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politicsNews reuters.com

Trump signs into law U.S. government ban on Kaspersky Lab software

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump signed into law on Tuesday legislation that bans the use of Kaspersky Lab within the U.S. government, capping a months-long effort to purge the Moscow-based antivirus firm from federal agencies amid concerns it was vulnerable to Kremlin influence.

topNews reuters.com

Advocates ready legal showdown with FCC on net neutrality

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Net neutrality advocates said they are gearing up for a legal fight after abandoning attempts to convince the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to keep 2015 rules aimed at maintaining an open internet.

companyNews reuters.com

BRIEF-Mason Graphite Announces $45 Million Bought Deal Private Placement Offering

* MASON GRAPHITE ANNOUNCES $45 MILLION BOUGHT DEAL PRIVATE PLACEMENT OFFERING

politicsNews reuters.com

Senate leader says he's confident of deal to keep government open after Dec. 22

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Monday he was confident the U.S. Congress would be able to reach an agreement to fund the government when the current spending bill ends on Dec. 22 and that there would be no forced government shutdown.

topNews reuters.com

U.S. slaps terror charges on accused Times Square bomber

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. prosecutors on Tuesday brought federal charges against the suspect in Monday's attempted suicide bombing in one of New York City's busiest commuter hubs, accusing him of supporting a foreign terrorist organization.

businessNews reuters.com

Trump administration holds talks with airlines, keeps pressure on Gulf carriers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Trump administration met with major airlines on Tuesday to discuss complaints that some Gulf states are unfairly subsidizing state-owned carriers, keeping up pressure on the Middle East airlines at the center of a spat with U.S. rivals.

politicsNews reuters.com

White House to host fresh biofuels talks to help refiners: sources

(Reuters) - The White House will host talks between the rival oil and ethanol industries on Wednesday in hopes of brokering a deal to help refiners struggling to meet the country's biofuels policy, according to sources familiar with the matter.

politicsNews reuters.com

'DACA' bill to help young immigrants nearing Senate deal: Senator Flake

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A bipartisan push in the Senate to protect undocumented people who immigrated to the United States as children is gaining momentum as lawmakers try to wrap up negotiations this month, Republican Senator Jeff Flake said on Tuesday.

companyNews reuters.com

White House to host fresh biofuels talks to help refiners -sources

Dec 12 (Reuters) - The White House will host talks between the rival oil and ethanol industries on Wednesday in hopes of brokering a deal to help refiners struggling to meet the country's biofuels policy, according to sources familiar with the matter.

companyNews reuters.com

Mexico government bans Odebrecht unit from public contracts for 4 yrs

MEXICO CITY, Dec 12 (Reuters) - The Mexican government has banned an affiliate of construction company Odebrecht from bidding for federal public contracts for four years, in an investigation stemming from the bribery scandal that has engulfed the Brazil-based builder.

topNews reuters.com

Times Square bomb suspect charged; Bangladesh questions wife

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. prosecutors on Tuesday brought federal charges against a Bangladeshi man, accusing him of using a weapon of mass destruction in Monday's bombing of a Manhattan commuter hub.

worldNews reuters.com

Poland's new PM says government policy to remain unchanged

WARSAW (Reuters) - Poland's new Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Tuesday in his policy speech that the Law and Justice (PiS) party government's policy will remain unchanged and it will be focused on supporting families.

worldNews reuters.com

Partial power-share can end German political dilemma, some in SPD say

BERLIN (Reuters) - Wary of renewing a coalition with conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel, Germany's Social Democrats are instead contemplating a so-called "cooperation" arrangement that would see them agree on a minimal program but leave contested matters up for debate.

companyNews reuters.com

Unimin to buy shale sand supplier Fairmount in cash-and-stock deal

HOUSTON, Dec 12 (Reuters) - Fairmount Santrol Holdings Inc said on Tuesday it would sell itself to Unimin Corp in a cash-and-stock deal to create one of the largest suppliers of sand for use in hydraulic fracturing to shale oil and gas producers.

technologyNews reuters.com

Facebook to book advertising revenue locally amid political pressure

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Social media giant Facebook said on Tuesday it would start booking advertising revenue locally instead of re-routing it via its international headquarters in Dublin although the move is unlikely to result in it paying much more tax.

topNews reuters.com

New York charges Times Square bomb suspect; Bangladesh questions wife

DHAKA/NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York officials on Tuesday said they charged a Bangladeshi man with terrorism, accusing him of setting off a pipe bomb a day earlier in a crowded Manhattan commuter hub, as investigators in his home country questioned his wife.

worldNews reuters.com

Denmark's government at risk in row with nationalists over Syrian refugees

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Demands from the nationalist Danish People's Party (DF) that Syrian refugees be sent home as soon as possible are threatening to bring down the country's centre-right minority government.

topNews reuters.com

U.S. producer prices rise strongly, point to firming inflation

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. producer prices rose in November as gasoline prices surged and the cost of other goods increased, leading to the largest annual gain in nearly six years.

worldNews reuters.com

French government dampens Corsican nationalists' autonomy hopes

PARIS (Reuters) - France's government on Tuesday ruled out major concessions towards autonomy sought by Corsica's nationalists after they won a regional election, but said it was open to talks that took account of the island's distinctive character.

topNews reuters.com

Investigators search for clues in attempted New York subway bombing

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Investigators are searching for reasons a Bangladeshi man set off a bomb strapped to his body in a New York City commuter hub during the morning rush hour in what is being characterized as an attempted terrorist attack.

businessNews reuters.com

Sanofi investors hungry for drug progress and deal news

PARIS (Reuters) - Sanofi still needs to convince markets it can deliver on an exciting and sustainable growth path as it contends with fresh difficulties in its vaccines arm and looks set for another gloomy year in diabetes, investors told Reuters.

topNews reuters.com

Five years after Sandy Hook, U.S. gun-control advocates switch strategy

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Five years after a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at a Connecticut elementary school, advocates who are disappointed with the failure of efforts to limit access to firearms are changing their strategy.

worldNews reuters.com

Russian credit to cover part of S-400 missile deal with Turkey: agency

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia will offer Turkey partial financing for Ankara's purchase of S-400 surface-to-air missile systems, the Interfax news agency reported on Tuesday, citing a Russian presidential aide.

entertainmentNews reuters.com

Major Cineworld investor 'uncomfortable' with debt for Regal deal

LONDON (Reuters) - One of the biggest shareholders in Cineworld has expressed concern about the company's $3.6 billion takeover of bigger U.S. rival Regal Entertainment, saying it is uncomfortable with the debt the British business will take on to finance the deal.

