Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Obama Says He Wants to Work 'as a Team' With Congress

Obama Says He Wants to Work 'as a Team' With Congress

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U.S. President Barack Obama is telling congressional leaders, including opposition Republican lawmakers, that he hopes to work with them "as a team" this year to pass key legislation, even as they continue to spar over several contentious issues. The president called key senators and members of Congress to the White House Tuesday. With Republicans now controlling Congress, the party's top leaders, House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, flanked...

Egypt cracks down on atheism

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Egypt's Constitution states that "freedom of belief is absolute," yet it says nothing about those who don't believe.
    


Ebola Epidemic May End by June 2015 In Liberia 

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Understanding the ebb and flow of the Ebola outbreak that erupted in West Africa last year—and continues to percolate in the three hardest hit countries—is critical to stopping it. That means knowing who’s getting infected, where the highest rates of transmission are occurring and which strategies work best to control its spread.
Scientists initially thought that even if almost every infected person could be hospitalized, it wouldn’t stop the rapid spread of the Ebola virus for months to come. But researchers in the U.S. are now predicting in the journal PLOS Biology that the epidemic in Liberia, which at one point had the biggest explosion in Ebola cases, could peter out by June 2015.
In coming up with their predictive models, the researchers, led by John Drake University of Georgia, took into account data from previous outbreaks of Ebola, as well as probabilities about infection rates among healthcare workers, family members of the infected and those who are exposed to the virus during burials.
In order for Liberia’s Ebola outbreak to end, new hospital beds would have to be added at the same current rate (300 were provided between July and September 2014), the study authors concluded. That would allow 85% of infected patients to be treated with the nutritional and hydration therapy that is critical to overcome the infection. If new beds aren’t continually added, then hospitalization rates could drop back down to 70%, and cases may start to outpace public health workers’ ability to contain the disease.
Burial practices need to change as well. Cultural norms include touching the bodies of the deceased, which spreads the Ebola virus in a community. Safer burial practices, in which infected patients are isolated from healthy people, are keeping transmission levels under control, the authors say.
The key to reducing the number of Liberia’s Ebola cases by summer is ensuring that anyone who is sick is hospitalized. “These modeling exercises suggested that in the absence of rapid hospitalization of most cases, none of the proposed scenarios for increasing hospital capacity would have been likely to achieve containment,” the authors write. “Continuing on the path to elimination will require sustained watchfulness and individual willingness to be treated.”
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Masses Mourn Paris Terror Victims in France and Israel

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These photographs are Tuesday's funeral services for both police officers and civilians killed in last week's terror attacks in Paris

Military Reviewing Security After Twitter Hack

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The U.S. military characterized Monday’s successful hacking attack as an “embarrassment” that has sparked a broader security review of how it handles its broader outreach to the public.

Jurors seated in civil trial over PLO role in Israeli attacks

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Victims of attacks in Israel more than a decade ago will look to prove the Palestine Liberation Organization and Palestinian Authority were behind the violence and should pay up to $1 billion, after jurors were selected Tuesday in a civil trial.Six men and six women will consider whether to hold the defendants responsible for seven shootings and bombings from 2001 to 2004 in the Jerusalem area that killed 33 people and wounded more than 450.
  
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Charlie Hebdo's new edition 'made with joy as well as pain' - The Guardian

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The Guardian

Charlie Hebdo's new edition 'made with joy as well as pain'
The Guardian
Charlie Hebdo cartoonist Renald Luzier, aka Luz, (l) and columnist Dr Patrick Pelloux (c) at the press conference in Paris. Photograph: Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty Images. Alexandra Topping in Paris. Tuesday 13 January 2015 12.03 EST. Share on Facebook ...

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US Watching Foreign Fighter Threat 'Very Carefully'

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The attacks in Paris -- and concerns that more terrorists from a cell linked to Said and Cherif Kouachi are waiting to strike -- have officials in the U.S. taking notice and bracing for what...
From: VOAvideo
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Artillery Strike Kills 11 People in Ukraine

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An artillery strike hit a bus in eastern Ukraine, killing 11 people in the largest civilian death toll in months and further dampening hopes for reviving peace efforts.

