• Police arrest 118 globally for flight ticket fraud

    Updated: 20 hr ago

    THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Police around the world have arrested 118 suspects in a global investigation into online fraud that targets the travel industry, a crime said to cost airlines $1 billion a year. European Union police coordination agency Europol said the arrests were made during two days of coordinated action this week at more than 80 airports in 45 countries. The investigation targeted criminal online services selling credit card details and fake plane tickets. Europol Director Rob Wainwright said Friday that the investigation and arrests were the result of close cooperation between law enforcement agencies, the airline industry and credit card companies.

  • At least 2 killed in Ukraine shelling

    Updated: 20 hr ago

    DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) — At least two people have been killed in a rocket attack that left a hospital badly damaged in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk, where fighting is raging between government forces and Russian-backed separatist rebels. The mayor's office in the rebel-held city said Friday that a 12-year old boy and 55-year old woman died in the attack, which took place Thursday afternoon. One rocket struck the roof of a hospital and another landed in the parking lot. Nobody was injured by the shells that hit the hospital. A cease-fire was nominally agreed between the warring sides in early September, but the truce has been violated daily since then. The U.N says more than 4,300 people have been killed

  • Malaysia Airlines apologizes for tweet, posts loss

    Updated: 20 hr ago

    KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia Airlines on Friday said its loss widened last quarter and apologized for a promotional tweet slammed as insensitive after two deadly passenger jet disasters this year. In its last public financial result before a planned privatization and overhaul, the flag carrier said its net loss in the July-September quarter rose 53 percent from a year earlier to 576.1 million ringgit ($170.3 million). The airline's business has suffered after a Malaysia Airlines jet with 239 people on board, mostly from China, went missing March 8 while en route to Beijing. No trace of it has been found. In July, a Malaysia Airlines jet was shot down over Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.

  • New platforms integrate phones’ features into cars

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES — Apple and Google want to get in your car. The tech giants have partnered with automakers to bring technology into vehicles that’s familiar and intuitive. Both sides are hoping to solve a problem that has been vexing drivers for years: The inability to easily and safely access smartphone apps and functions in the car. So these days, in-dash infotainment systems are essentially extensions of your phone. It’s a big change in approach for the car industry, and a hot topic of discussion on panels at the Los Angeles Auto Show, which wraps Sunday. The first wave of in-dash systems were typically developed in-house by automakers and flopped because they were balky, confusing and relied on technology th

  • Auto review: For model year 2014, the Hyundai Elantra compact sedan includes lots of design upgrades

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    For model year 2014, the Hyundai Elantra compact sedan includes lots of design upgrades and a new Sport trim featuring a more powerful gasoline direct injection (GDI) engine. According to Hyundai, more than 75 major sub-systems have been redesigned or added. Extensive technology upgrades enhance handling for the entire Elantra lineup, and all models receive all-new front and rear exterior designs and interior upgrades. The new performance-oriented Sport model also features sport-tuned suspension and steering for a sharper-handling vehicle. Elantra comes in three models — SE, Limited, and Sport — with seven exterior colors and three interior colors offered, priced from $17,200-$22,700.

  • Robotic Floats Will Reveal Southern Ocean’s Mysteries

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    This December, Hannah Zanowski, a graduate student at Princeton University, will travel to Cape Town, South Africa, bundle up in something warm, and board a German research icebreaker called the Polarstern. Over the next eight weeks, the ship will make its way from the southern tip of Africa to the bottom of South America via the Weddell Sea off the coast of Antarctica, stopping every so often along the way, so Zanowski and the scientists she’ll be working with can plop one of 12 yellow, oblong, instrument-laden, robotic floats into the sea. For the next five years, on roughly weeklong cycles, each float will dive deep, then surface to relay the data it will have gathered on the metabolism of this frigid and exotic stretch of oce

  • Russian warships wait out storm in English Channel

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    MOSCOW (AP) — Russian warships have entered the English Channel to wait out a storm following a week of maneuvers in the North Sea, the latest in a string of Russian military exercises this year. The Russian defense ministry said in a statement carried by Russian news agencies that a naval destroyer, a landing craft, a rescue tugboat and a tank ship had to anchor in the international waters of the Bay of the Seine, off France, on Friday. The ministry said the ships have been conducting naval exercises in the North Sea since Nov. 20. Russia has conducted a variety of exercises following the Kremlin's annexation of Crimea and its involvement in eastern Ukraine.