Layoffs and Job Reductions nytimes.com

DealBook: More American Jobs? Broadcom Deal Might Mean the Opposite

President Trump hailed Broadcom’s decision to bring its headquarters to the United States, but if its takeover bid for Qualcomm goes through, it may cost jobs.

companyNews reuters.com

BRIEF-Pershing Gold Announces Bought Deal Of Us$6.8 Million And Private Placement Of Us$6.8 Million

* PERSHING GOLD ANNOUNCES BOUGHT DEAL OF US$6.8 MILLION AND PRIVATE PLACEMENT OF US$6.8 MILLION

companyNews reuters.com

U.S. company sues China's HNA over deal, cites opaque ownership

NEW YORK, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Ness Technologies S.A.R.L., a U.S. software engineering company, has sued Chinese conglomerate HNA Group accusing it of failing to adequately answer questions about its ownership in a U.S. review of takeovers by foreign companies, thereby causing their $325 million deal to fail.

domesticNews reuters.com

Houston man arrested for trying to aid Islamic State: U.S. government

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - An 18-year-old Houston man was charged on Monday with trying to support the radical group Islamic State and distributing information about how to make bombs, the U.S. Justice Department said.

worldNews reuters.com

Prominent Australian opposition lawmaker quits over claims of China links

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Prominent Australian opposition Senator Sam Dastyari said on Tuesday he would resign from parliament after a series of allegations emerged about his links with Chinese-aligned interests in Australia.

topNews reuters.com

Subway bomber wounds self, three victims in New York

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A Bangladeshi man set off a homemade pipe bomb strapped to his body in a crowded New York City commuter hub during the morning rush hour on Monday, officials said, immediately calling it an attempted terrorist attack.

topNews reuters.com

Trump wants to send U.S. astronauts back to moon, someday Mars

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - At a time when China is working on an ambitious lunar program, President Donald Trump vowed on Monday that the United States will remain the leader in space exploration as he began a process to return Americans to the moon.

environmentNews reuters.com

Canada province pushes on with mega dam project despite opposition

(Reuters) - British Columbia said on Monday it would push ahead with a C$10.7 billion ($8.32 billion) hydroelectric dam project approved by the western Canadian province's previous government, provoking an angry response from a political partner and threats of court cases from indigenous groups.

companyNews reuters.com

CORRECTED-UPDATE 2-Canada province pushes on with mega dam project despite opposition

Dec 11 (Reuters) - British Columbia said on Monday it would push ahead with a C$10.7 billion ($8.32 billion) hydroelectric dam project approved by the western Canadian province's previous government, provoking an angry response from a political partner and threats of court cases from indigenous groups.

companyNews reuters.com

BRIEF-Bookrunner Says Detsky Mir Final Deal Size Expected To Be 46.5mm Shares in accelerated bookbuilt offering

* BLOCK TRADE - DETSKY MIR: BOOKRUNNER SAYS TRANSACTION EXPECTED TO PRICE AT RUB 90 PER SHARE; FINAL DEAL SIZE EXPECTED TO BE 46.5MM SHARES AT THIS PRICE‍​ Further company coverage:

environmentNews reuters.com

U.S. government calls for teens' climate change lawsuit to be halted

(Reuters) - The U.S. government on Monday urged a federal appeals court to issue an order blocking a lawsuit over climate change brought by a group of Oregon teenagers, warning that allowing it to go forward could lead to a constitutional crisis.

topNews reuters.com

'Amateur' bomber targets New York commuters; suspect held

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A Bangladeshi man with a homemade bomb strapped to his body set off an explosion at a New York commuter hub during rush hour on Monday morning, wounding himself and three others in what New York Mayor Bill de Blasio called an attempted terrorist attack.

worldNews reuters.com

Turkey, Russia will meet to finalize S-400 defense deal in coming week

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkish and Russian officials will meet to finalize Turkey's S-400 surface-to-air missile systems deal in the coming week, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday.

worldNews reuters.com

Tillerson set to meet Trudeau for North Korea crisis talks: source

OTTAWA (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson plans to meet Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau next week for talks on how to address the crisis over North Korea's nuclear weapons program, an Ottawa source said on Monday.

worldNews reuters.com

Tillerson set to meet Trudeau for N. Korea crisis talks: source

OTTAWA (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson plans to meet Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau next week for talks on how to address the crisis over North Korea's nuclear weapons, an Ottawa source said on Monday.

technologyNews reuters.com

Apple confirms deal to buy music discovery app Shazam

SAN FRANSICO (Reuters) - Apple Inc on Monday confirmed it had reached a deal to acquire Shazam Entertainment Ltd, the U.K.-based app that lets users identify songs by pointing a smart phone at the audio source.

companyNews reuters.com

BRIEF-Apple Confirms Deal To Buy Shazam Entertainment Ltd

* APPLE CONFIRMS IT HAS REACHED A DEAL TO ACQUIRE SHAZAM ENTERTAINMENT LTD Further company coverage:

companyNews reuters.com

UPDATE 2-Verizon to pay $2.25 bln to NFL for 5-year streaming deal- source

NEW YORK, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Verizon Communications Inc will pay around $2.25 billion for a five-year partnership with the National Football League that allows users to stream games on its Yahoo and go90 platforms as well as on mobile devices, a source told Reuters on Monday.

worldNews reuters.com

Putin, Egypt's Sisi discuss restart of flights, sign nuclear deal

CAIRO (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin held talks with Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Monday, agreeing to resume civilian flights which Moscow halted more than two years ago after militants bombed a Russian tourist jet over the Sinai.

topNews reuters.com

Ex-contractor says he shut Trump's Twitter account by accident

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The contractor who shut down Donald Trump's Twitter account has told Reuters he did so by mistake, but says he believes some of the U.S. president's recent tweets breach the social network's ban on hate speech.

