• FDA to take another look at livestock feed rule affecting beer makers who sell grain to farms
    Apr 24, 2014 6:17 PM CDT

    MILWAUKEE (AP) — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Thursday it will revise proposed livestock feed rules after hearing objections about the potential cost from brewers who sell grain leftover from making beer to ranchers and dairy farmers. Beer makers big and small feared they would have to pay for grain testing, equipment, audits and other safety measures at an estimated cost of $13.6 million per brewery, likely affecting the price of beer, beef and dairy products. To avoid passing on...

  • UN envoy to Yemen says rebel group agrees to discuss disarming, other issues
    Apr 24, 2014 6:13 PM CDT

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. envoy to Yemen says the country's president and Shiite rebels have agreed to discuss the group's disarming. Jamal Benomar told reporters Thursday that the Hawthis agreed to a new initiative by President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi to promote dialogue related to the rebels' "disarmament, demobilization and reintegration." The Shiite Hawthis led a six-year insurgency in the north that officially ended in 2010, but a recent escalation in fighting with ultraconservative...

  • Bolivia's armed forces dismisses hundreds of protesting soldiers for 'sedition'
    Apr 24, 2014 6:04 PM CDT

    LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivia's military leaders on Thursday ordered the dismissal for sedition of 702 enlisted men who had been protesting to demand they have the option of rising to the rank of officer. The army, navy and air force said in a statement that they have ordered the dismissal of the soldiers because they "committed acts of sedition, rebellion, conducted political actions and attacked the honor of the Armed Forces." The unprecedented military protest began on Tuesday with 500 soldiers,...

  • Major oil and gas supplier to disclose all chemicals used in fracking fluids
    Apr 24, 2014 5:57 PM CDT

    PITTSBURGH (AP) — A major supplier to the oil and gas industry says it will begin disclosing 100 percent of the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing fluid, with no exemptions for trade secrets. The move by Baker Hughes of Houston is a shift for a major firm; it's unclear if others will follow suit. The oil and gas industry has said the fracking chemicals are disclosed at tens of thousands of wells, but environmental and health groups and government regulators say a loophole that allows companies...

  • All eyes on Northwestern football players as historic vote on college union arrives
    Apr 24, 2014 5:50 PM CDT

    EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Northwestern University's football players will cast ballots Friday on whether to form the nation's first union for college athletes — a potentially landmark vote that will be kept sealed for months and possibly years. The National Labor Relations Board said Thursday it will hear an appeal by Northwestern challenging the decision from a regional NLRB director who ruled the players are university employees and thus have the right to unionize. The board said the ballots will...

  • Judge strikes down Arkansas voter ID law, saying it improperly adds condition voters must meet
    Apr 24, 2014 5:49 PM CDT

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — An Arkansas judge struck down the state's new voter ID law on Thursday, saying it violates the state constitution by adding a requirement that voters must meet before casting a ballot. Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox voided the measure in a lawsuit over the way absentee ballots are handled under the law. A separate lawsuit had been filed last week directly challenging the law, which requires voters to show photo identification before casting a ballot. The law "is...

  • Blunt Kerry says Russia not taken a single step to ease Ukraine crisis, warns of new sanctions
    Apr 24, 2014 5:43 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry is accusing Russia of failing to live up to commitments it made to ease the crisis in Ukraine. In unusually blunt language, Kerry said Thursday that unless Moscow takes immediate steps to de-escalate the situation, Washington will have no choice but to impose additional sanctions. He said It would be a "grave" and "expensive mistake." His comments come amid an increasingly bitter war of words over who is to blame for the crisis in Ukraine that is...

  • Washington first state to lose federal waiver on requirements from No Child Left Behind law
    Apr 24, 2014 5:42 PM CDT

    SEATTLE (AP) — Washington state is losing its independence to decide the best way to spend about $40 million in federal dollars to improve how students perform in its public schools, education officials said Thursday. Education Secretary Arne Duncan told state officials he was taking away a waiver that allowed the state to ignore some requirements of the federal No Child Left Behind law because Washington did not meet federal demands to include student performance on statewide standardized tests...

  • In Kentucky, Grimes' Keystone XL pipeline support shines light on battle to control Senate
    Apr 24, 2014 5:40 PM CDT

    FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Alison Lundergan Grimes is the latest Democratic Senate candidate to call for building the Keystone XL oil pipeline, but the Kentucky secretary of state's move doesn't seem to have cost her support among environmental groups who want to unseat Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell. It's evidence that campaign wrangling over Keystone XL is about more than the project itself. It's also about the battle for control of the Senate in the November midterm elections, with Republicans...

  • Google, Apple, Intel, Adobe settle class-action alleging they formed cartel to retain workers
    Apr 24, 2014 5:39 PM CDT

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google, Apple, Intel and Adobe Systems have settled a class-action lawsuit alleging they conspired to prevent their engineers and other highly sought technology workers from getting better job offers from one another. The agreement announced Thursday averts a Silicon Valley trial that threatened to expose the tactics deployed by billionaire executives such as late Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs and former Google Inc. CEO Eric Schmidt to corral less affluent employees working on...

  • Former Homeland Security watchdog put on leave from new job amid critical Senate report
    Apr 24, 2014 5:34 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The secretary of the Homeland Security Department put the agency's former internal watchdog on administrative leave Thursday following the release of a Senate report that concluded he was too cozy with senior agency officials and improperly rewrote, delayed or classified some critical reports to accommodate President Barack Obama's political appointees. Secretary Jeh Johnson said Charles K. Edwards, who was allowed to quietly resign and take another job within the department...

  • Kerry warns Russia not changing course will be a 'grave and expensive mistake,' window closing
    Apr 24, 2014 5:34 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Kerry warns Russia not changing course will be a 'grave and expensive mistake,' window closing.

  • Kerry: Russian propaganda broadcast on Kremlin-backed TV pushes Putin's Ukraine 'fantasies'
    Apr 24, 2014 5:28 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Kerry: Russian propaganda broadcast on Kremlin-backed TV pushes Putin's Ukraine 'fantasies'

  • Kerry says Russia 'has not taken a single concrete step' to de-escalate Ukraine crisis
    Apr 24, 2014 5:24 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Kerry says Russia 'has not taken a single concrete step' to de-escalate Ukraine crisis.

