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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recertified Iran's compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal late Monday, but senior administration officials emphasized that Tehran is a dangerous threat to both U.S. interests and Middle East stability.

The State Department has issued new instructions about which citizens from the six Muslim-majority countries covered by the Trump administration's travel ban are eligible for visas.

The instructions issued to U.S. embassies and consulates widen the definition of a close familial relationship to include categories such as grandparents and cousins, in accordance with a federal court ruling last week, a State Department spokesman said in a statement to The Two-Way.

It was a story that made headlines around the world.

An all-girl team from Afghanistan applied for visas to come to the First Global Challenge, an international robotics competition taking place in Washington, D.C. this week.

And their visa request was denied.

They weren't the only team to face visa hurdles. The team from Gambia — two girls and three boys — was also denied when they first applied.

Ten years ago this summer, the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas staged a coup, ousted members of the rival Fatah party and took over the Gaza Strip.

It felt it took what it deserved: Hamas had won the majority of seats in the 2006 Palestinian legislative elections, but Hamas and Fatah couldn't work out how to share power.

It led to gun battles. A 29-year-old man saw his cousin, a Fatah border guard in training, get shot in a fight with Hamas gunmen in one of the many battles that led to the coup. The man is afraid to be identified — even a decade later.

Iran says it has sentenced an American graduate student to 10 years in prison for spying for U.S. and British intelligence agencies. The Princeton University student was in Iran doing research when he was arrested.

Xiyue Wang, 37, is pursuing a Ph.D. in Eurasian history, studying local government in predominantly Muslim regions during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Stephen Kotkin, Wang's advisor at Princeton, says Wang came well-prepared for an extremely ambitious thesis topic.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

A Jordanian military court convicted a Jordanian soldier of murder and sentenced him to life in prison for the November 2016 shooting of three members of the U.S. Army Special Forces outside an air base.

Benjamin Wolfe sticks his nose into a Ziploc bag and takes a whiff. "Ooh! That's actually kind of nice," he says. Inside the bag is a pungent, beige goop. It's a sourdough starter — a slurry of water, flour, yeasts and bacteria — from which loaves of delicious bread are born. And it's those microbes that have the attention of Wolfe, a microbiologist at Tufts University.

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