companyNews reuters.com

UPDATE 1-SandRidge offers Icahn some deal records, rebuts claims

Dec 11 (Reuters) - SandRidge Energy Inc on Monday pushed back against activist investors Carl Icahn and Fir Tree Partners' attack on the oil and gas producer's proposed $746 million acquisition of rival Bonanza Creek Energy Inc.

topNews reuters.com

Trump to start process of sending Americans back to moon: White House

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump on Monday will sign a directive aimed at sending Americans back to the moon and eventually to Mars, the White House said.

topNews reuters.com

Explosion rocks New York commuter hub, suspect in custody

NEW YORK (Reuters) - An explosion rocked New York's Port Authority Bus Terminal, one of the city's busiest commuter hubs, on Monday morning and police said one suspect was injured and in custody, with three other injuries reported.

companyNews reuters.com

UPDATE 2-LKQ to buy German car parts retailer Stahlgruber in $1.8 bln deal

* LKQ to fund acquisition with debt offers, share exchange (Adds valuation, details)

businessNews reuters.com

First round of Volkswagen pay talks end without deal

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German trade union IG Metall on Monday said a first round of wage talks at Volkswagen failed to produce a result, adding it was disappointed the carmaker did not present a counter-offer to its demand for a 6-percent wage hike.

topNews reuters.com

Verizon to pay $2.25 billion to NFL for five-year streaming deal: source

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Verizon Communications Inc will pay around $2.25 billion for a five-year digital streaming partnership with National Football League, according to a source.

worldNews reuters.com

Russia's Putin, Egypt's Sisi discuss nuclear deal, Middle East tensions

CAIRO (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin met Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Cairo on Monday for talks over a nuclear power plant and tensions in the Middle East following Washington's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

topNews reuters.com

One person in custody, several injured, in New York explosion

NEW YORK (Reuters) - An explosion rocked New York's Port Authority, one of the city's busiest commuter hubs in midtown Manhattan, during Monday morning's rush hour, injuring several people.

topNews reuters.com

EU tells Netanyahu it rejects Trump's Jerusalem move

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took his case to Europe to ask allies to join the United States in recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital, but was met by a firm rebuff from EU foreign ministers who saw the move as a blow against the peace process.

topNews reuters.com

Verizon and NFL reach digital streaming agreement

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Verizon Communications Inc and the National Football League have reached an agreement for a multi-year digital streaming deal, Verizon said on Monday.

topNews reuters.com

Small Canadian miners in pole position for electric vehicle battery boon

VANCOUVER (Reuters) - Canadian developers of cobalt and lithium mines stand to benefit from a round of investments from the makers of electric vehicles and the batteries powering them, a potential game-changer for small miners short on money to develop deposits of these critical battery ingredients.

companyNews reuters.com

LKQ to buy German car parts retailer Stahlgruber in $1.77 bln deal

Dec 11 (Reuters) - U.S. auto parts retailer LKQ Corp said on Monday it would buy German peer Stahlgruber for about 1.5 billion euros ($1.77 billion) to expand in Europe.

topNews reuters.com

Bakers, farmers struggle to make any dough on poor wheat crop

WINNIPEG, Manitoba/CHICAGO (Reuters) - Chicago's iconic sandwiches - Italian beef heroes dripping with gravy, and hot dogs loaded with pickles and hot peppers - wouldn't be such culinary institutions without the bread.

topNews reuters.com

China's graft watchdog warns officials over 'concealed' extravagance

BEIJING (Reuters) - Chinese officials trying to hide dishonest spending with tricks such as throwing extravagant parties in private will be targeted in a sustained campaign to root out hedonism, the top anti-graft watchdog said on Monday.

businessNews reuters.com

Uber appeal case against London license loss planned for April or June next year

LONDON (Reuters) - Uber's [UBER.UL] appeal against the loss of its London license should begin on Apr. 30 for five days but might be delayed until June, a British judge said on Monday at a preliminary hearing.

companyNews reuters.com

Uber appeal case against London licence loss planned for April or June next year

LONDON, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Uber's appeal against the loss of its London licence should begin on Apr. 30 for five days but might be delayed until June, a British judge said on Monday at a preliminary hearing.

topNews reuters.com

Russian military chief criticizes U.S., Japan and South Korea drills

TOKYO (Reuters) - Russia's military chief warned on Monday that military exercises by Japan, the United States and South Korea aimed at countering North Korea only raise hysteria and create more instability in the region.

healthNews reuters.com

GSK's new pharma head on lookout for cancer deals to boost pipeline

LONDON (Reuters) - GlaxoSmithKline will scout for deal opportunities in cancer medicine, as well as immunology, as the drugmaker seeks to rebuild its presence in oncology, its new head of pharmaceuticals told Reuters.

topNews reuters.com

Seeking to extend martial law in Philippine south, Duterte says militants regrouping

MANILA (Reuters) - Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday asked Congress to extend martial law on the southern island of Mindanao for a year, arguing that Islamist militants have been regrouping since a five-month urban conflict ended there in October.

topNews reuters.com

Situation on Korean Peninsula risks moving into 'hot phase': Ifax cites Russian foreign minister

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The situation on the Korean Peninsula risks to move into a "hot phase", Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned on Monday, the Interfax news agency reported.

worldNews reuters.com

Merkel, Social Democrats seek clarity on coalition talks

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives and the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) say they hope to find clarity soon on prospects for a new ruling coalition as they gear up for exploratory talks this week.

companyNews reuters.com

Britain committed to no hard Irish border, whatever outcome of Brexit talks - Davis

LONDON, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Britain intends to prevent a hard border in Ireland after leaving the European Union whatever the outcome of talks with the bloc, UK's Brexit minister said on Monday, saying comments that this was not legally enforceable were taken out of context.

companyNews reuters.com

BRIEF-Steinhoff Chairman Wiese Is In Talks With Lenders To Seek Standstill On A 1.5 Bln-Euro Margin Loan- Bloomberg

* STEINHOFF CHAIRMAN CHRISTO WIESE IS IN TALKS WITH LENDERS TO SEEK A STANDSTILL ON A 1.5 BILLION-EURO MARGIN LOAN - BLOOMBERG, CITING SOURCES

environmentNews reuters.com

India government favors petcoke import ban, U.S. would be biggest loser

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's government is in favor of banning imports of petroleum coke on environmental grounds, according to a government affidavit filed with the country's top court, which could be a big blow to U.S. refiners who export heavily to the country.

cnn.com

Venezuela's Maduro: Some opposition parties to be barred from presidential vote

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said on Sunday that some of the main opposition parties will not be allowed to run in next year's presidential election.

topNews reuters.com

Britain's May hails new optimism in Brexit talks after deal

LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Theresa May will hail "a new sense of optimism" in Brexit talks on Monday, telling parliament Britain and the European Union should sign off on a deal at a summit this week "to move forwards together" to discuss future trade ties.

