Top of the News
BILL WOLFF (Announcer): This is NPR.
MATT MARTINEZ, host:
Thanks guys and good morning every one. I'm Matt Martinez filling in for the lovely Rachel Martin today.
It was a rough night in the south. Severe thunderstorms and tornados injured dozens of people in Alabama. Thousands lost power. Steve Chiotakis at WBHM in Birmingham has this report.
STEVE CHIOTAKIS: At least two residents were critically injured while people were at home or shopped and ate on a Sunday afternoon. The parking lot at Wal-Mart, a typically busy weekend place was strewn with damaged cars and shopping carts. Other strip malls and fast food restaurants were hit as well sending people running for cover. At least two dozen homes were damaged or destroyed and thousands are without power. More bad weather was reported in central and south Alabama near Selma and some homes received damage north of Pensacola in the Florida panhandle.
There was tornado watch up for much of the area by the national weather service which predicted the bad weather along a dynamic strong system that affected much of the nation's mid-section, with storms in the south and freezing rain and heavy snow further north.
MARTINEZ: That's Steve Chiotakis reporting.
Senator Barack Obama met with John Edwards in North Carolina this weekend. Obama is trying to get Edwards' endorsement. The former presidential candidate is torn over who to endorse. There are reports that Edwards is concerned that Obama is not ready for the presidency. There was no comment for the Obama camp on whether there will be an endorsement. A roundup of weekend politicking coming up later this hour with Jim VandeHei of Politico.com.
And it was an all night party in Kosovo last night.
(Soundbite of crowd cheering)
MARTINEZ: The crowd gathered and partied in Pristina. The country unilaterally declared it's independence from Serbia yesterday. Kosovo is the 6th state carved out of the old war-torn Yugoslavia. Now it's a bit of a waiting games as it waits to see which countries will officially recognize it. Here is more from NPR's Sylvia Poggioli in Pristina.
SYLVIA POGGIOLI: European Union foreign ministers meet today in Brussels to try to forge a united stand on Kosovo's recognition. The 27 member block is preparing a civilian mission to take over from the U.N. and stir the new nation to statehood. It was expected the main European powers involved in Balkan diplomacy - Britain, France, Germany and Italy could announce recognition directly after the meeting with the U.S. following later in the day. But this morning, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Germany will not make a decision on recognizing Kosovo today, saying the main priority is for the European union to act together on Kosovo. Several E.U. members such as Spain, Romanian, Cyprus and Slovakia have separatist movement of their own and fear a domino effect. They are not expected to announce recognition in the immediate future.
MARTINEZ: That's NPR's Sylvia Poggioli reporting from Pristina.
The polls are closed in Pakistan. Election officials said security concerns may have kept some people away. Today's parliamentary election were originally scheduled for January, but Benazir Bhutto's assassination pushed them back. Results from today's elections are expected to start rolling in around midnight Pakistan time.
And "Jumper" starring Hayden Christensen and Samuel L. Jackson about people who can teleport raked in $27.3 million, landing at number one at the box office.
Remember the news is always online at npr.org.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.