Police can keep us safe without spying on journalists’ sources

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Press freedom campaigners, doctors and lawyers are united against draft code on police use of Ripa; the government needs to listen
As the world mourns the attack on press freedom in Paris, it beggars belief that our political leaders should be planning to curb journalists’ ability to protect their sources. And yet, in just seven days, consultation will end on proposals that will allow the police to spy on journalists’ phone records without proper oversight, removing at a swipe historic privileges held by the press in the interests of the public.
In the febrile atmosphere after mindless acts of violence, such as those that occurred in Paris last week, governments - and the UK is no exception - want to be seen to be doing everything they can to track and bring to justice potential terrorists. Yet this very real fear and threat is being used to convince us that historic rights should be curtailed. Not overtly, of course, but in the home secretary’s disregard for the huge opposition to the draft code on the use of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (Ripa) which allows the police and other authorities to continue to access journalists’ communications without any independent process or judicial oversight.
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Muslims' mixed response to Charlie Hebdo's new Mohammed cover

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The cartoon on Charlie Hebdo's cover is a message of defiance, but also forgiveness -- and many Muslims responded with similarly mixed emotions.
    


Family of Man Killed by Police Chief Pledges to Seek Justice - New York Times

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Family of Man Killed by Police Chief Pledges to Seek Justice
New York Times
ORANGEBURG, S.C. — Relatives of a black man shot and killed by a white, small-town South Carolina police chief said Tuesday they will continue seeking justice for their loved one after a judge declared a mistrial in the former officer's murder trial.

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WorldViews: Islamic State video claims to show child killing Russia spies 

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The Islamic State released a video on Tuesday that appeared to show a child killing two men accused of spying for Russia. In the video, the two men, who said they were from Kazakhstan and Russia, said they had been working with the Federal Security Service (FSB), the Russian intelligence agency, to infiltrate the extremist organization.Read full article >>






Cuban dissidents out of prison but not entirely free

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HAVANA (Reuters) - Most of the 53 Cuban prisoners released from jail under a historic U.S.-Cuba accord remain bound to the justice system under conditions that could easily return them to prison, dissident leaders say.
  

ISIS Video Appears to Show Child Soldier Executing Two Men - NBCNews.com

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CBS News

ISIS Video Appears to Show Child Soldier Executing Two Men
NBCNews.com
ISIS released a video on Tuesday that appears to show a child soldier shooting and killing two prisoners whom the militants accuse of spying for Russia. The video opens with what ISIS presents as confessions — each of the two men telling an off-camera ... 
Islamic State video
 purports to show boy executing 'Russian spies'ABC Online
ISIS Video Appears To Show Young Boy Executing Russian 'Spies'CBS Local
Shocking IS Propaganda Video Shows Child Militant Executing 'Russian FSB...RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty
Washington Times-Irish Independent
Washington Post (blog) 
all 59
 
Islamic State Video Purports to Show What Happens to Russian Spies Who...VICE News
RT-RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty-Novinite.com
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Building Plans for Wiki-Style House Available Online

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About one third of the world's city dwellers are living in substandard housing, according to the McKinsey Global Institute. But researchers say free plans now available online for building houses made of manufactured parts that perfectly fit together may help solve this problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Syria Peace Talk Hopes Fade 

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A settlement might close off an avenue to radicalization for some Muslims worldwide who are watching the conflict in Syria closely.

Deadly subway malfunction leaves many unanswered questions 

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The subway train had just pulled out from a busy Washington station when it ground to a halt and foul-smelling smoke began filling the cars and the tunnel....
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Amazon lures Woody Allen to write, direct new TV series - Reuters

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Reuters

Amazon lures Woody Allen to write, direct new TV series
Reuters
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Director Woody Allen will make his first foray onto the small screen, writing and directing an online series for Amazon.com, the latest coup by deep-pocketed cable and streaming companies in luring the biggest names in film to ...
Will 2015 Be The Year Amazon Flips The Profit Switch?Forbes
Amazon Makes a Risky Bet on Woody Allen's Tarnished PrestigeThe Atlantic
Why an Amazon series is the perfect venue for 2015 Woody AllenSalon
SFGate -National Post -NBC26.tv
all 412 news articles »

Prokhorov Reportedly Trying To Sell NBA’s Brooklyn Nets

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Media reports in the United States say billionaire Russian businessman Mikhail Prokhorov is looking to sell the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association.