Venezuela nytimes.com

As Venezuela Opposition Shuns Vote, Many Feel It’s a ‘Waste of Time’

Voter turnout in Venezuela’s municipal elections was low as many considered the results a foregone conclusion: domination by President Nicolás Maduro and his party.

businessNews reuters.com

Mediaset hopes truce with Vivendi to come with content deal with Telecom Italia: media

MILAN (Reuters) - Mediaset's chief executive said he hoped the shared interest over TV content with Telecom Italia (TIM) could pave the way to a truce with France's Vivendi , speaking in a interview published late on Sunday.

topNews reuters.com

Exclusive: U.S. mall owner GGP rejects Brookfield Property's $14.8 billion offer - sources

NEW YORK (Reuters) - GGP Inc , one of the largest owners and operators of U.S. shopping centers, has rejected a $14.8 billion buyout offer from its biggest shareholder, Brookfield Property Partners LP , people familiar with the matter said on Sunday.

healthNews reuters.com

Hospital operators in merger talks to form U.S. industry leader: WSJ

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ascension Health and Providence St. Joseph Health are in talks about a merger between the two Catholic non-profits that would create the largest U.S. hospital chain, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the discussions.

worldNews reuters.com

Mexican opposition leader Anaya to seek presidency in coalition

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican opposition leader Ricardo Anaya said on Sunday he would seek to win the presidency in a left-right alliance after stepping down as head of the conservative National Action Party (PAN).

companyNews reuters.com

UPDATE 1-Hospital operators in merger talks to form U.S. industry leader -WSJ

NEW YORK, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Ascension Health and Providence St. Joseph Health are in talks about a merger between the two Catholic non-profits that would create the largest U.S. hospital chain, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the discussions.

topNews reuters.com

Iraq holds victory parade after defeating Islamic State

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - An Iraqi military parade in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone celebrated final victory over Islamic State on Sunday, with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi looking on as troops marched in formation, their bodies spelling "victory day" in Arabic.

healthNews reuters.com

Hospital operators in merger talks to create U.S. industry leader: WSJ

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ascension Health and Providence St. Joseph Health are in discussions about a merger that would create the largest hospital chain in the United States, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the situation.

companyNews reuters.com

Hospital operators in merger talks to create U.S. industry leader -WSJ

NEW YORK, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Ascension Health and Providence St. Joseph Health are in discussions about a merger that would create the largest hospital chain in the United States, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the situation.

worldNews reuters.com

Kenya's opposition says postpones 'swearing-in' of alternative president

NAIROBI (Reuters) - Kenya's opposition said on Sunday it had postponed plans to swear in its leader Raila Odinga as an alternative president, easing political tensions and opening a window for possible talks with the government of President Uhuru Kenyatta.

worldNews reuters.com

Qatar goes ahead with $6.7 billion Typhoon combat jets deal with UK's BAE Systems

LONDON (Reuters) - BAE Systems and Qatar have entered into a contract valued at around 5 billion pounds ($6.7 billion) for the country to buy 24 Typhoon combat aircraft, the British defense group said on Sunday.

topNews reuters.com

Palestinian stabs Israeli in Jerusalem; anti-Trump protest flares in Beirut

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A Palestinian stabbed an Israeli security guard at Jerusalem's main bus station on Sunday, police said, and violence flared near the U.S. Embassy in Beirut over U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

businessNews reuters.com

Thyssenkrupp makes offer to workers for Tata Steel deal: sources

BERLIN (Reuters) - Thyssenkrupp has offered workers commitments on jobs and investments to get union backing for its deal with Tata Steel to merge their European steel operations, several people close to labor union IG Metall said.

topNews reuters.com

Anti-Trump protests wane in Jerusalem, West Bank; flare in Beirut

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Palestinian protests waned in the occupied West Bank and in the Gaza Strip on Sunday while violence flared near the U.S. embassy in Beirut over U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

worldNews reuters.com

After Brexit, UK aims for trade deal with EU that tops Canada pact

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain is aiming to secure a comprehensive free trade deal with the European Union and wants it to be signed shortly after it leaves the bloc in 2019, Brexit minister David Davis said on Sunday.

topNews reuters.com

Yazidis caught in 'political football' between Baghdad, Iraqi Kurds

SINJAR, Iraq (Reuters) - Since Iraqi forces pushed the Kurds out of the Yazidis' mountainous heartland of Sinjar in northern Iraq in October, residents are wondering what could happen to them next.

topNews reuters.com

Violence flares at protest near U.S. Embassy in Lebanon

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Lebanese security forces fired tear gas and water canons at protesters near the U.S. Embassy in Lebanon on Sunday during a demonstration against President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

worldNews reuters.com

Syrian government returns to Geneva talks, Western envoys skeptical

GENEVA (Reuters) - The Syrian government's delegation returned to Geneva on Sunday for the resumption of talks with United Nations mediator Staffan de Mistura after more than a week's absence, but Western diplomats voiced scepticism about its willingness to engage.

worldNews reuters.com

Britain offered 'statement of intent' on Irish border to unlock talks: Davis

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's Brexit minister David Davis described the government's pledge to prevent any return to a hard border with Ireland after Britain leaves the European Union as "a statement of intent" rather than a legally binding move.

