Police kill another black youth just 10 km from Ferguson shooting

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 08:41

Police shot and killed a 23-year-old black male in the northern part of St. Louis, Missouri on Tuesday, just 10 km from and ten days after the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.

Police say he pulled a knife on them after taking energy drinks and sweet treats from a nearby convenience store.

Police Chief Sam Dotson told reporters the officers ordered the 23-year-old man to drop the knife and drew their weapons after he refused. He said the youth told officers, "Shoot me now. Kill me now."

Approximately 100 people were gathered to protest at the site of the shooting nearly three hours after the incident occurred.

Carmen, 69, was at the protest. "Whatever happened did not require two police officers to shoot six times. He was mentally challenged, everyone knew he was mentally challenged, if you didn't know him, you could look at him and tell he was mentally challenged," she said.

Monique Peete was in her house when she heard shots. "Shooting, a lot of shooting, in the daytime in this area, yes. When I did come down, the baby was lying in the middle of the street," she told Xinhua.

"I know this young man, he stands in front of this store and sells his CDs, I have given him money before, I have fed him before, he's not a bad person."

Sheff Pugg, another area resident, also heard the shots. "I was a devastated man to see another one get killed. Less than ten days. They are protesting right on in Ferguson. This gonna be another protest site. It's not fair to keep killing our young kids."

Many reporters that are present to cover Michael Brown incident have shown up at the scene. 

Categories: News

Your Top Plays for Today: AP's Sports Guide

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:57
by  Associated Press Your Top Plays for Today by The Associated Press, Associated Press - 20 August 2014 02:57-04:00

Your Top Plays for Today: AP's Sports Guide



Real Madrid's new signing James Rodriguez scores as the reigning European champion is held to a 1-1 home draw by city rival and Spanish league champion Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the Super Cup.



Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer are seeded one and two respectively for the U.S. Open, meaning they can only meet in the final should they get that far.



Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller will miss the entire 2014 season after injuring his throwing shoulder.



Ten-man Arsenal draws 0-0 at Besiktas in first leg of Champions League qualifier, while Bayer Leverkusen wins 3-2 at Copenhagen.



A former Washington Capitals co-owner and a London-based investor have bought a minority stake in the NHL's New York Islanders, ahead of a full sale in two years' time.

News Topics: Sports, NHL hockey, U.S. Open Tennis Championships, Professional hockey, Hockey, Men's hockey, Men's sports, Events, Tennis

People, Places and Companies: Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Braxton Miller, Madrid, Spain, Western Europe, Europe

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

Spain attracts more Belgian homebuyers

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:56

More and more Belgians are buying a second home in Spain, the Belgian press reported Tuesday.

In the first quarter 2014, 1,057 Spanish properties have already been sold to the Belgians, an increase of 27 percent compared to the same period last year, according to the newspaper L'Avenir.

In 2013, 2,501 Belgians have acquired a second home in Spain, the newspaper said, this represents 3,804 houses, villas and apartments.

The bursting of the housing bubble caused a "continuous" drop of house prices in Spain, being 37 percent below the 2008 peak, which attracted many Belgian owners, the newspaper explained.

Desertification in certain more rural areas also causes a fall in prices in the country. In addition, the Belgians seek to avoid increasing taxes on second homes in their country.

The Belgian owners are also interested in a second home in France, Turkey, Greece and even in Austria, it added.

Categories: News

111-year-old Japanese retired educator who enjoys poetry recognized as the world's oldest man

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:52
by  Associated Press 111-year-old from Japan recognized as oldest man Associated Press - 20 August 2014 02:52-04:00

TOKYO (AP) — A 111-year-old retired educator from Japan who enjoys poetry has been recognized as the world's oldest living man.

Sakari Momoi received a certificate from Guinness World Records on Wednesday. He succeeds Alexander Imich of New York, who died in April at the age of 111 years, 164 days.

The world's oldest living person is also Japanese: Misao Okawa, a 116-year-old woman from Osaka.

Momoi was born Feb. 5, 1903, in Fukushima prefecture, where he became a teacher. He later moved to the city of Saitama, north of Tokyo, and served as a high school principal there until retirement.

Momoi says he enjoys reading books, especially Chinese poetry. He has five children and now lives at a nursing home in Tokyo.

News Topics: General news

People, Places and Companies: Japan, Tokyo, East Asia, Asia

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

Portuguese nurses work in "awful" working conditions: trade group

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:52

Portuguese nurses have been working in awful working conditions with long working hours and low pay, which has triggered exodus of them to foreign countries looking for better opportunities.

Nurses from Santarem Hospital in Santarem City, some 80 kilometers northeast of Portuguese capital Lisbon, went on a four-day strike on Tuesday to protest against overstretched working timetables and lack of employees.

The hospital only has 460 nurses at the moment, and should have around 170 more. The shortness has caused "disruption" in services, Guadalupe Simoes, director of the Syndicate of Portuguese Nurses (SEP), told Xinhua.

Simoes added that the SEP, which organized the strike, has been flooded with complaints with nurses saying they are working too many hours, rarely have holiday breaks and are poorly paid.

"They don't have the physical or psychological conditions to look after themselves, let alone look after others," Simoes said. "Their working conditions are just awful."

According to Simoes, Portuguese nurses are working an average of 100 hours per week, 50 hours more than they should be, she said, adding that around 1,600 nurses this year left their jobs across the country.

"The Health Ministry is choosing not to employ more nurses," Simoes said. "It's due to bureaucracy but it's also a political decision."

Nurses working in Portugal on a contract earn an average salary of around 900 euros after tax, and those hired on a freelance basis (paid by hour) can earn as little as four euros per hour, around 500 euros per month.

That explains why increasingly more Portuguese nurses move abroad to countries like Britain, where they can almost double their salaries.