Goa State Officials in India Plan to Counsel Gay Youths to Lead ‘Normal Life’ 

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The Indian state, governed by the Bharatiya Janata Party, plans a program to help youths “get over same-sex feelings” a state minister announced.

5 things: Many back labeling of genetically modified foods

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- Two thirds of Americans support labeling of genetically modified ingredients on food packages, even if they may not read them, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll....

Israel Remembers Jewish Paris Victims | Shooting Terror Attack at Charlie Hebdo News 

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The Israeli president, the prime minister and the wife of one of the four Jewish victims in a Paris kosher market attack spoke at the burial ceremony for the slain men in Jerusalem. Produced...
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PM: France ‘still under threat from attacks by Paris gunmen’s associates’

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Manuel Valls’s warning as man linked to Charlie Hebdo killers arrested in Bulgaria and Coulibaly linked with jogger’s shooting
France’s prime minister, Manuel Valls, warned on Tuesday that the country was still under threat from accomplices of the gunmen who terrorised Paris last week and from global terrorist networks.
Valls, addressing a special session of the French parliament in memory of the victims, said that “very great and very serious risks remain”, as the manhunt for suspected accomplices to last week’s attacks widened. It emerged that an associate of one of the gunmen had been arrested in Bulgaria a few days earlier, allegedly on the way to join Islamic State (Isis) jihadists in Syria.
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Divers retrieve second black box from AirAsia crash - TODAYonline

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Divers retrieve second black box from AirAsia crash
TODAYonline
PANGKALAN BUN (Indonesia) — Divers retrieved the crashed AirAsia plane's second black box from the bottom of the Java Sea yesterday, giving experts essential tools to piece together what brought flight QZ8501 down. Search and rescue officials also said ...

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MI6 forced to show how it may snoop on privileged lawyer-client exchanges 

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Documents passed to civil liberties group Reprieve reveal intelligence agency’s attempt to show it stays within the law
MI6 has been forced to reveal documents detailing how it may access legally privileged communications between solicitors and their clients, even if the lawyers are suing the government.
Policy guidance handed over to the civil liberties organisation Reprieve shows how the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) is attempting to regulate its mass surveillance practices and demonstrate compliance with the law.
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Christie says 'I'll be here in one year' indirectly referencing possible presidential ... - NorthJersey.com

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NorthJersey.com

Christie says 'I'll be here in one year' indirectly referencing possible presidential ...
NorthJersey.com
Citing examples from Florida to Camden, Governor Christie called for a “New Jersey renewal and an American renewal” during his State of the State address this afternoon. Gov. Chris Christie in Trenton today. Buy this photo. Tyson Trish / Staff Photographer.

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New video shows Charlie Hebdo gunmen shooting at police

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New amateur video has emerged showing the Charlie Hebdo gunmen, Said and Cherif Kouachi, shooting at police after the attack. Report by Sarah Kerr.
From: ODN
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I am Hades (Clash of the Titans) - YouTube

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Published on Aug 21, 2013
I am Hades (edited)

electrical arcing event - Google Search

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  1. Electric arc - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_arc
    Wikipedia
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    An electric arc, or arc discharge, is an electrical breakdown of a gas that .... An arc flash describes an explosive electrical event that presents a hazard to people  ...
  2. Arc flash - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arc_flash
    Wikipedia
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    An arc flash is the light and heat produced from an electric arc supplied with ... The result of the violent event can cause destruction of equipment involved, fire,  ...

