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New Zealand Prime Minister John Key (C) buys a sausage after casting his vote on September 20, 2014Wellington (AFP) - New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key said he was "ecstatic" on Saturday after a crushing election win to secure his third term as leader of the South Pacific nation.


Worker offload the first consignment of USAID medical equipment towards the fight against Ebola, at the Roberts International Airport in MonroviaWASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. government technology expert who helped Microsoft Corp co-founder Bill Gates launch the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will join the Obama administration's battle against Ebola in West Africa, administration officials said on Friday. Steve VanRoekel is stepping down as chief information officer at the White House to join the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), which is overseeing the Obama administration's response to the outbreak, officials said. VanRoekel's task as USAID's chief innovation officer will be to coordinate a U.S. ...


An empty street is seen at the start of a three-day national lockdown in FreetownBy Umaru Fofana and Josephus Olu-Mammah FREETOWN (Reuters) - Streets in the capital of Sierra Leone were deserted on Friday as the West African state began a contested, three-day lockdown in a bid to halt the worst Ebola outbreak on record. President Ernest Bai Koroma urged people to heed the emergency measures as health workers, some clad in protective biohazard suits, went house to house, checking on residents and marking each doorway they visited with chalk. Radio stations played Ebola awareness jingles on repeat and encouraged residents to stay indoors. ...


FILE - In this Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 file photo, armed police take cover behind escalators as smoke fills the air inside the Westgate Mall during a terrorist attack in Nairobi, Kenya Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013. Nairobi has tens of thousands of security guards outside banks, restaurants, malls and homes - but they aren’t armed and when criminals or terrorists attack, they are often the first casualties. (AP Photo/Jonathan Kalan, File)NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Kenya's police chief is asking residents to be "extra vigilant" of attacks in the week following Sunday's anniversary of the Westgate Mall attack.


Angelina Jolie arrives at a summit to end sexual violence in conflict, at the Excel centre in LondonLOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has been hired to direct "Africa," a feature film about paleoanthropologist and conservationist Richard Leakey and his campaign against ivory poachers that threaten Africa's elephants. The film, Jolie's fourth directorial effort, is from Skydance Productions, the company behind recent "Terminator" and "Mission: Impossible" films. The screenplay is from Eric Roth, who won an Oscar for "Forrest Gump." "I've felt a deep connection to Africa and its culture for much of my life," said Jolie in a statement. ...


By Orhan Coskun and Jonny Hogg ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkish intelligence agents brought 46 hostages seized by Islamic State militants in northern Iraq back to Turkey on Saturday after more than three months in captivity, in what President Tayyip Erdogan described as a covert rescue operation. Security sources told Reuters the hostages had been released overnight in the town of Tel Abyad on the Syrian side of the border with Turkey after being transferred from the eastern Syrian city of Raqqa, Islamic State's stronghold. Officials declined to give details of the rescue operation. ...
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Kenyan anti-terror police have detained two Iranian men using forged Israeli passports to enter the East African country, on suspicion that they may have been involved in a plan to carry out an attack there, officials said on Friday. Kenyan security agencies have been on alert following several gun and grenade attacks and the killing of 67 people in an attack by Islamist gunment on Nairobi's Westgate shopping mall last September. ...
By John Irish and Antony Paone ARBIL Iraq (Reuters) - On a warm evening at Arbil International Airport in Iraqi Kurdistan some 150 mostly Christian refugees anxiously waited to flee their homeland aboard a French government plane. The refugees, of all ages and from 25 different families, had one message as they prepared to fly to Paris to escape the threat of Islamic State militants: Christians and Muslims can no longer live together in Iraq. ...

Kenya's President Kenyatta stands for Kenya's national anthem before the Africa Union Peace and Security Council Summit on Terrorism at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in NairobiAMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Judges at the International Criminal Court have ordered Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta to attend a hearing over how to proceed with his stalled trial for crimes against humanity, the tribunal said on Friday. Kenyatta and other senior officials are accused of orchestrating a wave of violence in which 1,200 people died after contested 2007 elections. He denies the charge. Two weeks ago, prosecutors asked for the case against him to be adjourned indefinitely, saying they did not have enough evidence because of obstruction by the Kenyan government. ...


