News for 2014-12-31

Wednesday, December 31, 2014
Over Two Dozen Killed in Rocket Attack on Afghan Wedding Party: AP
A rocket has killed at least 26 people attending a wedding party in Afghanistan's Helmand province, the Associated Press reported Wednesday. AP reports that the deadly strike, which may have also wounded up to 60, occurred amidst fighting between Taliban insurgents and Afghan soldiers, though it...
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Paving Way for War Crimes Charges, Palestinians Move to Join International Criminal Court
Following the defeat of a United Nations Security Council resolution that demanded an end to Israeli occupation and recognition of Palestinian statehood, Palestine's president Mahmoud Abbas signed a Palestinian request to join the International Criminal Court on Wednesday, a move that the Guardian...
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European Central Bank's Chief Economist: Beware the Rise of Populism
The European Central Bank's chief economist has warned against rising populism and said that governments must focus on economic growth and push through structural reforms. Peter Praet, a member of the European Central Bank (ECB) executive board, made the comments in an interview with the German...
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Ending "Legalized Killing" in Maryland, Gov. Commutes All Remaining Death Sentences
Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley announced Wednesday that he would commute the sentences of the state's four remaining death row prisoners, reverting their convictions to life in prison without the possibility of parole. The outgoing Democratic governor, who has been named as a potential president...
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Despite Climate Warnings, New Export Rules Open Crude Oil Floodgates
Despite warnings about how such a move could accelerate climate change, the Obama administration has quietly loosened its regulations on crude oil exports, "opening the floodgates" for the shipment of as much as a million barrels per day of ultra-light crude, also known as condensate, to the rest...
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2014 Deadliest Year for Afghan Civilians On Record
On the cusp of 2015, the people of Afghanistan pass another grim milestone: this calendar year saw the greatest number of civilians killed and wounded on record. According to the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), the devastation faced by Afghan civilians is the worst it has...
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Is Push for Corporate-Friendly Trade Deal Top 2015 Priority for White House?
It's not yet the new year, but the Obama administration appears to be preparing an all-out effort to push through the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement in 2015 despite the widespread concerns among his Democratic base, the unified opposition of hundreds of progressive...
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Keystone XL Pipeline at Top of GOP Agenda in 2015
The U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is set to hold a hearing next week to discuss the Keystone XL pipeline. The hearing will take place on January 7, once Republicans retake control of the Senate. The committee will consider legislation that, if approved, would push the...
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After 11 Years Without Charge Or Trial, 5 Men Released From Guantánamo
Five men, each of whom spent more than 11 years detained in the Guantánamo Bay without charge or trial, have been transferred from the U.S. military prison in Cuba to Kazakhstan, the Pentagon announced Tuesday. Two of the men—Adel Al-Hakeemy, 49, and Abdullah Bin Ali Al-Lufti, 48—are Tunisian...
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UN Security Council Rejects Palestinian Statehood Proposal
This story is updated below. A proposal that called for a full military withdrawal of Israeli forces from the occupied West Bank and international recognition of a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders within three years was rejected by the UN Security Council Tuesday evening. Though its failure...
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