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Nation & World


EU leaders show firm united front ahead of Brexit talks

European Union leaders vowed Saturday to stand shoulder-to-shoulder behind their negotiating team during the divorce proceedings with Britain and warned that demands from British Prime Minister Theresa May will be dealt with "firmly." The 27 EU leaders in Brussels finalized the cornerstones of their negotiating stance within minutes of starting a short summit, a month after the British leader...
The Latest: Belgian PM says beware of UK Brexit tactics

The Latest: Belgian PM says beware of UK Brexit tactics

The latest on the European Union summit dealing with the Brexit negotiations (all times local) 2:10 p.m. Belgium's Prime Minister Charles Michel says the 27 EU nations have to beware of British negotiating tactics of trying to split the bloc during the two-year divorce proceedings from the bloc. Michel said: "Maybe the British government will do its utmost to split the 27 nations and it is trap...
Berlusconi released after receiving stitches due to fall

Berlusconi released after receiving stitches due to fall

Former Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi received stitches to his upper lip after falling outside a restaurant where he was celebrating his elder son's birthday, the news agency ANSA reported Saturday. TV images showed Berlusconi holding a cloth over his mouth as he left the Madonnina clinic Saturday afternoon. The 80-year-old, three-time former premier reportedly fell Friday evening at a restaurant...

Security scare briefly halts flights to, from Berlin airport

Flights to and from Berlin's Tegel airport were briefly suspended Saturday after police cleared a terminal to investigate a suspicious suitcase. The airport operator said shortly after midday that flights to Tegel were being diverted as officers examined a piece of unclaimed baggage at Terminal B. About 20 minutes later the operator and federal police announced flights would resume. German news agency...
French president: May 7 vote will gauge support for EU exit

French president: May 7 vote will gauge support for EU exit

The latest on the European Union summit dealing with the Brexit negotiations (all times local) 12:15 p.m. French President Francois Hollande says French voters have a choice to make about the future of Europe when they cast their ballots in the second round of the presidential election next weekend. Speaking in Brussels, Hollande said the May 7 vote will show "whether the French people should...
The Latest: Hollande: May 7 vote will gauge EU support

The Latest: Hollande: May 7 vote will gauge EU support

The Latest on France's presidential election (all times local): 12:15 p.m. French President Francois Hollande says French voters have a choice to make about the future of Europe when they cast their ballots in the second round of the presidential election next weekend. Speaking in Brussels, Hollande said the May 7 vote will show "whether the French people should fear an exit from the European...
Knights of Malta vote for new leader after papal dispute

Knights of Malta vote for new leader after papal dispute

Members of the ancient Knights of Malta religious order are voting for a new leader after the old one was effectively ousted by Pope Francis. Setting the stage for drama, the former grand master has defied the pope and traveled to Rome for the election. Knights garbed in black robes gathered for a Mass inside the order's Villa Magistrale on Rome's Aventine Hill ahead of the secret balloting on Saturday...
The Latest: S. Korea navy begins drill with US supercarrier

The Latest: S. Korea navy begins drill with US supercarrier

The Latest on North Korea test-firing a missile Saturday (all times local): 6:45 p.m. South Korea's navy says it has started joint exercises with U.S. ships, including the supercarrier USS Carl Vinson, which the United States dispatched to the region in a show of force amid the growing threat posed by North Korea's nuclear and missile programs. The drills began Saturday hours after South Korean and...

Access to Wikipedia blocked in Turkey

Access to Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia, has been blocked in Turkey for content presenting the country as supporting terror. Turkey's official news agency, quoting the Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications, said Saturday the site was blocked for "becoming an information source acting with groups conducting a smear campaign against Turkey in the international arena...

Access to Wikipedia blocked in Turkey

Access to Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia, has been blocked in Turkey for content presenting the country as supporting terror. Turkey's official news agency, quoting the Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications, said Saturday the site was blocked for "becoming an information source acting with groups conducting a smear campaign against Turkey in the international arena...
As Macron hunts rural vote, Le Pen celebrates alliance

As Macron hunts rural vote, Le Pen celebrates alliance

French presidential front-runner Emmanuel Macron hunted Saturday for votes in rural France where his far-right opponent, Marine Le Pen, is making inroads among country folk who feel left behind. Back in Paris, Le Pen announced that if she wins the presidency next Sunday, she would name Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, her new campaign ally, as prime minister, aiming to secure the nearly 1.7 million votes that...
The Latest: Pope leaves Cairo stadium after Mass

The Latest: Pope leaves Cairo stadium after Mass

The Latest on Pope Francis' visit to Egypt (all times local): 12:05 p.m. Pope Francis is leaving a military run stadium in Cairo where he led Mass for some 15,000 Egyptian Catholics on the second and final day of a historic visit to Egypt, where Christians have been targeted by Islamic militants. The Mass was conducted in Latin, Italian and Arabic amid scenes of jubilation and tight security, with...
UAE's battle-hardened military expands into Africa, Mideast