By Madjiasra Nako N'DJAMENA (Reuters) - Chad's government accused the United Nations' peacekeeping mission in Mali on Friday of failing to relieve its contingent in the country's volatile north and neglecting to support it, a day after five Chadian soldiers were killed by a roadside bomb. The mission, known as MINUSMA, was deployed last year after a French-led military intervention drove out al Qaeda-linked Islamist fighters, who had seized the north a year earlier. ...
  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 07:17:11 -0400

Smokes rises from near the Yemeni Government TV building, background, during clashes between Sunni militiamen and Hawthi Shiite rebels in Sanaa, Yemen, Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014. The Hawthi fighters and militias and army units allied with the Muslim Brotherhood's Islah party battled in Sanaa for a third day Saturday in clashes that have shaken the Yemeni capital, killed over 120 people, and led to thousands fleeing their homes. The violence raises fears that this chronically unstable country could be dragged into the sort of sectarian conflicts that have plagued other nations in the region. (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed)SANAA, Yemen (AP) — A third day of fighting in Yemen's capital between Shiite rebels and Sunni militiamen killed at least four civilians on Saturday, security and health officials said.


US Secretary of State John Kerry appears before the House Foreign Affairs Committee to testify on the administration's strategy for dealing with the Islamic State (IS) group on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC on September 18, 2014United Nations (United States) (AFP) - Washington's arch-foe Iran has a role to play in tackling Islamic State militants who have overrun large swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria, US Secretary of State John Kerry said.


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 07:05:03 -0400

FILE - In this April 11, 2014, file photo, Chicago Cardinal Francis George pauses while speaking during a news conference in Chicago. The Associated Press has learned that Bishop Blase Cupich of Spokane, Wash., will be the next archbishop of Chicago. A person with knowledge of the selection says Cupich will succeed George. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person wasn't authorized to speak publicly. The Archdiocese of Chicago has scheduled a news conference Saturday, Sept. 20, but will not comment. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)Pope Francis on Saturday appointed Bishop Blase Cupich, a moderate who has called for civility in the culture wars, as the next archbishop of Chicago, signaling a shift in tone in one of the most important posts in the U.S. church.


New Zealand Prime Minister and leader of the National Party John Key buys a sausage after casting his vote on the day of the national election in Auckland, New Zealand, Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014. Polls indicate Key's center-right National Party is the most popular party, and Key is the front-runner to remain the country's leader. (AP Photo/New Zealand Herald, Brett Phibbs) NEW ZEALAN OUT, AUSTRALIA OUTWELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Prime Minister John Key won an emphatic victory Saturday in New Zealand's general election to return for a third term in office, a result that will be seen as an endorsement of the way Key's National Party has handled the economy.


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 06:56:36 -0400

FILE - This undated PennDOT identification photo released in this Friday Sept. 16, 2014 file photo by the Pennsylvania State Police shows Eric Matthew Frein, 31, of Canadensis, Penn., being sought in Friday's shooting that left one trooper dead and another critically wounded at a state police barracks in Blooming Grove. Authorities are hunkering down early Saturday morning Sept. 20, 2014 in the overnight darkness of the wooded northeast Pennsylvania neighborhood where a man suspected of the fatal ambush of a state police trooper lived with his parents. (AP Photo/PennDOT via Pennsylvania State Police, Filr)CANADENSIS, Pa. (AP) — Authorities hunkered down early Saturday in the neighborhood where a man suspected in the fatal shooting of a Pennsylvania State Police trooper lived with his parents, raising hopes they had him cornered a week after the ambush outside a rural police barracks.


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 06:55:54 -0400
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Afghanistan's drawn-out presidential election may finally be coming to an end.
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand Prime Minister John Key wins third term in office as rival Labour Party concedes.

Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters fire at Islamic-State (IS) positions, from the top of Mount Zardak, about 25kms east of Mosul on September 9, 2014Istanbul (AFP) - Forty-nine Turks were freed Saturday more than three months after the Islamic State group kidnapped them in Iraq, as tens of thousands fled across the Syrian border from the advancing jihadists.


Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and NO campaigner in Scotland's Independence Referendum meets pupils at Kelty Primary school in Kelty Scotland Friday Sept. 19, 2014. Voters in Scotland resoundingly rejected independence in a historic referendum that shook the country to its core. But No does not mean a return to the status quo. The referendum led to promises of further powers for each of the four nations in the United Kingdom _ a pledge that will change the country forever. (AP Photo/Garry F McHarg/PA) UNITED KINGDOM OUTKIRKCALDY, Scotland (AP) — Dour. Grim. Downright uninspiring. When Gordon Brown ended a disappointing three years as British prime minister in 2010, few would have credited him as the man most likely to swing a popular vote ever again.


BEIRUT (Reuters) - More than 300 Kurdish fighters have crossed into Syria from Turkey to help push back an Islamic State advance on a Kurdish border town, a group monitoring Syria's conflict said on Saturday. "They crossed over last night, they are more than 300," said Rami Abdulrahman, who runs the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights that monitors the war using sources on the ground. He said it was not clear which group the fighters belonged to but said they had joined Kurdish forces in Syria who are fighting Islamic State around the town of Ayn al-Arab, known as Kobani in Kurdish. ...