Portuguese nurse Isabel Patricia Dos Santos Dinis, 29, who now works for the NHS County Hospital in Hereford, United Kingdom, told Xinhua she left Portugal in April this year because she could no longer bear the burden of the country's poor working conditions.

"The working conditions where I worked were increasingly worse, with a lack of staff and recognition," she said.

Isabel was working at the Regional Health Service in the Portuguese archipelago of Madeira until earlier this year.

"I was earning a shameful wage, yet increasingly had to deal with more responsibility and demands," she explained.

She added that although her working hours were officially 35 hours per week, she had to do extra shifts without being consulted if she was able to.

"The extra shifts were not even paid as extra time. I was tired, and increasingly more worried about my future and further cuts," she said.

Thousands of other nurses like Isabel have fled to other countries in search of better opportunities. An increasing number of Portuguese nurses are also leaving to countries like Angola or Brazil, Portuguese-speaking former colonies.

Nursing agencies also come to Portugal to recruit employees here, who have a good reputation for being caring and empathetic.

Bureaucracy does discourage some Portuguese nurses from applying for jobs abroad, however, Miguel Peixoto, managing partner at Portuguese recruitment agency Medic Search, told Xinhua.

According to the Portuguese Order of Nurses, there are currently around 66,000 nurses registered in Portugal, but this figure also includes people who are unemployed or retired.

The Portuguese Order of Nurses (OE) said on Friday that nurses are in a "state of exhaustion" and called for the Health Ministry to recognize the effects that exhaustion can have on the safety and quality of services offered to patients.

Strike at Santarem Hospital will last until Aug. 22 but an emergency service will still be available, meaning patients will have to wait longer than usual to be attended to.

Portugal had a clean exit from the 78-billion-euro bailout program it signed with the troika of the international lenders -- the European Union, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank in May this year.

The government had been implementing a harsh austerity policy which sparked protests from all walks of life in the country in the past three years.

Categories: News

Former Norwegian minister to help solve Cyprus problem

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:44

Former Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide will be the new United Nations Secretary General's special adviser on Cyprus, a Cypriot government spokesman confirmed on Tuesday.

Eide will replace Alexander Downer, a former foreign minister of Australia who left earlier this year to take up duties as his country’s High Commissioner in London.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was reported to be contemplating appointing a personal envoy to help get of the ground negotiations aimed at a solution to the decades’ old Cyprus problem.

The negotiations aimed at reunifying Cyprus started in February but representatives of the estranged Greek and Turkish Cypriot communities failed to get any nearer to a solution.

Cyprus has been divided into the Greek Cypriot-controlled south and the Turkish Cypriot-controlled north since 1974.

Alexander Downer left his post to become Australia’s High Commissioner (Ambassador) to Britain in March, after he faced long criticism from Greek Cypriots for acting outside the scope of United Nations resolutions on Cyprus.

Espen Barth Eide is a prominent figure in Norway’s Labor Party and served as the Defence Minister from November 2011 to September 2012 and then Foreign Minister until October last year.

The Cypriot government spokesman confirmed a press report that the government had given its consent to the appointment of Espen Barth Eide in a statement signaling that the Turkish Cypriot side has also given its consent.

Government sources in Nicosia said Eide’s appointment is expected to be announced in the next few days.

Apart from his government posts, Eide has pursued an academic career in political science. From 1993 to 2000 and from 2002 to 2005 he was a senior researcher and research director at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs.

Eide, aged 50, is the first European to take up the post of the U.N. Secretary General’s representative on the Cyprus issue but he is only the second Norwegian to be chosen by the UN to help it bring back peace on the island.

Major General Kristin Lund of Norway took up just six days ago her post of commander of the United Nations Peace Keeping Force in Cyprus, UNFICYP, established since 1964, to become the first ever woman commander of a UN peace mission.

UN sources quoted by leading Cypriot “Phileleftheros” (“Liberal”) as saying they expected Eide to bring "a new momentum to the Cyprus issue". 

Categories: News

Spanish treasury places 4.545 bln euros on market

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:36

MADRID, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- The Spanish treasury on Tuesday placed treasury bills to the value of 4.545 billion euros (6.067 billion U.S. dollars) on the market, paying lower interest rates than in previous auctions.

     The auction could be considered a success as the treasury exceeded expectations when selling more than between 3.5 and 4.5 billion euros and registered a high demand of more than 9.1 billion euros.

     A total of 991.78 million euros worth of six-month treasury bills carried an average interest rate of 0.08 percent, falling from the previous 0.146 percent of July.

     The remaining 3.554 billion euros worth of 12-moonth treasury bills fetched an average interest rate of 0.16 percent, below the 0.294 percent of the previous auction held in July.

     So far, the Spanish treasury has covered around 77.6 percent of Spain's financial needs for the year placing around 100.343 billion euros on the market. The treasury will hold another auction on Thursday.

Categories: News

BC-BBO--MLB Linescores

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 07:35
by  Associated Press BC-BBO--MLB Linescores Associated Press - 20 August 2014 02:35-04:00 BC-BBO--MLB Linescores,0802 Tuesday's Major League Linescores

%byline(By The Associated Press%)

AMERICAN LEAGUE Houston 000 013 003—7 13 1 New York 000 202 000—4 9 1

Oberholtzer, Sipp (6), Fields (8), Qualls (9) and J.Castro; Capuano, Warren (6), Kelley (7), Betances (8), Dav.Robertson (9), R.Hill (9) and McCann. W_Fields 3-6. L_Dav.Robertson 1-4. Sv_Qualls (14). HRs_Houston, Carter (30). New York, McCann (14).


