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Friday, December 19, 2014
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Pakistan executes militants and bombards tribal areas
ISLAMABAD (AP) -- Pakistan hanged two convicted militants Friday in the country's first executions in years, while warplanes and ground forces pounded insurgent hideouts in a northwest region bordering Afghanistan - part of a stepped-up response to the Taliban slaughter of scores of schoolchildren.... 12/19/2014 8:01 PM

Brazil to study legalization of medical marijuana
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) -- The Brazilian government says it will study the possibility of legalizing the use of a marijuana derivative to treat people suffering from severe seizures.... 12/19/2014 7:37 PM

Putin: Russia military modernization to go ahead
MOSCOW (AP) -- Boasting about the Russian military's capability, President Vladimir Putin vowed Friday to continue an ambitious weapons modernization program with a particular emphasis on nuclear strategic forces.... 12/19/2014 7:21 PM

Iraq clashes with IS delay evacuation of Yazidis
BAGHDAD (AP) -- Sporadic clashes between Iraqi Kurdish fighters and Islamic State extremists, as well as other logistics problems, are delaying the evacuation of the last Yazidis still trapped on Mt. Sinjar, an Iraqi lawmaker said Friday.... 12/19/2014 7:10 PM

No word yet from Fidel amid historic US-Cuba shift
HAVANA (AP) -- Everyone in Cuba is talking about the abrupt turn in relations with the United States, with one notable exception: Fidel Castro.... 12/19/2014 7:06 PM

Greek lawmaker alleges bribery attempt in presidential vote
ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- A lawmaker from a small right-wing party claimed Friday he had been offered a bribe worth up to 3 million euros ($3.68 million) to vote in favor of electing Greece's new president, in the latest twist in the bailed-out country's fraught presidential vote.... 12/19/2014 6:44 PM

Marathon runner Jeptoo's 'B' sample positive
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- Marathon runner Rita Jeptoo's "B" sample tested positive, Kenya's athletics federation said Friday, confirming an earlier test that found traces of a banned performance enhancer.... 12/19/2014 6:44 PM

Report: Turkey orders warrant for US-based cleric's arrest
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) -- A Turkish court has ordered an arrest warrant for U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen - a former ally-turned-foe of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey's state-run media reported Friday.... 12/19/2014 6:39 PM

Little-known book by pope outlines views, hopes for Cuba
VATICAN CITY (AP) -- A little-known book about Cuba by Jorge Mario Bergoglio - now Pope Francis - provides new insight into his views on Cuban society, Marxism and the U.S. trade embargo that helped inform his behind-the-scenes role in helping bring about the historic thaw in U.S.-Cuba relations.... 12/19/2014 6:37 PM

Security flaws allow global cellular eavesdropping
BERLIN (AP) -- Security flaws in a system used by cellphone carriers around the world could open the door to wide-ranging surveillance of mobile phone traffic, according to a German researcher who discovered the problem.... 12/19/2014 6:14 PM

UN chief visits Ebola-ravaged West African nations
MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) -- United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon praised health workers battling Ebola in Sierra Leone and Liberia on Friday, saying they have shown "the most noble face of humankind" amid an epidemic that has killed more than 6,900 people in West Africa.... 12/19/2014 5:57 PM

Cyprus: initial offshore drilling finds no gas
NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) -- Cyprus' Energy Ministry says initial exploratory drilling by an Italian-Korean consortium off Cyprus' southern coast has failed to find significant quantities of gas.... 12/19/2014 5:53 PM

Suspected bomb found under N. Ireland soldier's car
BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) -- British army experts have dismantled a suspected booby-trap bomb hidden underneath an off-duty British soldier's car in Northern Ireland.... 12/19/2014 5:41 PM

Peru investigates Greenpeace member in Nazca stunt
LIMA, Peru (AP) -- A Peruvian prosecutor is investigating the suspected involvement of a Greenpeace activist in a publicity stunt that allegedly damaged the world-renowned Nazca lines.... 12/19/2014 5:38 PM

9 migrants drown off Morocco coast
RABAT, Morocco (AP) -- Moroccan authorities say that nine migrants, including three infants, drowned off the coast near Tangiers.... 12/19/2014 5:32 PM

Russia seeks 10 years in prison for Putin foe
MOSCOW (AP) -- Russian prosecutors on Friday asked a court to sentence President Vladimir Putin's chief foe to 10 years in prison, but the defiant opposition leader vowed to keep up his fight against the Kremlin regime.... 12/19/2014 5:27 PM

Key Profumo scandal figure Mandy Rice-Davies dies
LONDON (AP) -- Mandy Rice-Davies, a key figure in the "Profumo Affair," a sex-and-politics scandal that rocked Cold War Britain, has died at age 70.... 12/19/2014 5:01 PM

Air France-KLM stock drops on profit warning
PARIS (AP) -- Air France-KLM shares have plunged more than 8 percent in the wake of the airline's warning that weak demand on several long-haul routes and other factors would wipe hundreds of millions off profits this year.... 12/19/2014 4:47 PM

Hope and some fear in Cuba amid thaw with US
HAVANA (AP) -- The restoration of diplomatic ties between Cuba and the United States has unleashed expectations of even more momentous changes on an island that often seems frozen in a past of classic cars and crumbling Art Deco buildings.... 12/19/2014 4:46 PM

Another big catch for Thai co. in $1.5B bid for Bumble Bee
BANGKOK (AP) -- A Thai food company may be landing another whopper in the U.S. with its $1.5 billion bid for Bumble Bee Seafoods.... 12/19/2014 4:42 PM