  • Kerry sees way forward on Mideast peace: 'We will never give up hope' for that possibility
    Apr 24, 2014 5:22 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The suspension of peace talks between Israel and Palestinians on Thursday delivered the harshest blow yet to Secretary of State John Kerry's ambitious, if perhaps quixotic, hope of ending the decades-long impasse at the cost of focusing on other crises around the world. But Kerry refused to accept defeat, saying "we will never give up our hope or our commitment for the possibilities" of Mideast peace. Kerry sought to portray the latest setback with as much optimism as the dismal...

  • Nevada rancher at center of cattle grazing feud defends his comments on race and slavery
    Apr 24, 2014 5:21 PM CDT

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — A Nevada rancher at the center of a feud over cattle grazing on public land is defending himself from sharp criticism over comments he made about slavery. Cliven Bundy had told reporters near his ranch 80 miles from Las Vegas that he wonders whether black people are better off now or when they were slaves in the South. On Thursday, he insisted that he's not saying people should be slaves. Politicians including Nevada Republican Sen. Dean Heller are condemning the remarks Bundy...

  • Kerry: Only Ukraine is 'keeping its word' on agreement to calm crisis
    Apr 24, 2014 5:21 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Kerry: Only Ukraine is 'keeping its word' on agreement to calm crisis.

  • US government threatening to withhold $300M in aid from Haiti because of overdue elections
    Apr 24, 2014 5:20 PM CDT

    PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — The U.S. government has warned Haiti that it risks losing aid if it doesn't hold elections that are more than two years overdue. The U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince said Thursday that none of the money set aside for the Haitian government by the State Appropriations Act will be available until the U.S. State Department certifies Haiti is "taking steps" to hold the legislative and local votes. The money at stake is about $300 million that the U.S. Congress allocated...

  • Business Highlights
    Apr 24, 2014 5:20 PM CDT

    ___ FDA eases into regulating e-cigarettes WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal government's move to regulate e-cigarettes is a leap into the unknown. Proposed rules, issued Thursday by the Food and Drug Administration, tread fairly lightly. They would ban sales to anyone under 18, add warning labels and require FDA approval for new products. Some public health experts say a measured approach is the right one. They think that the devices, which heat a nicotine solution to produce an odorless vapor...

  • Kerry says Russia not abiding by terms of Geneva agreement on de-escalating crisis in Ukraine
    Apr 24, 2014 5:19 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Kerry says Russia not abiding by terms of Geneva agreement on de-escalating crisis in Ukraine.

  • Oregon moves to dump troubled health exchange website for private policies, use federal system
    Apr 24, 2014 5:17 PM CDT

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon, once expected to be a national leader in the federal health care overhaul, on Thursday moved to become the first state to dump its troubled online health exchange and use the federal marketplace instead. A top Cover Oregon official, Alex Pettit, said fixing the existing system would be too costly at an estimated $78 million, would take too long to implement, and would be too risky. The state's site still isn't fully functional seven months after a failed launch....

  • Afghan government guard opens fire at Kabul hospital, kills 3 Americans, wounds another
    Apr 24, 2014 5:08 PM CDT

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Three Americans — a pediatrician and a father and son — were killed by an Afghan government security officer at a hospital Thursday, the latest in a series of attacks on foreign civilians that has rattled aid workers, contractors and journalists. Another American, a female medical worker, was wounded in the attack at Cure International Hospital of Kabul, run by a U.S.-based Christian charity, and the gunman also was wounded, officials said. The hospital staff performed...

  • Hagel says new Russian military exercises increase tensions, counter diplomatic agreements
    Apr 24, 2014 4:57 PM CDT

    MEXICO CITY (AP) — Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says Russian military exercises on its border with Ukraine increase tensions and run counter to a diplomatic agreement it signed just last week. Hagel spoke with reporters in Mexico City after he was informed of the Russian military exercises that President Vladimir Putin said were in response to punitive measures by Ukrainian forces against pro-Russian insurgents. Hagel called the military exercises "dangerously destabilizing" and "very provocative."...

  • 2 detained on San Diego Navy base after firing of 'airsoft' gun that shoots plastic pellets
    Apr 24, 2014 4:51 PM CDT

    SAN DIEGO (AP) — The commander of Naval Base Point Loma says a report of an armed man on the San Diego base led to detention of a sailor who had fired a gun that shoots soft plastic pellets. Capt. Scott Adams says a second serviceman was also taken into custody. The Thursday morning report of a possible gunman led to an order that personnel shelter in place on the base, which is home to the Third Fleet command and other major units. Adams says the shooter told investigators he was firing the...

  • 5 Things to Know about Colorado's tax revenue from marijuana since recreational sales started
    Apr 24, 2014 4:34 PM CDT

    DENVER (AP) — Some Colorado lawmakers want to use $3.5 million in recreational pot tax revenue to seek a matching Medicaid grant from the federal government, which considers pot illegal. Here are five things to know about the state's marijuana income: — HOW IT'S GOING: Recreational pot sales began Jan. 1. Legislative economists estimate Colorado will sell nearly 2 million ounces of recreational pot next fiscal year. At an estimated $200 an ounce, Colorado would sell nearly $395 million worth....

  • Ukraine launches operation against insurgents in the east; Russia ramps up military exercises
    Apr 24, 2014 4:33 PM CDT

    SLOVYANSK, Ukraine (AP) — Russia announced new military exercises Thursday involving ground and air forces near its border with Ukraine, swiftly responding to a Ukrainian operation to drive pro-Russia insurgents out of occupied buildings in the country's tumultuous east. The Ukrainian move, which killed at least two people, brought new threats from Russian President Vladimir Putin, who denounced it as a "punitive operation." "If the Kiev government is using the army against its own people, this...

  • Federal jury finds ex-Hawaii soldier guilty of murder in beating death of 5-year-old daughter
    Apr 24, 2014 4:30 PM CDT

    HONOLULU (AP) — Federal jury finds ex-Hawaii soldier guilty of murder in beating death of 5-year-old daughter.

