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Updated: 2 hours 35 min ago

GOP White House hopefuls deride gay marriage ruling

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 20:02

DENVER (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee told conservatives Saturday that the Supreme Court tried to "unwrite the laws of nature and the laws of nature's God" when it legalized gay marriage across the nation.

European tour operators evacuate thousands from Tunisia after attack

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 19:13

Tour companies were evacuating thousands of foreign holidaymakers from Tunisia on Saturday, a day after a gunman killed 39 people at a beach hotel in an attack claimed by Islamic State. Tunisia's Prime Minister Habib Essid said most of the dead were British, and Britain's foreign office said 15 Britons had been confirmed killed in the attack in the resort town of Sousse, 140 km (90 miles) south of the capital Tunis. It was the second major attack in the North African country this year, following an Islamist militant assault on the Bardo Museum in Tunis in March when gunmen killed a group of foreign visitors as they arrived by bus.

Activist takes down Confederate flag outside South Carolina capitol

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 17:15

An activist climbed a flagpole outside the South Carolina state capitol early on Saturday and took down the Confederate flag, state officials said, a day after U.S. President Barack Obama called the banner a symbol of racial oppression. Two people were arrested and charged with defacing a monument, the South Carolina Department of Public Safety said in a statement. Brittany Newsome climbed the flag pole and James Ian Tyson stood inside a fence and assisted her, police said.

Manhunt for remaining New York prison escapee intensifies

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 17:02

By Pete DeMola MALONE, N.Y. (Reuters) - A manhunt for a convicted murderer who escaped from a New York state maximum security prison focused on a rural area near the Canadian border on Saturday, a day after his fellow escapee was killed. After Richard Matt was killed by U.S. Border Patrol officers, a tight security perimeter was set up in the area, where Sweat was believed to be holed up. About 1,200 federal, state and local law enforcement officers, were searching through a 22 square-mile (57 sq km) area along a highway between the towns of Malone and Duane in northern New York, New York State Police said in a statement.

Iran, US warn of 'hard work' at tough nuclear talks

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 12:17

Iran and the US showed little sign Saturday of an early breakthrough in last-ditch nuclear talks with both sides warning of "hard work" ahead and France stressing key issues remain unresolved. US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met twice during the day for what is set to be the final push to seal an accord curtailing Tehran's nuclear programme after almost two years of negotiations.

Terror on the beach: Tourists recount Tunisia attack horrors

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 12:03

Tunisia's postcard destination for tourists is reeling from the terror that blighted another day of play at the Mediterranean seaside resort of Sousse. A man armed with a Kalashnikov and grenades gunned down tourists on a private beach, and then moved methodically through the grounds of a luxury hotel — to the swimming pool, reception area and offices.

Baltimore police open probe into new shooting of unarmed black man

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 10:36

Police have opened an investigation into the killing of an unarmed black man by law enforcement officers outside Baltimore, authorities said on Saturday, two months after the city was rocked by protests over the death of another African-American who was taken into custody. The latest incident unfolded in the Baltimore suburb of Owing Mills, where three officers fired at least 19 rounds and killed Spencer Lee McCain, 41, during a domestic disturbance on Thursday. The Baltimore County police's homicide unit is investigating, police said in a statement Saturday.

Fire injures scores attending party at Taiwan water park

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 09:29

A fire on a music stage spread into a crowd of spectators at a party Saturday night at a Taiwan water park, injuring more than 200 people, authorities said.

New York manhunt for prison escapee heats up after accomplice killed

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 09:20

A day after killing the first of two convicted murderers who escaped from a maximum security prison in New York, hundreds of law enforcement officers were scouring an area near the Canadian border on Saturday in hopes of apprehending his accomplice. After Richard Matt was fatally shot by U.S. Border Patrol officers, a tight security perimeter was set up in the area where Sweat was believed to be holed up. New York State Police declined to provide additional information about the search and would not say why they thought Sweat was in the area.

Greece's future in balance as creditors reject aid extension

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 09:08

Greece's place in the euro currency bloc looked increasingly shaky on Saturday after eurozone nations rejected a monthlong extension to its bailout program and the prime minister called for a risky popular vote on the country's financial future.

Charleston suspect's life a troubled road to radicalization

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 08:33

The people who know Dylann Storm Roof — the people who watched his progression from a sweet child to a disturbed man — are struggling with guilt. How could they have missed the signs? Could they have done something to prevent the deaths of nine innocents at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church?

