National News from Yahoo

AP Interview: Syria candidate praises Bashar Assad

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — One of two candidates challenging Bashar Assad in next month's election has almost nothing but praise for the Syrian president, saying his handling of the country's conflict has proven he is a "great leader." His only, slight criticism is that officials in Assad's government have mismanaged the economy.


Thai army deploys against protesters

BANGKOK (AP) — Hundreds of demonstrators shouting "Freedom!" and "Democracy!" gathered Sunday near a major shopping mall in downtown Bangkok to denounce the country's May 22 coup despite a lockdown by soldiers of some of the city's major intersections.


NJ-bound plane, 7 aboard, catches fire on takeoff

BEDFORD, Mass. (AP) — A private plane with seven people aboard crashed and erupted into fire Saturday night as it was leaving Hanscom Field in Massachusetts, authorities said.

Despite dustup, NY Gov Cuomo gets liberal backing

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo beat back a challenge from the left Saturday, narrowly winning the nomination of the Working Families Party with a promise to support liberal priorities while taking on state senators who have blocked them.


U.S. soldier freed in Afghanistan, 5 Taliban prisoners leave Gitmo

By Warren Strobel WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The last U.S. prisoner of war held in Afghanistan was handed over to U.S. Special Operations forces on Saturday, in a dramatic swap for five Taliban detainees who were released from Guantanamo Bay prison and flown to Qatar. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl had been held for nearly five years by Afghan militants and his release, following years of on-and-off negotiations, suddenly became possible after harder-line factions of the Afghan Taliban apparently shifted course and agreed to back it, according to U.S. officials. The U.S. forces, who had flown in by helicopter, were on the ground very briefly, said the officials, who would not specify the precise location of the handover.


Pages