  • East-West divisions define Moldova's elections

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    CHISINAU, Moldova (AP) — A wealthy pro-Russian candidate who had hoped to be Moldova's next prime minister fled the country before dawn Friday, a dramatic development two days before elections in a country that is deeply torn over whether to move closer to Russia or the West. The candidate, Renato Usatii, a Rolls Royce-driving businessman who has done business with Russian Railways, said he feared arrest by Moldova's pro-European authorities. This week a court banned his Patria party from running, saying that it can't compete because it receives money from abroad. Border police said he caught an early flight to Moscow.

  • Sri Lanka candidate vows to protect incumbent

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lanka's opposition presidential candidate vowed Friday not to support any international prosecution of incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa for alleged war crimes. Former Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena announced his candidacy last week after leading a revolt in Rajapaksa's government. The main opposition United National Party has pledged to support him in the Jan. 8 election. Sirisena said if he is elected he will not let Rajapaksa or any of his relatives or members of the military be taken before a war crimes tribunal. "I must say clearly that I will protect them all," he said Friday. The U.N.

  • Leading Lebanese poet Saeed Akl dies at 102

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    BEIRUT (AP) — Lebanon's state-run news agency says Saeed Akl, Lebanon's leading poet whose fame once spread throughout the Arab world, has died. He was 102. The ultra-nationalist Akl wrote his poems in classical Arabic as well as Lebanese dialect which he used to refer to as "the Lebanese language." Some of his most famous poems were sung by Lebanon's top singer, Fayrouz, including the emotional "Take Me Back to My Country." Akl was born in 1912 to a Maronite Catholic family in Lebanon's eastern city of Zahle. During the country's 1975-90 civil war, Akl was known for his anti-Palestinian statements and once praised the late-Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin for invading Lebanon.

  • News from around Wisconsin at 5:28 a.m. CST

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Madison College is developing a program to train law enforcement officers on how to properly and ethically operate drones. Several law enforcement agencies in Wisconsin are considering using drones, after a Senate bill passed last year allows for use of the unmanned aerial vehicles. The legislation requires agencies to obtain a search warrant before using drones to collect evidence, but there are exceptions during certain emergencies such as search-and-rescue operations. Critics are concerned the law is broadly written and problematic. WISC-TV reported (http://bit.ly/1zzX655http://bit.ly/1zzX655 ) that Madison College is coming up with training that will show police and firefighters how to fly the aeria

  • EU won't sanction France, Italy on budget yet

    Updated: 21 hr ago

    BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union head office is opting not to sanction two of its biggest economies just yet for missing public finance targets and instead will give France and Italy until the spring to come up with better plans to cut their debts and deficits. Paris and Rome have been accused of being too profligate in their budgetary spending projects at a time when the EU and the 18-country eurozone have been advocating strict austerity as the best way to get their public finances into shape. "We will decide in early March whether any further steps are necessary," said EU Economic and Financial Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici.

  • More art in German trove identified as looted

    Updated: 22 hr ago

    BERLIN (AP) — The Jewish Claims Conference said Friday it has already identified a painting stolen by the Nazis among a newly published inventory of hundreds of works that belonged to late German collector Cornelius Gurlitt, and pushed for more time to investigate others. Executive vice president Greg Schneider said in an email to The Associated Press that a Pissaro among about 250 artworks found in Gurlitt's Salzburg property matched one on a looted-art list. Switzerland's Kunstmuseum Bern, which inherited the collection, posted lists of the Salzburg works and some of the 1,280 others found in Gurlitt's Munich apartment online Thursday.

