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Ukraine moving special forces to control Odessa

By Oleksander Miliukov ODESSA, Ukraine (Reuters) - Ukraine's Interior Minister said on Monday he had drafted a new special forces unit into the southern port city of Odessa after the "outrageous" failure of police to tackle pro-Russian separatists in a weekend of violence that killed dozens. The violence in Odessa, a southwestern port with a broad ethnic mix from Russians and Ukrainians to Georgians and Tatars, is seen as something as a turning point in Kiev; Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said the new Odessa force was based on "civil activists who wanted to help the Black Sea city "in these difficult days". The Odessa violence was the deadliest since Moscow-oriented president Viktor Yanukovich fled to Russia in February and pro-Russian militants launched uprisings in the industrial east.

Schools seek changes to healthier lunch rules

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — Becky Domokos-Bays of Alexandria City Public Schools has served her students whole-grain pasta 20 times. Each time, she said, they rejected it.


Vatican poised for 2nd grilling this year on abuse

GENEVA (AP) — The Vatican is bracing for its second grilling at the United Nations this year over the global priest sex abuse scandal, this time from the standpoint of torture and inhuman treatment.


Acrobats injured in fall as circus stunt goes awry

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Authorities are trying to determine what caused a support frame to collapse during an aerial hair-hanging stunt during a circus performance, sending eight acrobats crashing to the ground.


Malaysian plane's likely flight path gets 2nd look

SYDNEY (AP) — An international panel of experts will re-examine all data gathered in the nearly two-month hunt for the missing Malaysia jet to ensure search crews who have been scouring a desolate patch of ocean for the plane have been looking in the right place, officials said Monday.


Biplane crashes at Northern California air show

FAIRFIELD, Calif. (AP) — A 77-year-old pilot was killed when his vintage biplane crashed on a runway Sunday while he was performing an upside down stunt at a Northern California air show.

Pistorius defense enters critical phase at trial

PRETORIA, South Africa (AP) — Oscar Pistorius' murder trial enters a critical phase Monday as his defense team attempts to recover from a faltering start and reinforce the disabled athlete's claim that he fatally shot girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp by mistake because he was overwhelmed by a long-held fear of violent crime.


Outgoing leader's rival wins Panama's presidency

PANAMA CITY (AP) — Panamanians delivered a rebuke to President Ricardo Martinelli's attempt to extend his grip on power, electing as his successor a former ally turned rival in one of the toughest-fought contests since democracy was restored two decades ago.


Exclusive: CIA Fires Its Terror-Fighters

The intelligence agency’s irregular forces have been key to the fight against the Taliban since 2001. Now they’re being withdrawn—just as a bloody fighting season heats up.


Acrobats fall during Ringling Bros. circus stunt

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A platform collapsed during an aerial hair-hanging stunt at a circus performance Sunday, sending eight acrobats plummeting to the ground. Nine performers were seriously injured in the fall, including a dancer below, while an unknown number of others suffered less serious injuries.


Parker leads Spurs past Mavs in Game 7

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Tony Parker scored 32 points and the San Antonio Spurs led by as many as 31 on their way to 119-96 victory over the Dallas Mavericks, closing out a tense first-round series Sunday in seven games.


U.S. Watches While Ukraine Burns

As violence worsened in Ukraine over the weekend, U.S. lawmakers appeared on the Sunday talk shows to call for new and harsher sanctions on Russia. Many U.S. officials believe the government of Russian President Vladimir Putin is orchestrating the widespread takeover of government buildings in east Ukraine by ethnic Russians who want to see their part of the country annexed by Russia.  Russia, which annexed the Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula two months ago after widespread protests reportedly backed by Russian agents, currently has tens of thousands of troops massed on the Ukrainian border. 


Northern Ireland police free Gerry Adams

Antrim (United Kingdom) (AFP) - Northern Ireland police on Sunday freed Gerry Adams after four days of questioning over a notorious IRA murder, but the republican leader could still face charges when a file is sent to prosecutors. "A 65-year-old man arrested by detectives investigating the abduction and murder of Jean McConville has been released pending report to PPS (Public Prosecution Service for Northern Ireland)," said a statement issued by the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI). The PPS must now decide whether there is enough evidence to charge the leader of the Sinn Fein political party, or whether prosecution would be in the public interest. Adams, a key figure in the peace process, was arrested on Wednesday in connection with the death of Jean McConville, a mother-of-ten abducted from her home in 1972.


'Delusional Minority' driving GOP on Benghazi, Plouffe aays

There was “no conspiracy” behind the White House’s decision not to release an internal email related to Benghazi until this week, but a “very loud, delusional minority” is driving the Republican Party to politicize the issue, former Obama White House senior adviser David Plouffe said...


Focus now on Afghan families displaced by slide

ABI BARIK, Afghanistan (AP) — As Afghans observed a day of mourning Sunday for the hundreds of people killed in a horrific landslide, authorities tried to help the 700 families displaced by the torrent of mud that swept through their village.


9 acrobats seriously hurt after falling at circus

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Nine acrobats were seriously injured Sunday after falling 25 to 40 feet from an aerial platform during a circus performance, a safety official said.

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