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  • Semi crash coats Indianapolis highway in butter

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A semitrailer has overturned on an Indianapolis interstate, spilling what police say are 45,000 pounds of packages of butter and other dairy products. The crash happened about 3:30 a.m. Friday in the eastbound lanes of Interstate 465 just west of its interchange with Interstate 65 on the city's south side. The crash left perhaps thousands of butter tubs strewn on the highway, many broken open and coating the roadway. Police say the truck driver apparently fell asleep and hit a highway barrier. No injuries were reported. Some lanes of the highway are expected to be closed for hours for cleanup work, with crews using a small front-end loader to scoop the butter tubs and whipped cream containers

  • Banksy's 'Spy Booth' artwork defaced

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    LONDON (AP) — A mural by street artist Banksy that sparked a local preservation campaign has been defaced. "Spy Booth" shows three agents in trench coats and trilby hats eavesdropping on a phone booth. It appeared in April on a wall in Cheltenham, western England, home of spy agency GCHQ. A local group was formed to save the work after the building's owner attempted to have it removed and sold. Local businessman Hekmat Kaveh had agreed to buy and preserve the mural, but on Friday it was covered in scrawled graffiti letters. Kaveh said he hoped the work, which was treated with anti-graffiti paint, could be restored. Banksy works have fetched as much as $1.8 million at auction, and several of his outdoor pieces ha

  • Italy, Poland vie for top EU foreign policy job

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    BRUSSELS (AP) — The top diplomats of Italy and Poland are competing for the prestigious position of EU foreign policy chief amid the unfolding tensions with Russia. Italian Premier Matteo Renzi's office said Friday it officially nominated Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini for the position, while Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk said his top diplomat, Radek Sikorski, was the ideal candidate. The choice comes at a time of heightened tension with Russia over its actions in Ukraine, and several eastern European governments reject Mogherini as too Moscow-friendly. Sikorski is viewed as so critical of Russia that his appointment could jeopardize a possible reconciliation with Russia. A summit of the EU's 28 leaders on Au

  • Gas prices trending downward in SC

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Gas prices are dropping in South Carolina. AAA Carolinas says the downward trend should continue. The Charlotte, North Carolina, motor club reports gas costs an average of $3.24 a gallon. That's down 14 cents per gallon from a month ago and down 21 cents since Memorial Day. The motor club said the decline is the result of less reliance on foreign oil with more fuel efficient cars on the road. Club president David Parsons says the only thing that might make gas prices spike is if a hurricane damages refinery capacity in the Gulf of Mexico. The lowest gas prices in the state are in the Greenville-Spartanburg area at $3.18 a gallon. Myrtle Beach has the highest at $3.31. The national averag

  • Hilton 2Q earnings jump 35 pct to $209 million

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    MCLEAN, Va. (AP) — Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc.'s (HLT) second-quarter earnings rose 35 percent and topped Wall Street expectations. The McLean, Virginia, hotelier said Friday it earned $209 million, or 21 cents per share, in the three months that ended June 30. That compares with earnings of $155 million, or 17 cents per share, in last year's quarter, before the company held its December initial public offering of stock. Total revenue climbed 12 percent to $2.67 billion. Analysts expected, on average, earnings of about 19 cents per share on $2.63 billion in revenue, according to Zacks Investment Research. Hilton raised $2.35 billion last December in the largest hotel IPO ever, an offering that topped the $2.

  • Solid US job gains expected for 6th straight month

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — With a host of reports this week pointing to a healthier U.S. economy, analysts expect Friday's monthly jobs report to send a similar message. Economists predict that the government will say employers added 225,000 jobs in July, according to a survey by data provider FactSet. That would follow June's big 288,000 increase. And it would mark the sixth straight month of gains above 200,000, the longest such stretch since 1997. The Labor Department will issue the jobs report at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time. This year's burst of hiring has lowered the unemployment rate to 6.1 percent from 6.7 percent at the start of the year. The rate is now the lowest it's been in six years. Economists think the rate wil

  • Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise departs Russia

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    MOSCOW (AP) — The Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise departed for the Netherlands on Friday nearly a year after Russian authorities seized it during a protest against an oil platform, the Amsterdam-based environmental group said. The Arctic Sunrise left the northern Russian port city of Murmansk and was headed to Amsterdam, Greenpeace International said. The ship was seized by Russian authorities in September 2013 during a protest against the offshore oil platform, and the 30 people on board were arrested. Greenpeace opposes the location of the platform, within the Arctic Circle. The crew and journalists were initially charged with piracy and were held in Russian prisons for months after their arrest near the Prirazlomnay

  • WWI aviation still alive at aerodrome in New York

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    RHINEBECK, N.Y. (AP) — There's still a place where buzzing biplanes swoop in pursuit of German triplanes, where pilots in open cockpits let their scarves flutter in the wind. The sights and sounds of World War I flight are recreated regularly at the Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome in New York's Hudson Valley, where an original American Curtiss JN-4H "Jenny" shares the sky with reproductions of a French Spad VII and German Fokkers. "I get to shoot down a Fokker triplane every Sunday afternoon," said air show director Chris Bulko, who flew the Spad. "I call it playing with the toys here and sharing them with everybody else, and inviting them into our sandbox.

  • Flash flood warning in effect for Charleston area

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A flash flood warning remains in effect in the Charleston area, after torrential rains hit the area. The National Weather Service says the warning will remain in effect through midday Friday for Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester counties. Heavy rains drenched the area Thursday, with some places receiving up to 8 inches of rain. Numerous streets in the Charleston area were closed because of street flooding but all have reopened. The weather service says there is a chance of additional heavy rains through Friday morning.

  • Contract talks in Met Opera labor dispute extended

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — It's a drama worthy of the Metropolitan Opera: Frantic, last-minute labor negotiations aimed at averting a lockout that threatens to stop both pay and benefits for thousands of singers, musicians, stagehands and other workers. With just an hour to spare before general manager Peter Gelb's vow of a 12:01 a.m. Friday deadline that would trigger a lockout, the company announced it had agreed to a federal mediator's request to extend the talks by 72 hours. "We want to work together with union representatives, and do everything we can to achieve new contracts, which is why we've agreed to an extension," Gelb said.

  • Brokering a truce in Gaza no easy deal for Kerry

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    NEW DELHI (AP) — Hours past midnight Thursday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was still working the phones, trying to come up with a cease-fire plan to stop the bloodshed in the Gaza Strip. He'd been pushing for a deal all day — in fact, for more than a week — and nailing down a final agreement was proving elusive. Finally, less than an hour after all sides signed off on the precise and technical wording for a 72-hour truce, Kerry issued a statement and called a 3:30 a.m. Friday press conference to seal the deal before any party could back out. Kerry had helped shepherd a cease-fire that began at 8 a.m. local time Friday in Gaza and Israel.

  • Researcher tags great white off Cape Cod

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    CHATHAM, Mass. (AP) — A shark researcher has attached an electronic tracking device to a great white shark off Chatham. The Cape Cod Times reported it was (http://bit.ly/1rQwY24 ) the first time this year that a great white has been tagged in coastal waters. The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy says Greg Skomal, a state scientist, was able to tag the 12-foot shark on Thursday as it moved quickly past a research vessel a few hundred yards offshore. The devices allow scientists to track the sharks and learn more about their movements and behavior. Skomal's team has tagged a number of the creatures in recent years. Shark sightings off Massachusetts have increased in recent years as they move closer to the coast to

  • Severed leg found in Dublin recycling plant

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    DUBLIN (AP) — A severed leg has been found at a Dublin recycling plant, and police are searching trash for the rest of the body. A doctor called to the plant early Friday in west Dublin confirmed the leg was human, but couldn't determine whether it came from a man or woman. Police say the leg could belong to a homeless person sleeping in a dumpster who was accidentally crushed to death inside a garbage truck. Or a Dublin gang could have dismembered a murder victim. Last year a 43-year-old Polish man who had been sleeping in a bin was crushed to death. And police repeatedly have found parts of dismembered murder victims, including a headless body in a canal in 2005.

