BEIRUT (AP) — The number of Syrian children affected by the
civil war in their homeland has doubled in the past year to at
least 5.5 million — more than half the country's children — with
devastating effects on the health, education and psychological
well-being of an entire generation, the United Nations children's
agency said Thursday.
CHELTENHAM, England (AP) — Quevega became the first horse to
win the same race six times at the Cheltenham Festival, lifting
some of the gloom following the death of one of the favorites in
the signature Champion Hurdle on Tuesday.
Russia's responses to U.S. proposals to end the crisis in
Ukraine do not create the environment for a diplomatic resolution,
the United States said on Tuesday. Russia's bloodless seizure of
the Crimea region of Ukraine has brought U.S.-Russian relations to
one of their lowest points since the Cold War, with the United
States searching for a way to keep Russia from annexing Crimea and
its Russian naval base. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry spoke to
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Tuesday morning to
discuss a series of questions that Washington put to Moscow over
the weekend in an effort to find a diplomatic solution, the State
NEW HAVEN, Connecticut (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a judge
should allow a witness to testify by video against a British
citizen who pleaded guilty in Connecticut to supporting terrorists
A rare public spat erupted Tuesday between the CIA and the US
lawmakers meant to oversee its work, with the head of the agency
angrily denying claims it spied on Senate staff. Senate
Intelligence Committee chair Dianne Feinstein launched a fiery
public attack on the Central Intelligence Agency, accusing it of
improperly searching computers used by staffers investigating CIA
interrogation methods. "I have grave concerns that the CIA's search
may well have violated the separation of powers principles embodied
in the United States Constitution," Feinstein said on the Senate
floor. She alleged the CIA may have violated federal law as well as
the executive order that bars it from domestic spying, but the
agency's director John Brennan quickly denied the allegations.
By Niluksi Koswanage and Eveline Danubrata KUALA LUMPUR
(Reuters) - Malaysia's military believes a jetliner missing for
almost four days turned and flew hundreds of kilometers to the west
after it last made contact with civilian air traffic control off
the country's east coast, a senior officer told Reuters on Tuesday.
In one of the most baffling mysteries in recent aviation history, a
massive search operation for the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER
has so far found no trace of the aircraft or the 239 passengers and
crew. Malaysian authorities have previously said flight MH370
disappeared about an hour after it took off from Kuala Lumpur for
the Chinese capital Beijing. It made it into the Malacca Strait,"
the senior military officer, who has been briefed on
investigations, told Reuters.
MADISON, Wisconsin (AP) — Members of the Russian punk band
Pussy Riot are calling on Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van
Hollen to dismiss cases against protesters arrested for singing in
the Capitol building.
Britain's Co-operative Group announced Tuesday that chief
executive Euan Sutherland has resigned, throwing the troubled
mutual into a fresh crisis. He will be temporarily replaced by
chief financial officer, Richard Pennycook, until a new CEO can be
found, the Co-operative said in a statement.
Switzerland will ask the European Court of Human Rights to
review a case involving a Turkish politician who denied that mass
killings of Armenians in Ottoman Turkey in 1915 amounted to
genocide, the Justice Ministry said on Tuesday. A Swiss court had
fined the leader of the leftist Turkish Workers' Party, Dogu
Perincek, for having branded talk of an Armenian genocide "an
international lie" during a 2007 lecture tour in Switzerland. The
European court, which upholds the 47-nation European Convention on
Human Rights, said in December a Swiss law against genocide denial
violated the principle of freedom of expression.
Baalbek (Lebanon) (AFP) - Three people were wounded Tuesday in
a cross-border rocket attack launched from Syria that targeted a
Hezbollah-dominated area of eastern Lebanon, the Lebanese army
said. "Three rockets from Syria fell in and around the Nabi Sheet
village" in the eastern Bekaa Valley, an army statement said,
adding that the three people were wounded when one of the
projectiles slammed into a house, causing damage. Jihadist groups
frequently claim responsibility for cross-border rocket attacks on
eastern Lebanon, which they say are in revenge for the Shiite
Hezbollah's decision to fight alongside Syrian President Bashar
al-Assad's troops against a Sunni-led rebellion. Hezbollah bastions
in eastern Lebanon and southern Beirut have also in recent months
been the target of a string of bomb attacks, mostly suicide blasts,
killing dozens of people.
TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Libyan defense minister Abdallah
al-Thinni gave his oath in parliament on Tuesday to become acting
prime minister after deputies voted Ali Zeidan out of office amid
worsening disorder in the oil-producing North African state.
