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Fiscal Cliff: Obama signs American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 into law

President Barack Obama has signed into law the contentious compromise bill hammered out in Congress, narrowly averting the US ‘fiscal cliff’ of tax hikes and drastic, immediate cuts in spending, the White House said early Thursday. In a statement, the White House said that Obama late on Wednesday signed the…

One million workers get pay boost as 10 states adjust minimum wage

From Washington State to Florida, the new year is bringing a boost in the minimum wage for an estimated 1 million low-wage workers. The changes are coming in nine states that adjust their base wages annually for inflation, and in Rhode Island, where legislation last year set a higher minimum.…

Cantor’s revolt exposes Republican rift in fight for party’s future

A Republican civil war, which has simmered under the surface since the party’s defeat in last November’s presidential election, has now burst firmly into the open and pitted party leaders against each other. Majority leader Eric Cantor’s extraordinary vote against House speaker John Boehner in Tuesday’s late-night vote in the…

‘Do-not-publish’ Diana photo up for auction in U.S.

A previously unseen press photo of an apparently teenaged Princess Diana that a London tabloid deemed too hot to publish is coming up for auction in the United States later this month. The black-and-white image from the dawn of the 1980s shows Diana, possibly in a ski chalet, smiling at…

Hillary Clinton released from hospital

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was released from a New York hospital late Wednesday and is expected to make a full recovery from a rare blood clot in her head, a top aide said. “Secretary Clinton was discharged from the hospital this evening,” Deputy Assistant Secretary Philippe Reines said…

India debates naming new law after gang-rape victim

A call to name a new law targeting sexual violence in India after an anonymous woman who died last weekend following a gang rape has provoked a fierce debate in the country, where new details of the violent assault continue to provoke shock and outrage. The suggestion that the 23-year-old…

Iran claims to shoot down U.S. spy drone

Iran on Wednesday said it had shot down two US-made RQ-11 reconnaissance drones in the past 15 months, adding to a ScanEagle drone and RQ-170 Sentinel stealth aircraft it already claims to have captured. “The army’s air defence shot down two… RQ-11 drones,” Rear Admiral Amir Rastegari told state television…

New Jersey town sends armed police to guard schools

Amid a national debate on how to stop gun massacres in public places, one town in New Jersey began posting armed police at every school on the restart of the academic year Wednesday. The new policy was the town of Marlboro’s response to anguished questions over security in the wake…

Fiscal cliff deal paves way for more congressional crisis

Barack Obama should savor his flit home to Hawaii because his fiscal cliff victory was but one battle in an economic war of attrition with Republicans that is certain to get even more vitriolic. On deck now are feuds over lifting the US debt ceiling, funding government operations and over…

U.S. urges renewed Mideast peace effort in 2013

he United States Wednesday urged Israeli and Palestinian leaders to resume direct talks in 2013 and move toward peace. “As we turn the calendar to 2013… now is the time for leaders on both sides to display real leadership, to focus on the work that’s necessary to return to direct…

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