  • Food makers worry about costs, confusion as Vermont approves labeling of GMO products
    Apr 24, 2014 4:23 PM CDT

    MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — Vermont has raised the stakes in the debate over genetically modified foods by becoming the first state to pass a bill requiring that they be labeled as such in the grocery aisle, making the move despite the opposition of the powerful U.S. food industry. Americans overwhelmingly favor such requirements for foods containing genetically modified organisms, but the industry fears a patchwork of state policies. The Vermont bill says genetically modified foods "potentially pose...

  • US officials want to seize $700,000 allegedly linked to corruption by ex-South Korean dictator
    Apr 24, 2014 4:21 PM CDT

    NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) — U.S. officials on Thursday sought court permission to seize more than $700,000 from the sale of a Southern California home they allege was bought with corrupt money provided by South Korean's former dictator. Federal prosecutors filed a civil forfeiture complaint Thursday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. Authorities said Chun Jae Yong, son of former President Chun Doo-hwan, bought a Newport Beach home in 2005 with money provided through bribes that were given...

  • Christie says he would have stopped lane closings in New Jersey if told of the plan in advance
    Apr 24, 2014 4:20 PM CDT

    BRICK, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Thursday he would have stopped aides from blocking lanes to the George Washington Bridge last fall if he had known about the plan in advance, saying outright what he has implied in previous denials about the traffic jam scandal that's engulfed his administration. Christie told a town hall audience in the shore suburb of Brick that no one talked to him before lanes were closed in September to create gridlock in the town of Fort Lee after its...

  • Puerto Rico's government seeks deep-pocketed investors to help jumpstart island's economy
    Apr 24, 2014 4:19 PM CDT

    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico hopes to persuade wealthy investors to bet on the U.S. territory at a two-day conference aimed at attracting new money amid the island's struggles to recover from a nearly eight-year recession. Among the featured speakers Thursday were hedge fund billionaire John Paulson, whose New York-based firm Paulson & Co. is investing $260 million this year in two upscale, beachfront hotels in the capital of San Juan. Some 200 executives, the majority from the...

  • US proposes pay-for-priority Internet access rules that protect competition, free speech
    Apr 24, 2014 4:06 PM CDT

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — The nation's top telecoms regulator is proposing to allow a pay-for-priority fast lane on the Internet for movies, music and other services to get to people's homes. The proposed rules come after a federal appeals court struck down previous "net neutrality" rules designed to prevent Internet access providers such as Comcast from discriminating against certain traffic flowing to their customers. Under the proposal, an access provider could demand that high-traffic services such...

  • 'X-Men' director accused of sexual assault in lawsuit calls allegations a 'shakedown'
    Apr 24, 2014 4:05 PM CDT

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — The director of the upcoming "X-Men" film has denied allegations contained in a lawsuit that he raped an aspiring actor and model in 1999 and called the claims a shakedown. Bryan Singer wrote in a statement released Thursday that he was avoiding promotional events for his upcoming film "X-Men: Days of Future Past" to avoid distracting from the movie and the work of its actors and crew. "The allegations against me are outrageous, vicious and completely false," Singer wrote....

  • Everest climbing season in disarray as climbing teams cancel and talks with Sherpas founder
    Apr 24, 2014 4:02 PM CDT

    KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) — Nepal's attempts to salvage the Mount Everest climbing season fell flat Thursday as major expedition companies canceled their climbs and many Sherpas quit the mountain after an avalanche killed 16 of their fellow guides last week. While the season has not been officially canceled, guides and Sherpas said it appeared increasingly unlikely that any summit attempts would be made this season from the Nepal side of the mountain. "Many of us think this year is not good for climbing...

  • Report: Iran to cut portion of gasoline subsidies starting Friday, move delayed since 2012
    Apr 24, 2014 3:57 PM CDT

    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran will cut a portion of its gasoline subsidies beginning Friday, nearly doubling some prices at the pump as part of a second round of cuts delayed since 2012, state television reported Thursday. Under the new pricing scheme, state television said each car on the road would see its monthly, 60-liter (15.85-gallon) reduced-cost allowance jump to 7,000 rials (22 cents) per liter from 4,000 rials (12 cents). That works out to about 83 cents a gallon under the new pricing structure,...

  • GOP senators: Obama deportations review disregards Constitution, rule of law
    Apr 24, 2014 3:50 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and 21 other Republican senators accused President Barack Obama on Thursday of displaying "an astonishing disregard for the Constitution, the rule of law and the rights of American citizens" by considering administrative changes to the nation's deportations policy. In a letter to the president, the senators said that changes under consideration would amount to "near complete abandonment of basic immigration enforcement." The Associated...

  • Multilateralist, isolationist, neocon: Senate's next generation speaks out on foreign policy
    Apr 24, 2014 3:44 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Fresh voices in the U.S. Senate are speaking loudly on foreign policy, a new generation of Republicans and Democrats who reflect a war-weary nation cautious about America's next moves. Sens. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Rand Paul of Kentucky stand on either side of the growing divide in the GOP, pitting those who favor more robust U.S. engagement overseas against an isolationist's deficit-driven concerns about the cost of foreign entanglements. Ayotte, a self-described Ronald...

  • At Take Our Daughters, Sons to Work event, girl with jobless dad hands first lady his resume
    Apr 24, 2014 3:41 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Michelle Obama's annual question-and-answer session with the children of Executive Office employees took a serious turn Thursday when a 10-year-old girl in the front row told the first lady that her dad had been out of work for three years. Then the girl popped up to hand the first lady his resume. The first lady seemed a little taken aback but then explained to the other children, who might not have heard the girl's comment, that the matter was "a little private, but she's doing...

  • Costa Rica government warned US against launch of 'Cuban Twitter,' now demands answers
    Apr 24, 2014 3:35 PM CDT

    SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (AP) — The Costa Rican government says it's waiting for the Obama administration to explain why it improperly devised a secret "Cuban Twitter" network from inside the Central American nation's borders despite warnings in 2009 that the plan could jeopardize the two countries' diplomatic relations. Costa Rican Foreign Minister Enrique Castillo said it was "inappropriate" to use his country for developing the primitive social media network, known as ZunZuneo, which aimed to stir...

