• Egypt court suspends legislative election after court ruling

    Updated: 3 min ago

    CAIRO (AP) — An Egyptian court suspended the country's upcoming parliamentary elections Tuesday, following an earlier Supreme Constitutional Court ruling deeming laws regulating the vote unconstitutional. The decision by Judge Yahia Dakrouri of the Administrative Court was expected after the high court's ruling last week. The country's election committee later will set a new date for the vote. The Supreme Constitutional Court's ruling declared the law defining voting districts unconstitutional. The government is working on amending the law. The Supreme Election Committee said in a statement earlier that it is setting up a new timetable for elections whenever the law is ready.

  • US first lady plans mid-March visit to Japan, Cambodia

    Updated: 10 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Michelle Obama will visit Japan and Cambodia later this month, part of a new administration push to educate girls around the world. The White House says the first lady will visit Tokyo and Kyoto, Japan, from March 18-20 before concluding her trip with a March 21-22 stop in Siem Reap in northwestern Cambodia. Cambodia is an interesting choice for Mrs. Obama. President Barack Obama became the first U.S. president to visit in 2012. But White House officials insisted that he went only because Cambodia was the host for two annual regional summits he has been attending. Cambodia's longtime Prime Minister Hun Sen has a reputation for ruthlessness in dealing with political opponents.

  • Report: As Ebola wanes, other countries remain vulnerable

    Updated: 10 min ago

    N'DJAMENA, Chad (AP) — Arriving airline passengers lined up outdoors to have their temperatures checked, the screens in the nighttime darkness like glowing lightning bugs. Some of the travelers checked by workers with surgical masks had traveled through a West African country affected by Ebola, or sat next to passengers who did, and Chadian authorities weren't taking any chances. Impoverished countries like Chad know the only way to stay Ebola-free is to keep any infected people out. If any get in, these countries' health-care systems are unprepared to handle an outbreak, according to a report released Tuesday by Save the Children. The report said only Somalia is worse prepared than Chad for an epidemic such as Ebola.

  • VP Biden to headline gay rights group's convention

    Updated: 12 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden will deliver a speech this week to the nation's largest gay rights group. The Human Rights Campaign says Biden will headline its annual convention on Friday in Washington. The group advocates for equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. Biden spoke at the group's annual gala fundraiser last year, and President Barack Obama has also spoken to HRC. The group endorsed the Obama-Biden re-election campaign, and has already started attacking likely 2016 Republican presidential candidates over their positions on gay rights issues.

  • Fierce clashes outside Iraq's Tikrit after new offensive

    Updated: 13 min ago

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraqi troops fought on Tuesday with Islamic State extremists south of the militant-held city of Tikrit but their offensive to retake Saddam Hussein's hometown was slowed by roadside bombs, local officials said. Backed by Iranian-backed Shiite militias and advisers along with Sunni tribal fighters, government forces made little headway on the second day of a large-scale military operation to recapture Tikrit, which fell to the Islamic State group last summer, two local officials said. Fierce clashes were underway mainly outside the town of al-Dour, south of Tikrit, while government troops were shelling militant bases inside the city, they said. The officials spoke anonymously as they were not authorized

  • Afghan avalanches cut off 3 northern districts

    Updated: 13 min ago

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Avalanches have cut off at least three districts in a remote part of northern Afghanistan, the head of a disaster relief agency said Tuesday, a week after nearly 200 people died when snow buried their homes in a valley near the capital Kabul. Severe weather conditions in Takhar province in the last 24 hours have cut road access to the districts, said Daim Kakar, the general director of the Afghanistan National Disaster Management Authority. Authorities were attempting to reach villages to deliver emergency supplies, including food, blankets and tea. "Bulldozers are being brought in to clear the roads of snow so that the deliveries can be made," Kakar said.

  • Prince William focuses on football and film on China trip

    Updated: 15 min ago

    SHANGHAI (AP) — Britain's Prince William focused his China trip on promoting links between the countries in football and film Tuesday, watching students kick balls around with Premier League-trained coaches before attending a movie premiere. The second-in-line to the throne is on a three-day trip to China on behalf of the U.K. government to open a festival celebrating British creativity and innovation, the first major event in a year of cultural exchange between the countries. As well as pushing Britain's creative industries, he is aiming to forge new business relationships between Britain and China.