In the news
  • "There was an electrical arcing event involving the trackside power cables (the third rail)," ...
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  • 500,000 volt electrical arc - YouTube

    <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GiIVze2Tac" rel="nofollow">www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GiIVze2Tac</a>
    May 11, 2007 - Uploaded by enigma800
    Since the isolator isn't designed to open hot, there's no arc suppression, ... a video camera had been set up to try and record the event should it  ...
  • Electrical arcing - The Free Dictionary

    <a href="http://www.thefreedictionary.com/" rel="nofollow">www.thefreedictionary.com/</a>Electrical+arcing
    A luminous discharge of current that is formed when a strong current jumps a gap in a circuit or between two electrodes. American Heritage® Dictionary of the ...
  • [PDF]The Basics of Arc Flash - GE Industrial Solutions

    <a href="http://www.geindustrial.com/.../The-Basics-of-" rel="nofollow">www.geindustrial.com/.../The-Basics-of-</a>Arc-Flash-...
    GE Industrial Systems
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    qualifying the danger associated with such events. What is an Arc. Most of us are familiar with an arc. The dictionary describes an electric arc as “a luminous  ...
  • [PDF]Technical Advisory Bulletin: Arc Flash - Willis

    <a href="http://www.willis.com/.../" rel="nofollow">www.willis.com/.../</a>Arc_Flash.pdf
    Willis Group Holdings Limited
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    caused by electric arc flash burns between 1992 and 2002.4. ARC FLASH ... without warning – and few electrical ... conditions before an arcing event occurs.
  • [PDF]Arc flash hazards - Abb

    www05.abb.com/global/scot/scot260.../1sxu210204g0201.pdf
    ABB Ltd
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    equipment (PPE). An electrical arc occurs whenever there is a loss of insula- ... distance from the source, generated during an electrical arc event. Curable burn.
  • Washington Post on Twitter: "“An electrical arcing event ...

    <a href="https://twitter.com/washingtonpost/statuses/554976624958275584" rel="nofollow">https://twitter.com/washingtonpost/statuses/554976624958275584</a>
    4 hours ago - “An electrical arcing event” occurred about 1,100 feet in front of the train. That filled the tunnel with smoke. <a href="http://wapo.st/14PXMKC" rel="nofollow">http://wapo.st/14PXMKC</a>. 0 replies 32 ...
  • [PDF]Arc Flash Fast Facts

    <a href="http://www.ctdol.state.ct.us/.../" rel="nofollow">www.ctdol.state.ct.us/.../</a>Archives/.../ElectricalContractors/Arc%20Flash%...
    electrical arc event.” • A calorie is the energy required to raise one gram of water one degree Celsius at one atmosphere. Second- degree burns occur at 1.2  ...

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    Woman Dies After Smoke Fills Washington Metro Tunnel

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    WASHINGTON — One woman aboard a subway train died and 83 other people were taken to hospitals here Monday after a downtown Metrorail tunnel filled with smoke during the late afternoon rush, National Transportation Safety Board officials said. Two of the injured were reported to be in critical condition.
    The Virginia-bound train had just left L’Enfant Plaza station on the system’s Yellow Line and was on its way to the Pentagon about 3:30 p.m. when smoke from an unknown source in the tunnel began filling the cars. Officials said the driver was unable to back the train into the station, trapping some passengers in the cars until firefighters arrived.
    The N.T.S.B.’s initial finding was that the smoke had been caused by a high-voltage “arcing event,” when electricity jumps from the subway’s third rail in a pop or a flash, the agency’s investigator in charge, Michael Flanigon, said at a news conference late Monday.
    Arcing events are not uncommon in subway systems, he said, and it was unclear why this one — which occurred about 1,100 feet ahead of the train — turned deadly. There was water in the tunnel, he said, and that could have been a cause of the problem.
    The train, which had eight cars, stopped about 800 feet south of the station, and many of the passengers “self-evacuated” before firefighters arrived, Mr. Flanigon said. Some jumped out of the train cars, walked through the darkened tunnel to a vent shaft and climbed a three- or four-story-high staircase to get to ground level. In order for them to do so, the electricity for the third rail was turned off.
    The train did not derail, and there was no fire onboard, Mr. Flanigon said.
    Emergency crews helped the rest of the passengers leave the smoke-filled train, with riders walking through the tunnel leading back to the busy station, which serves as a transfer point for five of the system’s six lines. L’Enfant Plaza station was evacuated and closed for several hours, and some service on the Yellow and Green Lines was suspended through the end of the day.
    Mayor Muriel Bowser met with some of the injured passengers at George Washington University Hospital on Monday night.
    “We are all saddened by today’s fatality aboard the Metrorail, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the passenger who passed away,” the mayor said in a statement. “I want to thank our brave first responders who assisted passengers during the evacuation and with treatment at the scene.”
    Officials at MedStar Washington Hospital Center said on Monday night that 11 patients had been treated there and released and that seven remained at the hospital, including one in critical condition and another in serious condition. One firefighter was injured, emergency officials said.
    L’Enfant Plaza stop is near offices for the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Communications Commission and several Smithsonian museums.
    Mr. Flanigon said that investigators would remain at the scene for about a week and that it would take six months to a year for a final report, unless the safety board concludes immediate action is necessary.
    The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority posted a message on its website to inform riders of planned changes to rail service for Tuesday.
    There was still confusion at L’Enfant Plaza station around midnight as dozens of riders were forced to exit trains and had trouble finding the shuttle buses waiting for them on the street. One rider, Dashawn Grimes, said there was no announcement on her train saying there had been an accident. She wandered around looking for a shuttle bus before an employee sent her in the right direction. She boarded the last shuttle bus, which departed around 12:07 a.m.
    “It’s cold out here and there’s no one here, and no one told me where the shuttle bus is,” she said. “It’s just really annoying.”
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    Kyrgyz Man Suspected Of Sending 60 Citizens To Fight In Syria