US Treasury Secretary Lew stands with his Australian counterpart Hockey during a media conference at the start of the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in the northern Australian city of CairnsBy Lincoln Feast and Gernot Heller CAIRNS Australia (Reuters) - Financial leaders of the Group of 20 top economies remain committed to chasing higher global growth, but were divided on how to achieve it as Germany pushed back at calls from the United States and others for more immediate stimulus. Opening a meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bankers, Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey outlined on Saturday an ambitious agenda of boosting world growth, fireproofing the global banking system and closing tax loopholes for giant multinationals. ...


VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope names moderate Bishop Blase Cupich to lead Chicago, replacing conservative George.

Smoke rises from the headquarters of the Yemeni state television building, which is under attack from Shi'ite Houthi militants, in SanaaBy Mohammed Ghobari SANAA (Reuters) - Yemen's state-run television building caught fire after a three-day mortar attack by Shi'ite rebels who are protesting against the government, residents and a TV employee said on Saturday, After weeks of protests and clashes, the conflict intensified on Thursday when the Shi'ite Houthi rebels clashed with the army on the outskirts of Sanaa. The fighting expanded mainly between the Houthis and tribesmen allied with the al-Ahmar clan. ...


Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown speaks to pupils during a visit to Kelty Primary School in FifeEDINBURGH (Reuters) - Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown told British leaders on Saturday that they must honor their promise to grant further powers to Scotland after voters backed staying in the United Kingdom in an independence referendum. Just days before the Sept. 18 vote, Brown appeared to be making British policy by announcing that laws granting further devolution to the Scottish parliament would be drafted by the time Scots celebrate the birthday of their most revered poet, Robert Burns, on January 25. ...


Firefighter Cameron Andersen, of the US Forest Service, pours water on burning embers while clearing hot spots of the King fire in the El Dorado National Forest near Georgetown, Calif., Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014. More than 3,500 firefighters from various agencies are battling the blaze that started Saturday and has burned more than 70,000 acres.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)PLACERVILLE, Calif. (AP) — Firefighters are dropping record-breaking amounts of retardants on a massive Northern California wildfire that is burning explosively because of the prolonged drought.


Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown speaks to pupils during a visit to Kelty Primary School in FifeEDINBURGH (Reuters) - Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown told British leaders on Saturday that they must honour their promise to grant further powers to Scotland after voters backed staying in the United Kingdom in an independence referendum. Just days before the Sept. 18 vote, Brown appeared to be making British policy by announcing that laws granting further devolution to the Scottish parliament would be drafted by the time Scots celebrate the birthday of their most revered poet, Robert Burns, on January 25. ...


U.S. citizen Matthew Todd Miller sits in a witness box during his trial at the North Korean Supreme CourtBy James Pearson SEOUL (Reuters) - An American recently sentenced to six years hard labor by a North Korean court pretended to have secret U.S. information and was deliberately arrested in a bid to become famous and meet U.S. missionary Kenneth Bae in a North Korean prison, state media said on Saturday. Matthew Miller, 25, of Bakersfield, California, had prepared his story in advance and written in a notebook that he was seeking refuge after failing in an attempt to collect information about the U.S. government, state media said. ...


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 05:55:21 -0400

Police officers take position as a convoy escorting French citizen Mehdi Nemmouche is set to arrive at the Justice Palace in Brussels, on September 12, 2014Brussels (AFP) - The Belgian authorities have prevented several attacks by jihadist fighters returning home from Syria and by sympathisers with the Islamic State extremist group, a report said Saturday.


CAIRO (AP) — A renowned jihadi ideologue on Saturday urged the Islamic State group to release British aid worker Alan Henning, saying Islam forbids harming non-Muslims who work with relief agencies.
CAIRNS Australia (Reuters) - The Mexican economy is on track to achieve the government's growth forecast of 2.7 percent for 2014, deputy finance minister Fernando Aportela said on Saturday. Aportela said the latest data for new jobs, industrial output and automotive production supported the government's forecast, which some analysts have described as optimistic. "When you look at the indicators of the Mexican economy, they show a recovery that is consistent with the 2. ...

Delegates prepare to hear the opening remarks at the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting in Cairns on September 20, 2014Cairns (Australia) (AFP) - Finance chiefs from G20 nations held talks Saturday, confident they can "change the destiny of the global economy" despite rising world political tensions and mounting fears of financial instability.


