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Burned Black Churches May Be ‘Violent Backlash’ After Charleston Shooting

One after another, predominantly black churches have burned down across the South in the wake of Dylann Roof’s massacre. Some have been ruled arson—but are they hate crimes?

Days after the Charleston massacre, several predominantly black churches in the South have burned down. Now federal officials …

Charleston Shooting

Sugary drinks linked to 25,000 deaths in the U.S. each year

By contributing to obesity and, through that, to diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer, the consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks appears to claim the lives of about 25,000 American adults yearly and is linked worldwide to the deaths of 180,000 each year, new research says.

Low- and …


Obama to Expand Overtime Pay to Nearly 5 Million Workers

President Obama will announce a sweeping change to the nation's overtime pay law, dramatically expanding the number of people who will qualify for increased pay after working more than 40 hours in a week.

The proposed rule, first reported by Politico, will raise the threshold for guaranteed overtime …

Reports: 2 dead after man sets self on fire on Japan train

ODAWARA, Japan (AP) — A man riding one of Japan's high-speed bullet trains set himself on fire Tuesday, killing himself and another passenger as the coach filled with smoke, Japanese officials and media reports said.

At least nine others were injured, one seriously, mostly from smoke inhalation, …


South Korea navy fires warning shots at boat from North

Naval ships opened fire after North Korean patrol vessel crossed disputed sea border in the Yellow Sea, officials said.

A South Korean naval ship has fired warning shots to chase off a North Korean patrol boat which crossed their disputed western sea border, military officials said.

The reported …


Prehistoric worm with super armor found in China

Scientists have found the fossil of an ancient worm called Hairy Collins' Monster, one of the first creatures to grow rows of spiky armor on its …


U.S. is the No. 2 Spanish-Speaking Country in the World

A Spanish-language institute says the U.S. is the second largest Spanish-speaking country in the world.

Instituto Cervantes, based in Spain, reported there are 41 million native Spanish speakers in the U.S. and 11.6 million who are bilingual for a total of 52.6 million.

That puts the U.S. second to …


Nearly 2,000 Km of China’s Great Wall Have Crumbled Away Completely

Another 1,185 km of the structure are in poor condition

It’s no secret that the Great Wall of China has been getting smaller ever since it was constructed in the 14th century, with several crumbling sections of the man-made wonder being all but obliterated over thousands of years, but new figures …


Tasmania Is Paying Mothers to Quit Smoking

This post originally appeared on VICE Australia.

Tasmania is the pregnant smoker capital of Australia, according to a study by the country's National Health Authority carried out between 2009 and 2012. The study found 22 percent of pregnant Tasmanian women were smokers. For context, the national …


Singapore mom of detained teen blogger Amos Yee: 'Sorry, son'

(CNN) — The mother of detained teen blogger Amos Yee has written a heartfelt apology letter to her son, as he faces years in "reformative training" after being jailed for a Youtube video where he criticized Singapore's founding politician.

"Sorry for not teaching you well... Mummy is wrong," wrote …


Study: Breast milk helps babies develop immunity-boosting gut bacteria

Gut bacteria, the microorganisms that live in your digestive tract, are all the rage these days. Connected to everything from mood to asthma to waistlines, yogurt makers are adding them to products as “probiotics,” and one company has even turned them into a $1.9 billion business by trying to …


The hidden frontline of Europe's migration crisis

As a gateway to both the EU and the Schengen passport-free zone, Hungary has seen more than 50,000 migrants trying to cross its border this year. Now it is planning a 100-mile-long wall to keep them out

Dressed only in a thin white polo shirt and jeans, Ashraf, a 17-year-old from Damascus, shivers …

Finance (UK)

In Japan, a plan to expand military's powers faces growing resistance

Japan's ruling coalition came in for a shock recently as parliament mulled legislation pushed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to expand the powers of the nation's Self-Defense Forces.

The lawmakers had invited three constitutional scholars to address the lower house. One of them, Waseda University …


Charleston Church Mourns One More Beloved Victim

CHARLESTON, S.C. — It was just after 10:30 on Monday morning, as yet another hearse stopped in front of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, when the crowd on Calhoun Street grew quiet.

The scene — Emanuel parishioners returning for their funeral services in the building where they died — had …


UN: South Sudan army raped girls and burned them alive

Report by UN mission in South Sudan says recent military campaign was notable for its "brutality and intensity".

The UN has accused South Sudan's army of raping and then burning girls alive inside their homes during its recent campaign, a report by its mission in the country said.