  • Colorado lawmakers hatch plan to boost marijuana profits, despite potential federal conflict
    Apr 24, 2014 3:26 PM CDT

    DENVER (AP) — The federal government has reluctantly agreed to let Colorado be the first state to collect taxes from the legal sale of recreational marijuana, but it also has made clear it doesn't agree with the move and may try to stop it, if isn't tightly controlled. Instead of keeping a low profile with the money, however, some Colorado lawmakers are trying the bold move of using millions of dollars they've collected so far from pot sales to seek matching funds from the federal government to...

  • Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari confirms 9 names for World Cup squad
    Apr 24, 2014 3:20 PM CDT

    SAO PAULO (AP) — Coach Luis Felipe Scolari has confirmed nine players who will make Brazil's squad for the World Cup at home. They are David Luiz, Oscar, Ramires, Willian, Paulinho, Julio Cesar, Thiago Silva, Fred and Neymar. Scolari said at a local event that he talked to some of the players on a recent trip to Europe to assure they had his support and were guaranteed making the World Cup. The coach said four were up for captain: Silva, Luiz, Cesar and Fred. Silva was the captain in recent...

  • US securities regulators are looking into GM recall case, company says in quarterly report
    Apr 24, 2014 3:04 PM CDT

    DETROIT (AP) — U.S. securities regulators are looking into General Motors' delayed recall of more than 2 million cars with a deadly ignition switch problem. GM disclosed in a quarterly report Thursday that the Securities and Exchange Commission has made inquiries about the recall. It also confirmed for the first time that the U.S. Attorney's office in New York and an unidentified state attorney general are conducting investigations. Congress and federal highway safety regulators also are investigating....

  • Figures on government spending and debt
    Apr 24, 2014 3:02 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Figures on government spending and debt (last six digits are eliminated). The government's fiscal year runs Oct. 1 through Sept. 30. Total public debt subject to limit April 23 17,479,418 Statutory debt limit suspended Total public debt outstanding April 23 17,525,949 Operating balance April 23 150,225 Interest fiscal year 2014 through March 117,724 Interest same period 2013 120,987 Deficit fiscal year 2014 through March 413,264 Deficit same period...

  • Tiny Pacific nation sues world's 9 nuclear-armed powers, demanding disarmament action
    Apr 24, 2014 2:52 PM CDT

    NEW YORK (AP) — The tiny Pacific nation of the Marshall Islands is taking on the United States and the world's eight other nuclear-armed nations with an unprecedented lawsuit demanding that they meet their obligations toward disarmament and accusing them of "flagrant violations" of international law. The island group that was used for dozens of U.S. nuclear tests after World War II filed suit Thursday against each of the nine countries in the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Netherlands....

  • Israel halts US-brokered peace talks in response to Palestinian reconciliation deal
    Apr 24, 2014 2:48 PM CDT

    JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel broke off Mideast peace talks and brought the U.S.-brokered process to the brink of collapse Thursday, protesting a reconciliation agreement between the Western-backed Palestinian Authority and the militant group Hamas, the Jewish state's sworn enemy. Israel's Security Cabinet made the decision during a marathon emergency meeting convened to discuss the new Palestinian deal. The rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah announced the reconciliation plan Wednesday, meant...

  • Suicide bomber hits checkpoint south of Baghdad, killing at least 11 people, officials say
    Apr 24, 2014 2:44 PM CDT

    BAGHDAD (AP) — A suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into a police checkpoint south of Baghdad on Thursday morning, killing at least 11 people, officials said, the latest episode in an uptick in violence in the run-up to next week's parliamentary elections. The attack struck during the morning rush hour, when the checkpoint at one of the entrances to the city of Hillah, about 95 kilometers (60 miles) south of Baghdad, was crowded with commuters. Among the 11 killed were seven civilians...

  • FDA takes light approach to regulating e-cigarettes as it waits for science to catch up
    Apr 24, 2014 2:34 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal government's move to regulate e-cigarettes is a leap into the unknown. Most everyone agrees a ban on selling them to kids would be a step forward. But health and public policy experts can't say for certain whether the electronic devices are a good thing or a bad thing overall, whether they help smokers kick the habit or are a gateway to ordinary paper-and-tobacco cigarettes. The proposed rules, issued Thursday by the Food and Drug Administration, tread fairly lightly....

  • House Speaker Boehner wants US leadership globally, and immigration reform tackled at home
    Apr 24, 2014 2:30 PM CDT

    MIDDLETOWN, Ohio (AP) — House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that allies of the United States want America to show strong leadership globally, and that he wants some of his congressional colleagues to stop shying away from immigration reform. Boehner said other countries are looking for the United States to lead, and that the 150 troops now in Poland with contingents planned for three other European countries is a step in the right direction. The first 150 paratroopers' arrival Wednesday for...

  • AP sources: US government effort to seek release of US soldier is disorganized
    Apr 24, 2014 2:27 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Critics of the U.S. government's nearly five-year effort to seek the release of the only American soldier held captive in Afghanistan claim the work suffers from disorganization and poor communication among numerous federal agencies involved, leaving his captors unclear which U.S. officials have the authority to make a deal. The shrinking U.S. military footprint in Afghanistan has refocused attention on efforts to bring home Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, of Hailey, Idaho, who has been...

  • No charges for fake, obscene Twitter account created in central Illinois mayor's name
    Apr 24, 2014 2:26 PM CDT

    PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — No charges will be filed over a fake Twitter account that purported to be a central Illinois mayor's lewd thoughts on sex and drugs. Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis filed a criminal complaint over the matter, which led to police raiding a home last week, seizing computers and hauling residents in for questioning. That move sparked criticism that the mayor had abused his powers and violated free speech rights. Peoria County State's Attorney Jerry Brady told the Journal Star (

  • Kerry sees way forward on Mideast peace: 'We will never give up hope' for that possibility
    Apr 24, 2014 2:21 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Kerry sees way forward on Mideast peace: 'We will never give up hope' for that possibility.

  • Chicago announces it will build Barack Obama College Preparatory High School, will open 2017
    Apr 24, 2014 2:06 PM CDT

    CHICAGO (AP) — President Barack Obama's hometown of Chicago plans to name a high school after him. Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Thursday announced plans to build Barack Obama College Preparatory High School. The selective enrollment high school will be open for the 2017-2018 school year. Chicago Public Schools says its enrollment will be 1,200 students. Emanuel and school officials say Chicago needs more competitive selective enrollment schools. They say nearly 16,500 students applied for 3,200 seats...