Detroit 000 031 010 03—8 10 0 Tampa Bay 310 000 010 01—6 8 1

(11 innings)

Scherzer, Chamberlain (8), Alburquerque (9), B.Hardy (9), Ji.Johnson (10), Nathan (11) and Avila, Holaday; Archer, Yates (6), Boxberger (7), Jo.Peralta (8), McGee (9), Balfour (11), Beliveau (11) and Casali, J.Molina. W_Ji.Johnson 5-2. L_Balfour 1-5. Sv_Nathan (26). HRs_Detroit, J.Martinez (17). Tampa Bay, Loney (7).


Los Angeles 003 000 001—4 9 0 Boston 100 011 000—3 8 0

Weaver, Grilli (6), Salas (7), J.Smith (8), Street (9) and Iannetta; Webster, A.Wilson (7), Uehara (9) and Vazquez. W_J.Smith 5-1. L_Uehara 5-3. Sv_Street (10). HRs_Boston, D.Ortiz (29).


Cleveland 010 213 000—7 11 0 Minnesota 500 000 000—5 8 1

Bauer, Crockett (5), Atchison (6), Rzepczynski (7), C.Lee (7), Hagadone (7), Shaw (8), Allen (9) and Y.Gomes; Gibson, Duensing (6), Burton (7), Fien (8), Perkins (9) and K.Suzuki. W_Crockett 3-0. L_Duensing 3-3. Sv_Allen (16). HRs_Cleveland, Y.Gomes (17). Minnesota, Arcia (13).


Baltimore 100 003 100—5 9 1 Chicago 100 000 000—1 3 0

Tillman, Tom.Hunter (9) and Hundley; Quintana, D.Webb (7), Petricka (9) and Flowers. W_Tillman 10-5. L_Quintana 6-10. HRs_Baltimore, Hundley (3). Chicago, J.Abreu (32).


INTERLEAGUE Seattle 200 001 020—5 7 0 Philadelphia 000 000 002—2 6 0

Iwakuma, Furbush (9), Medina (9), Rodney (9) and Zunino; A.Burnett, Hollands (8), C.Jimenez (9) and Ruiz. W_Iwakuma 12-6. L_A.Burnett 6-14. Sv_Rodney (36). HRs_Seattle, Seager (19).


Texas 000 100 200 0—3 10 3 Miami 000 102 000 1—4 11 3

(10 innings)

Mikolas, Mendez (6), Klein (7), Sh.Tolleson (8), Cotts (9), Feliz (10) and Chirinos; Cosart, A.Ramos (7), M.Dunn (7), Morris (8), Cishek (9), S.Dyson (10) and Saltalamacchia. W_S.Dyson 2-0. L_Cotts 2-7. HRs_Miami, Ozuna (17).


Toronto 010 000 000—1 2 1 Milwaukee 202 020 00x—6 10 0

Happ, McGowan (4), Redmond (5), Drabek (7) and D.Navarro; Fiers, Duke (8), Kintzler (9) and Maldonado. W_Fiers 3-1. L_Happ 8-8.


Kansas City 000 100 330—7 11 1 Colorado 100 010 002—4 11 0

Shields, K.Herrera (7), W.Davis (8), Bueno (9), G.Holland (9) and S.Perez; Matzek, Ottavino (7), Brothers (8), Masset (8), B.Brown (9) and McKenry. W_Shields 12-6. L_Matzek 2-9. Sv_G.Holland (39). HRs_Colorado, Arenado (13), Stubbs (13).


New York 000 100 100—2 7 0 Oakland 000 400 02x—6 10 0

Gee, Edgin (6), Germen (8) and Recker; Kazmir, Cook (7), O'Flaherty (7), Gregerson (8), Doolittle (9) and D.Norris. W_Kazmir 14-5. L_Gee 4-6. HRs_New York, d'Arnaud (11). Oakland, Reddick (9).


NATIONAL LEAGUE Atlanta 013 150 001—11 14 1 Pittsburgh 000 110 001— 3 9 1

Harang, Hale (9) and Gattis; F.Liriano, Cumpton (5) and R.Martin. W_Harang 10-7. L_F.Liriano 3-10. HRs_Atlanta, J.Upton (24), Gattis (19).


Arizona 100 000 000—1 3 0 Washington 006 002 00x—8 12 0

C.Anderson, E.De La Rosa (3), Harris (7), A.Reed (8) and M.Montero, Gosewisch; Strasburg, Blevins (9) and Lobaton. W_Strasburg 10-10. L_C.Anderson 7-5. HRs_Arizona, D.Peralta (7).


San Francisco 000 00—0 6 0 Chicago 200 0x—2 3 0

(5 innings)

Vogelsong and Posey; Wada and Castillo. W_Wada 3-1. L_Vogelsong 7-9. HRs_Chicago, Rizzo (29).


Cincinnati 000 202 000—4 7 0 St. Louis 001 002 011—5 14 3

Simon, LeCure (6), M.Parra (7), Ju.Diaz (8), Hoover (8) and Mesoraco; Lackey, Choate (7), Maness (8), Neshek (9) and T.Cruz, Pierzynski. W_Neshek 6-0. L_Hoover 1-10. HRs_Cincinnati, Frazier (21). St. Louis, Jh.Peralta (17).


San Diego 300 010 011—6 14 2 Los Angeles 020 310 20x—8 9 1

Kennedy, Vincent (6), Thayer (7), A.Torres (7), Garces (8) and Rivera, Grandal; Correia, J.Wright (6), Howell (7), League (8), Jansen (9) and A.Ellis. W_Correia 2-0. L_Kennedy 9-11. Sv_Jansen (35). HRs_San Diego, Gyorko (9). Los Angeles, C.Crawford (5).

News Topics: MLB baseball, Sports, Professional baseball, Baseball, Men's sports

People, Places and Companies: New York, Los Angeles, Missouri, Texas, Oakland, Illinois, San Diego, Florida, Ohio, Cincinnati, Tampa, Cleveland, Houston, Seattle, St. Louis, Washington, United States, North America, California

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

Palestinian rocket attacks, Israeli airstrikes after collapse of Gaza cease-fire talks

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 06:38
by  Associated Press Israel, Gaza militants trade fire after talks fail Associated Press - 20 August 2014 01:38-04:00

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Palestinian militants are firing rockets from Gaza and Israel is launching airstrikes following the end of a cease-fire and the collapse of talks aimed at a lasting truce.

