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By ksiffledeen | A look at developments around the world

Iran Nuclear Talks at Crunch Time

A March 31 target date is fast approaching

(LAUSANNE, Switzerland)—Negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program reached a critical phase Monday with diplomats struggling to overcome substantial differences just a day before a deadline for the outline of an agreement.

With Tuesday’s target date for a …

Iran Nuclear Negotiations

Germanwings crash: Co-pilot Lubitz had ‘suicidal tendencies’

“Suicidal tendencies”.

The chilling words were pronounced by a German prosecutor on Monday, giving another insight into the troubled mind of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz who is thought to have deliberately crashed a passenger plane in the French Alps, killing all 150 people on board. “Several years ago, …

Suicidal Tendencies

As China Expands Its Navy, the U.S. Grows Wary

China’s navy chief, Adm. Wu Shengli, strolled the Harvard University campus in a tweed blazer and slacks during a visit to the U.S. last fall, joking with students and quizzing school officials about enrolling some of his officers.

A few days earlier, he became the first Chinese navy chief to attend …

Asia

Boston prosecutors rest case with focus on bombing's smallest victim

From the witness stand at the Boston Marathon bombing trial, the city’s chief medical examiner slipped on a pair of white latex gloves Monday and gingerly prowled around in a large cardboard box.

It was no accident that Dr. Henry Nields was the government’s final witness in the first phase of the …

Boston Bombing

Eroding Freedom in the Name of Freedom

When the federal government adopted a religious protection act in 1993, same-sex marriage was not on the horizon.

An informal coalition of liberals and conservatives endorsed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act because it seemed to protect members of vulnerable religious minorities from punishment …

Civil Rights

Air strike on Yemeni refugee camp by Saudi-led coalition kills at least 40

An air strike in Yemen by the Saudi-led coalition has killed at least 40 people and wounded about 200 at a camp for internal refugees, a human rights group has said.

Of the injured, 25 were severely injured in the raids, a spokesman for the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) told the …

Middle East

NSA: Car smashes into police vehicle at Fort Meade; 1 dead

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FORT MEADE, Md. (AP) -- The warnings are strong and security is always tight, but most drivers are versed in the daily routine as thousands of employees and contractors stream through the closely guarded entrance to the National Security Agency.

The ordinary start to the work …

National Security Agency

South Africa braces for Marikana massacre report

The official report into the police killing of 34 South African miners in 2012 has been submitted to the office of President Jacob Zuma, with rights groups demanding that its findings are published immediately.

The president's office said on Tuesday that Zuma, who is currently on a state visit to …

News (South Africa)

Malaysia arrests three editors for sedition

Malaysian police have arrested three editors from a news portal on suspicion of sedition, their lawyers and authorities have said, over a news report on discussions about punishments meted out under Islamic law.

Police and officials from the Malaysian communications and multimedia commission (MCMC) …

Malaysia

Poland says will train 50 Ukrainian military staff this year

WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland will provide training to around 50 Ukrainian army instructors this year, the Polish ministry of defense said on Tuesday, a part of NATO's efforts to boost Ukraine's defense capacity as it faces a pro-Russian rebellion in the east.

The Ukrainians will be trained in Poland, …

Military

Thai PM asks king's permission to lift martial law

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said on Tuesday he has asked for King Bhumibol Adulyadej's permission to lift martial law, which has been in place since before a coup 10 months ago, replacing it with a law that maintains the army's wide-ranging powers.

Critics of the junta …

Authoritarianism

Nigeria election: Buhari 'ahead' in early counting

Partial results from Nigeria's election give ex-military ruler Muhammadu Buhari more votes than the incumbent, President Goodluck Jonathan.

However, populous states such as Lagos and Rivers are yet to declare.

With just over half of Nigeria's states declared, Gen Buhari's All Progressives Congress …

Elections

Major British Parties Struggle to Fend Off Challenges as Campaigns Begin

LONDON — And they’re off! Parliament was dissolved at midnight, making Monday the official start of what is already a bitter and bad-tempered effort to win the minds, if not the hearts, of Britain’s undecided voters, who by most accounts make up close to 40 percent of the electorate. This election …

World Politics

Japan extends North Korea sanctions amid stalled abduction probe

Japan says it will extend sanctions against North Korea for two more years, citing no progress in talks on abducted Japanese nationals.

In July 2014, PM Shinzo Abe had said he was easing the measures amid hope of movement on the long-stalled dispute.

But on Tuesday the government said Pyongyang had …

Japan

Pesticides on fruits and vegetables could account for 49 percent loss in sperm

A major study of men’s sperm found that those who ate regular quantities of fruit and vegetables that had pesticide residue on them had half the sperm count of men who ate less, a new study showed.

