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WORLD NEWS

Deaths shake Ukraine truce; Poroshenko wary of Russian threat

A convoy of Ukrainian armed forces including armoured personnel carriers, military vehicles and cannons prepare to move as they pull back from the Debaltseve region, in BlagodatneBy Natalia Zinets KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine on Friday reported the first deaths in three days in east Ukraine and President Petro Poroshenko said Russia would pose a "military threat" even if a ceasefire holds. "Even under the most optimistic scenario ... the military threat from the east would unfortunately remain," Poroshenko said in a televised speech, in a clear reference to Russia. Kiev and Western governments have accused Russia of sending troops and weapons to support the separatists in east Ukraine, despite a peace deal agreed in the Belarussian capital Minsk on Feb. 12.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:09:04 -0500
Islamic State under pressure as Kurds seize Syrian town

Fighters of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) carry their weapons along a street in the Syrian Kurdish city of Qamishli, in celebration after it was reported that Kurdish forces took control of the Syrian town of Tel HamisBy Mariam Karouny BEIRUT (Reuters) - Kurdish forces dealt a blow to Islamic State by capturing an important town on Friday in the latest stage of a powerful offensive in northeast Syria, a Kurdish militia spokesman said. Islamic State has been forced into retreat across parts of the strategic region, a land bridge between territory it controls in Syria and Iraq, even as its fighters have mounted new raids this week on Assyrian Christian villages, abducting more than 200 people. The capture of Tel Hamis was announced by the Kurdish YPG militia and confirmed by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the country's civil war. "The flag is flying over Tel Hamis.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 10:59:11 -0500
British TV shows student picture of 'Jihadi John' in baseball cap

A masked, black-clad militant brandishes a knife in this still image from videoSky News broadcast a photograph of the 26-year-old wearing a black cap with a logo that resembled the P from the Pittsburgh Pirates U.S. Major League Baseball team, which it said was stored by the University of Westminster where he studied. Two U.S. government sources have told Reuters that Emwazi is Jihadi John, the black-clad militant seen brandishing a knife and speaking with an English accent in videos released by Islamic State (IS). The document obtained by Sky News also showed that Emwazi had completed a degree in Information Systems with Business Management.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 12:12:46 -0500
Danish police arrest man suspected of links to February 14-15 shootings

Investigative personnel work at the scene of a cafe shooting in Oesterbro, in CopenhagenDanish police said they arrested a young man on Friday and charged him with complicity in the shootings in Copenhagen on Feb. 14 and 15 in which two people were killed and five police officers wounded. Danish media reports described the man as personally connected with the gunman, Omar El-Hussein, who was shot dead by police on Feb. 15. State-owned DR TV reported that all three men charged with complicity in the shootings knew each other, and lived in the same neighborhood as Hussein.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 07:33:13 -0500
U.S., Cuba meet for second round of normalization talks

Second Round Of Talks To Re-Establish Diplomatic Ties With Cuba Takes Place At State Dept.By David Adams and Arshad Mohammed WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Cuban and U.S. officials held talks on Friday aimed at restoring diplomatic relations, with Cuba pushing to be removed from a U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism but Washington saying the designation should not be linked to the negotiations on opening embassies. Washington severed diplomatic relations with Cuba 54 years ago. The delegations at Friday's talks, which followed a first round of negotiations in Havana last month, were headed by Roberta Jacobson, U.S. assistant secretary of state, and Josefina Vidal, chief of the Cuban foreign ministry's U.S. division. The United States said the talks should focus on issues around the functioning of diplomats in future embassies, but Communist-run Cuba is pressing Washington to remove it from its terrorism list before the official restoration of diplomatic ties.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 12:26:28 -0500
China questions U.S. threat of U.N. sanctions on South Sudan

