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Iran, North Korea, and Syria block major UN arms trade treaty

Iran, North Korea and Syria held up agreement on the first global treaty on the $80 billion a year conventional arms trade. The three states twice blocked moves to adopt a treaty by consensus at the end of 10 days of arduous talks at the UN headquarters. Kenya announced that…

Guilty plea rejected for Colorado theater shooter James Holmes

US prosecutors rebuffed a reported offer by Colorado theater massacre suspect James Holmes to plead guilty in exchange for escaping the death penalty, legal documents showed. A prosecutors’ filing cited by the Denver Post and other media was scathing about a defense motion Wednesday which suggested a guilty plea in…

North Korea prepares rockets for strike against U.S.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un on Friday ordered preparations for strategic rocket strikes on the US mainland and military bases in the Pacific and South Korea. The order, issued at an overnight emergency meeting with top army commanders, was a direct response to the use of nuclear-capable US B-2 stealth…

Obama: U.S. should be ashamed if horror of Newtown has already been forgotten

Barack Obama rejected criticism on Thursday that he has delayed too long on gun reform, allowing memories of the Newtown shooting to fade and allowing time for opponents to regroup. In a speech at the White House, attended by parents of gun victims, he said bluntly that the United States…

New York cops get strict new rules for Facebook

New York City’s police commissioner announced new restrictions Thursday for cops who want to tweet and post on Facebook. Police will not be allowed to specify their jobs on YouTube, Facebook and other Internet platforms, NY1 television and the New York Daily News reported. They also can’t post photos of…

Barbara Walters set to retire in 2014: reports

US broadcasting icon Barbara Walters, 83, is poised to announce her retirement next year in the coming weeks, US news media reported Thursday. The New York Times, quoting “an executive familiar with the newswoman’s plans,” said a formal announcement of Walter’s retirement would likely be made on “The View,” a…

Obama launches commission to investigate voting irregularities

US President Barack Obama Thursday tasked a presidential commission to probe long lines at polling stations and other irregularities faced by voters in last year’s election. Obama, making good on a promise issued in his victory speech last November, signed an executive order to charter the commission, which will deliver…

Solar-powered plane prepares for flight across the United States

A groundbreaking solar-powered Swiss aircraft is ready to make a coast-to-coast flight across the United States, its creators said Thursday. The experimental Solar Impulse plane, which has made several trips since its maiden flight in 2009, will take off on May 1 on a transcontinental tour split in five stages.…

Obama ‘deeply concerned’ for Nelson Mandela

US President Barack Obama said Thursday he was “deeply concerned” for the health of Nelson Mandela, after the former South African president was again admitted to hospital. “We are deeply concerned with Nelson Mandela’s health — he is a hero, I think, to all of us,” Obama said as he…

U.S. will ‘respond’ to North Korea’s provocations, says Chuck Hagel

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Thursday that the United States was “prepared to deal with any eventuality” from North Korea and warned that danger from Pyongyang was on the rise. “We will unequivocally defend — we are unequivocally committed — to that alliance with South Korea as well as our…

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