topNews reuters.com

Iraq holds military parade celebrating victory over Islamic State

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - An Iraqi military parade celebrating final victory over Islamic State is underway in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone, an Iraqi military spokesman told Reuters on Sunday.

cnn.com

'SNL': Kids grill Santa on political scandals

A group of precocious kids had some tough questions for Santa Claus on "Saturday Night Live."

topNews reuters.com

With foes absent, Venezuela's socialists to gain from local vote

CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's ruling Socialist Party looked set to sweep Sunday's nationwide mayoral polls, deepening opposition splits and consolidating President Nicolas Maduro's position ahead of a likely 2018 re-election campaign.

businessNews reuters.com

Thyssenkrupp ready to make workers offer for Tata Steel deal: Bild am Sonntag

BERLIN (Reuters) - Thyssenkrupp is prepared to offer workers commitments on jobs and investments to get union backing for its deal with Tata Steel to merge their European steel operations, German weekly Bild am Sonntag reported, citing an internal memo.

topNews reuters.com

German conservatives reject 'United States of Europe' ahead of coalition talks

BERLIN (Reuters) - Senior members of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives on Saturday rejected the vision for a "United States of Europe" put forward by the Social Democrats (SPD), with whom they are hoping to form a governing coalition.

topNews reuters.com

U.N. envoy told North Korea urgent need to open channels to cut conflict risk

SEOUL/UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United Nations political affairs chief told senior North Korean officials during a visit to Pyongyang this week that there was an "urgent need to prevent miscalculations and open channels to reduce the risks of conflict," the world body said.

cnn.com

Trump escalates his rhetoric following the plea deal reached by fired national security adviser Michael Flynn

President Donald Trump's escalating assault on the "rigged" and "sick" institutions of the government that he leads may portend an ominous end game to special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation.

topNews reuters.com

Trump blasts San Francisco murder acquittal, 'Dreamer' effort

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Saturday juxtaposed a high-profile murder case involving an illegal immigrant from Mexico with efforts in Congress to protect undocumented immigrants brought into the United States when they were children.

worldNews reuters.com

Norway's Liberal Party seeks to join government

OSLO (Reuters) - Norway's Liberal Party will launch formal negotiations to join the right-wing cabinet of Prime Minister Erna Solberg, it said on Saturday, although the government would still be ruling in a minority even if the small centrist group is included.

topNews reuters.com

Palestinians to snub Pence during visit over Jerusalem move

CAIRO/GAZA (Reuters) - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will not meet U.S. Vice President Mike Pence during Pence's visit to the region this month, in a snub over the U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, the Palestinian Foreign Minister said on Saturday.

Income Tax nytimes.com

Tax Plans May Give Your Co-Worker a Better Deal Than You

The G.O.P. bills impose different rates on the same income based on things like organizational structure or occupation. At the losing end? Employees with paychecks.

topNews reuters.com

Iraq declares final victory over Islamic State

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared final victory over Islamic State on Saturday after Iraqi forces drove its last remnants from the country, three years after the militant group captured about a third of Iraq's territory.

topNews reuters.com

Aftershocks likely from September test detected from North Korea nuclear site: USGS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Two minor tremors were detected on Saturday from near North Korea's nuclear test site and were probably aftershocks from the country's massive nuclear test in early September, a U.S. Geological Survey official said.

topNews reuters.com

As coalition talks loom, German conservatives reject SPD's Europe idea

BERLIN (Reuters) - Senior members of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives on Saturday rejected the vision for a United States of Europe put forward by the Social Democrats (SPD), with whom they are hoping to form a governing coalition.

topNews reuters.com

Israeli strikes kill two Gaza gunmen, anti-Trump protests less intense

GAZA (Reuters) - Israeli air strikes in Gaza killed two Palestinian gunmen on Saturday after rockets were fired from the enclave, in violence that erupted over President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

topNews reuters.com

Russia says it is fully committed to nuclear missile pact

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia said on Saturday it was fully committed to a Cold War-era pact with the United States banning intermediate-range cruise missiles, a day after Washington accused Moscow of violating the treaty.

worldNews reuters.com

UK's Johnson in Iran talks to lobby for jailed aid worker

DUBAI (Reuters) - British foreign minister Boris Johnson held talks on Saturday with his Iranian counterpart and other officials, during a visit to Iran where he is expected to seek the release of jailed Iranian-British aid worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe.

topNews reuters.com

Islamic State completely 'evicted' from Iraq, Iraqi PM says

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said on Saturday that Iraqi forces had driven the last remnants of Islamic State from the country, three years after the militant group captured about a third of Iraq's territory.

worldNews reuters.com

Kenyan lecturers end strike, say deal reached with government

NAIROBI (Reuters) - Lecturers in Kenya's public universities ended a strike on Saturday after reaching agreement with the government over pay and other issues, according to a statement from their union.

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Israeli strikes kill two Gaza gunmen, but anti-Trump protests subside

GAZA (Reuters) - Israeli air strikes in Gaza killed two Palestinian gunmen on Saturday after rockets were fired from the enclave, in violence that erupted over President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

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Iraqi PM says Islamic State completely 'evicted' from Iraq

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said on Saturday that Iraqi forces had driven the last remnants of Islamic State from the country, three years after the militant group captured about a third of Iraq's territory.

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Pilatus jet development far exceeded planned costs - NZZ interview

ZURICH, Dec 9 (Reuters) - Swiss plane maker Pilatus's development costs of "well over 500 million Swiss francs" ($504 million) far exceeded the original budget for the company's first business jet, Chairman Oscar Schwenk told the Neue Zuercher Zeitung in an article published on Saturday.

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Israeli retaliation strikes kill two Palestinian gunmen in Gaza

GAZA (Reuters) - Israel launched fresh airstrikes in the Gaza Strip on Saturday in response to rocket fire from the enclave and the Palestinian Islamist Hamas group said two of its gunmen were killed in the bombings.

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North Korea says U.N. envoy expressed willingness to ease tensions

SEOUL (Reuters) - The U.N. political affairs chief expressed willingness to ease tension on the Korean peninsula during a visit to North Korea this week, state media said on Saturday, amid a rising war of words over the North's missile and nuclear programs.

