Peter Kenyon

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Iranians head to the poll on Friday to elect a new president. The vote comes after what has been a rough year. The country has faced increasing economic decline amid tough U.S. sanctions, and it's still struggling under the coronavirus.

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Now to Istanbul, a city bisected by one of the world's busiest waterways - the Bosporus Strait. NPR's Peter Kenyon paid a visit to a man who spends a lot of his spare time watching the ships that sail up and down the strait.

Leaked excerpts from an interview with Iran's foreign minister have ignited controversy inside the Islamic Republic. The comments by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad-Zarif were never intended to be broadcast, but officials say more than three hours of the seven-hour interview were leaked on Sunday.

The excerpts first appeared on Iran International, a London-based channel that Tehran views as a hostile, pro-Saudi Arabia outlet.

ISTANBUL — Clubhouse, the invitation-only app billed as "a space for casual, drop-in audio conversations," has attracted users from many parts of the world.

Not everyone is a fan: the Anti-Defamation League says the app's lack of moderation has attracted extremism and hate speech.

But in Iran, Clubhouse has begun to catch on.

Updated April 24, 2021 at 12:37 PM ET

For decades, U.S. presidents have avoided calling the World War I-era mass killing of Armenians by Ottoman Turkish forces an act of genocide.

President Biden made that declaration on Saturday as Armenians mark the anniversary of the atrocities.

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ISTANBUL — After a weekend visit to Tehran by Rafael Grossi, Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the agency and Iran announced their agreement to keep some verification activities going for the immediate future.

Iran had previously announced that, as of Tuesday, Feb. 23, it would suspend snap inspections by IAEA inspectors. Such unscheduled visits were seen by some as an effective means of verifying that Iran wasn't pursuing a clandestine nuclear weapons program.

Updated at 11:30 a.m. ET

The United States and Iran remain at odds over what comes next in their standoff over Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Iran's supreme leader said Sunday that all U.S. sanctions must be lifted before Tehran will return to its commitment under the 2015 nuclear deal. And, in an interview airing Sunday, President Biden said the United States won't lift sanctions first.

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