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Damascus mortar fire kills five

Rebel mortar fire on a government-held district of Damascus killed five people Tuesday, state media said, as a car bomb killed one person in a pro-government area of third city Homs. Five people were also wounded by the mortar fire on the south Damascus district of Kissweh, the state SANA news agency reported. The car bomb in Homs wounded 14 people in a district mainly inhabited members of the same Alawite community as President Bashar al-Assad, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.


France sells GDF Suez stake in bid to raise funds for Alstom buy

France's cash-strapped government on Tuesday put its 3.1-percent stake in energy giant GDF Suez up for sale, in a bid to raise funds to buy a controlling stake in Alstom. At the close, GDF Suez shares stood at 20.80 euros, valuing the sale at 1.56 billion euros. The proceeds from the sale of 75 million shares to selected investors "can be used to finance the state's purchase of a stake in Alstom," France's economy and finance ministers said in a statement. France on Sunday clinched a deal to take a 20-percent stake in Alstom, a move aimed at preserving the country's strategic interests in the face of a bidding war for the engineering giant.


17 Muslims killed in C.Africa's latest sectarian strife

Gunmen have killed 17 Muslims at a camp in the centre of the strife-torn Central African Republic in the latest sectarian violence to wrack the impoverished country, peacekeepers said on Tuesday. "Seventeen people, all of them from the (Muslim) Fulani minority, were killed on Monday by young gunmen claiming to be from the (mostly Christian) anti-balaka" militia near the town of Bambari, an officer from the African Union force told AFP on condition of anonymity. The Central African Republic has seen more than a year of unrest, with violence between ex-Seleka rebels and the largely Christian militias leaving tens of thousands dead and about a quarter of the population of some 4.5 million displaced. The central Bambari region, which lies some 400 kilometres (250 miles) from Bangui and where the ex-Seleka rebels have established their new headquarters, has seen several outbursts of violence this month.


Cameroon troops kill 8 suspected Boko Haram gunmen

Yaoundé (AFP) - Cameroonian security forces killed eight gunmen believed to be members of Boko Haram, the Islamist group sowing terror in neighbouring Nigeria, a paramilitary official said Tuesday.


Beirut blast killed Lebanese security officer

An overnight suicide blast in Beirut's southern suburbs, Hezbollah's main bastion, killed a security officer who had tried to stop the bomber, a Lebanese security source said Tuesday. No one has claimed the attack, but an audio recording posted on YouTube by a Sunni militant group said there would be more "strikes" if the Shiite movement does not pull out of Syria. An army statement said a suicide attacker driving a white Mercedes "blew himself up at an army checkpoint at the Tayuneh roundabout (in southern Beirut), wounding several civilians." The official National News Agency reported 12 people wounded.


Crowdsourcing NYC’s War on Rats

The Rat Information Portal (RIP)—an interactive public map—and other digital tools will help guide amplified rat extermination efforts in New York City this summer.


Boehner: House Republicans weighing U.S. Export-Import Bank renewal

U.S. House of Representatives Republicans are working on how to approach reauthorization of the U.S. Export-Import Bank, which helps finance exports of U.S. goods and services, House Speaker John Boehner said on Tuesday, saying he would listen to all sides on the "thorny" issue. Some House Republicans, including Boehner's newly elected deputy, oppose renewing the bank's funding. "We are going to continue to work with our members" on whether the bank's role should be taken over by the private sector, said Boehner, sidestepping a question about whether he personally backed reauthorizing the bank. Boehner noted the House Financial Services Committee would have a hearing on Wednesday on the Export-Import Bank.


Second bridge probe linked to Christie is underway: report

A second bridge investigation linked to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is underway, this one focusing on possible securities law violations involving the Pulaski Skyway bridge, the New York Times reported on Tuesday. The new inquiry was prompted by an ongoing investigation into "Bridgegate," the George Washington Bridge traffic scandal that has engulfed Christie, a potential 2016 Republican contender for the White House. Now investigators from the Manhattan District Attorney's Office and the Securities and Exchange Commission are focusing on the Christie administration and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. In bond documents, the Port Authority said the project was part of "Lincoln Tunnel Access Infrastructure Improvements," although the Skyway is more than 9 miles (14 kilometers) south of the Lincoln Tunnel connecting Weehawken, New Jersey and midtown Manhattan in New York City.