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Honduras opposition parties ask for disputed election to be annulled

TEGUCIGALPA (Reuters) - Honduras' two main opposition parties on Friday presented formal requests to annul the results of the still-unresolved presidential election, deepening a political crisis that has roiled the poor, violent Central American nation.

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Honduras opposition party asks for disputed election to be annulled

TEGUCIGALPA (Reuters) - Honduras' opposition Liberal Party on Friday presented a formal request to annul the results of the still-unresolved presidential election, deepening a political crisis that has roiled the poor, violent Central American nation.

United States Politics and Government nytimes.com

Liberal Activists to Democrats: Protect Young Immigrants or Shut Down Government

Democrats want a deal to shield young undocumented immigrants from deportation, but liberal activists question their party’s willingness to provoke a shutdown.

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Apple in talks to acquire music identification app Shazam: source

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Apple Inc is in talks to acquire Shazam Entertainment Ltd, whose software helps users identify songs by pointing their phone at an audio source, according to a person familiar with the situation.

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Apple in talks to acquire music identification app Shazam - source

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Apple Inc is in talks to acquire Shazam Entertainment Ltd, whose software helps users identify songs by pointing their phone at an audio source, according to a person familiar with the situation.

United States Politics and Government nytimes.com

Justice Dept. Investigating Fetal Tissue Transfers by Planned Parenthood and Others

In a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Justice Department requested documents indicating it is picking up the fetal tissue issue that Congress started last year.

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Two dead in 'Day of Rage' over Jerusalem, Palestinian president defiant

JERUSALEM/GAZA (Reuters) - At least two people were killed in clashes with Israeli troops on Friday when thousands of Palestinians demonstrated against U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital and the Palestinian president said Washington could no longer be a peace broker.

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BRIEF-NYX Gaming & Scientific Games Announce Sky Betting & Gaming Will Support Proposed Deal

* NYX GAMING GROUP AND SCIENTIFIC GAMES ANNOUNCE SKY BETTING & GAMING WILL SUPPORT PROPOSED ACQUISITION OF NYX

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PWC to sell government services practice -sources

WASHINGTON, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Global financial auditing and consulting company PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP is exploring the sale of its government consulting practice, which could fetch about $500 million, four people familiar with the matter said this week.

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BRIEF-Government Of Canada Names Direct Energy Business As Their New Natural Gas Provider

* DIRECT ENERGY - GOVERNMENT OF CANADA NAMED CO THEIR NEW NATURAL GAS PROVIDER FOR CORRECTIONAL SERVICES CANADA, DEPARTMENT OF NATIONAL DEFENCE

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Trump signs temporary spending bill as budget talks intensify

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday signed legislation to fund the federal government for two weeks, giving congressional negotiators more time to work out budget priorities through next September and other thorny policy matters.

Air Pollution nytimes.com

Environmentalists Ask: Is India’s Government Making Bad Air Worse?

As northern India is swallowed by an epic smog cloud, critics say that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s business-friendly policies are exacerbating the problem.

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One dead, scores hurt in Palestinian 'Day of Rage' over Jerusalem

JERUSALEM/GAZA (Reuters) - Thousands of Palestinians demonstrated, scores were hurt and at least one killed in clashes with Israeli troops on a "Day of Rage" against U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

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Britain, EU clinch Brexit 'breakthrough' with move to trade talks

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Britain and the European Union struck a divorce deal on Friday that paves the way for arduous talks on future trade ties, easing immediate pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May and boosting hopes of an orderly Brexit.

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CVS expects Justice Department to handle review of Aetna deal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - CVS Health Corp expects the U.S. Justice Department to do the antitrust review of its planned acquisition of health insurer Aetna Inc, a spokesman for the drugstore chain operator said.

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UPDATE 1-CVS expects U.S. Justice Department to handle review of Aetna deal

WASHINGTON, Dec 7 (Reuters) - CVS Health Corp expects the U.S. Justice Department to do the antitrust review of its planned acquisition of health insurer Aetna Inc, a spokesman for the drugstore chain operator said.

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CVS expects U.S. Justice Department to handle review of Aetna deal

WASHINGTON, Dec 7 (Reuters) - U.S. drugstore chain operator CVS Health Corp expects the Justice Department to do the antitrust review of its planned acquisition of health insurer Aetna Inc, a spokesman said.

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Scores injured, one dead as Palestinians hold 'Day of Rage' over Jerusalem

JERUSALEM/GAZA (Reuters) - Thousands of Palestinians demonstrated, scores were hurt and at least one killed in clashes with Israeli troops on a "day of rage" on Friday against U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

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GLOBAL MARKETS-World stocks rise as Brexit deal adds to Asian cheer

* European stocks surge 0.8 pct, following Asian stocks higher

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Abdul-Jabbar urges athletes to continue political protests

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - NBA Hall of Fame center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says NFL players and other professional athletes should continue their protests against police brutality in the United States and has rejected the notion that speaking out is in any way unpatriotic.

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Britain and EU clinch Brexit 'breakthrough' with move to trade talks

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Britain and the European Union struck a divorce deal on Friday that paves the way for arduous trade talks, easing immediate pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May and boosting hopes of an orderly Brexit.

International Trade and World Market nytimes.com

E.U. and Japan Reach Deal to Keep ‘Flag of Free Trade Waving High’

The agreement would cover more than a quarter of the world’s economy. Leaders on both sides said it carried strategic as well as economic importance.

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BRIEF-First Cobalt Announces $25 Mln Bought Deal Private Placement Financing

* FIRST COBALT ANNOUNCES $25 MILLION BOUGHT DEAL PRIVATE PLACEMENT FINANCING

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Brexit deal helps U.S. futures bounce

(Reuters) - U.S. stock futures pointed to a higher opening for Wall Street on Friday, helped by gains for global stock markets after Britain secured EU agreement to move on from the first-round of Brexit negotiations.