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    A Kyrgyz man suspected of sending 60 fellow citizens to fight alongside Islamist militants in Syria has been questioned by investigators in the southern city of Osh.

    The Daily Vertical: Hostage Economy

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    The Daily Vertical is a video primer for Russia-watchers that will appear Monday through Friday. Viewers can submit suggested topics to address on Twitter @PowerVertical or on the Power Vertical Facebook page.

    Cops Charged With Murder Of Homeless Man

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    The killing of James Boyd in the hills of Albuquerque last year was caught on video and sparked protests over police methods.

    Nick Clegg: Snooper’s charter would not plug intelligence gap

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    Deputy prime minister reiterates that he opposes any attempt to store online activity details of millions of ordinary people
    Nick Clegg has said he supports measures to require internet service providers (ISPs) abroad to do more to provide information on the communications of potential terrorists, but opposes any attempt to store details of the visits of millions of ordinary people to social media and websites.
    The leader of the Liberal Democrats was trying to clarify the measures he is likely to support and oppose after the election, when MPs are required in 2016 to revisit laws passed in this parliament.
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    Egyptian Appeals Court Overturns Mubarak’s Conviction

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    His release could pose an unprecedented challenge to the country’s new president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
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    Georgian Ex-President Says 'Hundreds of Georgians Fighting With IS In Syria'

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    In a politically-charged statement, the former President of Georgia, Mikheil Saakashvili has blamed the Georgian government for what he says are "hundreds" of Georgian nationals fighting in Syria with the Islamic State (IS) militant group.

    Pope Francis Calls For 'Healing And Unity'

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    The Pontiff begins a five-day tour of Sri Lanka and the Philippines which could attract crowds of six million supporters.

    Putin snubbed by Poland over Auschwitz anniversary

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    Russian president not invited to ceremony to mark 70th anniversary of liberation of Nazi death camp by Soviet troops
    Vladimir Putin has not been invited to a ceremony in Poland to mark the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp by Soviet troops, according to the Kremlin.
    Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, told the Interfax news agency that since the Russian president had not received an invitation he would not be attending the event later this month.
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    4 Victims of Paris Terror Attacks Are Buried in Jerusalem - New York Times

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    Haaretz

    4 Victims of Paris Terror Attacks Are Buried in Jerusalem
    New York Times
    JERUSALEM — Thousands of Israelis, many of them recent immigrants from France, gathered under a clear blue sky on a hilltop here on Tuesday to bury four men they saw as brothers — the victims of a terrorist attack on Friday at a kosher supermarket in ...
    Rivlin, at funeral of Paris market victims: Europe's leaders must restore Jews ...Haaretz
    Ceremonies in Paris, Jerusalem Honor France Terror DeadNBCNews.com
    President Reuven Rivlin's speech at the funerals of victims of terror attack at ...Ynetnews
    Fox News -CTV News -Chron.com
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    Bulgaria arrests Frenchman linked to Charlie Hebdo attackers - Chron.com