Palestinian militants fired at least 7 rockets at Israel Wednesday, the military said. Some 30 airstrikes were carried out in Gaza overnight, it said.

Fighting resumed Tuesday after Gaza militants fired dozens of rockets at Israel hours before an Egyptian-mediated cease-fire was set to expire. Israel withdrew its delegation from Cairo and responded to the rocket fire with airstrikes, while Palestinian negotiators declared the cease-fire talks over.

The fighting dashed hopes for a lasting truce after a monthlong war that has already claimed over 2,000 lives, mostly Palestinians.

News Topics: General news, Militant groups, War and unrest, Cease fires, Government and politics

People, Places and Companies: Palestinian territories, Israel, Gaza Strip, Middle East

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

Anti-government protesters claim victory after occupying area around parliament

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 06:26
by  Associated Press Jubilation as Pakistan protests reach parliament Associated Press - 20 August 2014 01:26-04:00

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Jubilant anti-government demonstrators in Pakistan are claiming victory after tearing down barricades and occupying a key road outside Parliament, where they are demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

A peaceful and celebratory atmosphere prevailed Wednesday after tens of thousands of protesters entered Islamabad's high-security Red Zone the night before, five days after arriving in the capital from the eastern city of Lahore in convoys.

Famous cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan and cleric Tahir-ul-Qadri have led twin rallies calling on Sharif to step down over alleged voting fraud in the election that brought him to office last year in the country's first-ever democratic transfer of power. Sharif's party says he will not quit, while the country's powerful army has called for a negotiated settlement.

News Topics: General news, Protests and demonstrations, Political resignations, Government and politics, Legislature, Political and civil unrest

People, Places and Companies: Nawaz Sharif, Pakistan, Islamabad, South Asia, Asia

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

BC-BBA--AL Standings

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 06:18
by  Associated Press BC-BBA--AL Standings Associated Press - 20 August 2014 01:18-04:00 BC-BBA--AL Standings,0193 American League

%byline(By The Associated Press%)

East Division W L Pct GB Baltimore 72 52 .581 — New York 63 60 .512 8½ Toronto 64 62 .508 9 Tampa Bay 61 64 .488 11½ Boston 56 69 .448 16½ Central Division W L Pct GB Kansas City 70 55 .560 — Detroit 67 56 .545 2 Cleveland 63 61 .508 6½ Chicago 59 67 .468 11½ Minnesota 55 69 .444 14½ West Division W L Pct GB Los Angeles 74 50 .597 — Oakland 74 51 .592 ½ Seattle 68 57 .544 6½ Houston 53 73 .421 22 Texas 48 77 .384 26½


Tuesday's Games

Houston 7, N.Y. Yankees 4

Seattle 5, Philadelphia 2

Detroit 8, Tampa Bay 6, 11 innings

L.A. Angels 4, Boston 3

Miami 4, Texas 3, 10 innings

Baltimore 5, Chicago White Sox 1

Cleveland 7, Minnesota 5

Milwaukee 6, Toronto 1

Kansas City 7, Colorado 4

Oakland 6, N.Y. Mets 2

Wednesday's Games

Texas at Miami

Seattle at Philadelphia

Toronto at Milwaukee

N.Y. Mets at Oakland

Houston at N.Y. Yankees

Detroit at Tampa Bay

L.A. Angels at Boston

Baltimore at Chicago White Sox

Cleveland at Minnesota

Kansas City at Colorado

News Topics: MLB baseball, Professional baseball, Sports, Baseball, Men's sports

People, Places and Companies: Houston, New York City, Oakland, Los Angeles, Toronto, Texas, Philadelphia, United States, North America, New York, California, Ontario, Canada, Pennsylvania

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

17 National Rugby League players receive ASADA notices over illegal supplements from 2011

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 06:10
by  Associated Press 17 NRL players get notices over banned supplements Associated Press - 20 August 2014 01:10-04:00

SYDNEY (AP) — The Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority has begun issuing notices to 17 current and former National Rugby League players from the Cronulla Sharks over the use of illegal supplements during the 2011 season.

ASADA said in a statement Wednesday that the "show cause" notices were issued in relation to the use of prohibited substances CJC-1295 and GHRP-6, both banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency, based on evidence collected during a 16-month investigation.

Show-cause notices ask potential offenders to explain why they should not be served with infraction notices over alleged breaches. Those breaches carry penalties of up to two years, but could be reduced to six months for those who provide "substantial assistance" to ASADA.

The players will have 10 days to respond and have the option to challenge the notices.

News Topics: Sports, Doping, Men's rugby league, Rugby league, Doping regulations, Rugby, Men's rugby, Men's sports

People, Places and Companies: Australia, Oceania

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

BC-AP Americas Digest

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 06:09
by  Associated Press BC-AP Americas Digest Associated Press - 20 August 2014 01:09-04:00



WASHINGTON — A grisly video shows Islamic State militants beheading American journalist James Foley, U.S. officials say, in what the extremists called retribution for recent U.S. airstrikes in Iraq. The militants threatened to kill another captive they also identified as an American journalist. By Lara Jakes and Bradley Klapper.

AP Photos.


FERGUSON, Missouri — Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says he would not seek the removal of the county prosecutor overseeing the investigation into the fatal police shooting of an unarmed black 18-year-old by a white police officer, which has sparked more than a week of nightly clashes between protesters and police. By Nigel Duara.

AP Photos, video.