Parliament will support Thinni and not obstruct his work, its head
Nuri Ali Abu Sahmain told the assembly during a session broadcast
by state television. (Reporting by Ulf Laessing; Editing by Mark
Egyptian police on Tuesday shot dead a militant suspected of
being involved in a January bomb attack against Cairo police
headquarters, the interior ministry said. The bombing in the heart
of the capital, one of many attacks targeting security forces since
the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July, had killed
four people. Mohamed al-Sayed Mansour al-Toukhi was killed in a gun
battle with policemen when they came to arrest him in an eastern
Cairo neighbourhood, the ministry said. His killing comes a day
after police said they had arrested a man suspected of being
involved in one of the four bombings on January 24 that rocked
Cairo a day before the third anniversary of the revolt that toppled
Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
A homemade bomb exploded in a Shi'ite Muslim village in
Bahrain on Tuesday, wounding two policemen, the interior ministry
said, nine days after another blast in the Gulf Arab kingdom killed
three police officers. Bahrain has been grappling with unrest by
majority Shi'ites over the past three years demanding political
reform and an end to perceived discrimination in the Sunni
Muslim-ruled country. Bahrain denies any discrimination against
Shi'ites. Bomb attacks have increased since last year, raising
concern about further instability in the Western-allied kingdom
where the U.S. Fifth Fleet is based as a bulwark against Shi'ite
giant Iran across the Gulf.
By Carl Odera JUBA (Reuters) - South Sudan charged four
high-profile prisoners with treason on Tuesday, dashing rebel hopes
that they would be released ahead of peace talks planned in
Ethiopia this month. Rebels led by former vice president Riek
Machar have demanded a pardon for the four politicians, all former
members of the ruling SPLM party, before the peace talks
Dressed in mourning black, Spaniards commemorated Tuesday their
country's deadliest peacetime attack, a decade to the day since
Al-Qaeda-inspired bombers blew up four packed commuter trains and
killed 191 people. Relatives of those killed on the trains, which
were carrying rush hour passengers from Madrid's suburbs when they
exploded on March 11, 2004, wept quietly as the names and ages of
the victims were read out at the city's main Atocha railway
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. says Assistant
Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic has canceled a
visit to Crimea primarily because the airport is closed to flights
coming from other parts of Ukraine.
An Israeli court on Tuesday ruled that Jewish settlers were the
lawful owners of a long-disputed building in the heart of the
occupied West Bank city of Hebron. The Supreme Court ruling brings
an end to a legal dispute lasting nearly seven years, after the
Palestinian Rajabi family said its four-storey building had been
taken over by Israeli settlers. Israeli settlements on occupied
land the Palestinians want for their future state have been a major
source of tensions in US-brokered peace talks relaunched last year.
When settlers moved into the structure in 2007 the Palestinians
charged they had been tricked and said the purchase was invalid,
lodging complaints with the police and petitioning the court.
By Patricia Zengerle and Doina Chiacu (Reuters) - A bitter
dispute between the CIA and the U.S. Senate committee that oversees
it burst into the open on Tuesday when a top senator accused the
agency of spying on Congress and possibly breaking the law. Senator
Dianne Feinstein delivered a scathing critique of the CIA's
handling of her intelligence committee's investigation into a
Bush-era interrogation and detention program that began after the
September 11, 2001, attacks but was only made public in 2006.
By Richard Balmforth KIEV (Reuters) - Sunday's vote in
Ukraine's Crimea is being officially billed as a chance for the
peninsula's peoples to decide fairly and freely their future - but
in fact there is no room on the ballot paper for voting "Nyet" to
control by Russia. According to a format of the ballot paper,
published on the parliament's website, the first question will ask:
"Are you in favor of the reunification of Crimea with Russia as a
part of the Russian Federation?" The second asks: "Are you in favor
of restoring the 1992 Constitution and the status of Crimea as a
part of Ukraine?" At first glance, the second option seems to offer
the prospects of the peninsula remaining within Ukraine.
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — The Malaysian military has
radar data showing the missing Boeing 777 jetliner changed course
and made it to the Malacca Strait, hundreds of kilometers (miles)
from the last position recorded by civilian authorities, according
to a senior military official. The development injects more mystery
into the investigation of the disappearance of Saturday's flight,
and raises questions about why the aircraft was not transmitting
signals detectable by civilian radar.
Egyptian military chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi arrived Tuesday in
the United Arab Emirates, a strong supporter of his July ouster of
Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, the WAM news agency reported.
Field Marshal Sisi, who is Egypt's defence minister and deputy
premier, travelled to the UAE to attend the closure of joint
military exercises there. He was met by UAE deputy army chief
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed al-Nahyan.
Russia warned the United States on Tuesday about the
consequences of planned financial support to what it called
Ukraine's illegitimate regime, saying the aid would be illegal. The
U.S. House of Representatives last week approved $1 billion worth
of loan guarantees for Ukraine and U.S. senators are preparing
legislation that aides said would be broader and could include
sanctions against Russia. The Russian foreign ministry explicitly
referred to a statement made earlier on Tuesday by ousted President
Viktor Yanukovich asserting that any such aid would be illegal. "By
all criteria, issuing funding to an illegitimate regime that seized
power by force is unlawful and goes beyond the framework of the
American legal system." The statement is likely to further increase
tension between Russia and the West amid diplomatic deadlock over
Ukraine after sustained pro-Western unrest toppled the pro-Russian
By Steve Slater and Chris Vellacott LONDON (Reuters) - Barclays
faces a backlash from shareholders over its decision to raise
bonuses despite a fall in profits, with investors increasingly
demanding CEO Antony Jenkins give more money to them and less to
his staff. Few have drawn as much criticism as Barclays, where
profits fell by a third but staff have just won a 10 percent bigger
bonus pot to share for last year than the year before. Jenkins said
in a newspaper interview last week that he was forced to increase
bonuses after an exodus from Barclays' investment bank in America
left him fearing a "death spiral". "The bonus issue is on a
collision course with shareholders again.