China's Ambassador to the United Nations Liu Jieyi speaks during a meeting of the Security Council at the United Nations in the Manhattan borough of New YorkBy Michelle Nichols UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - China on Friday questioned the logic behind a U.S. push to create a United Nations sanctions regime for South Sudan while warring parties there negotiate a power-sharing deal to end the conflict in the country, the world's newest state. The United States circulated a draft U.N. Security Council resolution on the measure to the 15-member body on Tuesday but stopped short of proposing an arms embargo or placing specific individuals on a blacklist. "To apply a punitive measure now would send out what kind of a message – a right message or wrong message?" China is a Security Council veto-wielding member, along with Russia, the United States, France and Britain. Thousands of people have been killed and more than a million have fled their homes since fighting erupted in South Sudan in December 2013 between soldiers allied to President Salva Kiir and those loyal to his former deputy Riek Machar.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:16:09 -0500
US rescinds rule requiring judges to move to Guantanamo
MIAMI (AP) — A new rule that required military judges presiding over the war crimes tribunals at the U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to relocate to the remote installation has been rescinded, the Pentagon said Friday.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:55:12 -0500
Around Ukraine's Mariupol displaced wary despite lull

Cars burned after shelling near a church in the southeastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol, on February 25, 2015Pensioner Alla Troyan shares her room with ten other displaced people in a dilapidated social centre in Ukraine's port city Mariupol, after fighting in their nearby village forced them to flee. The ceasefire was meant to come into force weeks ago but fighting raged on and Troyan's village of Shyrokine to the east of Mariupol was a battleground for government forces and pro-Russian rebels. Kiev and its allies say that Mariupol -- a vital steel-making hub -- could be the target for any new separatist offensive, and to many it would remove a key obstacle for Russia if it wanted to open up a land bridge to the Crimea peninsula it seized a year ago. The director of the social centre Mimosa Stepchenko said that 32 refugees are currently living in the temporary shelter and that it could hold scores more if needed.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:48:17 -0500
Teacher denies radicalizing Canadian teens headed to Syria

Adil Charkaoui answers a question during a press conference outside of Centre St-Pierre in MontrealBy Andrew Soong and Jake Bleiberg MONTREAL (Reuters) - A Muslim teacher once jailed by Canada as a security threat denied on Friday he had radicalized Canadian teens believed to have headed to Syria to fight with Islamic State, saying his school had only brief contact with one of the six students. The students, four men and two women aged 18 and 19, left Montreal in January and February for Turkey and then on to Syria, according to media reports, the latest in a string of young Westerners who have become radicalized and have headed to the Middle East hoping to fight with Islamic State. The teacher, Adil Charkaoui, told a news conference in Montreal that anti-Muslim sentiment in Quebec is to blame for alienating Muslim students, not his classes, where he said only Arabic, the Koran and "basic notions" are taught.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:47:01 -0500
ex-England captain brings Becks appeal to Qatar Open

Former England footballer David Beckham attends the women's singles semi-final tennis match between Venus Williams of the USA and Victoria Azarenka of Belarus during the Qatar Open tennis tournament on February 27, 2015 in DohaOne surprise spectator at the Qatar Open on Friday was footballer David Beckham and Victoria Azarenka admitted it was great to have him watching in the crowd. Beckham was constantly shown on the big screen in his VIP seat at the Khalifa International Complex, Doha, each time bringing loud cheers and screams from the crowd.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:46:16 -0500
The big melt: Antarctica's retreating ice may re-shape Earth

In this Jan. 22, 2015 photo, a zodiac carrying a team of international scientists heads to Chile's station Bernardo O'Higgins, Antarctica. Water is eating away at the Antarctic ice, melting it where it hits the oceans. As the ice sheets slowly thaw, water pours into the sea, 130 billion tons of ice (118 billion metric tons) per year for the past decade, according to NASA satellite calculations. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)CAPE LEGOUPIL, Antarctica (AP) — From the ground in this extreme northern part of Antarctica, spectacularly white and blinding ice seems to extend forever. What can't be seen is the battle raging thousands of feet (hundreds of meters) below to re-shape Earth.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:38:53 -0500
Palestinians tear-gassed on 10th anniversary of barrier protests

