Iranian president defends interim nuclear deal
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:25:05 -0500
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran's president defended an interim nuclear deal that eases some of the international community's crippling economic sanctions in return for a freeze on part of the Islamic Republic's uranium enrichment activities, saying Saturday that improving the economy is as important as maintaining a peaceful nuclear program.
Mandela funeral cortege to travel round Pretoria for three days
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:24:22 -0500
Nelson Mandela's funeral cortege will travel through the streets of the capital Pretoria on three consecutive days, the South African government said Saturday, encouraging people to line the route. "Every morning, when the remains leave the mortuary to the lying in state, those routes will be made public," said government spokesman Neo Momodu. Mandela's remains will lie in state at the Union Buildings -- the official seat of the South African government -- on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Thai premier: No quick end to political impasse
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:19:50 -0500
BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand's prime minister said Saturday that while she sees no quick end to her country's deep political impasse, her government is willing to negotiate with opponents to end the crisis.
North Korea frees U.S. Korean War veteran after seven weeks
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:19:30 -0500
By Ben Blanchard and Michael Martina BEIJING (Reuters) - North Korea freed an 85-year-old retired American soldier on Saturday after detaining him for more than a month for crimes it said he committed during the Korean War six decades ago. The veteran, Merrill E. Newman, flew to China from North Korea in the morning. Hours later he left on a United Airlines flight to San Francisco to be reunited with his family, sources at Beijing airport said. North Korea's official KCNA news agency earlier said he was being deported on humanitarian grounds and because he had admitted to his wrongdoing and apologized.
Hagel lands in Kabul amid chaos over security deal
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:19:06 -0500
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is visiting with American forces in Afghanistan amid a stubborn stand-off between the U.S. and Afghan leaders over a security agreement that President Hamid Karzai still refuses to sign despite increasing pressure from diplomatic and defense officials.
UN nuclear watchdog inspectors arrive in Iran
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:11:38 -0500
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — An Iranian news agency says inspectors from the U.N. nuclear agency have arrived in Tehran to visit a nuclear facility that has long been off-limits to outside experts.
Obama takes up new agenda item after battering on healthcare
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:08:51 -0500
By Steve Holland and Susan Cornwell WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama, battered by weeks of turmoil over the malfunctioning HealthCare.Gov website, turned to a fresh item on his agenda on Saturday as he pressured Republicans in Congress to extend benefits for jobless Americans. It was a sign Obama may be slowly turning the corner from one of the worst crises of his five years in office, emerging bruised and weakened from the troubled rollout of his signature healthcare law, even as big challenges remain. "For decades, Congress has voted to offer relief to job-seekers - including when the unemployment rate was lower than it is today," Obama said in his weekly address. Attending memorial services in South Africa next week for late South African President Nelson Mandela and then launching into holiday season festivities will also allow for a change of subject from the healthcare controversy.
Putin spokesman: customs union not discussed
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:04:49 -0500
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — The spokesman for Russia's president says Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and Vladimir Putin didn't discuss Ukraine joining a Russian-led customs union, one of the issues driving large protests now in their third week in Kiev.
Obama calls on Congress to extend jobless benefits
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:02:56 -0500
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is calling on Congress to extend benefits for the long-term unemployed before they expire at the end of the year.
U.S. veteran Newman on flight home after release from North Korea
Sat, 07 Dec 2013 06:01:23 -0500
An 85-year-old U.S. veteran of the Korean War detained for more than a month in North Korea left Beijing on Saturday on a flight to San Francisco, hours after being deported from the secretive state, sources at the airport said. Merrill Newman, who had earlier arrived in Beijing from Pyongyang, left China on a United Airlines direct flight to California, where he lives in a retirement community in Palo Alto. North Korea, which had detained him over his role in special forces operations in the war six decades ago, said he had been released on humanitarian grounds and because he had admitted to his wrongdoing and apologized.
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