Activist takes down Confederate flag outside South Carolina state capitol

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 07:18

The Civil War-era flag has been a focal point for soul-searching across the southern United States in the aftermath of the fatal shooting last week of nine African Americans during a Bible study session at a historic church in Charleston, South Carolina. The suspect in the shootings, Dylann Roof, 21, had posed with a Confederate flag in photos posted on a website that also displayed a racist manifesto. Following the removal of the flag in Columbia, two people were arrested and charged with defacing a monument, the South Carolina Department of Public Safety said in a statement.

In custody, suspect in French terror attack keeps quiet

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 06:07

A detained truck driver with a history of radical Islamic ties is refusing to speak to police investigators over his implication in an explosion and beheading in southeastern France, a French official said Saturday, adding that one of the other suspects initially arrested has been released without charge.

Surviving inmate still on the loose after 1 escapee killed

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 05:25

The shooting death of one escaped killer brought new energy to the three-week hunt for a second escaped murderer as helicopters, search dogs and hundreds of law enforcement officers converged on a wooded area 30 miles from the prison.

Big business on winning side in U.S. top court's major rulings

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 05:14

By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Big business was on the winning side in the U.S. Supreme Court's two major cases of the year, with hundreds of employers pushing hard in favor of gay marriage and the healthcare industry backing the insurance subsidies available under Obamacare. The court on Thursday rejected a conservative challenge to President Barack Obama's healthcare law on a 6-3 vote and, a day later, ruled 5-4 that gay marriage should be legal nationwide. Both cases were largely seen through the lens of national ideological wars, with liberals backing gay marriage and Obamacare and conservatives opposing them.

Tourists scramble to leave Tunisia after seaside massacre

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 03:32

Thousands of scared foreign holidaymakers were being flown from Tunisia on Saturday after an Islamist gunman killed 38 people, most of them British tourists, at a beach resort. The Islamic State jihadist group, which controls swathes of Iraq and Syria, claimed responsibility for the attack, the deadliest in Tunisia's recent history.

For many black Americans, Confederate flag debate a distraction

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 03:14

As calls grow to remove the Confederate flag from public spaces across America's South, Vanessa White says she questions whether that would mark real progress for black Americans like her. "We never felt like we were allowed near normal life," said White, speaking from the tidy, two-story home she purchased last year in the struggling suburb south of Los Angeles. Across the country, African Americans are applauding a fast-growing movement to remove the Confederate flag from public life after last week's racially charged massacre of nine black worshipers in a Charleston church.

Bill Cosby's lawyer says revealing court documents would cause 'embarrassment'

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 02:02

(Reuters) - A lawyer for Bill Cosby argued that unsealing court documents from a 2005 Pennsylvania sexual assault case filed against the comedian would cause severe "embarrassment," court records show. Attorney George Gowen asked in a motion filed in federal court on Wednesday to keep under seal records from the case brought by Andrea Constand, who alleged Cosby tricked her into consuming drugs before he sexually assaulted her. Gowen wrote that Cosby had explained in a previous filing that "his embarrassment at the release of the discovery motions — deposition excerpts about sex, money, health, and marriage — would be severe." While Constand's case was settled for an undisclosed sum years ago, the Associated Press has asked the court to release the documents.

Obama sheds cool style for 'fearless' final lap in office

Fri, 06/26/2015 - 21:20

By Roberta Rampton, Richard Cowan and Steve Holland WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Barack Obama has reached the stage of his presidency where if he wants to break out in song publicly, as he did with “Amazing Grace” in a eulogy on Friday, then he’s going to do it. With a year-and-a-half left in office, Obama is shedding some of his trademark “no drama” style for a looser approach, admitting that he feels more fearless and liberated. The icing on the cake came on Friday with the high court’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage, a move Obama said was a "big step" toward equality for Americans.

California governor blocks parole of killer who buried man alive

Fri, 06/26/2015 - 20:56
California Governor Jerry Brown has blocked the parole of a convicted murderer who beat and buried alive a mentally disabled man three decades ago, his office said on Friday. David Weidert, 52, was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the 1980 murder of Fresno-area resident Michael Morganti, 20. A California parole board ruled in January that Weidert was no longer dangerous, leaving the possibility of his parole from the state's overcrowded prison system up to Brown.