A Palestinian protester throws back a tear gas cannister using a sling shot during clashes with Israeli security forces on February 27, 2015 in BilinPalestinian, Israeli and foreign activists faced off against Israeli forces Friday in the occupied West Bank village of Bilin where they marked 10 years of protests against Israel's separation barrier. Palestinian youths with slingshots aimed stones at border police posted along the wire-topped concrete wall and the police fired tear gas to disperse them, AFP journalists at the scene said. At least one demonstrator was arrested, another was seen being taken away by ambulance after a blow to the head and several suffered tear gas inhalation. Israel says the barrier is designed to prevent militant attacks, but the Palestinians say it is an "apartheid wall" that carves off key parts of their promised state.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:38:10 -0500
Syria expels 3 key UN humanitarian staffers
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Syrian government has expelled three key U.N. humanitarian staffers, a decision the U.N. says could have "a major impact" on critical aid operations and harm a new effort to secure a six-week truce in the country's largest city.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:35:04 -0500
Top Asian News at 8:30 p.m. GMT
DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) — A prominent Bangladeshi-American blogger known for speaking out against religious extremism was hacked to death as he walked through Bangladesh's capital with his wife, police said Friday. The attack Thursday night on Avijit Roy, a Bangladesh-born U.S. citizen, occurred on a crowded sidewalk as he and his wife, Rafida Ahmed, were returning from a book fair at Dhaka University. Ahmed, who is also a blogger, was seriously injured. It was the latest in a series of attacks on secular writers in Bangladesh in recent years.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:33:06 -0500
Afghan President Ghani to speak to joint meeting of Congress
WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker John Boehner is inviting Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to address a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress when he visits Washington next month.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:26:49 -0500
Norway arrests radical preacher who praised Charlie Hebdo killers

Najumuddin Faraj Ahmad, better known as Mullah Krekar, is pictured following his release from Kongsvinger prison in Norway, on January 25, 2015A radical Islamic preacher has been arrested in Norway after praising last month's deadly attack on the Charlie Hebdo satirical weekly in Paris, police said Friday. The Iraqi Kurd preacher known as Mullah Krekar said in a television interview broadcast on Wednesday that "those who draw caricatures of Mohammed must die". "I am obviously happy with what happened in Paris," the 58-year-old said in the interview with Norwegian channel NRK. Jihadist gunmen killed 12 people, including some of France's best-known cartoonists, in the January 7 attack on Charlie Hebdo's Paris office.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:22:12 -0500
Brazil homicide division to investigate summary executions
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The homicide division of the Rio de Janeiro Police Department will start investigating summary executions of suspects committed by officers in Brazil's second largest city.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:17:23 -0500
House Speaker John Boehner invites Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to address Congress
WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker John Boehner invites Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to address Congress.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:17:05 -0500
Pirates call it sickening to see 'Jihadi John' in team hat

This undated image shows a frame from a video released Friday, Oct. 3, 2014, by Islamic State militants that purports to show the militant who beheaded of taxi driver Alan Henning . A British-accented militant who has appeared in beheading videos released by the Islamic State group in Syria over the past few months bears "striking similarities" to a man who grew up in London, a Muslim lobbying group said Thursday Feb. 26, 2015. Mohammed Emwazi has been identified by news organizations as the masked militant more commonly known as "Jihadi John." London-based CAGE, which works with Muslims in conflict with British intelligence services, said Thursday its research director, Asim Qureshi, saw strong similarities, but because the hood worn by the militant, "there was no way he could be 100 percent certain." (AP Photo)BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — The Pittsburgh Pirates say it's "absolutely sickening" to see a photo of the Islamic State militant known as "Jihadi John" wearing a Pirates hat.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:14:53 -0500
S. Africa family reunited with child snatched in 1997

A baby stolen from her sleeping mother's arms shortly after birth in a Cape Town, South Africa, hospital has been found by the family through an astonishing coincidence 17 years laterA baby stolen from her sleeping mother's arms shortly after birth has been found by the family through an astonishing coincidence 17 years later, her biological family and South African police said Friday. A 50-year-old woman has been arrested and charged with kidnapping after pupils noticed a remarkable likeness between the 17-year-old and her younger biological sister who started attending the same school this year. DNA tests have confirmed that the older girl is the daughter of Celeste and Morne Nurse, who was snatched from Groote Schuur hospital as a three-day-old baby named Zephany in April 1997, local media reported. Zephany grew up with a different name in a different family.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:11:54 -0500
Stocks slip in afternoon after weaker estimate of US growth

