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Thursday, April 24, 2014
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China set to punish web giant Sina for pornography
BEIJING (AP) -- China plans to revoke two crucial publication licenses for Sina.com, which might partially ban the web giant's operations, because obscene content was found during an anti-pornography crackdown, state media said Thursday.... 4/24/2014 4:36 PM

Costa Rica is demanding US explain 'Cuban Twitter'
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (AP) -- The Costa Rican government says it's waiting for the Obama administration to explain why it improperly devised a secret "Cuban Twitter" network from inside the Central American nation's borders despite warnings in 2009 that the plan could jeopardize the two countries' diplomatic relations.... 4/24/2014 4:35 PM

Residents of conflictive Rio slum stage protest
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) -- Residents of a Rio de Janeiro slum that saw deadly clashes with police earlier this week are staging a protest in the Copacabana beach neighborhood.... 4/24/2014 4:31 PM

Mexican vigilantes search caves for cartel leader
MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Vigilantes are searching an extensive cave system in the hunt for the last fugitive boss of the Knights Templar drug cartel, a "self-defense" group leader in western Mexico said Thursday.... 4/24/2014 4:12 PM

Mexico food labeling rules draw fire on sugar
MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Mexico's new food labeling rules were supposed to help fight an obesity epidemic, but activists and experts said Monday they may actually encourage the public to consume high levels of sugar.... 4/24/2014 4:09 PM

UN chief: Syria war threatens Lebanon's stability
UNITED NATIONS (AP) -- The U.N. secretary-general is warning that the 3-year-old conflict in Syria poses a serious threat to the stability of neighboring Lebanon, as thousands of refugees stream into the small country and weapons and fighters are transferred out.... 4/24/2014 3:49 PM

Israel halts peace talks with Palestinians
JERUSALEM (AP) -- Israel broke off Mideast peace talks and brought the U.S.-brokered process to the brink of collapse Thursday, protesting a reconciliation agreement between the Western-backed Palestinian Authority and the militant group Hamas, the Jewish state's sworn enemy.... 4/24/2014 3:48 PM

Vatican: Pope's private calls don't reflect policy
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- What Pope Francis may tell Catholics in private telephone conversations doesn't reflect church policy, the Vatican's spokesman said Thursday.... 4/24/2014 3:48 PM

Suicide attack in Iraq kills at least 11 people
BAGHDAD (AP) -- A suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into a police checkpoint south of Baghdad on Thursday morning, killing at least 11 people, officials said, the latest episode in an uptick in violence in the run-up to next week's parliamentary elections.... 4/24/2014 3:44 PM

Report: Iran to cut portion of gasoline subsidies
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Iranian state television is reporting that the country will cut gasoline subsidies, part of a second round of subsidy cuts delayed since 2012.... 4/24/2014 3:37 PM

Ukraine moves against insurgents in the east
SLOVYANSK, Ukraine (AP) -- Russia began new military exercises near its border with Ukraine, the defense minister announced Thursday, after Ukrainian forces launched an operation to drive pro-Russia insurgents out of occupied buildings in the country's tumultuous east.... 4/24/2014 3:34 PM

Timbuktu's storied mausoleums to rise from ruins
TIMBUKTU, Mali (AP) -- Roofs are torn off, mud bricks are strewn about and walls barely rise from the desert dunes where Timbuktu's storied mausoleums once stood and are now in ruins. Islamic radicals swept in and tore them apart as totems of idolatry, along with other symbols of the fabled city.... 4/24/2014 3:24 PM

Czech man faces fine after near miss with train
PRAGUE, Czech Republic (AP) -- Czech police say a man faces a fine after having a near miss with a train while walking over a level crossing.... 4/24/2014 3:09 PM

Canada's FM denounces Russia's actions in Ukraine
WARSAW, Poland (AP) -- Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said Thursday that the international community should not accept Russia's "aggression" in Ukraine and committed to help the country develop its democracy.... 4/24/2014 2:59 PM

Activists say Syrian airstrikes in north kill 30
BEIRUT (AP) -- Syrian government airstrikes struck a vegetable market in a northern rebel-held town Thursday, killing at least 30 people and wounding scores of others, an activist group said.... 4/24/2014 2:59 PM

Panama's outgoing president touts wife's candidacy
PANAMA CITY (AP) -- She's a political novice with a scant presence on the campaign trail, but Marta Linares has one vote that matters more than most in her bid to become Panama's next vice president: that of her husband, outgoing President Ricardo Martinelli.... 4/24/2014 2:58 PM

London school says students abused by US teacher
LONDON (AP) -- A British private school said Thursday that images of between 50 and 60 of its students were found on the computer drive of an American suspected child predator who killed himself last month.... 4/24/2014 2:22 PM

Internet governance debated in Brazil
SAO PAULO (AP) -- An international two-day conference on Internet governance is drawing to a close in Brazil as government officials, academics and technical experts from some 90 countries debate how the Internet should be run.... 4/24/2014 2:22 PM

John XXIII's brief papacy made big mark for church
VATICAN CITY (AP) -- Pope John XXIII left his imprint on humanity and the Catholic Church he led for fewer than five years, helping propel him to sainthood on Sunday. Here are some highlights, in deeds and words:... 4/24/2014 2:16 PM

South Korea ferry disaster may cloud Obama visit
TOKYO (AP) -- When President Barack Obama arrives in South Korea on Friday, he will be thrust anew into the role of consoler in chief in a time of crisis, a responsibility he has become all too accustomed to in the United States.... 4/24/2014 2:14 PM