  • Canadian foreign minister says Russian 'aggression' in Ukraine unacceptable, pledges support
    Apr 24, 2014 1:59 PM CDT

    WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird said Thursday that the international community should not accept Russia's "aggression" in Ukraine and committed to help the country develop its democracy. Baird noted the conflict between Moscow and Kiev was worsening as Ukraine's forces moved to drive pro-Russian insurgents out of government buildings they have occupied. He blamed Russia's President Vladimir Putin with breaking the Geneva accord that called for the insurgents to leave...

  • Syrian government airstrikes on market in northern town kill at least 30 people, activists say
    Apr 24, 2014 1:58 PM CDT

    BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian government airstrikes struck a vegetable market in a northern rebel-held town Thursday, killing at least 30 people and wounding scores of others, an activist group said. The airstrikes came as another Syrian lawmaker announced his candidacy for June presidential election, state media said, a poll embattled President Bashar Assad is expected to win. Fighter jets hit the crowded market in the Aleppo province town of Atareb early Thursday morning, killing 30 people, the Britain-based...

  • Panama's president boosts wife's candidacy in bid to maintain influence after stepping down
    Apr 24, 2014 1:57 PM CDT

    PANAMA CITY (AP) — She's a political novice with a scant presence on the campaign trail, but Marta Linares has one vote that matters more than most in her bid to become Panama's next vice president: that of her husband, outgoing President Ricardo Martinelli. Barred by the constitution from seeking re-election, Martinelli is counting on his wife and another loyalist newcomer, presidential candidate Jose Domingo Arias, to protect his legacy of transforming Panama into one of the world's fastest-growing...

  • New day for Michelle Obama speech to Kansas high schoolers after uproar by students, parents
    Apr 24, 2014 1:56 PM CDT

    TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Michelle Obama is rearranging plans for a speech before graduating high school seniors in Kansas in the face of protests that her appearance at a combined graduation ceremony for five schools would limit seating for families and friends. She had accepted the Topeka public school district's invitation to speak May 17 at the combined ceremony to mark that day's 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, outlawing school segregation. The...

  • Suspect dies weeks after shootout at Los Angeles police station
    Apr 24, 2014 1:51 PM CDT

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — A man suspected of wounding an officer while shooting up a Los Angeles police station died Thursday at a hospital more than two weeks after the attack, authorities said. Daniel Christoph Yealu, 29. died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter said. Yealu, 29, was wounded in the April 7 shootout with two officers at the West Traffic Division. He had been charged with attempted murder. Yealu, a onetime security guard, had applied to join the Los Angeles...

  • Oregon panel recommends dropping troubled exchange for private policies, using federal system
    Apr 24, 2014 1:32 PM CDT

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon panel recommends dropping troubled exchange for private policies, using federal system.

  • Ferry disaster thrusts Obama into consoler role during his visit to South Korea on Asia tour
    Apr 24, 2014 1:14 PM CDT

    TOKYO (AP) — When President Barack Obama arrives in South Korea on Friday, he will be thrust anew into the role of consoler in chief in a time of crisis, a responsibility he has become all too accustomed to in the United States. South Korea is reeling from the ferry disaster that has left more than 300 dead or missing, with the vast majority of the victims students from a high school near the capital of Seoul. The tragedy has consumed South Korean President Park Geun-hye in the lead-up to Obama's...

  • Russia's Putin calls Internet a 'CIA project' as Kremlin exerts control over online activity
    Apr 24, 2014 1:08 PM CDT

    MOSCOW (AP) — President Vladimir Putin on Thursday called the Internet a CIA project and made comments about Russia's biggest search engine Yandex, sending the company's shares plummeting. The Kremlin has been anxious to exert greater control over the Internet, which opposition activists — barred from national television — have used to promote their ideas and organize protests. Russia's parliament this week passed a law requiring social media websites to keep their servers in Russia and save...

  • US protests Iran's election to UN NGO committee, Iran rejects 'baseless accusations'
    Apr 24, 2014 1:06 PM CDT

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power protested the election of repressive regimes including Iran to the U.N. Committee on Non-governmental Organizations which deals with civil society groups accredited to the United Nations. Iran's U.N. Mission responded Thursday by rejecting "baseless accusations" raised by Power on the status of human rights and civil liberties in the country. Iran was one of 19 members elected Wednesday by the U.N. Economic and Social Council to four-year terms...

  • AP Interview: Ukraine foreign minister says country ready to fight if Russian troops invade
    Apr 24, 2014 1:04 PM CDT

    PRAGUE (AP) — Ukraine's foreign minister has blasted the Russian decision to start military maneuvers along their border and said Thursday his country will fight any invading troops. Andriy Deshchytisa told The Associated Press in Prague that Russia's decision to launch the military exercises "very much escalates the situation in the region." Deshchytisa said his country had been taught a lesson by Russia's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula. "We will now fight with Russian troops if ... they...

  • First lady to help open new costume center at Metropolitan Museum of Art
    Apr 24, 2014 1:00 PM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Michelle Obama is ready to celebrate the art of fashion. The first lady will be in New York on May 5 to cut the ribbon and officially open The Costume Institute's new Anna Wintour Costume Center. It's opening after a two-year renovation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The ribbon-cutting will be held in the museum's Temple of Dendur.

  • Notable deeds and words of Pope John Paul II, soon to be proclaimed a saint at the Vatican
    Apr 24, 2014 12:49 PM CDT

    VATICAN CITY (AP) — The most-traveled pope in history, John Paul II left his mark on the Catholic Church and non-believers worldwide. Here are some milestones along his path to sainthood: BY THE NUMBERS —Elected to the papacy in 1978 as first non-Italian pope in 455 years and only Pole. —Upon election he was 58, the youngest pope in 125 years. —Distance traveled on his foreign trips: 725,000 miles, or nearly three times the distance from the Earth to the moon. He visited more than 120 countries,...