By Louis Charbonneau UNTED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.N. Assistant
Secretary-General Ivan Simonovic, who is in Ukraine to assess the
human rights situation, will not go to the pro-Russian Crimea
region for the time being, the United Nations said on Tuesday. "He
plans to travel to Lviv tomorrow," U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric
told reporters. "Regarding travel to Crimea, Mr. Simonovic has been
informed that under the current circumstances, the security of his
delegation cannot be guaranteed.
TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — Libya's parliament ousted the prime
minister in a Tuesday vote of confidence, after his government was
embarrassed this week when a militia controlling an eastern port
defied Tripoli's authority by trying to sell oil.
Barouk (Lebanon) (AFP) - Steam rises from a gourd filled with
yerba mate as Wissam al-Halabi takes a sip, seated on a Lebanese
mountain slope where the South American drink has become a local
tradition. It is particularly popular among adherents of the
secretive Druze faith, who are scattered throughout the eastern
Mediterranean's Levant region, mostly in Lebanon and Syria. "It's
from Argentina originally and we're told it came here hundreds of
years ago, brought by Lebanese migrants who came back from there,"
says Samah Halawi, a Druze sheikh. Latin America became a prime
destination for economic migrants from the Levant, particularly in
the late 19th century, and a large community of their descendants
still exists in Argentina and elsewhere in the region.
Rio police will boost their presence in a violent slum
controlled by drug gangs as authorities crack down on crime in the
final countdown to the World Cup, an official source said Tuesday.
The source said a specialist police battalion will be deployed in
the notorious Vila Kennedy favela on Thursday as part of Brazil's
campaign to "pacify" violent neighborhoods. The battalion's
deployment in Vila Kennedy, home to around 100,000 people, comes
ahead of the permanent stationing there of what will be the 38th
Police Pacification Unit or UPP. Vila Kennedy has in recent weeks
been the scene of violent clashes between rival gang leaders.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A former Washington private school teacher
who was captured in Nicaragua after a year on the FBI's "Ten Most
Wanted" fugitives list was sentenced Tuesday to 25 years in prison
in a child pornography case.
VALPARAISO, Chile (AP) — US Vice President Joe Biden has been
discussing the "difficult situation" in Venezuela with other Latin
American leaders attending Chile's presidential nomination on
Tuesday, possibly including mediation by a third country, according
to a senior U.S. administration official.
Israel's insistence on Palestinian recognition of the Jewish
state and the Palestinian refusal to comply is threatening bring
about the collapse of US-led peace talks. "I will not accept an
agreement that does not cancel the (refugees') right of return and
which does not include Palestinian recognition of the Jewish
state," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday.
"In light of the latest statements by the Palestinians, we are
getting further away from an agreement," he charged. His remarks
were made a day after Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas reiterated
his refusal to recognise "the Jewishness of the State of Israel" in
a speech to the Revolutionary Council of his ruling Fatah
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate Tuesday passed Republican-backed
legislation to repeal taxpayer funding for political conventions
and to go on record in support of devoting $126 million over the
coming decade for additional research into pediatric cancer and
other childhood disorders like autism and Down syndrome.
Italy's defense ministry on Tuesday said that no Italian
military vessels were near to where a Libyan military spokesman
earlier said Italian ships had helped Libya's navy secure a fleeing
oil tanker, a spokeswoman said. "There were no Italian military
vessels in the area," a ministry spokeswoman told Reuters. A tanker
that loaded oil at a rebel-held port in the east of the country
escaped the Libyan navy earlier in the day, leading to the ouster
of Prime Minister Ali Zeidan. A Libyan military spokeswoman later
said the tanker had been fired on, damaged and secured with the
help of "Italian vessels".
One of the top executives of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc has
raised questions about Comcast's potential dominance of the U.S.
broadband Internet market if regulators allow its $45.2 billion
merger with Time Warner Cable to be completed. Speaking at an
investor conference on Tuesday, Chase Carey, Fox president and
chief operating officer, said the "broadband issue" will be front
and center when U.S. regulators review the tie-up that merges the
No. 1 and No. 2 cable operators. Are you really headed toward every
home having simply one broadband provider, and what are the
implications of that?" If its bid for Time Warner Cable is
approved, Comcast would be the Internet provider to about 40
percent of U.S. households paying for high-speed Internet access,
analysts estimate. Comcast did not immediately respond to a request