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Unemployment claims fall for the third week in a row

New claims for US unemployment benefits fell last week for the third week in a row, signaling continuing improvement in the troubled jobs market, Labor Department data released Thursday showed. Jobless claims, an indicator of the pace of layoffs across the country, totaled 332,000 in the week ending March 9,…

New data ‘strongly indicates’ particle is Higgs boson

New data unveiled on Thursday strengthens the belief that a subatomic particle discovered last year is the elusive Higgs boson, European physicists said. Analysis of two characteristics, teased from experiments at the world’s biggest particle smasher, aligns with theories that the discovery is a Higgs, the European Organisation for Nuclear…

TSA chief to defend knives-on-planes rule today at Congressional hearing

Copyright ImageClick to View TSA Administrator John Pistole, shown here testifying before Congress in 2010, will be back at the Capitol this afternoon to defend his decision to allow knives on planes during a hearing convened by a House Homeland Security subcommittee. Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images…  …

Google tosses RSS feed Reader as house cleaning continues

Google said it was tossing its Reader service and seven other products under a house cleaning campaign that has closed 70 of the Internet giant’s features in the past two years. “These changes are never easy,” Google senior vice president of technical infrastructure Urs Holzle on Wednesday said in a…

Europe and Russia ink deal on double mission to Mars

The European Space Agency (ESA) said it signed a deal on Thursday with its Russian counterpart to launch two unmanned missions to Mars, a quest that was rocked by a US pullout last year. Called ExoMars, the scheme entails sending an orbital probe to the Red Planet in January 2016…

88-year-old peaceful activist wins surveillance database fight

John Catt, who has no criminal record, wins legal action to have records deleted from police database of suspected extremists Three appeal court judges have ruled that police violated the human rights of an 88-year-old peaceful campaigner when they secretly labelled him a “domestic extremist” and recorded his political activities.…

Israel poised to unveil new government ahead of Obama visit

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to formally unveil the shape of his long-awaited coalition government on Thursday which will be sworn in just days before a visit by US President Barack Obama. After nearly 40 days of intensive negotiations with potential partners, Netanyahu was expected to announce a deal between…

Venezuela’s acting president admits it may be too late to embalm Chavez for eternal viewing

Venezuela’s acting president Nicolas Maduro acknowledged Wednesday that it could be too late to have president Hugo Chavez embalmed “like Lenin” so that his body could be on view permanently. “We have welcomed top-level scientists, the best in the world, from Russia and Germany… The scientific reports and opinions we…

India to give small plots of land to homeless rural poor

India’s government is drawing up a major new welfare reform which would hand small plots of land to millions of homeless poor in the countryside, reports said on Thursday. The proposed entitlement programme, which comes as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s administration is struggling to rein in the public spending deficit,…

Japan fails to overturn shark-protection deal

Japan and other pro-shark fishing nations lost a bid to overturn a landmark deal to offer international trade protection for several species of the ocean’s oldest predator. The decision to restrict exports in the oceanic whitetip shark, the porbeagle, three types of hammerheads and the manta ray won final approval…

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