  • Chrysler US sales climb 20 percent in July

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) — Chrysler says its U.S. sales rose 20 percent in July from a year ago, its best performance for the month in nine years. The automaker said Friday that it sold 167,667 vehicles in the U.S. during the month compared with 140,102 in the prior-year period. Jeep sales surged 41 percent. That's the best July performance for the brand ever. The Fiat, Dodge and Chrysler brands also posted sales increases for the month. The Jeep Wrangler, Jeep Compass, Dodge Dart, Dodge Challenger, Dodge Journey and Ram Cargo Van each recorded their best July sales ever. And the Fiat 500L set a new all-time monthly sales record in July.

  • Oklahoma History Center plans back-to-school event

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Staff and educators at museums across Oklahoma will be on hand later this month to answer questions about field trips, teacher resources and professional development. The event is called the Back-to-School Bash and is being held at the Oklahoma History Center on Aug. 14. Teachers, parents, school staff and students are invited to take part. The museums and organizations taking part include the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center, Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum and the Oklahoma Arts Council.

  • South Africa: Giraffe's head hits highway overpass

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Those responsible for the death of a giraffe whose head struck a South African highway overpass while it was being transported in a truck will likely be prosecuted under animal protection laws, an official said Friday. The accident on a highway between Pretoria and Johannesburg on Thursday was very unsettling because it could easily have been avoided, said Rick Allan, an animal welfare officer. "It's just so unnecessary," said Allan, head of the Pretoria area branch of Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The group's members were able to respond quickly to the giraffe accident because they were already out on the highway attending to a separate case of cattle stranded because of a truck bre

  • Pope slips out of Vatican, joins Jesuits for lunch

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    ROME (AP) — Maybe Pope Francis is getting tired of the food in the Vatican hotel. The pope slipped out of the Vatican on Thursday for his second drop-in, surprise luncheon, visiting his fellow Jesuits on the feast day of their founder, St. Ignatius Loyola. Francis told the Jesuit superior, the Rev. Adolfo Nicolas, only at the last minute that he wanted to join, and was driven down the block to the Jesuit headquarters in his blue Ford Focus for the visit. Also attending the luncheon were the seven siblings of Fr. Paolo Dall'Oglio, a Jesuit priest abducted in Syria a year ago. A Jesuit statement Friday said Francis "consoled them with words of comfort." Last week, Francis surprised Vatican workers by lining up at

  • AP PHOTOS: City streets destroyed in Taiwan blasts

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    City streets destroyed, transformed into trenches strewn with dirt, ripped pieces of pipe and jagged blocks of concrete. Broken fire trucks turned upside down, twisted soot-covered cars and motorcycles, ripped advertising signs. The site of underground gas explosions in Taiwan's second-largest city is a scene of destruction. The blasts hit a densely populated district where petrochemical companies operate pipelines in the city of Kaohsiung. Firefighters who went to investigate the early reports of a gas leak were among the dead and injured. The blasts affected an area of two to three square kilometers, much of it sealed off, and authorities were trying to prevent further explosions. Here is a gallery of photos from the

  • 'B' sample confirms teen weightlifter's doping

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) — A 16-year-old Nigerian weightlifter faces being stripped of her Commonwealth Games gold medal after her backup doping sample confirmed a previous finding for banned substances. Chika Amalaha tested positive for diuretics and masking agents after winning the 53-kilogram (117-pound) division last Friday, becoming the youngest ever female to win a weightlifting title at a Commonwealth Games. Amalaha was initially suspended on Tuesday after the "A'' sample tested positive for amiloride and hydrochlorothiazide, which are both banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency. Organizers said Friday the "B'' sample also came back positive.

  • Israeli army says soldier "feared" captured by Gaza militants

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli army says soldier "feared" captured by Gaza militants.