UAE's battle-hardened military expands into Africa, Mideast

The United Arab Emirates is better known for its skyscrapers and pampered luxuries, but its small size belies a quiet expansion of its battle-hardened military into Africa and elsewhere in the Middle East. The seven-state federation ranks as one of Washington's most prominent Arab allies in the fight against the Islamic State group, hosting some 5,000 American military personnel, fighter jets and...
Security tight as pope celebrates open-air Mass in Cairo

Security tight as pope celebrates open-air Mass in Cairo

Military helicopters flew overhead and police fanned out in force Saturday as Pope Francis celebrated an open-air Mass for Egypt's tiny Catholic community on the final day of a visit aimed at comforting Christians following a series of attacks by Islamic militants. Despite the security concerns, Francis zoomed around the Cairo sports stadium in an open-topped golf cart before the start of Mass, evidence...
N. Korean missile test fails hours after UN meeting on nukes

N. Korean missile test fails hours after UN meeting on nukes

A North Korean mid-range ballistic missile apparently failed shortly after launch Saturday, South Korea and the United States said, the third test-fire flop just this month but a clear message of defiance as a U.S. supercarrier conducts drills in nearby waters. North Korean ballistic missile tests are banned by the United Nations because they're seen as part of the North's push for a nuclear-tipped...
Timeline: President Trump vs. North Korea

Timeline: President Trump vs. North Korea

A North Korean missile launch Saturday is the latest development in an ongoing game of brinkmanship this year with President Donald Trump's new U.S. administration. A look at key moments this year: Jan. 1: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un says in a New Year's address that North Korean preparations for launching an intercontinental ballistic missile have "reached the final stage." ___ Jan...
Buses torched, roads blocked, clashes during Brazil strike

Buses torched, roads blocked, clashes during Brazil strike

Protesters lit buses on fire, blocked roads and clashed with police on Friday during a general strike that brought transportation to a halt in many cities across Latin America's largest nation. The strike was to protest major changes to labor law and the pension system being considered by Congress, but it was also a raw display of anger by many Brazilians fed up with corruption and worried about the...
Venezuela formally notifies OAS it will leave amid protests

Venezuela formally notifies OAS it will leave amid protests

Venezuela formally notified the Organization of American States on Friday of its intention to leave the regional body amid sometimes violent protests at home and international calls for its embattled government to hold delayed elections and release prisoners. Venezuelan interim ambassador Carmen Velasquez submitted a letter announcing the move in Washington to OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro, a...

Filipino troops kill notorious Abu Sayyaf kidnapper in clash

Philippine marines have killed an Abu Sayyaf extremist commander and a notorious kidnapper who had sailed across the sea border into Malaysia to snatch tourists and sailors for ransom, the military chief said Saturday. Gen. Eduardo Ano told The Associated Press that Alhabsy Misaya was slain in a clash with marines late Friday in the jungles between the towns of Indanan and Parang in Sulu province...
The Latest: Venezuela calls OAS forum for 'coercion'

The Latest: Venezuela calls OAS forum for 'coercion'

The Latest on Venezuela's ongoing political crisis. (all times local): 7:50 p.m. Samuel Moncada, Venezuela's deputy minister of foreign affairs for North America, said his country is pulling out of the Organization of American States because the group has become a forum for "coercion" instead of cooperation. Amid protests in Caracas aimed at forcing President Nicolas Maduro from office,...
The Latest: Tokyo subway temporarily closed over N. Korea

The Latest: Tokyo subway temporarily closed over N. Korea

The Latest on North Korea test-firing a missile Saturday (all times local): 1:05 p.m. One of Tokyo's major subways systems says it shut down all lines for 10 minutes early Saturday after receiving warning of a North Korean missile launch. Tokyo Metro official Hiroshi Takizawa says the temporary suspension affected 13,000 passengers. Service was halted on all nine lines at 6:07 a.m. It resumed at 6...
Iraqi officials: Car bomb kills 4 and wounds 8

Iraqi officials: Car bomb kills 4 and wounds 8

A car bomb at a police station in central Baghdad killed four people and wounded eight late Friday night, according to Iraqi police and hospital officials. Saad Mann, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry and Baghdad Operations Command, told the Associated Press the attack was carried out by a suicide bomber and only three were killed in the blast. He said all those killed were policemen and did not...
Pakistan: Thousands of activists rally against PM Sharif

Pakistan: Thousands of activists rally against PM Sharif

Thousands of supporters of Pakistan's popular opposition leader Imran Khan have rallied in the capital Islamabad to call for the resignation of the country's prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, over his alleged corruption. Friday's rally came a week after Pakistan's Supreme Court, acting on a petition submitted by Khan, asked investigators to complete a probe into corruption allegations against Sharif within...