FILE - This Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014, file photo, shows the facade of the New York Stock Exchange. U.S. stock indexes edged slightly lower in early trading Friday, Feb. 27, 2015, after the U.S. economy slowed more sharply than expected in the final three months of 2014. Utilities stocks were among the biggest decliners. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)Major U.S. stocks indexes were on course for a slightly lower close Friday afternoon. Trading was mostly listless as investors weighed the implications of new economic reports and corporate earnings. Oil rose, recouping some of its losses from a day earlier.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:11:32 -0500
Germany approves Greek bailout extension despite unease

The four-month reprieve for Greece won overwhelming backing in Germany's lower house of parliamentGerman lawmakers approved Friday a hard-won bailout extension for Greece's new anti-austerity government in a move Berlin's finance chief called "not easy" but necessary, keeping a crucial lifeline open to Athens. Greece's left-wing Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras welcomed the German vote as "a political act of common sense and democracy", pledging to get to work on reforms and suggesting it was a victory for his cause. He promised that now his month-old government would "start working hard, in order to change Greece within a Europe that changes direction". The four-month bailout extension for Greece, approved by eurozone finance ministers Tuesday, averts a potentially calamitous end-February deadline that could have seen Athens default and exit from the euro.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:09:51 -0500
Kurdish forces 'capture strategic IS Syria bastion'

People's Protection Units fighters sit in the back of pick-up truck in the town of Tal Hamis, Syria, on February 26, 2015, after they retook parts of the townKurdish fighters seized a strategic Islamic State stronghold in Syria Friday in a move that could impede jihadist movements near the border with Iraq, where they also control large swathes of territory. Meanwhile, the United States and Turkey are to begin training and equipping moderate Syrian rebels for the fight against President Bashar al-Assad and IS. The main Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) said its fighters had liberated Tal Hamis and surrounding communities at the request of residents "who wanted to get rid of these terrorists and mercenaries".


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:05:22 -0500
Democrats caught between Obama, Netanyahu on speech

FILE - In this Feb. 8, 2015 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting in his Jerusalem office. Jewish House Democrats personally offered Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a chance to lower the political temperature after he accepted a Republican invitation to speak to Congress next week on Iran _ a less provocative, closed-door session. Netanyahu turned them down, frustrating members of President Barack Obama's party caught between the White House and the Israeli leader. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner, File)WASHINGTON (AP) — Jewish House Democrats personally offered Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a chance to lower the political temperature after he accepted a Republican invitation to speak to Congress next week on Iran — a less provocative, closed-door session.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:04:34 -0500
Greek prime minister rules out third bailout

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras waits the arrival of German politician and Member of the European Parliament for The Greens Ska Keller,in Athens, on Friday, Feb. 27, 2015. Tsipras will chair a Cabinet meeting later Friday. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece's new radical left government has no intention of seeking yet another bailout deal from international creditors and will spend coming months trying to ease the terms of its current commitments, the financially struggling country's prime minister said Friday.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:02:11 -0500
Libyan PM says Turkey supplying weapons to rival Tripoli group

Libya's internationally recognized Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni speaks during an interview with Reuters in BaydaBy Ahmed Tolba and Ayman al-Warfalli CAIRO/BENGHAZI (Reuters) - Libya's internationally recognized Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thinni said his government would stop dealing with Turkey because it was sending weapons to a rival group in Tripoli so that "the Libyan people kill each other". Two administrations, one in the capital and Thinni's in the east, have been battling for power since the armed group Libya Dawn seized Tripoli in July and reinstated lawmakers from a previous assembly, four years after Muammar Gaddafi was ousted. "Turkey is a state that is not dealing honestly with us. A spokesman for Turkey's Foreign Ministry strongly denied Thinni's allegations.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:01:40 -0500
Iran, six powers to hold nuclear talks in Switzerland on March 5: EU

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif attends a news conference with his Belarussian counterpart Vladimir Makei in MinskSenior officials from Iran and six powers negotiating with Tehran over its nuclear program will hold more talks in Montreux, Switzerland, on March 5, the European Union said on Friday. The talks between political directors will be preceded by a series of bilateral meetings between Iran and some of the six powers - the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany - starting on Monday, March 2. "The EU is making every effort to facilitate the negotiations: we cannot miss the opportunity of a good agreement," EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:59:35 -0500
Unmasking of 'Jihadi John' as a London lad shocks Britain