  • Russia's currency reserves drop as state finances squeezed

    Updated: 20 min ago

    MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's finance ministry says the country's foreign currency reserves dropped by almost 10 percent in dollar terms in February after the government sought to fill a hole in the state budget, where revenues have suffered due to low oil prices. The fund, which is used to support Russia in time of low oil and gas prices and is held in dollars, euros and British pounds, fell from $85.09 billion to $77.05 billion, the ministry said. The fall in ruble terms was sharper, almost 20 percent, since the ruble gained ground against the dollar and other currencies during February. Last month, the government used 500 billion rubles ($8 billion) from the fund to support the budget. Cuts of 10 percent are planned to most are

  • Turkey: Notice on military maneuvers in Aegean was a mistake

    Updated: 21 min ago

    ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey says a recent notice seeking to reserve a large swath of airspace over the Aegean Sea for military maneuvers was issued by mistake and then canceled. A statement by Foreign Ministry Spokesman Tanju Bilgic said Tuesday that the Notice to Airmen, or NOTAM, was inadvertently declared "with an inaccurate coordinate." He did not elaborate. Greece had complained about the planned maneuvers, which it said would have intruded into Greek airspace and interfered with commercial air traffic. Bilgic said Turkey would not declare a new NOTAM for "a certain period of time" and said Turkey was willing to resolve the dispute through talks.

  • New Jersey faces more snow, sleet and rain

    Updated: 27 min ago

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey faces another round of winter weather that could slow the ride home from work. Winter weather advisories are in effect for most of the state from 3 p.m. Tuesday until 1 a.m. Wednesday. The National Weather Service is predicting snow and sleet will sweep through the area during the late afternoon hours. The precipitation will transition to freezing rain before changing to rain during the overnight hours. Most of the state is facing an inch or less of snow. However, there could be more snow in Passaic, Bergen, Hudson, Essex and Union counties.

  • Armani creates new winter trousers with tulip flair

    Updated: 28 min ago

    MILAN (AP) — The final day highlights of Armani and DSquared2 always make a rather odd pairing, representing in many ways the two poles of Milan fashion. Armani, who celebrates 40 years of his fashion brand this year, was a founding protagonist of the Milan fashion scene, and has become a global fashion watchword by creating enduring looks, with a focus on detailing and elegance, not flash-by trends. Dean and Dan Caten, the Canadian twins behind the 20-year-old DSquared2 label, are on the more extravagant end of the fashion spectrum, with audacious styles that cross the border into camp. What they share is a vision for Milan that they are willing to invest in.

  • Wintry weather possible in northwest Georgia by mid-week

    Updated: 31 min ago

    ATLANTA (AP) — Another round of wintry weather could soon hit parts of north Georgia. Forecasters say rain possibly mixed with light sleet or freezing rain will be possible in far north Georgia late Wednesday night into Thursday. The National Weather Service projects that the best chances of the wintry precipitation will be in the far northwest portion of the state, which includes the Dalton and Trenton areas. Forecasters say any accumulation should be light -- a trace to a tenth of an inch.

  • Kerry working on Iran nuke deal, Netanyahu to criticize it

    Updated: 32 min ago

    MONTREUX, Switzerland (AP) — Top U.S. and Israeli officials are spending the day focusing on an emerging nuclear deal with Iran, but from opposite corners. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry wants to bridge differences with Tehran while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu plans to criticize the pact before Congress. Kerry was meeting Tuesday with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif in the Swiss town of Montreux — head of a March 31 deadline to seal a preliminary deal putting constraints on Tehran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief for Iran. Their meeting is overshadowed by Netanyahu's planned speech by invitation of congressional Republicans skeptical that the deal will seriously crimp Iran'

  • Philippines suspends oil, gas exploration in disputed waters

    Updated: 45 min ago

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A Filipino-British company says the Philippine government has ordered the suspension of all exploration at an offshore oil and gas field because of an ongoing territorial dispute with China. The oil and gas exploration and production company Forum Energy Plc. says the Department of Energy has instructed it to halt all exploration work in its contracted area at Reed Bank in the South China Sea off the western Philippine province of Palawan. It said in a statement Monday that the area is subject to a U.N. arbitration case filed by the Philippines over China's rival claim to the territory. Forum is majority-owned by Philippine company Philex Petroleum Corp.