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    Chron.com

    Bulgaria arrests Frenchman linked to Charlie Hebdo attackers
    Chron.com
    SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Bulgarian authorities say they have arrested a French citizen believed to have links to one of the Kouachi brothers suspected of the terror attack against Charlie Hebdo, the French satirical magazine. Darina Slavova, regional ...
    Bulgaria arrests Frenchman with alleged links to Paris attackersThe Australian
    Frenchman in contact with Kouachi brother is arrested in BulgariaDaily Mail
    Frenchman held in Bulgaria 'linked to Cherif Kouachi': prosecutorsSydney Morning Herald
    The Courier-Express -Sputnik International
    all 61 news articles »

    Armenia And Russia Discuss Custody Of Murder Suspect

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    Armenian and Russian authorities are discussing which country will have custody of a Russian soldier suspected of killing six members of an Armenian family near Russia's military base in the South Caucasus nation.
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    Page 8

    Muhammad on the Cover of Charlie Hebdo's New Issue - New York Times

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    New York Times

    Muhammad on the Cover of Charlie Hebdo's New Issue
    New York Times
    PARIS — Around 9:10 on Monday evening, laughter and a round of applause broke out among the surviving staff members of Charlie Hebdo, followed shortly by cries — joyous if ironic — of “Allahu akbar!” The group was cheering Rénald Luzier, a cartoonist ...
    Charlie Hebdo's latest edition to depict Prophet MuhammadBBC News
    Tearful Michel Houellebecq breaks silence on Paris shootings: 'Je Suis Charlie'Telegraph.co.uk
    'The Simpsons' pays tribute to Charlie Hebdo victims using 'Je Suis Charlie'Daily Mail
    Fox News -Irish Times -Irish Independent
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    Pope Francis Lands in New Look Sri Lanka

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    At the start of his second visit to Asia as pontiff, Pope Francis called for reconciliation in Sri Lanka, which is still healing from a 26-year civil war and emerging from a hard-fought presidential election.

    China sacks senior lawmaker after corruption probe

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    BEIJING (Reuters) - China's ruling Communist Party sacked a senior lawmaker who was under investigation for graft, China's anti-corruption commission said on Tuesday, the latest in a series of corruption cases against high ranking political and business figures.






      

    Retired School Principal Wins $326m Jackpot

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    The new millionaire, 80, credits his luck to his wife and says: "I put the ticket in my wallet and forgot about it."

    Court ruling may free Egypt's Mubarak from custody

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    CAIRO (AP) -- Egyptian authorities have exhausted all legal grounds to keep deposed President Hosni Mubarak in detention after an appeals court on Tuesday ordered his retrial in a corruption case, a judicial official said....

    US, Pakistan to intensify fight against terror - Channel News Asia

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    Channel News Asia

    US, Pakistan to intensify fight against terror
    Channel News Asia
    The United States is set to boost its security and intelligence cooperation with Pakistan to step up its offensive against extremist militants, Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday (Jan 13). PHOTOS. US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) is greeted by ...

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    This is the group organizing anti-Islam rallies in Germany

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    This post has been generated by Page2RSS

    Pakistan hangs seven to show determination to fight terrorism

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    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – Seven prisoners were hanged in jails across Pakistan Tuesday in an unprecedented push to demonstrate the country’s resolve to get tough on terrorists and Islamist extremists. The executions were carried out in four different Pakistani prisons at the same time that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was in the capital, Islamabad, to pledge U.S. support and extra funds for Pakistan’s stepped-up offensive against terrorism.Read full article >>






    Russia To Boost Combat Capabilities In Crimea, Kaliningrad, Arctic

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    Russia has announced plans to strengthen its military capabilities on the annexed Crimean Peninsula, in the Arctic, and in its westernmost territory -- the exclave of Kaliningrad.