  • Families of ferry's lost confront SKorea officials; signs that ship was heavily overloaded
    Apr 24, 2014 12:44 PM CDT

    JINDO, South Korea (AP) — Angry relatives of some of the more than 120 people still missing from the sinking of the ferry Sewol surrounded the fisheries minister and the coast guard chief Thursday, preventing them from leaving the area where families have been waiting for word of their loved ones for more than a week. It was the latest expression of fury and desperation in a disaster filled with signs that the government did too little to protect passengers. An opposition politician said he has...

  • NRA convention in Indianapolis draws attention to push for universal concealed carry gun law
    Apr 24, 2014 12:38 PM CDT

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — With concealed weapons now legal in all 50 states, the National Rifle Association's focus at this week's annual meeting is less about enacting additional state protections than on making sure the permits already issued still apply when the gun owners travel across the country. The nation's largest gun-rights group, which officially opens its meeting of about 70,000 people Friday in Indianapolis, wants Congress to require that concealed weapons permits issued in one state be...

  • Rebels kill 7 in India, casting pall over big day of voting in national elections
    Apr 24, 2014 12:37 PM CDT

    SRINAGAR, India (AP) — A major day of voting in the world's biggest elections was marred by violence Thursday as suspected rebels killed four paramilitary soldiers and three polling officials who were traveling on buses after conducting balloting in two Indian states. Maoist insurgents ambushed one of the buses near Shikaripada, a village in eastern Jharkhand state, and fatally shot four paramilitary soldiers and two polling officials carrying voting machines, said Anurag Gupta, a state police...

  • A look at the events in the inmates' legal challenge of Oklahoma's execution drug secrecy
    Apr 24, 2014 12:28 PM CDT

    The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled late Wednesday that death row inmates Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner are not entitled to know the source of the drugs that will be used to kill them. The court, which is the highest in the state for civil cases, had previously halted their executions, even though critics said only the Oklahoma Court of Appeals can issue stays. The Court of Appeals is the highest in the state for criminal cases. Here is a look at the inmates' legal challenge: ___ Feb. 26: The...

  • Measles illnesses off to fastest start in 18 years; experts worry about spread in hospitals
    Apr 24, 2014 12:14 PM CDT

    NEW YORK (AP) — Health officials are worried about recent U.S. measles outbreaks that so far have caused more illnesses than at the same point of any year since 1996. Authorities say 129 cases in 13 states were reported by mid-April, the bulk of them in California and New York City. Most were triggered by travelers who caught the virus abroad and spread it in the United States among unvaccinated people. Many of the travelers had been to the Philippines, where a recent measles epidemic has caused...

  • Mali coup leader faces possible death penalty over killing of soldiers
    Apr 24, 2014 11:59 AM CDT

    BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — Officials say the leader of Mali's 2012 coup could face the death penalty after a revision of charges filed against him over the deaths of soldiers who opposed his rise to power. Gen. Amadou Haya Sanogo led the March 2012 coup that facilitated the country's northern half being taken over by rebels including al-Qaida-linked extremists. He was arrested in November and charged with kidnapping. A charge of assassination conspiracy was added after the December discovery of graves...

  • Now that stock mutual funds are soaring again, investors are getting a tax reminder
    Apr 24, 2014 11:52 AM CDT

    NEW YORK (AP) — How painful was tax season for you? For many investors with mutual funds in a taxable account, it was tougher this year than last. That's because the best year for stocks since 1997 pushed many funds to make capital gains distributions to their shareholders, and those got taxed even if the shareholder didn't sell any shares. Investors who make the biggest incomes got a double whammy: They paid a higher percentage of their capital gains distributions in taxes than a year before....

  • Produce giant Chiquita asks appeals court to dismiss Colombian terror payments case
    Apr 24, 2014 11:50 AM CDT

    MIAMI (AP) — Chiquita Brands International asked a federal appeals court Thursday to dismiss lawsuits filed against the produce giant by relatives of thousands of Colombians killed in a bloody civil war, contending the cases do not belong in a U.S. court. John Hall, attorney for Charlotte, N.C.-based Chiquita, told a three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that any legal action by the relatives should be pursued in Colombia. The lawsuits accuse Chiquita, which for decades...

  • 'Horror,' UN Security Council says, after S. Sudan massacre; president replaces army leader
    Apr 24, 2014 11:28 AM CDT

    NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — The U.N. Security Council on Thursday expressed "horror" at the recent massacre of several hundred civilians in South Sudan, while the U.S. ambassador to the world body said she fears a deepening human catastrophe. The strongly worded Security Council statement deplored the killings last week in Bentiu, the capital of oil-producing Unity state, as well as the use of radio broadcasts to "foment hate and sexual violence." It said council members may be willing to impose sanctions...

  • Done deal: Argentina's Congress approves $5 billion payoff to Spain's Repsol for YPF takeover
    Apr 24, 2014 11:27 AM CDT

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina is hoping to have an easier time attracting international investors to exploit its oil and gas fields now that lawmakers have agreed to pay $5 billion to the Spanish company Grupo Repsol for its controlling stake in the YPF oil company. President Cristina Fernandez nationalized the company two years ago without paying anything beforehand to Respsol, which had demanded $10.5 billion in compensation. The deal was approved early Thursday by a vote of 135-59,...

  • Sriracha controversy continues as back-and-forth fight between city, hot sauce maker delayed
    Apr 24, 2014 11:25 AM CDT

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — A cooling-off period has been called in the fight between the makers of Sriracha hot sauce and the Southern California city that says its air is too spicy to bear. The Irwindale City Council delayed a decision for two weeks Wednesday night on declaring the Sriracha plant a public nuisance. About 100 supporters of the hot sauce, including Huy Fong Foods owner David Tran, rallied outside City Hall before the meeting. Irwindale's city attorney requested the delay, saying he's...

  • Saudi Arabia says MERS virus deaths reach 85 as new infections include pilgrim in Mecca
    Apr 24, 2014 11:21 AM CDT

    RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — In the past 24 hours, Saudi Arabia has reported four new deaths from a Middle East virus related to SARS and 36 more cases of infection, including a Turkish pilgrim in Mecca. Officials are struggling to alleviate concerns that the virus is spreading amid a spike in infections over the past several weeks. Many of the infections reported Wednesday and Thursday are health workers. Prince Miteb, the son of ruler King Abdullah and the head of the Saudi National Guard, was...