WASHINGTON — Sharp differences on historical issues that have strained relations between Japan and South Korea require Tokyo to face up to its abusive wartime past and for Seoul to be less preoccupied with it, U.S. experts and former officials say. By Matthew Pennington.


LIMA, Peru — At her job, Maria Torero is a nurse for sick human beings. At her home, she lavishes love on slowly dying cats — 175 of them at last count. She her two-story, eight-room apartment into a hospice for cats with feline leukemia. By Franklin Briceno. With photo gallery by Martin Mejia.


BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Three relatives of Pope Francis are dead and a fosurth is in serious condition after their car crashed on a provincial highway in Argentina, the Vatican and local officials say. By Almudena Calatrava.

AP Photos.


RIO DE JANEIRO — In her first live prime-time television interview of her re-election campaign, President Dilma Rousseff acknowledges "many problems and challenges" plague Brazil's woeful heath system but defends her record on the economy and education. By Jenny Barchfield.

AP Photo.


MEXICO CITY — Mexico's top environmental official says a mining company lied about a spill of millions of gallons of acids and heavy metals that contaminated two rivers and a dam downstream. By Mark Stevenson.

AP Photos.


ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A primary election in Alaska pits three Republican challengers against each other in a campaign to take on Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich in the fall, when the Republican party hopes to win enough seats to take control of the U.S. Senate. By Becky Bohrer.

AP Photos.



WASHINGTON — Eric Holder talks about the nation's civil rights struggles in a way no previous U.S. attorney general could — by telling his own family story. It's a legacy he'll likely draw on when he travels Wednesday to Ferguson, Missouri, to supervise the federal investigation of the fatal shooting of a black 18-year-old by a white police officer. By Connie Cass and Jesse J. Holland.

AP Photos.



LOS ANGELES — Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is stepping down from the company's board, closing a chapter on 34 years with the software giant. By Ryan Nakashima.

AP Photo.


ALBANY, New York — The retailer Macy's has agreed to pay $650,000 to settle allegations of racial profiling at its flagship store in Manhattan's Herald Square.



SANTA ANA, California — The estate of Anna Nicole Smith has failed in its final bid to obtain her late husband's money, seven years after the death of the Playboy model and reality TV star.

AP Photo.

News Topics: General news, Shootings, Police, Government and politics, Violent crime, Crime, Law enforcement agencies

People, Places and Companies: James Foley, Jay Nixon, Pope Francis, Dilma Rousseff, Mark Begich, Eric Holder, Steve Ballmer, Anna Nicole Smith, United States, South Korea, Japan, Missouri, Mexico, Alaska, North America, East Asia, Asia

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

Time for a reality check for Michael Phelps at Pan Pacific Championships

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 06:01
by  Associated Press Reality check for Phelps at Pan Pacific Champs by JOHN PYE, Associated Press - 20 August 2014 01:01-04:00

GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — Michael Phelps received an abrupt reminder of how challenging his return to international competition may be when he was asked whether he was good enough to even reach a final at the Pan Pacific Championships starting Thursday.

Phelps, the 18-time Olympic gold medalist on the comeback trail from a short-lived retirement, took a deep breath before responding to the question on Wednesday and said: "Wow, you're really setting the bar high for me!"

His long-time coach, Bob Bowman, chipped in: "Reality check there."

Phelps qualified by finishing second in the 200-meter medley and the 100 butterfly at the U.S. nationals. The Pan Pacs is his first international meet since coming out of retirement four months ago, and a springboard for the 2015 world titles and 2016 Olympics.

News Topics: Sports, Men's sports, Men's swimming, Swimming, Aquatics, Men's aquatics

People, Places and Companies: Bob Bowman

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Categories: News

Macy's to pay $650,000 to resolve New York profiling allegations, attorney general says

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 05:53
by  Associated Press Macy's to pay $650,000 in shopper-profiling probe by MICHAEL VIRTANEN, Associated Press - 20 August 2014 00:53-04:00

ALBANY, New York (AP) — The retailer Macy's has agreed to pay $650,000 to settle allegations of racial profiling at its flagship store in Manhattan's Herald Square.

Under the agreement signed Tuesday with New York's attorney general, the company will adopt new policies on police access to its security camera monitors and against profiling, further train employees, investigate customer complaints, keep better records of detentions and report for three years on its compliance.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said the settlement should help ensure customers are treated equally regardless of race or ethnicity at the retail giant's 42 department stores statewide.

"It is absolutely unacceptable — and it's illegal — for anyone in New York to be treated like a criminal simply because of the color of their skin," Schneiderman said.

The attorney general's Civil Rights Bureau said it opened an investigation into Macy's in February 2013 when it received several complaints from minority customers. Since then, the office recorded complaints from 18 African-American, Latino and other ethnic minority customers who claimed they'd been apprehended and detained at Macy's stores between 2007 and 2013, despite not having stolen or attempted to steal any merchandise.

The complaints included customers detained after traveling between floors by escalator with unconcealed merchandise. Other customers speaking limited English and suspected of shoplifting or credit card fraud were not permitted to make phone calls, denied access to an interpreter and required to sign trespass notices they couldn't understand.

The agreement cites Macy's data from October 2012 through October 2013 showing employees apprehended and detained 1,947 individuals at the Herald Square store. Meanwhile, about 6,000 people were detained at stores statewide.

The agreement requires publicly posting Macy's "customer's bill of rights" in English and Spanish in all its New York stores and on the Macy's Inc. website.

"To be clear, our company's policies strictly prohibit any form of discrimination or racial profiling and any occurrence of such behavior will not be tolerated in our organization," Macy's said in a statement. "Moving forward, our company will be initiating a series of measures including enhanced training and education for our loss prevention and sales associates. We also will be adopting an expanded role for our security monitor to help ensure that we have the right policies and procedures in place, and that we are constantly reviewing our compliance with them."

The attorney general's Civil Rights Bureau reached a similar agreement with the retailer Barneys earlier this month.