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US STOCKS-Brexit deal helps U.S. futures bounce

Dec 8 (Reuters) - U.S. stock futures pointed to a higher opening for Wall Street on Friday, helped by gains for global stock markets after Britain secured EU agreement to move on from the first-round of Brexit negotiations.

cnn.com

Tax bill could make 'dark money' political contributions tax deductible

For the first time in American politics, anonymous "dark money" political donations could become tax-deductible. That's if a provision currently being debated between House and Senate negotiators makes it into the final tax bill.

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Special Report: How Monsanto's GM cotton sowed trouble in Africa

BOBO-DIOULASSO, Burkina Faso (Reuters) - In 2000, farmers in Burkina Faso, Africa's top cotton grower, were desperate. Their cotton fetched top prices because its high-quality fiber lent a luxurious sheen to clothing and bedsheets. But pests – bollworms – were threatening the crop.

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Britain and EU clinch divorce deal to move Brexit talks onto trade

BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) - Britain and the European Union struck a divorce deal on Friday that paves the way for talks on trade, easing pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May and boosting hopes of an orderly Brexit.

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Airbnb pushes back on Singapore's tough home rental rules

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Short-term home rental service Airbnb on Friday called Singapore's regulatory framework "untenable" as authorities said they planned to hold discussions with home-sharing platforms and resident groups soon on how such accommodation may be allowed.

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Exclusive: U.S. spy chief orders changes in 'unmasking' policy

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The top U.S. intelligence official has ordered tighter restrictions on how the names of Americans kept secret in intelligence reports can be revealed during presidential transitions, according to documents seen by Reuters.

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Sterling hits six-month high, stocks up as Brexit deal adds to Asian cheer

LONDON (Reuters) - A breakthrough in Brexit negotiations pushed sterling to a six-month high against the euro on Friday and added momentum to an upswing in world stocks underpinned by strong economic news from China and Japan.

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GLOBAL MARKETS-Sterling hits 6-month high, stocks up as Brexit deal adds to Asian cheer

* European stocks surge 0.9 pct, following Asian stocks higher

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Britain and EU clinch deal to move Brexit talks forward

BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) - Britain and the European Union struck a deal on Friday to move on to talk about trade and a transition period after they agreed the outline of their divorce, easing the pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May.

cnn.com

Economist: Brexit fair deal is an illusion

Former Greek Minister of Finance, Yanis Varoufakis, said the notion that Britain can negotiate a mutually advantageous deal with the European Union is an illusion.

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Britain and EU reach deal to move Brexit talks forward

BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) - The European Commission said on Friday enough progress had been made in Brexit negotiations with Britain and that a second phase of negotiations should begin, ending an impasse over the status of the Irish border.

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Germany's SPD says talks with Merkel's conservatives to start Wednesday

BERLIN (Reuters) - A senior member of Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) said on Friday her party would start exploratory talks on Wednesday with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives on forming a coalition, a move that could end the political impasse in Europe's largest economy.

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Russia says ready for talks with U.S. to try to save arms pact

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia's Foreign Ministry said on Friday it was ready for talks with the United States to try to keep a landmark arms control treaty that helped end the Cold War alive and that Moscow would comply with its obligations if the U.S. did.

Great Britain Withdrawal from EU (Brexit) nytimes.com

Britain and E.U. Clear Way for ‘Brexit’ Talks to Proceed

Prime Minister Theresa May apparently offered enough assurances over the future of the Irish border to satisfy European negotiators.

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May makes dawn flight to Brussels as Brexit deal seems done

BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May met European Union chief executive Jean-Claude Juncker before dawn in Brussels on Friday after a night flight from London, apparently having clinched a deal to open talks on post-Brexit trade

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Kobe Steel's copper plant loses JIS certification - government

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Industrial Standards (JIS) certification for copper and copper alloy seamless pipes produced by Kobe Steel Ltd's unit Shinko Metal Products has been suspended, the nation's trade ministry said on Friday.

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May readies dawn call on EU as Brexit deal nears

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May is likely to meet European Union chief executive Jean-Claude Juncker before dawn in Brussels, the European Commission said early on Friday, as the two sides seek a deal to open talks on post-Brexit trade.

United States Politics and Government nytimes.com

On Washington: Al Franken’s Improbable Political Rise and Sudden Fall

Mr. Franken came to the Senate as an instant star, but he was brought down by accusations of inappropriate behavior and a Democratic need to clean house.

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Congress averts government shutdown for now

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Congress moved rapidly on Thursday to send President Donald Trump a short-term funding bill to avert a government shutdown this weekend, leaving fights over budget priorities and a range of other controversial issues for the coming weeks.

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Rep. Franks resigns after staff members complain of harassment

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican U.S. Representative Trent Franks said on Thursday he would resign after two female staffers complained that he had discussed surrogacy with them.

Same-Sex Marriage, Civil Unions and Domestic Partnerships nytimes.com

Contributing Op-Ed Writer: Australia’s Shifting Political Order

The same-sex marriage debate showed that attitudes on gender and sexuality do not fit neatly into the traditional conservative-progressive divide.

politicsNews reuters.com

Congress moves to avoid government shutdown, talks resume Friday

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Congress on Thursday moved rapidly to send President Donald Trump a short-term funding bill that would avert a government shutdown this weekend, leaving fights over budget priorities and other controversial issues for later this month.

Net Neutrality nytimes.com

Inside the Opposition to Net Neutrality

Fight for the Future, a scrappy 10-person nonprofit, has helped lead the uproar against changes to internet rules, including hundreds of protests on Thursday.

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Brexit Irish border deal possible within hours

BRUSSELS/DUBLIN (Reuters) - The United Kingdom and Ireland could reach agreement in hours on how to run their post-Brexit Irish land border, paving the way for a deal that would remove the last obstacle to opening free-trade talks with the European Union.

United States Politics and Government nytimes.com

House Passes Two-Week Stopgap Bill to Keep Government Funded

Faced with a Friday deadline to pass a government funding measure, the House passed on Thursday a two-week fix to buy more time for negotiations.

Hair nytimes.com

The Male Animal: What’s the Deal With That Guy’s Fluffy Hair?