Russia seeks arrest of former Ukraine prime minister

Russia has sent a request to the international police agency Interpol for the arrest and extradition of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, claiming he killed Russian soldiers in Chechnya in the 1990s. Yatsenyuk was one of the prime figures of the massive protests that drove Ukraine's Russia-friendly president out of the country in 2014. He became prime minister and was in office until...

FIFA audit official admits bribery in US federal probe

The sprawling American investigation of bribery and corruption in international soccer has reached into Asia and claimed the first guilty plea from a senior official in the new FIFA leadership. A member of FIFA's Audit and Compliance Committee, Richard Lai of Guam, was provisionally suspended Friday by the football organization's ethics committee after admitting taking about $1 million in bribes,...

Germany: Mistakes made in case of soldier planning attack

Germany's Interior Ministry said Friday it will "leave no stone unturned" in trying to determine how a German army officer managed to register as a Syrian asylum-seeker without being detected. Conceding that mistakes were made, a ministry spokesman said every effort was being made to uncover how the 28-year-old lieutenant duped authorities, received a place in a refugee home and collected...
Yangon protesters force closure of Muslim schools in Myanmar

Yangon protesters force closure of Muslim schools in Myanmar

Ultra-nationalist Buddhist monks and their supporters have forced the closing of two Muslim schools in Yangon, Myanmar's biggest city, in a reminder that religious strife remains a threat to the country's stability. About a dozen monks and scores of supporters gathered Friday afternoon near the two Muslim madrassas while police stood by as protesters demanded that local officials close the buildings...
Albanian parliamentary speaker picked as new president

Albanian parliamentary speaker picked as new president

Albania's parliament elected its leader as the country's new president Friday, abandoning efforts to build consensus with boycotting opposition lawmakers after two weeks of delays. Speaker Ilir Meta was chosen after lawmakers in the 140-seat body who were present for the closed-door election voted 87-2 in favor of him. Meta's nomination was formally supported by the main left-wing governing Socialist...

Germany arrests 2 Japanese, 1 American in darknet drug case

German prosecutors say authorities have arrested two Japanese citizens and an American on suspicion of selling millions of euros worth of drugs online. Frankfurt prosecutors say a 43-year-old Japanese man, a 40-year-old Japanese woman and a 39-year-old man from the U.S. were arrested late Thursday in Berlin. Their names weren't released. In a statement Friday, prosecutors said the suspects were part...

Spaniard's public 'love letter' sparks mixed response

A young Spaniard who was smitten with a woman he saw on a tram posted fliers on lampposts hoping to make contact. Someone claiming to be the woman responded by pleading with him to leave her alone. Spanish newspaper El Pais and other media reported Friday how Sergio Moreno had posted a letter titled "The Girl on the Tram" in the southeastern city of Murcia, describing the date and time of...
Reporter Q&A: What to look for at Southeast Asian summit

Reporter Q&A: What to look for at Southeast Asian summit

Leaders of 10 Asian countries are meeting this weekend to discuss topics including North Korea, territorial disputes in the South China Sea and improved economic integration of the region. The Associated Press' chief Manila correspondent, Jim Gomez, who has covered regional politics for more than two decades, weighs in on what to expect: WHAT'S LIKELY TO BE THE SUMMIT'S DOMINANT ISSUE? WILL ASEAN...

EU leaders to address Ireland's future in wake of Brexit

European Union leaders are set to acknowledge on Saturday that Northern Ireland could join the bloc in the future if its people vote to unite with EU member state Ireland, officials said Friday. The leaders are meeting in Brussels to approve guidelines for their divorce negotiations with Britain, which is due to leave the EU in March 2019. Two European officials said a statement on the issue is likely...

Iran: Tehran's mayor attacks Rouhani in pre-election debate

Tehran's mayor and presidential candidate Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf accused on Friday President Hassan Rouhani's administration of dishonesty, mismanagement and supporting the rich at the expense of the poor in the first debate between the six presidential candidates. During the first of three planned debates ahead of the May 19 elections, Qalibaf criticized the Rouhani administration, saying social...
Erdogan: 'Fresh page' for US relations with Trump

Erdogan: 'Fresh page' for US relations with Trump

Turkey's president says a "fresh page" in Turkish-American relations can be opened with President Donald Trump's administration, as high-level dialogue has intensified since January. Speaking in Istanbul on Friday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he sees "signs that Mr. Trump will exhibit a more decisive stance than the previous administration in terms of combatting terror."...
'Apartheid' furor comes amid 50 years of Israeli occupation

