Peter Kenyon

Peter Kenyon is NPR's international correspondent based in Istanbul, Turkey.

Prior to taking this assignment in 2010, Kenyon spent five years in Cairo covering Middle Eastern and North African countries from Syria to Morocco. He was part of NPR's team recognized with two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University awards for outstanding coverage of post-war Iraq.

In addition to regular stints in Iraq, he has followed stories to Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Qatar, Algeria, Morocco and other countries in the region.

Arriving at NPR in 1995, Kenyon spent six years in Washington, D.C., working in a variety of positions including as a correspondent covering the US Senate during President Bill Clinton's second term and the beginning of the President George W. Bush's administration.

Kenyon came to NPR from the Alaska Public Radio Network. He began his public radio career in the small fishing community of Petersburg, where he met his wife Nevette, a commercial fisherwoman.

Washington is calling on Syria to remove its troops from the border with Turkey. Aid officials say hundreds of Syrians fled makeshift camps into southeastern Turkey as the military approached.

Ankara doesn't want to lose its economic engagement with Syria, but nonetheless is shifting its rhetoric in support of the people demanding more freedoms.

When Syria's mukhabarat, the secret police, couldn't get Abu Ali to tell them the names of the leading activists in his town of Jisr al-Shughour, the 43-year-old says they blindfolded him and tied his hands and feet to an apparatus on the floor.

His interrogators told him he was about to take a trip on the "Flying Carpet."

"I felt my body coming off the ground, then they beat me with a cable on my legs and feet. I could stand it on the legs, but on the feet it was extremely painful," he says. "This was the first stage of the Flying Carpet."

Just outside the Syrian village of Khirbet Al-Jouz, a 27-year-old Syrian named Ali splashes water on his face in a muddy creek.

He jokingly cries out, "Syria hurra! ["Free Syria!"]"

In a valley framed on one side by Syrian mountains and on the other by the Turkish border, tents and blankets are strewn across the hillside. Displaced Syrians continue to make their way over rough mountain roads and trails to the northwestern corner of the country. Free Syria, for these uprooted farm families, is a long valley studded with evergreens and strewn with boulders.

When one man first began writing about the uprising against the regime in Syria, he was terrified. But now he and other Syrians realize there is a certain measure of virtual freedom to be had online. He uses his real name in interviews now, and believes Syrians will not go back to living in fear of the authorities.

As Syrian troops continue their crackdown against demonstrators in the north of the country, more Syrians are massing on the border with Turkey. Nearly 8,500 Syrians are already seeking refuge there, and Turkish officials are scrambling to keep the situation from getting out of hand.

Following the revolution that ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak earlier this year, the country's economy is sagging — tourism has plummeted, unemployment is soaring and poverty is spreading.

This week, a delegation of U.S. business leaders is expected to visit the Arab world's most populous state, looking to give the economy a boost.

In Cairo, it's easy to see how devastating the Arab Spring has been to economies in the Mideast and North Africa. Nowhere has the damage been greater than in Egypt.

The party of Turkey's sitting prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is poised to win a third term in power when Turks go to the polls Sunday.

Turkey's secular opposition, having failed to convince voters that the ruling party has a "secret Islamist agenda," is hoping to keep the government from winning a two-thirds majority in Parliament. If it does, the Justice and Development Party, known as the AK Party or AKP, could rewrite Turkey's Constitution essentially without constraint.

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