Boy Scouts settle California suit over abuse

Boy Scouts Ready For Move To Allow Gay Scouts From 2014The case involved a man who was molested by a Scout volunteer in 2007.



Gas blast at Mexico City children's hospital

147176659JM00031_MEXICANS_AAt least three people are dead and dozens are injured.



Lindsey Graham to test 2016 Republican presidential waters

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush speaks at the National Automobile Dealers Association convention in San Francisco, Friday, Jan. 23, 2015. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)By Steve Holland and Susan Cornwell WASHINGTON (Reuters) - South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham on Thursday formed a political organization to explore a potential run for his party's presidential nomination, the latest high-profile politician to test the 2016 waters. Graham would attempt to use his South Carolina home base to his advantage for any potential run, since the Southern state is typically the third to hold a nominating contest in presidential election years, after Iowa and New Hampshire. "What I'm looking at is, is there a pathway forward on the ground in Iowa and New Hampshire for a guy like me?



Islamic State purportedly sets new deadline for hostage swap

This still image taken from a video posted on YouTube by jihadists on Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, purports to show a still photo of Japanese journalist Kenji Goto holding what appears to be a photo of Jordanian pilot 1st Lt. Mu'ath al-Kaseasbeh. Both are being held hostage by the Islamic State militant group. The still image was overdubbed with audio which condemns Jordan for not releasing Sajida al-Rishawi, saying that unless she is freed within 24 hours both will be killed. The Arabic subtitle reads "I only have 24 hours left to live." The Associated Press could not independently verify the video. (AP Photo)A voice claiming to be a Japanese hostage relays the group's latest threat.



U.S. jobless claims plunge 14%

New claims for US unemployment insurance benefits plunged to the lowest level in nearly 15 years last week, the Labor Department reportsNew claims for US unemployment insurance benefits plunged to the lowest level in nearly 15 years last week, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Initial jobless claims, a sign of the pace of layoffs, dropped to a seasonally adjusted 265,000 in the week ending January 24, a hefty decline of 43,000 from the prior week's slightly upwardly revised level of 308,000. It was the lowest level for initial claims since mid-April 2000. The Labor Department said there was no particular factor influencing the week's claims data, which is often volatile.



Weekly Ebola cases below 100

Medical workers treating their protective gear in an Ebola treatment centre in Monrovia, December 19, 2014By Tom Miles and Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA (Reuters) - The number of new confirmed Ebola cases totaled 99 in the week to Jan. 25, the lowest tally since June 2014, the World Health Organization said on Thursday, signaling the tide might have turned against the epidemic. "The response to the EVD (Ebola virus disease) epidemic has now moved to a second phase, as the focus shifts from slowing transmission to ending the epidemic," the WHO said. "To achieve this goal as quickly as possible, efforts have moved from rapidly building infrastructure to ensuring that capacity for case finding, case management, safe burials, and community engagement is used as effectively as possible." The outbreak has killed 8,810 people out of 22,092 known cases, almost all of them in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea. Cases and deaths have fallen rapidly in Liberia and Sierra Leone in the past few weeks, with just 20 deaths recorded in Liberia in the 21 days to Jan. 25.



Matt Bai: Jeb and the myth of the Sister Souljah moment

Jeb Bush and Sister SouljahContrary to what people say, there’s really no such thing as a “Sister Souljah moment” unless a political candidate has spent a good bit of time making the argument that underlies it first.



Malaysia declares MH370 an 'accident', airline to proceed with compensation

The wife of a passenger aboard the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, holds a picture of her husband walking with Malaysia's Prime Minister Razak, at a news conference in PutrajayaMalaysia declared on Thursday the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 an accident, clearing the way for the airline to pay compensation to victims' relatives while the search for the plane goes on. "We officially declare Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 an accident ... and that all 239 of the passengers and crew onboard MH370 are presumed to have lost their lives," Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) director-general Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said in a statement. The announcement is in accordance with standards of annexes 12 and 13 in the International Civil Aviation, said Azharuddin. It will allow families of the passengers to obtain assistance through compensation, he said.