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 05:40:47 -0400

FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2014, file photo, Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston rolls out of the pocket in the first half of an NCAA college football game against Oklahoma State in Arlington, Texas. Florida State has suspended Winston for the entire game against Clemson on Saturday, Sept 20, extending its initial punishment of one half after the quarterback made "offensive and vulgar" comments about female anatomy earlier this week. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida State has suspended Jameis Winston for the entire game against Clemson on Saturday, extending its initial punishment of one half after the quarterback made "offensive and vulgar" comments about female anatomy earlier this week.


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 05:40:30 -0400

Alibaba employees attend the opening bell ceremony during the company's IPO at the New York Stock Exchange, Friday, Sept. 19, 2014 in New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)NEW YORK (AP) — China's e-commerce giant Alibaba began trading its shares Friday on the New York Stock Exchange. Here are ten things to know about Alibaba, and why its initial public offering made history:


CAIRNS Australia (Reuters) - Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said on Saturday he told his Group of 20 counterparts that the world's third-largest economy continues to recover moderately despite the temporary pain from a sales tax hike in April. He also said Japan stressed the importance of setting up appropriate financial regulation and macro-prudential frameworks to guard against any sudden change to the current low volatility market environment. Asked whether the dollar's rise to 109 yen reflected economic fundamentals, Aso said: "We can't comment on such questions. ...
  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 05:40:01 -0400

Shipping containers roll out of a port on the Bay of Bengal which forms the northeastern part of the Indian Ocean, in Chennai, India, Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. Chinese President Xi Jinping toasted the birthday of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a quiet dinner earlier this week in Modi’s home state. And the two leaders are full of praise for one another, and one another’s countries. Left largely unspoken, though, are the deep worries in India over Chinese maneuvering in the Indian Ocean, where New Delhi’s years of dominance is being chipped away by billions of dollars in aid from Beijing and gargantuan Chinese construction projects. (AP Photo/Arun Sankar K)NEW DELHI (AP) — At first glance, it looks like a diplomatic love-fest. There was Chinese President Xi Jinping, toasting the birthday of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a quiet dinner earlier this week in Modi's home state. There were the two leaders, deep in conversation as they walked along the Sabarmati River, Xi dressed in a Nehru jacket.


A Secret Service police officer holds a weapon as he stands near an entrance to the White House complex during an evacuation minutes after President Barack Obama departed Washington for Camp David aboard Marine One on Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. A Secret Service agent at the scene says someone jumped the fence surrounding the White House. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)WASHINGTON (AP) — The Secret Service is coming under intense scrutiny after a man who hopped the White House fence made it all the way through the front door before being apprehended.


In this photo made available by Greenpeace International, President Anote Tong of the Pacific Island nation Kiribati stands during a retreat to the high Arctic glacier Nordenskioldbreen, on Svalbard, Norway. Fearing that his Pacific island nation could be swallowed by a rising ocean, the president of Kiribati says a visit to the melting Arctic has helped him appreciate the scale of the threat. President Anote Tong on Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014 ended a Greenpeace-organized tour of glaciers in Norway’s Svalbard Archipelago, a trip he said left a deep impression that he would share with world leaders at a U.N. climate summit next week in New York. (AP Photo/Greenpeace International, Christian Aslund)STOCKHOLM (AP) — Fearing that his Pacific island nation could be swallowed by a rising ocean, the president of Kiribati says a visit to the melting Arctic has helped him appreciate the scale of the threat.


  Sat, 20 Sep 2014 05:29:39 -0400

A car drives near a burnt military vehicles and unexploded ammunition following the recent bombing of a Ukrainian camp near the village of Dmytryivka in the region of Lugansk on September 19, 2014Kiev (AFP) - Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian militias were due Saturday to pull back their troops from a demilitarised zone created under a new peace plan agreed in marathon overnight talks.


Taylor Swift performs at the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on September 19, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Al Powers/Powers Imagery/Invision/AP)Taylor Swift didn't divulge any more new secrets about her forthcoming album when she took the stage at the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas, but the crowd's enthusiasm about her bouncy new single, ...


Turkish soldier stands guard as Syrian Kurds cross the border fence into Turkey near the southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa provinceBy Seyhmus Cakan SANLIURFA Turkey (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of Syrian Kurds have crossed into Turkey over the past day, fleeing an advance by Islamic State fighters who have seized dozens of villages close to the border, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said on Saturday. Turkey opened a stretch of the frontier on Friday after Kurdish civilians fled their homes, fearing an imminent attack on the Syrian border town of Ayn al-Arab, known as Kobani in Kurdish. ...



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