Primary Day: 10 Races to Watch

ABC News’ Shushannah Walshe and FiveThirtyEight.com’s Harry Enten, with ABC News’ Caleb Jackson and Elizabeth McLaughlin: The primary season continues, and today is one of the biggest days left on the calendar. Voters in eight states are going to the polls: It’s primary day in...


Majority Disapprove of Obama's Response to Iraq Crisis

More Americans disapprove than approve of Barack Obama’s response to the situation in Iraq, even while the public broadly agrees with his decision not to send U.S. combat forces there. The latest ABC News/Washington Post poll marks the difficulties Obama faces in crafting a popular...


Japan PM Abe unveils economic revival plans

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe unveiled a fresh round of reforms Tuesday, in the latest bid to cement a fragile recovery, his second attempt to fire the "third arrow" of his economic action plan. In a package that has already been heavily trailed, he promised to slash Japan's corporate tax rate -- one of the world's highest at up to 36 percent -- and tackle sectors long sheltered by the state. "The government decided today to make our growth strategy more powerful in a bold manner. "There is neither a taboo nor a sanctuary in the Abe government's growth strategy.


Egypt 'plans new mass trial of 500 Islamists'

Nearly 500 alleged Islamists will go on trial on July 16 over violence in which 44 people died, state media said Tuesday, the latest in a string of mass trials slammed internationally. The trial is part of a relentless crackdown targeting supporters of deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, ousted by the army in July 2013. Hundreds have already been sentenced to death in speedy mass trials condemned by the United Nations and international rights groups. Since Morsi's ouster, a government crackdown on his supporters has seen 15,000 people jailed and sparked clashes in which more than 1,400 people have died.


Mississippi voters deciding tough GOP Senate race

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi voters are choosing a Republican nominee for U.S. Senate, ending one of the state's hardest fought and most expensive races in decades.


Jill Biden making 3 country trip to Africa

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, will make a three-country trip to Africa this summer to promote girls' education and women's participation in government, the economy and civil society.

IRS head says no laws broken in loss of emails

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans in Congress aren't buying the contention by the head of the Internal Revenue Service that he has seen no evidence anyone committed a crime when the agency lost emails that might shed light on the targeting of tea party and other political groups before the 2010 and 2012 elections.


Beirut blast killed Lebanese security officer

An overnight suicide blast in Beirut's southern suburbs, Hezbollah's main bastion, killed a security officer who had tried to stop the bomber, a Lebanese security source told AFP on Tuesday. An army statement earlier said a suicide attacker driving a white Mercedes "blew himself up at an army checkpoint at the Tayuneh roundabout (in southern Beirut), wounding several civilians". The official National News Agency reported 12 people wounded in the blast. On Tuesday, a security source told AFP that a high-ranking General Security Agency officer whom the army had reported missing had "been martyred".


Kurdish leader cites 'new reality' in Iraq

IRBIL, Iraq (AP) — The president of Iraq's ethnic Kurdish region declared Tuesday that "we are facing a new reality and a new Iraq" as the country considers new leadership for its Shiite-led government as an immediate step to curb a Sunni insurgent rampage.


Israel warns Assad forces behind deadly cross-border attack

Israel's Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Tuesday that military forces loyal to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad were behind a cross-border attack that killed an Israeli teenager. The 13-year-old Arab Israeli, the son of a defence ministry contractor, was killed on the Golan Heights on Sunday when a missile hit the car he was in with his father. The army said it was a deliberate attack against Israel, but was initially uncertain as to whether regime or opposition forces were behind it. Israel responded immediately with tank fire, and hours later launched air strikes targeting Syrian military headquarters and positions.


Hillary Clinton to announce youth jobs push

DENVER (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton is encouraging companies to train and hire young people, offering a new jobs pitch during her family's annual domestic policy summit as she considers another presidential campaign.

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