U.S. funding impasse blocks Secret Service hires: Homeland Security chief

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Johnson listens to a question from a Republican member of Congress as he defends Obama's executive action on immigration at Capitol Hill in WashingtonBy Doina Chiacu and Susan Cornwell WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Secret Service cannot hire new agents for the next presidential election or make improvements at the agency until Congress settles a dispute over funding, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said on Thursday. Johnson said in a speech in Washington that uncertainty over the budget for the Department of Homeland Security, which secures U.S. borders, airports and coastal waters and protects the president, had put security initiatives on hold. These included recommendations made in December by a review panel on the Secret Service, which has been plagued with a series of security lapses including a White House intruder and a drone that landed on the mansion's lawn early Monday. Secret Service protection extends to major presidential and vice presidential candidates and their spouses within four months of a presidential election.



Convicted Ft. Hood killer to face military hearing in Kansas

Bell County Sheriff's Office photograph of Nidal Hasan(Reuters) - Former U.S. Army major Nidal Hasan will appear in a military court on Thursday for a procedural hearing related to his capital punishment conviction for the 2009 shooting spree at Fort Hood in Texas that killed 13 people and wounded 32 others. Military Judge Colonel Tara Osborn "plans to review routine matters such as Hasan's post-trial rights and elections, discuss the Record of Trial and Hasan's post-trial representation by counsel," U.S. Army officials said in a statement. The hearing will take place at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, where Hasan was sent after being sentenced to death for the killings. His death sentence is subject to an automatic appeal.



Flooding leaves mess in oceanfront Massachusetts after storm

A man emerges from the snow beyond a pine twisted from heavy winds near Nantasket Beach in Hull, Mass., Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. Massachusetts was pounded by snow and lashed by strong winds early Tuesday as bands of heavy snow left some towns including Sandwich on Cape Cod and Oxford in central Massachusetts reporting more than 18 inches of snow. (AP Photo/The Quincy Patriot Ledger, Gary Higgins) BOSTON HERALD OUT; BOSTON GLOBE OUT; QUINCY OUT (REV-SHARE)By Scott Malone MARSHFIELD, Mass. (Reuters) - Ocean Street in the waterfront Massachusetts town of Marshfield was littered with lobster traps, downed wires and chunks of houses on Wednesday, after a massive blizzard hammered New England. Notably absent was much of the 2 feet (30 cm) of snow that blanketed much of the Boston area, since for much of the storm, Ocean Street was under water because of flooding from a breached sea wall. "This area sees flooding regularly, but we haven't seen damage like this since the blizzard of '78," town planner Greg Guimond said as he surveyed the wreckage. Schools remained closed in Boston and most of its suburbs for a second straight day but life was otherwise returning to normal with the city's transit system and airport resuming service and a travel ban lifted.



AirAsia co-pilot at controls when plane crashed

The tail of AirAsia QZ8501 passenger plane is seen on the deck of the rescue ship Crest Onyx after it was lifted from the sea bed, south of Pangkalan Bun, Central KalimantanThe French co-pilot was at the controls of an AirAsia plane before it crashed into the sea last month after flying through an area of towering clouds, killing all 162 people on board, investigators said Thursday. The announcement came as fishermen found two more bodies from the crash in waters off Sulawesi island in central Indonesia, around 1,000 kilometres (600 miles) from where the plane crashed, a search and rescue official said. On Thursday, Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee, which has been analysing the plane's black boxes, said that prior to the crash, the aircraft had climbed fast in an area packed with huge storm clouds, and the stall alarms started going off. They also revealed that the Airbus A320-200's less experienced French co-pilot, Remi Plesel, was flying the plane before it went down, rather than Captain Iriyanto, a former fighter pilot who had around 20,000 hours of flying time.



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