  • Attacks kill 9 people in Iraq

    Updated: 22 hr ago

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Authorities in Iraq say bombings and a shooting have killed nine people around the capital, Baghdad. Police officials say the first attack took place Friday morning when a bomb exploded near a market in Baghdad's northeastern suburb of Husseiniyah, killing four people and wounding nine others. Just north of Baghdad, a bomb blast targeting an outdoor market killed three people and wounded 12 others in the Sabaa al-Bour area. Also, gunmen in a speeding car sprayed an army checkpoint with bullets, killing two soldiers and wounding two others in in the town of Tarmiyah, 50 kilometers (30 miles) north of Baghdad. Medical officials confirmed the casualty figures.

  • Hong Kong protest movement's unlikely teen leader

    Updated: 22 hr ago

    HONG KONG (AP) — At age 14, he stepped into the spotlight to take on — and ultimately help defeat — Hong Kong authorities' plans to launch a "national education" curriculum, calling it a ploy to brainwash the city's youth with unquestioned support for the Chinese Communist Party. Now, at 18, Joshua Wong is helping spearhead a mostly student-led protest movement that is pressing for greater democratic reforms in the semiautonomous Chinese territory. Slender and serious, with a shock of shaggy black hair, Wong does not cut an imposing figure. He usually wears black eyeglasses and is often seen hunched over his smartphone — a key tool used by the young protesters to get their message out via social media and group chats.

  • Black Friday problems hit Britain

    Updated: 22 hr ago

    LONDON (AP) — Americans celebrating Thanksgiving in Britain may have felt right at home as Black Friday shopping chaos caused disruptions. The practice of offering bargain basement prices the day after Thanksgiving has spread across the Atlantic, with some retailers opening overnight to lure shoppers. Police were called early Friday morning to help maintain security at some supermarkets and shopping outlets that offered deep discounts starting at midnight. Some of the worst problems were in the Manchester area in northwestern England where police were summoned to seven Tesco supermarkets after disturbances.

  • Austria: 13 radical Islamic suspects arrested

    Updated: 23 hr ago

    VIENNA (AP) — Austrian police have arrested 13 people suspected of recruiting fighters for radical Islamic groups in the Middle East. The state prosecutor's office says they were arrested early Friday in a sweep covering homes and mosques in Vienna, the southern city of Graz and Upper Austria province. It says the arrests follow two years of observation of the suspects that included listening in on their telephone calls. A statement says searches yielded "terroristic propaganda material," an unspecified amount of cash and stored computer data. The suspects were not identified, in line with Austrian privacy laws. About 500 police officers participated in the searches and arrests.

  • Purdue using robot to digitize insect collection

    Yesterday

    WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — Purdue University's Department of Entomology is using a special robot to tackle the daunting task of digitizing the school's collection of some 2 million insect specimens. The robot, called BugEye, is an automated camera that's being used to scan drawers full of insects in Purdue's Entomological Research Collection using three-dimensional imaging. The new digitizing system was designed and funded through a National Science Foundation project Assistant professor of entomology Jennifer Zaspel says some of Purdue's insect specimens are more than a century old.

  • Russian doctor rebellion causes headache for Putin

    Yesterday

    MOSCOW (AP) — Dr. Semyon Galperin spent a decade in medical research in Russia and as much time in the United States, working at top hospitals and research companies. Despite his expertise, Galperin was recently given a stark ultimatum from the Moscow hospital where he works: Leave or stay on as a lowly hospital attendant. Galperin's job is being eliminated as part of a sweeping reform in which at least 28 Moscow hospitals are to be closed and up to 10,000 medical staff fired, an overhaul that officials say is needed to modernize a decrepit Soviet-era health system.

  • Chalmers leads Australian Open; McIlroy shares 2nd

    Yesterday

    SYDNEY (AP) — Two-time former champion Greg Chalmers took a one-stroke lead Friday at the Australian Open after a 5-under 66, while marquee attractions Rory McIlroy and Adam Scott weren't far behind on a tough day for scoring. Chalmers had seven birdies in his second round to move to 5-under 137 after 36 holes. Defending champion McIlroy played in difficult afternoon conditions at The Australian Golf Club and he persevered for an up-and-down 69 to be in a group tied for second. Scott and American Jordan Spieth played together in calmer morning conditions and Spieth (72) was in a group tied for sixth, two behind. Scott, who moved from potential cut to contention with a 66, was three strokes behind. After two roun