The statement, …


WikiLeaks: NSA spied on French ministers and business too

The latest WikiLeaks report says the US National Security Agency spied more extensively on top French officials in an apparent bid to seek information on economic policy, exports and trade.

Jointly published by the French newspaper Liberation and the online outlet Mediapart, the allegations follow …

National Security Agency (NSA)

Islamic State beheads female civilians for first time in Syria: monitor

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The hardline Islamic State group has beheaded two women in Syria, the first time it has decapitated female civilians, the founder of a group monitoring the war said on Tuesday.

The beheadings took place in the eastern Deir al-Zor province this week said Rami Abdulrahman, head of …


Australian inmates riot against new smoking ban

Prison staff evacuated and tactical police deployed after 300 prisoners take part in violent protest against ban.

Hundreds of Australian inmates at a maximum security prison in Melbourne have rioted and prison staff have been evacuated prior to a smoking ban at the facility taking effect.

Television …


Texas attorney general attacks 'lawless' supreme court ruling on gay marriage

The attorney general of one of America’s most conservative states has vowed to personally defend marriage clerks who refuse to register gay unions on religious grounds.

The move has sparked speculation that lawsuits could be in the offing challenging states’ obligations to deliver marriage equality …


Kuwait says in 'state of war' with militants, warns of other cells

KUWAIT (Reuters) - Kuwait's interior minister said on Tuesday the Gulf Arab country was at war with Islamist militants and would strike out at cells believed to be on its soil.

The ultra-radical Islamic State group claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing on Friday on a Shi'ite Muslim mosque in …

World Politics

Ukraine ceasefire: 'There is shooting all the time'

“This doesn’t smell like peace to me,” said the Monk, sighing heavily in his makeshift control centre, a former chandelier shop in the basement of a block of flats, near the remains of what not long ago was Donetsk international airport.

“There is shooting all the time,” he said. A 47-year-old …


Islamic State bomb attack on Houthi rebel leaders in Yemen leaves 28 dead

Islamic State has claimed responsibility for an attack on two Houthi rebel leaders in Sanaa on Monday night that medics say killed at least 28 people, including eight women.

The car bomb targeted Houthi rebel chief brothers Faycal and Hamid Jayache during a gathering to mourn the death of a family …


Former Oil Tycoon Named Murder Suspect in Russia

Mikhail Khodorkovsky also is a vocal critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin's government

(MOSCOW) — Russian investigators announced Tuesday they are reopening the case of the 1998 killing of a Siberian mayor and consider former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky a prime suspect.

At the time when …


See the Devastation of Washington State’s Wildfire From Above

The worst fire of the season devastated entire neighborhoods, as the state struggles with an ongoing drought

Washington State

KKK Plans Pro-Confederate Flag Rally In South Carolina

Members of the Ku Klux Klan have announced plans to rally next month in South Carolina in support of the Confederate flag.

State officials confirmed to The Washington Post that the Loyal White Knights chapter of the KKK got permission to meet at the statehouse in Columbia on July 18. The group's …

Confederate Flag

Prosecutors: Putin's cronies helped the Russian mafia work in Spain for more than a decade

One of Russia's largest organized-crime syndicates allegedly operated out of Spain for more than a decade with the help of close allies of President Vladimir Putin, then the deputy mayor of St. Petersburg, Bloomberg reports.

Prosecutors in Madrid have filed a 488-page petition to charge 27 people …


In Afghanistan, Suicide Blast and Angry Crowd Target American Soldiers

KABUL, Afghanistan — A convoy of American troops survived a huge suicide bomb attack in Kabul on Tuesday afternoon, only to find themselves struggling against a gathering crowd of Afghans who were trying to tend to civilians wounded in the bombing.

The confusing scene left one American soldier with …


California Governor Jerry Brown Signs Mandatory Vaccine Law

Law abolishes exemptions for personal beliefs

California Governor Jerry Brown signed a mandatory school vaccination bill into law Tuesday, abolishing the “personal belief” exemption that many parents use as a loophole to avoid vaccinating their children.

Now, under California law, which is among the …


CIA lagging in recruiting, promoting minorities, study finds

Washington (CNN) — The Central Intelligence Agency is falling behind in recruiting racial and ethnic minorities and promoting them to its highest ranks, according to an internal study the agency released Tuesday.

Minorities make up less than 24% of the CIA workforce, and only 10.8% of its top Senior …


London exercise tests readiness for potential terrorist attack

London (CNN) — How well can a major world city contain a deadly terrorist attack?

That's a question that more than 1,000 emergency personnel in London set out to answer on Tuesday and Wednesday.

It was a major anti-terrorism exercise -- one that had been months in the planning but that took on new …