  • Liberia calls for Ebola 'Marshall Plan' to rebuild economies

    Updated: 47 min ago

    BRUSSELS (AP) — Liberia's president is calling for a plan of international aid to help eradicate Ebola from western Africa and rebuild economies, as the number of deaths from the disease approaches 10,000. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said Tuesday that "we need our international partners to remain committed to us," even as the number of new Ebola cases each week in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone has dropped significantly. Sirleaf told fellow regional leaders and delegates at a major international conference on Ebola in Brussels that rebuilding economies devastated by the outbreak is a long-term and costly task.

  • LePage pushing to eliminate tax on military pensions

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Republican Gov. Paul LePage is continuing his push to eliminate the tax on military pensions. LePage will meet with veterans at the Statehouse on Tuesday to discuss the need for Maine to join 22 other states in not taxing military pensions. The governor has said that his proposal will encourage more veterans to move to Maine. The effort is part of LePage's larger tax overhaul plan in his $6.3 billion budget. He also wants to slash the personal and corporate income tax and get rid of the estate tax. It would be paid for in part by raising the sales tax and expanding it to include more services.

  • Nebraska man faces sentencing in federal contract fraud case

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A judge is considering whether to sentence a Nebraska businessman to prison for fraudulently landing $23.4 million in federal contracts intended for disabled veterans. The U.S. Attorney's Office in Des Moines will ask for a two-year prison term during Tuesday's sentencing for Ram Hingorani. Hingorani's attorney is expected to ask U.S. District Judge Stephanie Rose to impose probation. His companies won 45 contracts to perform construction work for the Department of Veterans Affairs in Des Moines and Omaha and at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. They were awarded under a program to encourage contracts for veterans who are injured during their service. Hingorani is not a veteran.

  • Yemen's leader suggests Riyadh for dialogue with rebels

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Yemen's president has offered the Saudi capital Riyadh as a possible venue for the resumption of U.N. talks with Shiite rebels who have seized Yemen's own capital Sanaa. President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi made the offer during a meeting Tuesday with tribal leaders, according to two participants and an aide to the president who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media. They said Hadi offered Riyadh as an alternative venue if the Houthi rebels continue to oppose moving the talks from Sanaa, which has been under their control since September, to either Aden or Taiz.

  • FG senior makes (radio) waves

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    Her voice is heard on the radio each Sunday night, but don’t expect Erin Michael to keep Sunday hours. Michael, a senior at Fort Gibson High School, hosts a music program 7 to 11 p.m. Sundays on Okie Country, KTFX-FM 101.7. However, she tapes most of the show the Thursday before each broadcast — right after she gets out of school. “It takes about an hour to do a four-hour show,” Michael said. “When I come in here, they always have the music preset for me. But they have a system in which if someone requests a song, you can plug it in.” Michael has been a fixture at the Muskogee radio station since she was 13. She said she first got involved after being part of a singing competition the station put on.

  • Concerns over drug prompt delay of Georgia woman's execution

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    JACKSON, Ga. (AP) — Citing concerns about the drug to be used in a lethal injection, Georgia corrections officials postponed the execution of the state's only female death row inmate for the second time in a week. Georgia Department of Corrections spokeswoman Gwendolyn Hogan says the execution drug was sent to an independent lab to check its potency and the test came back at an acceptable level, but during subsequent checks it appeared cloudy. Corrections officials called the pharmacist and decided to postpone Kelly Renee Gissendaner's Monday night execution "out of an abundance of caution." No new date was given. Forty-six-year-old Gissendaner was scheduled to be executed at 7 p.m. for the 1997 slaying of her husband, Doug