Matthew S. Schwartz

Matthew S. Schwartz is a reporter with NPR's news desk. Before coming to NPR, Matt worked as a reporter for Washington, D.C., member station WAMU, where he won the national Edward R. Murrow award for feature reporting in large market radio. Previously, Matt worked as a technology reporter covering the intricacies of Internet regulation. In a past life, Matt was a Washington telecom lawyer. He got his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center, and his B.A. from the University of Michigan ("Go Blue!").

Updated at 10 a.m. ET

The young Saudi woman who captivated the world with her harrowing tweets claiming abuse has been granted refugee status by the United Nations.

"The UNHCR has referred Ms Rahaf Mohammed Al-Qunun to Australia for consideration for refugee resettlement," the Australia Department of Home Affairs told NPR in a statement, referring to the office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees. Australia will "consider this referral in the usual way, as it does with all UNHCR referrals."

After extending to an unexpected third day, trade talks between U.S. and Chinese officials have concluded, a spokesman for the Chinese foreign ministry announced Wednesday morning. Delegates to the talks have not yet revealed what specifically was discussed, or if anything was agreed to. In a Tweet Tuesday morning, President Trump said the talks were "going very well!"

On Tuesday, the woman believed to be the oldest person in the U.S. passed away at her home in Cleveland Heights, the Associated Press reported. According to the Gerontology Research Group, which tracks and verifies the age of people aged 110 and older, Lessie Brown lived for 114 years and 108 days.

Updated at 9:05 a.m. ET

Florida's voting rolls are about to swell.

In November, Florida voters overwhelmingly voted to restore voting rights to most felons who have served their time. Today, as NPR Miami correspondent Greg Allen reports, the amendment to the state constitution goes into effect — and more than a million people will be able to register to vote.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has traveled to China at the request of Chinese President Xi Jinping, state media of both countries announced. It's Kim's fourth visit to China in a year.

The four-day visit could be a chance for the two leaders to coordinate ahead of a second summit between Kim and President Trump, NPR's international correspondent Anthony Kuhn reports.

U.S. and Chinese officials have begun talks aimed at ending the trade war that has imposed hundreds of billions of dollars in tariffs over the past year. The U.S. is seeking concessions in Chinese business practices; in exchange it will eliminate tariffs recently imposed on Chinese goods.

Updated at 10:30 p.m. ET

Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun, the 18-year-old Saudi woman who barricaded herself in a Bangkok hotel room as she posted pleas for asylum over the weekend, will be allowed to stay in Thailand for up to a week while U.N. refugee agency officials study her case, according to Thai authorities.

Alqunun says her family in Saudi Arabia has abused her and might kill her if she is deported back home.

A third woman has crossed the threshold into the sacred Hindu Sabarimala temple in southern India, defying a centuries-old ban on women of menstruating age — between the ages of 10 and 50 — from entering the shrine, according to Reuters.

Updated at 11:35 a.m. ET

Edward Gallagher was a decorated 19-year Navy veteran on his eighth tour of duty. And military prosecutors say that while serving in Mosul, Iraq, in 2017, he snapped.

Gallagher plans to plead not guilty to multiple charges of war crimes at his arraignment hearing Friday at Naval Base San Diego, attorney Phillip Stackhouse told NPR.

The Houston Sheriff's Office has released a composite sketch of the man wanted in the killing of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes.

In a press conference Thursday, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzales said the suspect is described as a thin white man in his 30s or 40s, wearing a black hoodie, with pale skin and blue eyes. What police originally described as a beard "looks more like a 5-o'clock shadow," he said.

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