The Harvard University study, the first of its kind on the issue, analyzed sperm samples from 155 men …

Fruit

ISIS Declares War on Mohammad's Covenant

Back when ISIS was still expanding into the multi-ethnic and religiously diverse northern Iraq, not just Yazidis but also the country's 1 million Christians were some of their main targets. They were asked to either convert or leave, otherwise they would be killed. All along, churches were being …

Christianity

Ex-FBI agent given 10 years after pleading guilty to derailing Afghan scheme investigation

SALT LAKE CITY – A former FBI agent accused of trying to derail a Utah investigation into an alleged defense contractor kickback scheme was sentenced to 10 years in prison Monday.

Prosecutors say that in exchange for promised riches, now-retired New York counterintelligence agent Robert Lustyik Jr. …

FBI

Aunt of men accused in terror plot: They're 'not monsters'

CHICAGO (AP) — An aunt of two suburban Chicago men accused of plotting a terrorist attack on a military facility in northern Illinois said Monday the allegations perplexed and devastated their extended family of Muslims and Christians.

Tiffany Edmonds spoke to reporters after a brief detention …

Northern Illinois

Money Rules: Candidates Go Around The Law, As Cash Records To Be Smashed

This is Part One in an occasional series of features on campaign finance, called "Money Rules."

The hunt for big bucks is changing the way politicians run for president.

When a candidate finally admits he or she is a candidate, donors are limited to gifts of $2,700. (A donor can give an additional …

Money

Germanwings crash: 78 DNA strands isolated

Five days after Germanwings flight 4U 9525 crashed in the French Alps killing all 150 on board, investigators say they have isolated 78 DNA strands.

However, they denied German media reports body parts of co-pilot Andreas Lubitz had been identified.

The cockpit voice recorder suggested he crashed the …

Aviation

US-led task forces continues air strikes as officials say 14 Isis targets are hit

Members of the US-led coalition struck targets in Iraq and Syria overnight between Saturday and Sunday as part of the fight against Islamic State militants, according to a press release from the Combined Joint Task Force.

The attacks struck 14 targets in Iraq and one in Syria, including positions …

Middle East

Drownings along Rio Grande spike after enforcement surge

MISSION, Texas (AP) — A U.S. surveillance helicopter hovering over the Rio Grande spots a body floating near a muddy bank on the Mexican side of the river.

Soon another body turns up, then another. A Mexican investigator arrives and holds up his hand confirming the grim tally: four men and a …

Rio Grande

Threat of ground incursion looms over Yemen

Oversized military trucks painted in desert beige hauled tanks in the same camouflage color down a dark highway late Saturday past glowing billboards in the Saudi Arabian town of Jazan.

With the border with Yemen little more than 20 miles away, the trucks captured on a video distributed by the news …

Middle East

Air Canada plane skids off Halifax runway on 'abrupt' landing

An Air Canada plane made a hard landing in bad weather early Sunday and skidded off the runway at the airport in Halifax, Canada. The airline said 25 people were taken to hospitals for observation and treatment of minor injuries.

“This was not a hard landing. This was an actual crash,” said Mike …

Aeronautics

Four-year-old Pennsylvania girl rides late-night bus alone in search of slushie

A 4-year-old Pennsylvania girl surprised a driver and passengers when she boarded a public bus alone in the middle of the night on a quest for a sugary slushy, transportation officials said on Sunday.

Surveillance footage shows the pint-sized girl with blonde hair, bundled up in all purple, boarding …

Pennsylvania

Obama golfs with big money, oil moguls in Florida

PALM CITY, Fla. (AP) — President Barack Obama is teeing off in Florida with a trio of oil and private equity moguls.

The president is spending the weekend in Palm City in eastern Florida, at the private Floridian National Golf Club.

Obama was joined for his round of golf Sunday by Jim Crane, who owns …

Florida

Air Canada plane passenger: 'I thought we were goners'

An Air Canada plane made an "abrupt" landing and skidded off the runway as it landed in stormy weather at Halifax International Airport.

Officials say 25 people were taken to hospital for minor injuries.

The Airbus A320, carrying 132 passengers and five crew, was flying from Toronto.

Passengers on …

Aeronautics

Videos Show Wild Celebration by Syrian Rebels After Takeover of City of Idlib

Syrian rebels have taken over the city of Idlib from forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, inflicting a major blow to the Syrian regime and signaling the significant advance of Islamist groups in the country.

A coalition of Islamist rebel groups, including the al Qaeda-affiliated al Nusra …

Middle East

That one-way ticket to Mars you were hoping for may not be such a good idea

A Dutch nonprofit called Mars One has proposed a Mars mission with a twist that's captured worldwide attention: it's a one-way trip. But an MIT study published last fall says that very aspect could be the plan’s undoing.

“Right now it’s unfeasible to do a one way mission to Mars, essentially because …

Mars