Video Only Hospital in Sudan's S. Kordofan Struggles to Treat Victims of Violence, Illness

The rebel-held areas of Sudan's Nuba Mountains have been under blockade since the start of a civil war In 2011 -- with the Sudanese government denying all access for food, supplies and humanitarian aid. Adam Bailes reports from the only hospital in the region and says deaths as a result of preventable illnesses are on the increase.

Video Russia's Financial Crisis Hits Ordinary Citizens

The collapse of the Russian currency has led to increased mortgage payments for some ordinary Russians who are paying off loans based on foreign currency. Analysts predict that Russia will enter recession sometime next year as a result of declining energy prices and western sanctions against Moscow for its interference in eastern Ukraine. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video France Rocked by Attacks as Fear of ISIS-Inspired Terror Grows

Eleven people were injured, two seriously, when a man drove his car into crowds of pedestrians Sunday night in the French city of Dijon, shouting ‘God is Great’ in Arabic. It’s the latest in a series of apparent ‘lone-wolf’ terror attacks in the West. Henry Ridgwell looks at the growing threat of attacks, which security experts say are likely inspired by the so-called "Islamic State" terror group.

Video 2014 Brings Hopeful Signs to Address Global Warming

In 2014, the United Nations released a series of climate reports that affirm with ever greater certainty the planet is warming. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, while the predictions are grim, 2014 also brought some hopeful signs that the global community is beginning to take action on climate change.

Video Massive Study Provides Best Look at Greenland Ice Loss Yet

The Greenland ice sheet is melting faster than predicted, according to a new study released in the Proceedings of the National Academic of Sciences that combines NASA satellite data and aerial missions. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the finding means coastal communities worldwide could be at greater risk, sooner, from the impact of rising seas.

Video US Marines, Toys for Tots Bring Christmas Joy

Christmas is a time for giving in the United States, especially to young children who look forward to getting presents. But some families don't have money to buy gifts. For nearly 70 years, a U.S. Marines-sponsored program has donated toys and distributed them to underprivileged children during the holiday season. VOA's Deborah Block tells us about the annual Toys for Tots program.

Video Calm Amid Fear in Daily Life in S. Sudan’s Town of Bentiu

Six months ago, Bentiu was a ghost town. The capital of northern Unity State, near South Sudan’s important oil fields, had changed hands several times in fighting between government forces and rebels. Calm returned in November and since then, residents of Bentiu have been trying to regain some sense of normalcy. Bentiu’s market has reopened there are plans to start school again. But fears of new attacks hang heavy, as Benno Muchler reports from Bentiu.

Video Jane Monheit Christmas Special

Chanteuse Jane Monheit sings the holiday classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and explains why it’s her favorite song of the season.


The Rivenbark family at the Everest Base Camp in Nepal, one of many stops on their world tour.

Family's Yearlong World Tour Proves Exciting, Educational

Rivenbarks have seen other cultures up close, made many friends; 'We want to see as much of the world as we can' More


A soldier stands near a woman reading messages left by people for the victims of the Taliban attack on a school, in Peshawar, Pakistan, Dec. 23, 2014.

Pakistan Broadens Anti-Militancy Drive After School Massacre

Measures include setting up new courts for terrorism cases, moving against media that publish incendiary material More


FILE - A teacher uses a thermometer to test students' temperature checking for signs of Ebola virus at Aiyetoro African Church Nursery and Primary school in Lagos, Nigeria.

WHO: Ebola Death Toll Hits 7,573

Ebola crisis claimed its first victim exactly a year ago, is likely to last until the end of 2015, according to scientist who helped in virus' discovery More

Middle East

Estimates Rising of Foreign Fighters in Iraq, Syria

Video Estimates Rising of Foreign Fighters in Iraq, Syria

US intelligence officials estimate that more than 18,000 foreign fighters now have flocked to region -- up from about 16,000 at start of November More


FILE - A woman with her children moves out of the way as a health ministry worker fumigates against mosquitoes that transmit dengue fever as well as Chikungunya fever, in Managua, Nicaragua, Oct. 27, 2014.

Chikungunya Virus Infects More Than 1 Million in Americas

Illness is marked by severe joint pain, inflammation, headaches, rashes and fever; if infection is severe enough, it can lead to death More

Arts & Entertainment

A poster for the movie "The Interview" is taken down by a worker after being pulled from a display case at a Carmike Cinemas movie theater, Dec. 17, 2014, in Atlanta, Georgia.

Video Dozens of US Theaters to Show 'The Interview'

Despite hacker threats, Sony says movie lampooning North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will open December 25 More


FILE - Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta, second right, talks to his defense team when appearing before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Netherlands, Oct. 8, 2014.

After Kenyatta Setback, ICC Struggles to Move Ahead

Collapse of the case against Kenya's president, other setbacks are fueling a debate about International Criminal Court's effectiveness and relevancy More


FILE - A woman suffers from depression.

Clinical Depression Is Pervasive Worldwide

World Health Organization estimates 350 million global cases, and researchers now are looking at several unconventional approaches to treat the disorder More

Economy & Business

A driver unloads wheat grains from a truck on a drying complex at the Solgonskoye farming company in the village of Solgon, southwest from Krasnoyarsk, Russia, Sept. 6, 2014.

Farm Lobby: Russia's Grain Exports Stop

Grain exports stop due to curbs brought in to protect domestic supply, putting big deals at risk, Russia's Grain Union says More

News Alerts From VOA

New in Music Alley

Soul Lounge

"Soul Lounge" host Shawna Renee catches up with soul singer and songwriter Russell Taylor to hear what he’s been up to since winning the VH1 "You Oughta Know" title in 2013. She also convinces him to share a few songs from his album "War of Hearts."


What Our Readers Are Saying

North Korea Internet Partially Restored Following Outage

Latest Comment (25 total)

Steve: Perhaps not, why do assume hackers support the US? PRISM isn't exactly liked. More

Islamic State Holds Jordanian Pilot; US Denies IS Claim F-16 Jet Shot Down

Latest Comment (15 total)

Matthew: I wish the safe and quick return of this brave pilot to Jordan. More