    Ukraine Summit Called Off Over Lack of Progress

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    Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France have scrapped plans for a summit this week on the conflict in Ukraine because of a lack of progress in implementing a four-month-old ceasefire agreement. With bloodshed continuing between Ukrainian government forces and Russian-backed separatists, there was no sign of when a new attempt at a big-power meeting could be scheduled. The Russian, German and French leaders had been invited to talks on Thursday in the Kazakh capital Astana by Ukrainian...

    Mentor of Charlie Hebdo Gunman Says He Was Obsessed With Violence 

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    One of the two brothers who mounted the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris last Wednesday, killing 12 people, was obsessed with violence and just two months ago debated the issue of murdering people in the name of Islam with his spiritual guide.
    That revelation came on Tuesday morning in a French television interview with the man who 10 years ago turned Chérif Kouachi from a 22-year-old pot-smoking wannabe rap star, into a devout Muslim bent on fighting U.S. troops in Iraq. Kouachi, who was killed by police with his elder brotherSaïd, became more radical than his mentor. “With him it always came back to the same conversation, everything revolved around combat,” said Farid Benyettou, 32, who is now a trainee nurse at a Paris hospital. “That is the only thing that interested him. So our discussions were around that subject.”
    The interview was aired as four Jewish victims of Kouachi associate Amedy Coulibaly were buried in Jerusalem and Bulgarian police said they had arrested a man associated with the Kouachi brothers.Fritz-Joly Joachin, 29, was arrested under two European arrest warrants, one citing his alleged links to a terrorist organization, and a second for allegedly kidnapping his 3-year-old son and smuggling him out of the country, said Darina Slavova, regional prosecutor of the southern province of Haskovo on local television.
    In 2004, Benyettou was the spiritual leader to a group of Muslim youth in Paris’s northeastern 19thdistrict, which has a high concentration of immigrant families from North and West Africa. Benyettou’s followers were French-born Muslims of immigrant parents, and several of them then traveled to Iraq to fight with al-Qaeda. The youth came to be known as the Buttes-Chaumont group, after the local park where they exercised in order to train for combat. In a high-profile trial in Paris in 2008, Benyettou was convicted of recruiting Parisian youth to fight in Iraq, while several of his acolytes received jail terms for furthering terrorism. Chérif spent 18 months in jail and Benyettou served three years, emerging from prison in 2011 claiming to be a reformed man.
    Speaking to French news channel iTele over coffee in a Paris café in a beige sweater, his face hidden from the camera, Benyettou said he had last seen Chérif two months ago. At that point, he tried to persuade him that there were limits to jihad — a discussion he suggested was a regular point of argument between them.
    He said that two months ago, Chérif was keen to discuss Mohamed Merah, a 23-year-old French-born Muslim of Algerian parents — just like Chérif and Benyettou — who went on a shooting spree in the southern city of Toulouse in 2012, killing three children at a Jewish school, and four others. “We came back to the Merah affair,” Benyettou says. “I said I was against what happened…. I was against the assassination of a child… He seemed to have accepted the criticism, accepted things he had not accepted previously.” Ultimately, he said, Chérif was “guided by ignorance.”
    Benyettou used his interview also as a defense of himself, saying he believed that killing civilians was “terrorism.” French police questioned him after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, while the Kouachi brothers were still on the run — police cornered and killed them last Friday — but let him go after several hours.
    Still, Benyettou’s revelations again raise the question of how many people realized that Chérif Kouachi and his older brother Saïd might be plotting an attack, and why they did not inform French police.
    Neighbors of the Kouachis in the Paris suburb of Gennevilliers even broke into their apartment, because they were so concerned that they might be plotting an attack, since they heard incessant Koranic chanting through the walls. There, they told a reporter, they found a “cache of arms.” The brothers returned while they were still inside, and threatened to harm them if they went to the police. They did not — and sometime later, the brothers mounted their attack on Charlie Hebdo.
    Read the whole story
     
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    Students clash with military over missing Mexico students

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    Students clash with military over missing Mexico students

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    Student-led demonstrators clash with soldiers outside military barracks in the Mexican state where 43 students disappeared last September. Report by Claire...
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