  • Steady there bud: Uruguay to limit marijuana buyers to 10 grams a week in pharmacies
    Apr 24, 2014 11:15 AM CDT

    MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (AP) — Uruguay's government is still writing the rules for its legal marijuana market, two weeks overdue now, and President Jose Mujica has asked that no details be released until the regulations are published Friday or Monday. But an official in Uruguay's drug control office told The Associated Press that the rules will limit consumers to buying 10 grams of pot a month, rather than the maximum of 40 grams set by legislators. The official said that is aimed at reducing the...

  • Netanyahu blasts Palestinian leaders over Hamas coalition gov't; won't deal with terrorists
    Apr 24, 2014 11:05 AM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (neh-ten-YAH'-hoo) says a decision by Palestinian authorities to create a coalition government with Hamas is a big step backward for peace. Netanyahu says he will never negotiate a peace treaty with a government backed by a terrorist organization. He spoke Thursday in an interview from Tel Aviv on NBC News. He's urging Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (mahk-MOOD' ah-BAHS') to change his mind about letting Hamas become part of the...

  • Aetna's 1st-quarter profit jumps 36 percent, health insurer also hikes 2014 earnings forecast
    Apr 24, 2014 10:44 AM CDT

    Aetna's first-quarter net income soared 36 percent, fueled by gains from a multi-billion-dollar acquisition, and the health insurer hiked its 2014 earnings forecast above Wall Street estimates. Its results breezed past analysts' expectations, and Aetna shares jumped more than 5 percent Thursday after it detailed a starkly different quarter compared with competitor UnitedHealth Group, which dragged down other health insurance stocks last week after it said first quarter earnings fell 8 percent....

  • Officials: Pakistan airstrikes target suspected militant hideouts in tribal region, killing 37
    Apr 24, 2014 10:21 AM CDT

    KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) — Pakistani warplanes attacked insurgent hideouts in the tribal region near the Afghan border, killing 37 suspected militants and wounding 18, army officials said Thursday, as authorities hold peace negotiations with the Taliban. The airstrikes pounded two suspected hideouts in a remote area of Tirah Valley in the Khyber tribal region, three military officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to journalists. There was no...

  • UN Security Council expresses rare 'horror' at South Sudan massacre, threatens sanctions
    Apr 24, 2014 10:09 AM CDT

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council is expressing rare "horror" at the recent massacre of civilians in South Sudan and threatens sanctions. The strongly worded press statement released Thursday deplores the killings last week in Bentiu, the capital of oil-producing Unity state, as well as the use of radio broadcasts to "foment hate and sexual violence." The council statement also expresses "grave concern" over the more than 23,000 displaced people who are seeking shelter at the U.N....

  • Russia's Khodorkovsky criticizes Putin at Ukraine forum
    Apr 24, 2014 9:45 AM CDT

    KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Mikhail Khodorkovsky, once Russia's most famous prisoner, has harshly criticized Russian President Vladimir Putin over the annexation of Crimea and Russian pressure against Ukraine. Khodorkovsky, who spent 10 years in prison in a case widely seen as political revenge by Putin, opened a conference in Kiev devoted to fostering ties between Ukraine and Russia. He said Thursday that Putin was being petty and vengeful against a democratic uprising and that he and many other Russians...

  • Official: Israel decides to suspend peace talks in response to Palestinian unity deal
    Apr 24, 2014 9:41 AM CDT

    JERUSALEM (AP) — Official: Israel decides to suspend peace talks in response to Palestinian unity deal.

  • Moscow court extends house arrest for Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny instead of jailing him
    Apr 24, 2014 9:39 AM CDT

    MOSCOW (AP) — A Moscow court decided Thursday to keep Russian opposition leader and anti-corruption blogger Alexei Navalny under house arrest rather than send him to jail pending trial. The ruling came as a surprise to many of Navalny's supporters, who had predicted that President Vladimir Putin — riding on 80 percent approval ratings after annexing the Ukrainian Black Sea region of Crimea in March — would have no qualms about putting Russia's top opposition figure behind bars. "Putin has dreamed...

  • Presidents of post-Soviet republics, EU meet in Prague over closer ties amid crisis in Ukraine
    Apr 24, 2014 9:10 AM CDT

    PRAGUE (AP) — Amid Ukraine's deepening crisis, the presidents of post-Soviet republics and EU member states gathered Thursday in Prague to save a project to boost their ties. Launched in the Czech capital in 2009, the Eastern Partnership was supposed to inspire democratic change in six post-communist nations to ensure political stability and turn the territory east of the EU's border into a region of stable and prosperous democracies. In exchange, the European Union promised Armenia, Azerbaijan,...

  • Applications for US unemployment aid jumped last week to 329K, likely due to Easter layoffs
    Apr 24, 2014 8:59 AM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits surged 24,000 to a seasonally adjusted 329,000 last week, though the gain likely reflected temporary layoffs in the week before Easter. The Labor Department said Thursday that the four-week average of applications, a less volatile number, rose 4,750 to 316,750. The four-week average fell two weeks ago to its lowest level since October 2007, two months before the recession began. Applications can be volatile around Easter,...

  • Obama warns Russia that more sanctions are 'teed up' but admits they may not stop Putin
    Apr 24, 2014 8:55 AM CDT

    TOKYO (AP) — Accusing Russia of failing to live up to its commitments, President Barack Obama warned Moscow on Thursday that the United States has another round of economic sanctions "teed up" — even as he acknowledged those penalties may do little to influence Vladimir Putin's handling of the crisis in Ukraine. Obama's frank pessimism underscored the limits of Washington's ability to prevent Russia from stirring up instability in Ukraine's east and exerting influence over elections scheduled...

  • Armenians commemorate 1915 killings, unsatisfied by Turkish PM's gesture
    Apr 24, 2014 8:51 AM CDT

    YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Armenians are making their annual commemoration of the massacre of an estimated 1.5 million Armenians by Ottoman Turks, unsatisfied by an unprecedented conciliatory message by Turkey's premier. The killings in 1915 are regarded by many historians as the first genocide of the 20th century. Turkey rejects the term "genocide," says the death figure is inflated and that people died on both sides as the Ottoman Empire collapsed amid World War I. Turkish Prime Minister Recep...