This undated image shows a frame from a video released Friday, Oct. 3, 2014, by Islamic State militants that purports to show the militant who beheaded of taxi driver Alan Henning . A British-accented militant who has appeared in beheading videos released by the Islamic State group in Syria over the past few months bears "striking similarities" to a man who grew up in London, a Muslim lobbying group said Thursday Feb. 26, 2015. Mohammed Emwazi has been identified by news organizations as the masked militant more commonly known as "Jihadi John." London-based CAGE, which works with Muslims in conflict with British intelligence services, said Thursday its research director, Asim Qureshi, saw strong similarities, but because the hood worn by the militant, "there was no way he could be 100 percent certain." (AP Photo)LONDON (AP) — The unmasking of Islamic State militant "Jihadi John" as a London lad who had repeatedly been questioned by security services sent shock waves through Britain Friday, with Prime Minister David Cameron stepping in to defend British spy craft.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:57:18 -0500
Mexico official: Police capture top capo 'La Tuta' Gomez

Federal police patrol as part of increased security outside the SEIDO, the organized-crime division of Mexico's Attorney General Office where high profile detainees are sometimes shown to the press in Mexico City, Friday, Feb. 27, 2015. The leader of the Knights Templar cartel Servando "La Tuta" Gomez," one of Mexico's most-wanted drug lords, was captured early Friday by federal police in the capital city of Morelia, according to a Mexican official. It could not be confirmed if Gomez was inside the SEIDO building. (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte)MEXICO CITY (AP) — Servando "La Tuta" Gomez, a former school teacher who became one of Mexico's most-wanted drug lords as head of the Knights Templar cartel, was captured early Friday by federal police, according to Mexican officials.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:54:25 -0500
Iran blocks website for reporting on reformist ex-president

Iran has blocked two news websites after they published reports and photos of former Iranian president Mohammad Khatami, pictured here in Tehran on October 16, 2008Iran blocked a website Friday for publishing reports about and pictures of former reformist president Mohammad Khatami despite a judicial ban, state-run IRNA news agency said Friday. Jamaran.ir is close to Hassan Khomeini, grandson of the Islamic republic's late founder, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Newspapers have said judicial authorities told media they were banned from publishing information, including pictures, about "heads of sedition", a reference to protests claiming that the 2009 re-election of hardline president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was fraudulent. Khatami served from 1997 to 2005 and his double tenure was marked by bids to open up Iran to the West.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:53:46 -0500
By the British seaside, UKIP seeks second wind

UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage delivers his keynote speech on the first day of the UKIP spring conference in Margate, Kent, England, on February 27, 2015Britain's anti-EU UK Independence Party is hoping for a major breakthrough in May's general election, but will have to overcome an electoral system stacked against small parties and its own history of racist gaffes. The battle came to Margate, a faded seaside resort in southeast England which is hosting its spring conference, on Friday. Here, beer-loving leader Nigel Farage's policies of withdrawing from the EU, toughening immigration controls and restoring Britain to the good old days resonate. Both were already MPs, but defected from Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives and were re-elected under the yellow and purple banner of UKIP in by-elections.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:53:36 -0500
Mugabe admits land reform blunder in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe attends his inauguration and swearing-in ceremony at the sports stadium in Harare on August 22, 2013Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has admitted he blundered by giving ill-equipped black farmers vast tracts of farmland seized from whites under his controversial land reforms. In an interview with the state-owned Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) late Thursday to mark his 91st birthday on February 21, Mugabe also declared he is still in charge, dismissing speculation that his increasingly powerful wife Grace is now running the show. They can't manage them," Mugabe said, referring to black farmers who benefited from the land reforms. The land seizures have reduced Zimbabwe from being the regional breadbasket to having to import grain from neighbouring Zambia and other countries, as most of the beneficiaries lacked both farming equipment and expertise.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:53:35 -0500
Black Madam: Celeb model hired me for buttocks injections
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A hip-hop artist charged with killing a London break dancer with an illegal buttocks injection claims one celebrity who sought her out became "a walking billboard" for her body-sculpting work.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:53:07 -0500
Joint working group formed to speed up preps for 2018 Games
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — South Korean organizers and the IOC are setting up a special joint working group to accelerate the bumpy preparations for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:50:59 -0500
UAE and Kuwait to reopen embassies in Yemen's south, backing Hadi

