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Susan Rice to meet with McCain to quell Benghazi conspiracy

WASHINGTON — US envoy to the UN Susan Rice is to meet Senator John McCain on Tuesday in an apparent bid to defuse a bitter row over Libya that could hurt her chances of becoming the next secretary of state. McCain has led Republican attacks against Rice, accusing her of…

Fraudster behind anti-Islam film on YouTube voices no regrets

WASHINGTON — The convicted fraudster behind an online video that outraged Muslims with its portrayal of the Prophet Mohammed as a thuggish deviant says he has no regrets, the New York Times reported Monday. Nakoula Basseley Nakoula’s crude trailer for “Innocence of Muslims” first appeared on YouTube in July, and…

Media fooled by bogus Google acquisition press release

NEW YORK — A bogus news release prompted several websites to run incorrect articles about Google making a $400 million acquisition of a wireless company on Monday, the target company said. “This was a hoax. We are investigating the source,” said an emailed statement from George Strouthopoulos, chairman and chief…

‘Redhack’ hackers on trial in Turkey for first time

ANKARA — A group of Internet hackers appeared in an Ankara court on Monday on charges of terrorism, the first time alleged cyber criminals have been put on trial in Turkey, local media reported. The 10 members of the “Redhack” group are accused of belonging to an armed terrorist organisation,…

Toronto mayor ousted over conflict of interest

OTTAWA — A court ordered the mayor of Toronto, Canada’s largest city, to be removed from office for violating conflict of interest rules when soliciting donations for his football charity. Mayor Rob Ford got into legal trouble when he spoke out at a city council vote in February against a…

Cyber Monday deals boost U.S. retail sales

WASHINGTON — Online retail sales were jumping for “Cyber Monday,” the key Web shopping day following the US Thanksgiving holiday weekend, a survey showed. IBM said its cloud-based digital analytics platform, tracking shopping in real time, showed sales up 26 percent from last year as of 2000 GMT. “All signs…

NASA monitors massive dust storm on Mars

WASHINGTON — The US space agency says it is monitoring a massive dust storm on Mars that has produced atmospheric changes. It’s the first time since the 1970s that NASA is studying such a phenomenon both from orbit and with a weather station on the surface, NASA said on its…

U.S. officials halt Bahrain outreach featuring ‘King of Partying’ Andrew W.K.

WASHINGTON — The US State Department was forced to deny Monday that it had invited a notorious rock star behind such classics as “Party Til You Puke” to represent America in the conservative Gulf state of Bahrain. Musician, DJ, motivational speaker and self-styled “King of Partying” Andrew W.K. had earlier…

Facebook adds iTunes credits to gift service

Facebook said Monday it was adding Apple iTunes digital credits to its new gift service at the social network. “Starting today with Facebook Gifts, you can instantly gift your friends iTunes digital gifts and recommend albums, movies, games, apps, and more available on the iTunes Store,” a Facebook statement said.…

UN: Migrants send double the amount of foreign aid back but little of it benefits the country

Migrant workers from the world’s poorest countries sent home $27 billion (21 billion euros) in 2011 despite the global financial slowdown, but developing nations are failing to benefit fully from the cash, the UN said Monday. Remittances “could prove particularly valuable for capital-scarce developing countries,” by helping to reduce poverty,…

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