  • Abdullah leads in new partial results from Afghan presidential election; full tally due soon
    Apr 24, 2014 8:38 AM CDT

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The latest partial results in Afghanistan's presidential election show front-runner Abdullah still leading but far from the majority needed to avoid a runoff. Abdullah Abdullah, a former foreign minister, had 43.8 percent of the vote in results released Thursday. His closest rival, ex-Finance Minister Ashaf Ghani Ahmadzai, had 32.9 percent. The results were based on 82.6 percent of the more than 7 million votes cast in the April 5 election to replace President Hamid Karzai,...

  • Mandalay Bay convention center plans $66M expansion; will be among top 5 largest centers in US
    Apr 24, 2014 8:29 AM CDT

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — The Mandalay Bay resort in Las Vegas announced a $66 million expansion project that will boost its convention center from the seventh-largest to the fifth-largest in the United States. Company officials said Thursday that the 350,000 square feet of new exhibit space and extra underground parking will help it attract larger trade shows, and will allow conferences already there to expand. "One of the real strengths of the recovery is in meetings," Mandalay Bay President and COO...

  • Texas GOP Gov. Rick Perry says he needs more preparation if he runs for president in 2016
    Apr 24, 2014 8:17 AM CDT

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Texas Gov. Rick Perry says he'll need more preparation if he runs for president again in 2016. Perry says he learned a lot when he ran last time. He tells CBS "This Morning" it was a humbling experience. The Republican governor says he recommends not having major back surgery six weeks before you start running. And he says that whether he runs for president or not, preparation on foreign policy, economics and other issues will serve him well. Perry had a lot of support when...

  • Everest climbing season in disarray as climbing teams cancel and talks with Sherpas fall flat
    Apr 24, 2014 8:04 AM CDT

    KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) — Nepal's attempts to salvage the Mount Everest climbing season fell flat Thursday as major expedition companies canceled their climbs and many Sherpas quit the mountain after an avalanche killed 16 of their fellow guides last week. While the season has not been officially canceled, guides and Sherpas said it appeared increasingly unlikely that any summit attempts would be made this season from the Nepal side of the mountain. "Many of us think this year is not good for climbing...

  • Ky. Senate candidate Grimes breaks silence on Keystone pipeline, urges Obama to approve it
    Apr 24, 2014 8:01 AM CDT

    FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes called on President Barack Obama to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline, joining 11 incumbent Democrats as the party tries to keep control of the Senate this November. Grimes' statement Wednesday to The Associated Press came on the same day that a group committed to blocking the pipeline's construction announced plans to spend $500,000 setting up field offices in Kentucky to defeat U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell. And it...

  • European Union institutions are wide open to corruption, independent report finds
    Apr 24, 2014 7:44 AM CDT

    BRUSSELS (AP) — Official complacency, complex rules and spotty oversight have left the European Union's leading institutions vulnerable to corruption, an independent report says. The report, from the non-governmental watchdog organization Transparency International, claims to be the first comprehensive survey of how the European Commission, European Parliament and other EU institutions are acting to ensure standards of integrity, transparency and accountability. The 244-page document was made...

  • Poll finds Colorado Sen. Mark Udall, Rep. Cory Gardner neck-and-neck in tight US Senate race
    Apr 24, 2014 7:02 AM CDT

    DENVER (AP) — Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Udall is about even with his Republican challenger, U.S. Rep. Cory Gardner, according to a poll released Thursday that confirms Colorado's Senate race is one of the nation's most competitive. The Quinnipiac University poll shows Udall has the support of 45 percent of voters, compared with Gardner's 44 percent. That's well within the poll's margin of error of plus or minus 2.7 percentage points. Colorado's Senate race is expected to be one of the most expensive...

  • Nigeria's Forcados oil export terminal still closed; oil theft at 300,000 barrels per day
    Apr 24, 2014 6:51 AM CDT

    WARRI, Nigeria (AP) — Shell Nigeria's Forcados oil export terminal remains closed seven weeks after it was shut down to repair a sabotaged undersea pipeline, a spokesman said Thursday, amid growing concerns about the industrial levels of oil theft in the world's 13th largest oil producer. Shell will not say how much oil is not being exported, though Forcados is one of the country's biggest terminals with capacity to export 400,000 barrels a day — more than one fifth of Nigeria's estimated daily...

  • Crude oil rebounds to near $102 a barrel on Ukraine uncertainty, export woes in Libya, Nigeria
    Apr 24, 2014 6:44 AM CDT

    The price of oil rebounded to near $102 a barrel Thursday on worries about tensions in Ukraine and continued concerns about crude exports from Libya and Nigeria. By early afternoon in Europe, U.S. crude for June delivery was up 34 cents to $101.78 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Wednesday, the Nymex contract fell 31 cents. Brent crude, an international benchmark for oil, was up 15 cents to $109.26 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London. Ukraine...

  • WHITE HOUSE NOTEBOOK: Obama kicks around with robot, meets with kidnap victims' relatives
    Apr 24, 2014 6:37 AM CDT

    TOKYO (AP) — The voice was slightly halting, childlike. "Welcome to Miraikan, Mr. President, it is a pleasure to meet you." President Barack Obama bowed, looking delighted. His greeter, after all, was a 55-inch-tall, give or take, humanoid robot with the look of a diminutive Star Wars storm trooper. "It's nice to meet you, too," Obama said, pausing to watch the robot, named ASIMO, perform during a tour of the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation. Despite Obama's background in...

  • Japan says talks with US on Pacific trade pact halted for now with no resolution in sight
    Apr 24, 2014 6:25 AM CDT

    TOKYO (AP) — Talks between the United States and Japan on a Pacific Rim trade pact have halted for now without any resolution in sight, spoiling plans for a showcase deal during President Barack Obama's visit to Tokyo. Economy minister Akira Amari, Japan's top negotiator, said too many issues remained unresolved and further working-level talks will be needed to reach a market-opening pact as part of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Amari told reporters Thursday that no end was in sight. He described...

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