'Apartheid' furor comes amid 50 years of Israeli occupation

Labeling Israel's treatment of Palestinians as "apartheid" is like flinging a burning match into spilled gasoline — so combustible are the passions on both sides. Rima Khalaf did just that when a report commissioned by her U.N. agency at the request of 18 Arab member states accused Israel of having established an apartheid regime designed to dominate the Palestinian people as a whole...
Germany says reviving G-8 with Russia 'not up for debate'

Germany says reviving G-8 with Russia 'not up for debate'

The German government says there are no plans to invite Russia to return to the club of leading industrialized nations. Russia was kicked out of the G-8 after its 2014 annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region and assistance for pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. A spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel says "a change to the G-7 format isn't up for debate at the moment." Steffen Seibert...
UK jury convicts doctor of performing unnecessary surgeries

UK jury convicts doctor of performing unnecessary surgeries

A prominent breast surgeon whose victims accused him of playing God with their lives faces a life sentence after a jury convicted him Friday of carrying out unnecessary operations that maimed some of his victims for life. The Nottingham Crown Court jury found Ian Paterson guilty of 17 counts of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and three counts of unlawful wounding. Prosecutors say...
Tillerson eyes cutting 2,300 jobs at State Department

Tillerson eyes cutting 2,300 jobs at State Department

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is proposing to eliminate 2,300 jobs as part of a plan to cut more than a quarter of the State Department's budget for the next fiscal year, officials said Friday. The plan will almost certainly meet resistance from lawmakers opposing President Donald Trump's proposal to shrink the size of the federal government. Tillerson's proposal reduces the number of new diplomats...
Tillerson eyes cutting 2,300 jobs at State Department

Tillerson eyes cutting 2,300 jobs at State Department

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is proposing to eliminate 2,300 jobs as part of a plan to cut more than a quarter of the State Department's budget for the next fiscal year, officials said Friday. The plan will almost certainly meet resistance from lawmakers opposing President Donald Trump's proposal to shrink the size of the federal government. Tillerson's proposal reduces the number of new diplomats...
Palestinians say dozens wounded at protests for prisoners

Palestinians say dozens wounded at protests for prisoners

Dozens of Palestinians were hurt in clashes with Israeli soldiers at demonstrations across the West Bank Friday in support of hundreds of prisoners observing the 12th day of an open-ended hunger strike, Palestinian health officials said. Palestinian Health Ministry spokesman Anas Diek said three people were hospitalized, including one who was shot in the head by a rubber bullet and another who was...
N. Korean missile test fails hours after UN meeting on nukes

N. Korean missile test fails hours after UN meeting on nukes

A North Korean mid-range ballistic missile apparently failed shortly after launch Saturday, South Korea and the United States said, the third test-fire flop just this month but a clear message of defiance as a U.S. supercarrier conducts drills in nearby waters. North Korean ballistic missile tests are banned by the United Nations because they're seen as part of the North's push for a nuclear-tipped...
The Latest: France's Macron would keep up Mideast operations

The Latest: France's Macron would keep up Mideast operations

The Latest on the French presidential election (all times local): 9:05 p.m. French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron has vowed to keep up France's operations against extremists in Iraq and Syria within a U.S.-led coalition. During a political rally in the rural town of Chatellerault on Friday night, Macron said the aim of France's military intervention is to "eradicate Islamist terrorist...

11 dead of mystery illness in Liberia as Ebola is ruled out

United Nations officials say at least 11 people have died from a mysterious illness in Liberia, and tests have been negative for the Ebola virus. The World Health Organization said Friday that authorities are looking into whether the people were sickened by something they ate or were exposed to a chemical or bacteria. Five others remain hospitalized in Sinoe County, about 250 miles (400 kilometers)...

UBS profits rise on higher trading, commission earnings

Swiss bank UBS has reported a near doubling in its first quarter net profit to 1.3 billion francs ($1.3 billion), as its wealth management and investment banking operations grew. Profit was up from 707 million francs in the same period last year, and was welcomed by the bank's management as it tries to revitalize a firm that was hit hard by the financial crisis and various scandals. Costs were steady...

The Latest: Ex-PM hails Montenegro joining NATO

The Latest on Montenegro and NATO membership (all times local): 4:55 p.m. Montenegro's former prime minister Milo Djukanovic says the approval of NATO membership is the most important decision the country has made in recent history. Djukanovic said Friday after parliament voted to ratify the accession treaty that membership in NATO presents an honor for Montenegro and its history. Djukanovic was the...

German airlines to scrap requirement for 2 people in cockpit

Germany's aviation association says the country's airlines have decide to scrap rules requiring two people in the cockpit at the same time, implemented after a Germanwings pilot is believed to have crashed his own plane in France two years ago. European Aviation Safety Agency had earlier repealed its two-person rule, introduced as an emergency measure following the 2015 crash that killed all 150 people...
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