News Topics: Business, Race and ethnicity, Contracts and orders, Racial profiling, African-Americans, Social issues, Social affairs, Corporate news, Racial and ethnic discrimination, Discrimination, Human rights and civil liberties

People, Places and Companies: Eric Schneiderman, Macy's Inc, United States, New York, Manhattan, North America, New York City

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Years after her death, Anna Nicole Smith loses final bid to get millions from husband's estate

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 05:50
by  Associated Press Anna Nicole Smith's estate loses bid for millions Associated Press - 20 August 2014 00:50-04:00

SANTA ANA, California (AP) — The estate of Anna Nicole Smith has failed in its final bid to obtain her late husband's money, seven years after the death of the Playboy model and reality TV star.

A federal judge on Monday rejected the effort to obtain about $44 million from the estate of Texas billionaire J. Howard Marshall, whom Smith married in 1994 when he was 89 and she was 26. The oil tycoon died the next year. His will left his $1.6 billion estate to his son and nothing to Smith.

Smith, under her real name of Vickie Lynn Marshall, challenged the will, claiming that her husband promised to leave her more than $300 million above the cash and gifts showered on her during their 14-month marriage. A Houston jury said Marshall was mentally fit and under no undue pressure when he wrote the will.

Over the course of nearly 20 years, the Texas bankruptcy court and local and federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, all rejected Smith's various attempts to overturn Marshall's will and trust and to obtain money from his estate.

The efforts continued even after Smith died of an accidental drug overdose in February 2007.

On Monday, U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter denied a request from Smith's estate to sanction the estate of Marshall's son, E. Pierce Marshall.

"Time spent litigating the relationship between Vickie Lynn and J. Howard has extended for nearly five times the length of their relationship and nearly twenty times the length of their marriage. It is neither reasonable nor practical to go forward," the judge said in his ruling. He noted that it was the last surviving piece of decades of litigation.

"The American taxpayer has supported the burden of this litigation for many years, and it is time for this suit to no longer 'drag its weary length before the Court,'" Carter concluded, quoting a Supreme Court decision in the case that itself quoted Charles Dickens' "Bleak House."

An email message for Howard K. Stern, the executor of Smith's estate, was not immediately returned Tuesday.

G. Eric Brunstad Jr., attorney for the Marshall family, said in a statement that the family agreed with the judge that it was time to stop the litigation.

News Topics: Arts and entertainment, Television programs, Entertainment, Celebrity deaths, Celebrity relationships, Court decisions, National courts, Celebrity, Legal proceedings, Law and order, General news, National governments, Government and politics, Courts, Judiciary

People, Places and Companies: Anna Nicole Smith, Pierce Marshall, Charles Dickens, Howard K. Stern, Marshall, Santa Ana, United States, Texas, North America, California

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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NYC's Metropolitan Opera, 10 unions continue contract talks as deadline passes

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 05:49
by  Associated Press NYC's Met opera still negotiating with 10 unions Associated Press - 20 August 2014 00:49-04:00

NEW YORK (AP) — Contract negotiations are continuing between New York's Metropolitan Opera and 10 of its unions to avert a lockout.

Shortly before a 12:01 a.m. Wednesday deadline, Met spokesman Sam Neuman said there was "nothing to report" about ongoing talks with unions representing stagehands, carpenters and other artisans.

The musicians of the two largest Met unions reached tentative four-year deals Monday.

Met general manager Peter Gelb demanded pay cuts of about 17 percent, citing skyrocketing production costs and shrinking audiences. Union members countered that such a radical move was unwarranted on a $2.8 million deficit against a $326 million budget. They say Gelb wasted many millions on failed productions.

The orchestra and chorus agreed to cuts of 3.5 percent and 3.5 percent more within six months.

News Topics: Arts and entertainment, Music, Entertainment, Labor negotiations, Labor unions, Opera, Personnel, Business, Labor issues, Social issues, Social affairs, Classical music, Performing arts

People, Places and Companies: New York City, New York, United States, North America

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US top attorney brings personal history to Missouri racial crisis

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 05:27
by  Associated Press Holder brings civil rights push to racial crisis by CONNIE CASS and JESSE J. HOLLAND, Associated Press - 20 August 2014 00:27-04:00

WASHINGTON (AP) — Eric Holder talks about the nation's civil rights struggles in a way no previous U.S. attorney general could — by telling his own family story. It's a legacy he'll likely draw on when he travels Wednesday to Ferguson, Missouri, to supervise the federal investigation of the fatal shooting of a black 18-year-old by a white police officer.

As Holder increasingly pushes his Justice Department to protect voting rights and end unfair prison sentences and police brutality, he has drawn on personal history to make the case that the nation has much work to do to achieve justice for all.

Holder tells how his father, an immigrant from Barbados proudly wearing his World War II uniform, was ejected from a whites-only train car. How his future sister-in-law, escorted by U.S. marshals, integrated the University of Alabama in spite of a governor who stood in the schoolhouse door to block her. How as a college student, he was twice pulled over, his car searched, even though he wasn't speeding.

And Holder recalls that the slaying of black teen Trayvon Martin in 2012 prompted him to sit down with his own 15-year-old son for a talk about the way a young black male must act and speak if confronted by police — the same talk his father had given him decades earlier.

"I had to do this to protect my boy," the nation's first black attorney general said at a civil rights group's convention last year.

President Barack Obama is sending Holder to Ferguson to bring the full weight of the federal government into the investigation of the death of another young black man, Michael Brown, who was unarmed when a white police officer shot him multiple times Aug. 9. Daily and nightly protests, sometimes marred by rioting and looting and met with tear gas and rubber-coated bullets from police, have rocked the suburban St. Louis community since.

Holder has led an unusually fast and aggressive Justice Department response to the local case, sending teams of prosecutors and dozens of FBI agents to investigate and arranging a federal autopsy on top of one by local authorities.

