BAGHDAD (Reuters) - A car bomb killed 12 people and wounded 30 in Baghdad's mainly Shi'ite Muslim Kadhamiya neighbourhood on Thursday evening, police said. The explosion was the fourth attack in Shi'ite districts of the capital in two weeks. "Cars are set ablaze...this place has been targeted several times as it's very crowded," a policeman near the blast scene said. He said the bomb detonated near shops and restaurants. (Reporting by Raheem Salman; Writing by Oliver Holmes, Editing by Angus MacSwan)
A prime suspect in the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank has been charged with organising and financing the crime, Israeli security officials said Thursday. The deaths, which Israel immediately blamed on Hamas, triggered a series of events that led to a devastating 50-day war in Gaza that killed more than 2,100 Palestinians and 71 Israelis. Israel's internal security service Shin Bet accused Hossam Qawasmeh, who was arrested on July 11, of organising the June 12 kidnapping and spending some 220,000 shekels ($61,300, 47,200 euros) on weapons and cars used in the crime. According to the charge sheet seen by AFP, Qawasmeh was charged in a military court for "transferring enemy funds", carrying out services for an illegal organisation (Hamas) and "deliberately causing the death" of the three Israelis.
President Barack Obama tapped Silicon Valley for two key positions on his technology policy team on Thursday, naming Megan Smith from Google as his chief technology officer and Alexander Macgillivray, formerly of Twitter, as a deputy. Smith was vice president of the "Google X" lab that worked on projects like driverless cars and Google Glass eyewear, and led acquisitions for the company like Picasa and Google Maps.
(Reuters) - Actor Tom Hanks, British rock star Sting and comedian Lily Tomlin are to receive this year's Kennedy Center Honors, one of the top cultural prizes in the United States. "Let's Stay Together" singer Al Green and ballet dancer Patricia McBride will round out the five 2014 honorees in recognition of their lifetime contributions to U.S. "Al Green's iconic voice stirs our souls in a style that is all his own; Tom Hanks has a versatility that ranks him among the greatest actors of any generation," the Kennedy Center said in a statement.
An Ohio man has been charged with aggravated murder in the beating deaths of four men found in separate houses in a small central Ohio town this week, authorities said on Thursday. Donald Hoffman, 41, had been taken into custody on Tuesday as a person of interest in the deaths of the men in Bucyrus, Ohio, and was being held on a probation violation, the Crawford County Sheriff's Office said. They have been identified as Billy Jack Chatman, 55, Freelin Hensley, 67, Darrell Lewis, 65, and Gerald Lee Smith, 65.
Every minute, cancer takes a life in the United States — that's more than 1,500 Americans every single day. In fact, cancer is the second leading cause of death in our country, and we need to fight it now before it becomes the leading cause. For me, the battle is personal. I lost my husband Jay and my sister Emily to cancer.
One person commits suicide every 40 seconds -- more than all the yearly victims of wars and natural disaster -- with the highest toll among the elderly, the United Nations said Thursday. In its first report on suicide, the UN's World Health Organisation blamed intense media coverage when celebrities kill themselves for fuelling the problem.
By Will Dunham WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The word big does not do justice to a massive, long-necked dinosaur that shook the Earth in Argentina about 77 million years ago. Try colossal, enormous, gargantuan and stupendous - and you might come close to an accurate description of this behemoth, known to scientists as Dreadnoughtus schrani. Paleontologist Kenneth Lacovara of Drexel University in Philadelphia, who discovered the dinosaur and led the effort for its excavation and analysis, said the scientists calculated its weight on the basis of the bones in its upper arm and thigh. Dreadnoughtus weighed more than an adult sperm whale or a herd of African elephants.
By Mustafa Andalib GHAZNI Afghanistan (Reuters) - Taliban insurgents detonated truck bombs and fired rocket-propelled grenades outside the office of Afghanistan's spy agency and a police compound in the central town of Ghazni on Thursday, killing 18 people, the provincial governor said. More than 150 people were wounded in the attack, the biggest in recent weeks, as Afghanistan's leadership grapples with a political crisis and a security vacuum as most foreign troops prepare to leave the country. Ghazni provincial governor Musa Khan Akbarzada said a group of 19 insurgents was involved in the simultaneous attacks on the local office of the National Directorate of Security and a quick reaction team housed in the police building.
Russia has several thousand combat troops and hundreds of tanks and armored vehicles inside Ukraine, a NATO military officer said on Thursday. NATO had previously said that "well over 1,000" Russian troops were operating inside Ukraine, marking a significant escalation of Moscow's military involvement in the country. "We are still seeing several thousand Russian combat troops on the ground inside Ukraine, equipped with hundreds of tanks and armored vehicles, so (there is) no substantial change in the disposition of Russian forces inside Ukraine," the NATO officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters on the sidelines of a NATO summit in Wales.