Ukraine launches anti-terror operation against pro-Russian forces
Ukraine's acting president said Tuesday that a military operation to quash a pro-Russian insurgency has started in eastern Ukraine after more than a week of seizures of government building in the latest standoff to grip the country.
Oleksandr Turchynov said the “anti-terrorist” operation began in the early morning hours in the northern Donetsk region, where the majority of the pro-Russian forces are located, The Wall Street Journal reported.
At least 71 killed in massive explosion at bus station in Nigerian capital
ABUJA, Nigeria – A massive explosion ripped through a bus station during the morning rush hour in Nigeria's capital, killing at least 71 people and wounding 124 in a bombing that marked the bloodiest terrorist attack ever in Abuja.
President Goodluck Jonathan visited the scene and blamed Boko Haram, an Islamic extremist group which operates in the northeast of Nigeria and which has been threatening to attack Nigeria's capital. One official said he believed the bomb buried in the earth while the emergency management agency said the explosives were apparently hidden in a vehicle.
US threatens fresh sanctions against Russia over Ukraine
WASHINGTON – Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew is warning Russia that it could face tougher economic sanctions because of its actions in Ukraine but so far other economic powers are showing a reluctance to go as far as the United States.
Lew delivered his warning Thursday to Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, telling him that the Obama administration was willing to impose "additional significant sanctions" if Russia escalates the Ukraine situation. Treasury said in a statement that Lew described Russia's annexation of Crimea as "illegal and illegitimate."
Chernobyl cap could be casualty of Ukraine crisis
Ukraine's political and economic meltdown could spell doom - or at least delay - for a containment dome being built over Chernobyl.
Construction of the coated steel, climate-controlled sarcophagus was begun in 2010 to cover the site of the infamous 1986 meltdown, scene of the worst nuclear accident in history. But finishing the $2.1 billion project requires money and, likely, stability from the Ukraine government and international backers. Planned in sections comprised of two 300-foot-high arches that will span the site and then be walled on the sides, the project will never be completed by the original goal of 2015, officials acknowledge.
MORE PINGS RAISE HOPES PLANE WILL BE FOUND SOON
PERTH, Australia (AP) -- The frustrating monthlong search for the Malaysian jetliner received a tremendous boost when a navy ship detected two more signals that most likely emanated from the aircraft's black boxes. The Australian official coordinating the search expressed hope Wednesday that the wreckage will soon be found.
Angus Houston, head of a joint agency coordinating the search for the missing plane in the southern Indian Ocean, said that the Australian naval vessel Ocean Shield picked up the two signals on Tuesday, and that an analysis of two sounds detected in the same area on Saturday showed they were consistent with a plane's black boxes.
HAGEL, CHANG AIR DIFFERENCES OVER DISPUTED ISLANDS
BEIJING (AP) -- The defense chiefs of China and the U.S. faced off Tuesday over Beijing's escalating territorial disputes in the region, with U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel telling his Chinese counterparts they do not have the right to unilaterally establish an air defense zone over disputed islands with no consultation.
And he said America will protect Japan, the Philippines and other allies locked in disputes with China, as laid out in U.S. treaty obligations.
2 NEW PINGS SOUND 'JUST LIKE' BLACK BOX BEACONS
PERTH, Australia (AP) -- An Australian ship detected two distinct, long-lasting sounds underwater that are consistent with the pings from aircraft black boxes in a major break in the monthlong hunt for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet, the search coordinator said Monday.
Navy specialists were urgently trying to pick up the signal again so they can triangulate its position and go to the next step of sending an unmanned miniature submarine into the depths to try to identify plane wreckage.
AP PHOTOGRAPHER KILLED, REPORTER WOUNDED
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- A veteran Associated Press photographer was killed and an AP reporter was wounded on Friday when an Afghan policeman opened fire while they were sitting in their car in eastern Afghanistan.
Anja Niedringhaus, 48, an internationally acclaimed German photographer, was killed instantly, according to an AP Television News freelancer who witnessed the shooting.
US SECRETLY BUILT 'CUBAN TWITTER' TO STIR UNREST
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. government masterminded the creation of a "Cuban Twitter" - a communications network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba, built with secret shell companies and financed through foreign banks, The Associated Press has learned.
The project, which lasted more than two years and drew tens of thousands of subscribers, sought to evade Cuba's stranglehold on the Internet with a primitive social media platform. First, the network would build a Cuban audience, mostly young people; then, the plan was to push them toward dissent.
BLAST KILLS 6 AT AFGHAN INTERIOR MINISTRY COMPOUND
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- A suicide bomber wearing a military uniform struck the heavily fortified Interior Ministry compound in the heart of Kabul on Wednesday and killed six police officers, authorities said, in an escalation of Taliban violence aimed at disrupting this weekend's presidential election.
Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi said the bomber got through several checkpoints to reach the ministry gate before detonating his explosives. An Interior Ministry statement said the bomber was among other men in uniform entering the compound.
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