Protesters show support for Yemen's President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi during a demonstration in the southwestern city of TaizThe United Arab Emirates and Kuwait will reopen their Yemeni embassies in the southern city of Aden instead of the capital Sanaa, the two countries' state news agencies said on Friday. Sanaa was captured in September by the Shi'ite Muslim Houthi militia, which placed President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi under house arrest and forced him to announce his resignation. Parliament never approved the resignation, and on Sunday Hadi fled to Aden where he has set up a new seat of power. An aide to Hadi said on Thursday that Yemen's neighbor Saudi Arabia, the Sunni-ruled main Gulf Arab power, was moving its ambassador to Aden.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:50:18 -0500
Obama to host new Afghan leaders at White House on March 24

FILE - In this Feb. 21, 2015 file-pool photo, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani speaks at the Presidential Palace in Kabul, Afghanistan. President Obama will host the leaders of Afghanistan's new unity government for their first White House visit next month. The White House says Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and chief executive Abdullah Abdullah will visit March 24. Abdullah's post is similar to a prime minister. The meeting comes as the White House considers slowing its military exit from Afghanistan by keeping a larger-than-planned troop presence this year. (AP Photos/Jonathan Ernst, File-Pool)WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will host the leaders of Afghanistan's new unity government for their first White House visit next month.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:45:47 -0500
Nearly half of Greeks would back Syriza in new election: poll

Greek PM Tsipras arrives for a government meeting at the parliament in AthensNearly half of Greeks would back the governing leftist party of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras if elections were held this week, a Metron Analysis poll to be published on Saturday showed. Altogether, 47.6 percent of respondents said they would back Syriza, up sharply from the 36.3 percent that the radical party won in elections barely a month ago, based on those who said they would be sure to vote. The poll, conducted after Greece gained a four-month extension to the country's aid program, appears to show the government holding the support of a large chunk of Greeks despite being accused of having performed a climbdown on its pledge to end the unpopular bailout. More than two in three Greeks said they were satisfied with the way the government was negotiating with EU partners while 76 percent were positive about its overall performance so far, according to the survey for Parapolitika newspaper.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:42:41 -0500
Super Rugby: Cheetahs beat Blues 25-24 to prevent NZ sweep
Joe Pietersen kicked a 79th-minute penalty and Ihaia West missed a dropped goal after the hooter as the Cheetahs beat the Blues 25-24 to prevent a sweep from New Zealand teams in Super Rugby on Friday.
Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:42:31 -0500
Debates rage over color of dress photographed in rare light

Shop manager Debbie Armstrong adjusts a two tone dress in a window display of a shop in Lichfield, England, Friday Feb. .27, 2015. It's the dress that's beating the Internet black and blue. Or should that be gold and white? Friends and co-workers worldwide are debating the true hues of a royal blue dress with black lace that, to many an eye, transforms in one photograph into gold and white (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)It's the dress that's beating the Internet black and blue. Or should that be gold and white?


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:41:33 -0500
Argentina prosecutor Julio Cesar Strassera dies at 81

FILE - In this Jan. 11, 2015 file photo, Argentina's former judge Julio Cesar Strassera, left, speaks with France's ambassador to Argentina, Jean-Michel Casa, during a demonstration in solidarity with the victims of an attack in Paris, outside France's embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Strassera, prosecutor in the trial that saw the conviction of Argentina's military dictatorship leaders, died in Buenos Aires on Friday, Feb. 27, 2015. He was 81. Strassera died in the clinic San Camilo de Buenos Aires where he had been admitted for a respiratory illness. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd, File)BUENOS AIRES (AP) — Julio Cesar Strassera, the prosecutor who won conviction against leaders of Argentina's dictatorship and coined the term "Nunca mas," or "Never again," to describe the repressive period, has died at age 81.


Date Posted : Fri, 27 Feb 2015 14:39:45 -0500
 

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