Still, protesters in the streets say they aren't convinced justice will be done. Holder's record on civil rights and personal commitment may help reassure the community when he visits.

"It's a powerful message," said William Yeomans, a law school fellow at American University who worked in the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division for more than two decades. "He's the embodiment of law enforcement, and the positive contribution he can make here is to assure the community that the federal government is taking very seriously the quest for justice in this incident."

Holder reinvigorated a civil rights force at Justice, Yeomans said, that had been scaled back and demoralized during President George W. Bush's administration.

Holder's department has been especially strong in going after police misconduct, both through criminal civil rights cases and lawsuits against police departments, Yeomans said.

His civil rights push got off to a difficult start, however.

Shortly after taking office in February 2009, Holder called the United States "a nation of cowards" when it comes to talking about race in a Black History Month speech. Conservative backlash was swift. Holder quickly toned down his rhetoric while quietly rebuilding the division.

For much of Holder's early tenure, his public profile was shaped by battles over how to prosecute terror cases, the use of armed drones to kill terror suspects overseas and his handling of various Obama administration controversies. A 2012 vote in the Republican-controlled House made Holder the first sitting Cabinet member ever held in contempt of Congress over his refusal to hand over without preconditions documents involving the a gun-running gun investigation.

More than a dozen Republican lawmakers have called for his impeachment for not prosecuting anyone in the tax-collecting Internal Revenue Service for targeting conservative groups and for his department's probes of journalists linked to news leaks.

But over the last three years, civil rights has moved to the forefront, starting with Holder's opposition to state voter ID laws that make it harder for the poor to cast ballots. He compared Texas' voter ID law to a poll tax, the now-illegal fees imposed across the South for decades to block African-Americans from voting.


Associated Press writers Pete Yost and Eric Tucker contributed to this report. Follow Connie Cass and Jesse J. Holland on Twitter at and

News Topics: General news, Race and ethnicity, Human rights and civil liberties, African-Americans, Violent crime, Police, Homicide, Crime, Voting, Government and politics, Shootings, Social issues, Social affairs, Law enforcement agencies, Elections

People, Places and Companies: Eric Holder, Trayvon Martin, Barack Obama, Michael Brown, George W. Bush, United States, Missouri, North America

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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US officials say video shows beheading of American journalist James Foley by Islamic militants

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 05:16
by  Associated Press US officials: Video shows American's beheading by LARA JAKES and BRADLEY KLAPPER, Associated Press - 20 August 2014 00:16-04:00

WASHINGTON (AP) — A grisly video shows Islamic State militants beheading American journalist James Foley, U.S. officials said, in what the extremists called retribution for recent U.S. airstrikes in Iraq. The militants threatened to kill another captive they also identified as an American journalist.

After the video was released Tuesday, Foley's family separately confirmed his death in a statement posted on a Facebook page that was created to rally support for his release, saying they "have never been prouder of him."

"He gave his life trying to expose the world to the suffering of the Syrian people," said the statement, which was attributed to Foley's mother, Diane Foley. She implored the militants to spare the lives of other hostages. "Like Jim, they are innocents. They have no control over American government policy in Iraq, Syria or anywhere in the world."

The statement was posted on a Facebook page called "Find James Foley," which his family has used a number of times since his November 2012 disappearance. Earlier Tuesday, a red-eyed but gracious Diane Foley said the family would not hame an immediate statement when approached at her home by an Associated Press reporter. A priest arrived at the home several hours later.

Foley, a 40-year-old journalist from Rochester, New Hampshire, went missing in northern Syria while freelancing for Agence France-Presse and the Boston-based media company GlobalPost. The car he was riding in was stopped by four militants in a contested battle zone that both Sunni rebel fighters and government forces were trying to control. He had not been heard from since.

The video released on websites Tuesday appears to show the increasing sophistication of the Islamic State group's media arm and begins with scenes of President Barack Obama explaining his decision to order airstrikes.

It then cuts to a bald man in an orange jumpsuit kneeling in the desert, next to a black-clad militant with a knife to his throat. Foley's name appears in both English and Arabic graphics on screen, and he is wearing a clip-on microphone as he begins his statement. The scene is captured on at least two video cameras and has been edited in a professional style.

After the captive speaks, the masked man is shown apparently beginning to cut at the neck of the captive; the video fades to black before the beheading is completed. The next shot appears to show the captive lying dead on the ground, his head on his body. The video appears to have been shot in an arid area; there is no vegetation to be seen and the horizon is in the distance where the sand meets the gray-blue sky. The sound quality is sharp.

At the end of the video, a militant shows a second man, who was identified as another American journalist, Steven Sotloff, and warns that he could be the next captive killed. Sotloff was kidnapped near the Syrian-Turkish border in August 2013 and freelanced for Time, the National Interest and MediaLine.

One U.S. official said the video appeared to be authentic, and two other U.S. officials said the victim was Foley. All three officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the killing by name.

One of the officials said Obama was expected to make a statement about the killing on Wednesday. Obama was briefed about the video on Air Force One on Tuesday as he flew from Washington to resume his vacation on the resort island of Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts. A White House statement said he would continue to receive regular updates.

The beheading marks the first time the Islamic State has killed an American citizen since the Syrian conflict broke out in March 2011, upping the stakes in an increasingly chaotic and multilayered war. If confirmed, the killing is likely to complicate U.S. involvement in Iraq and the Obama administration's efforts to contain the group as it expands in both Iraq and Syria.

The group is the heir apparent of the militancy known as al-Qaida in Iraq, which beheaded many of its victims, including American businessman Nicholas Berg in 2004.

