National News from Yahoo

101-year-old weather observer gets a place in the sun

It takes only a couple of minutes, twice a day, but 101-year-old Richard Hendrickson is fiercely proud that he has done the same thing for his country and community nearly every day since Herbert Hoover was in the White House in 1930.


Nigerian president meets parents of abducted girls

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — President Goodluck Jonathan met for the first time Tuesday with parents of 219 kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls and dozens of classmates who managed to escape from their Islamic extremist captors.


UK plans new laws against female genital mutilation

By Kylie MacLellan and Emma Batha LONDON (Reuters) - Britain will introduce new laws to combat female genital mutilation (FGM) including making it compulsory for teachers and health workers to report cases, Prime Minister David Cameron said on Tuesday. "It's absolutely clear what we are trying to achieve...and that is to outlaw the practices of female genital mutilation and childhood and early forced marriage; Around 103,000 women aged between 15 and 49, and another 10,000 girls aged under 15 who have migrated to England and Wales are estimated to have undergone FGM, according to a report on Tuesday from City University London. Cameron said ending FGM and child marriage was a global challenge on a par with eradicating poverty and tackling diseases.


Palestinians propose Gaza ceasefire, five-day peace talks

The Palestinian leadership proposed to Egypt a plan for a Gaza ceasefire to be followed by five days of negotiations to stop fighting between Palestinians and Israel, Palestinian official Azzam al-Ahmed told reporters in Cairo on Tuesday. "The Palestinian leadership offered a new suggestion in the framework of the Egyptian initiative for a ceasefire followed immediately by negotiations lasting five days," Fatah official al-Ahmed said. Writing by Shadia Nasralla;


Victim of 'Slenderman' stabbing sent Purple Heart

WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin girl stabbed 19 times, allegedly by classmates trying to please a fictional online character, has received a military Purple Heart from an anonymous donor.


Despite crush of children, illegal immigration low

WASHINGTON (AP) — Border Patrol agents stationed in South Texas are the busiest in the country, arresting tens of thousands of children illegally crossing the border without their parents and thousands more families with children.


Court deals setback to Obama health care law

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court delivered a serious setback to President Barack Obama's health care law Tuesday, potentially derailing billions of dollars in subsidies for many low- and middle-income people who bought policies.


Israeli soldier missing as Gaza fighting rages on

JERUSALEM (AP) — An Israeli soldier is missing following a deadly battle in the Gaza Strip, a defense official said Tuesday, as Israeli airstrikes pummeled a wide range of locations along the coastal area and diplomatic efforts intensified to end the two week war that has killed more than 600 Palestinians and 29 Israelis.

Missing Israeli soldier in Gaza presumed dead

By Maayan Lubell JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel said on Tuesday it had failed to trace any remains of one of its soldiers whom it believes died in the Gaza Strip two days ago, and whom Hamas has said it captured. The Israeli military named the missing man as Oron Shaul, 21, who was traveling in an armored vehicle that was hit with an anti-tank missile fired at it by Palestinian fighters in Gaza on Sunday. "The efforts to identify the seventh soldier are ongoing and have yet to be determined," it added. Hamas's armed wing announced on Sunday it had captured an Israeli soldier identified as Shaul Aron, revealing his army ID number, but not saying whether he was dead or alive.


Is this evolution? Humans getting taller, fatter, older

Humans are getting taller; Most of the transformations that occur within such a short time period "are simply the developmental responses of organisms to changed conditions," such as differences in nutrition, food distribution, health care and hygiene practices, said Stephen Stearns, a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at Yale University. But the origin of these changes may be much deeper and more complex than that, said Stearns, pointing to a study finding that British soldiers have shot up in height in the past century. "Evolution has shaped the developmental program that can respond flexibly to changes in the environment," Stearns said.


Putin: I'll handle Ukraine rebels, West should butt out

President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday Russia would use its influence with separatists in east Ukraine to allow a full investigation into the downing of a Malaysian airliner, but said the West must put pressure on Kiev to end hostilities. Putin also called on Western powers not to meddle in Russia's domestic affairs and said steps were needed to strengthen the country's military capabilities because of moves by NATO and to protect the economy from "external threats". "We are being called on to use our influence with the separatists in southeastern Ukraine. Putin's comments were his first detailed response in public to Western criticism of Russia's role in Ukraine since the Malaysian airliner was brought down on Thursday, killing 298 people.


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