The Islamic State militant group is so ruthless in its attacks against all people they consider heretics or infidels that it has been disowned by al-Qaida's leaders. In seeking to impose its harsh interpretation of Islamic law in the lands it is trying to control, the extremists have slain soldiers and civilians alike in horrifying executions — including mounting the decapitated heads of some of its victims on spikes.

Several senior U.S. officials with direct knowledge of the situation said the Islamic State very recently threatened to kill Foley to avenge the crushing airstrikes over the last two weeks against militants advancing on Mount Sinjar, the Mosul dam and the Kurdish capital of Irbil.

Both areas are in northern Iraq, which has become a key front for the Islamic State as its fighters travel to and from Syria.

Since Aug. 8, the U.S. military has struck more than 70 Islamic State targets — including security checkpoints, vehicles and weapons caches. It's not clear how many militants have been killed in the strikes, although it's likely that some were.

Officials from the State Department and Pentagon contacted social media sites Tuesday to inform them of the video and ask them to remove it. White House National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said the Obama administration asked the sites to "take appropriate action consistent with their stated usage policies."

In 2011, Foley was among a small group of journalists held captive for six weeks by the government in Libya and was released after receiving a one-year suspended sentence on charges of illegally entering the country. In a May 2011 interview about his experience, he recounted watching a fellow journalist being killed in a firefight and said he would regret that day for the rest of his life. At the time, Foley said he "would love to go back" to Libya to report on the conflict and spoke of his enduring commitment to the profession of journalism.

"Journalism is journalism," Foley said during the AP interview, which was held in GlobalPost's office in Boston. "If I had a choice to do Nashua (New Hampshire) zoning meetings or give up journalism, I'll do it. I love writing and reporting."

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists estimated Tuesday that about 20 journalists are missing in Syria, and has not released their nationalities. In its annual report last November, CPJ concluded that the missing journalists are either being held and threatened with death by extremists, or taken captive by gangs seeking ransom. The group's report described the widespread seizure of journalists as unprecedented and largely unreported by news organizations in the hope that keeping the kidnappings out of public view may help in the captives' release.

Earlier on Tuesday, GlobalPost CEO and co-founder Philip Balboni in a statement asked "for your prayers for Jim and his family." AFP chairman Emmanuel Hoog said the French news agency was "horrified" by the video and called Foley "a brave, independent and impartial journalist."


Associated Press Writers Julie Pace, Rik Stevens in Rochester, New Hampshire, and Zeina Karam in Beirut contributed to this report.

News Topics: General news, Hostage situations, Journalists, Militant groups, News industry, Social media, War and unrest, Journalism, News media, Media, Media industry, Media and entertainment industry, Industries, Business, Online media

People, Places and Companies: James Foley, Barack Obama, United States, Syria, Iraq, New Hampshire, Boston, North America, Middle East, Massachusetts

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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US experts fault both Japan and South Korea for their tensions over war-time history

New Europe News - Wed, 20/08/2014 - 05:14
by  Associated Press US experts fault both Japan, SKorea for tensions by MATTHEW PENNINGTON, Associated Press - 20 August 2014 00:14-04:00

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sharp differences on historical issues that have strained relations between Japan and South Korea require Tokyo to face up to its abusive wartime past and for Seoul to be less preoccupied with it, U.S. experts and former officials say.

The divisions between the two main American allies in Asia, which play host to a total of 80,000 U.S. forces, have become a growing concern in Washington as it attempts to consolidate its system of alliances and deepen its engagement in the region.

South Korea's ambassador to Washington, Ahn Ho-young told the Heritage Foundation think tank Tuesday that it would difficult for relations between the neighbors to improve unless Japan "fairly and honestly" recognizes its wrongdoings of the past, including its treatment of so-called "comfort women" — mostly Chinese and Korean sex slaves used by Japan's military during World War II.

But U.S. experts addressing the same forum expressed frustration with the attitude of both South Korea and Japan given their common interests. They are both democracies, have strong economic ties and are both threatened by a nuclear North Korea.

"Washington has become frustrated with both our friends. With Japan for its tin-eared, ham-fisted diplomatic approach toward resolving historic issues, and with South Korea's insistence on seeing every issue through the lens of history," said Bruce Klingner, Heritage senior research fellow on Northeast Asia.

Evans Revere, a former senior State Department official, described the relationship as "often dysfunctional," undermining U.S. efforts to forge regional cooperation.

South Korean perceptions that Japan lacks contrition for its militarist past have intensified since nationalist Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was elected to power in Japan a year-and-a-half ago.

Last December, Abe visited a shrine in Tokyo where convicted war Japanese criminals are among the 2.5 million honored. Last week, two Japanese Cabinet ministers also visited the Yasukuni shrine, prompting fresh criticism from South Korea.

South Korea is also suspicious about the Abe government's moves to reinterpret Japan's pacifist post-war constitution to allow Japanese troops a more active role in defensive military activities, including with the U.S. and other partners.

Dennis Blair, a former chief of the U.S. Pacific Command, supported the steps Japan was taking. "They should not be confused with a return to 1930s-style militarism. Japan of today is so far from that," he said.

Victor Cha, who served as director for Asian affairs in the George W. Bush White House, said there's no prospect of "closure" on historical issues between the two sides. He urged pragmatic cooperation, although he noted a growing sense of "Korea fatigue" in Japan over the criticism from Seoul.

Klingner said the evidence of atrocities by imperial Japan between 1910 and 1945 is "unequivocal and overwhelming and for anyone in Japan to question Tokyo's responsibility really historically inaccurate and morally reprehensible."

But he said South Korea should not allow "emotional nationalism to impede security policy."

It should identify specific steps it wants Tokyo to take, rather than make "amorphous demands for sincerity," he said.

News Topics: General news, International relations, Nationalism, Government and politics

People, Places and Companies: Shinzo Abe, Dennis Blair, George W. Bush, Japan, South Korea, Tokyo, Seoul, East Asia, United States, District of Columbia, Asia, North America

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