From Bernie Sanders to Graydon Carter, men of a certain age embrace an unruly hairstyle that suggests mad genius or regal slob.

worldNews reuters.com

Brexit border deal possible in 'hours' as talks go down to the wire

BRUSSELS/DUBLIN (Reuters) - The United Kingdom and Ireland could reach agreement in hours on how to run their post-Brexit Irish land border, paving the way for a deal that would remove the last obstacle to opening free trade talks with the European Union.

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BRIEF-Freddie Mac Prices $1.1 Billion Multifamily K-Deal, K-F39

* FREDDIE MAC - APPROXIMATELY $1.1 BILLION IN K CERTIFICATES (K-F39 CERTIFICATES) ARE EXPECTED TO SETTLE ON OR ABOUT DECEMBER 18, 2017 Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:

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Trump, Democrats face off over potential government shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump will face off with Democratic leaders of Congress on Thursday in a high-stakes White House meeting intended to bridge differences over a spending bill and preventing a government shutdown.

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German SPD backs talks with Merkel after impassioned Europe speech

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) voted on Thursday to hold talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives on forming a government after their leader made an impassioned plea for a free hand to work for a social "United States of Europe".

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UPDATE 4-German SPD backs talks with Merkel after impassioned Europe speech

* Schulz asks for support to implement "social Europe" programme

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Potash CEO meets with Chilean government amid stake sale

SANTIAGO, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Chief Executive Officer Jochen Tilk met on Thursday with authorities in Chile as the Canadian fertilizer company tries to divest its minority stake in Chilean lithium miner SQM ahead of its proposed merger with rival Agrium Inc .

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Hackers steal $64 million from cryptocurrency firm NiceHash

(Reuters) - Slovenian cryptocurrency mining marketplace NiceHash said it lost nearly $64 million in a hack of its payment system, the latest incident to highlight the risks that uneven oversight and security procedures pose to digital currencies such as bitcoin.

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Hamas calls for Palestinian uprising over Trump's Jerusalem plan

JERUSALEM/GAZA (Reuters) - The Islamist group Hamas urged Palestinians on Thursday to abandon peace efforts and launch a new uprising against Israel in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as its capital.

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WikiLeaks faces U.S. probes into its 2016 election role and CIA leaks: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange, are facing multiple investigations by U.S. authorities, including three congressional probes and a federal criminal inquiry, sources familiar with the investigations said.

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Exclusive: U.N. watchdogs call for probe of Taser assaults in U.S. jails

GENEVA (Reuters) - The U.N. special rapporteur on torture urged U.S. authorities to investigate and weigh criminal charges against jail officials in Ohio, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Arkansas for the “clearly gratuitous infliction of severe pain and suffering” from the use of Tasers on inmates, citing a Reuters report this week.

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Ryan feels good about spending bill, wants budget cap talks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan said he felt good about the vote count on a government spending bill coming before House on Thursday afternoon that is aimed at keeping the government from shutting down this week.

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Democratic Senator Franken to resign: CNN

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democratic U.S. Senator Al Franken was set to announce his resignation from office on Thursday, CNN reported, bowing to pressure from party colleagues after a string of sexual misconduct allegations against him.

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UPDATE 3-German SPD head seeks 'United States of Europe', open to coalition talks

* Schulz asks for support to implement "social Europe" programme

politicsNews reuters.com

Trump and Democrats face off over potential U.S. government shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump will face off with Democratic leaders of Congress on Thursday in a high-stakes White House meeting intended to bridge differences over a spending bill and preventing a government shutdown.

politicsNews reuters.com

Trump and Democrats face off over potential government shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump will face off with Democratic leaders of Congress on Thursday in a high-stakes White House meeting intended to bridge differences over a spending bill and prevent a government shutdown.

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REFILE-UPDATE 2-Norway wealth fund in first Asia property deal with Tokyo acquisition

OSLO, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Norway's $1 trillion sovereign wealth fund has made its first real estate investment in Asia by acquiring a 70 percent stake in five properties in Tokyo and hopes to do more property deals in the Japanese capital, it said on Thursday.

worldNews reuters.com

German SPD head seeks 'United States of Europe', open to coalition talks

BERLIN (Reuters) - The leader of Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) urged his party on Thursday to push for the creation of a "United States of Europe" and keep open the option of helping Chancellor Angela Merkel form a new government.

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UPDATE 2-German SPD head seeks 'United States of Europe', open to coalition talks

* Schulz asks for support to implement "social Europe" programme

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Tillerson says Ukraine is biggest obstacle to normal Russia ties

VIENNA (Reuters) - The United States would "badly" like to lift sanctions against Russia but will not do so until Moscow has pulled its forces out of eastern Ukraine and Crimea, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Thursday, calling that the main obstacle to normal ties.

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Catalan separatists march in Brussels

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Nearly 50,000 people marched through Brussels' European quarter on Thursday in support of Catalan independence and the region's president, who has avoided arrest in Spain by taking refuge in Belgium.

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Czech Travel Service says signs deal for additional nine Boeing 737 MAX planes

PRAGUE (Reuters) - Czech airline Travel Service said on Thursday it had signed an order for nine additional Boeing 737 MAX planes for its fleet in November, increasing its total order book for the model to 39 planes.

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Czech Travel Service says signs deal for additional 9 Boeing 737 MAX planes

PRAGUE, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Czech airline Travel Service said on Thursday it had signed an order for nine additional Boeing 737 MAX planes for its fleet in November, increasing its total order book for the model to 39 planes.

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Stock futures sluggish; eyes on tax bill talks and General Electric

(Reuters) - U.S. stock futures pointed to a dull opening on Thursday with technology stocks holding on to their modest gains as traders focus on progress in tax bill negotiations and General Electric's job-cut plan.

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German SPD leader urges members to back coalition talks

BERLIN (Reuters) - The leader of Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) on Thursday asked party members to give the green light for talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives to find a way out of the political impasse and leave all government options on the table.

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U.N. to assess if either side trying to 'sabotage' Syria talks

GENEVA (Reuters) - The mediator of U.N.-led Syria talks in Geneva plans to assess next week whether either side is trying to sabotage the talks, he told reporters on Thursday, after President Bashar al-Assad's negotiators announced they would turn up five days late.

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Tillerson holds tough line on Russia sanctions over Ukraine

VIENNA (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson held his tough line on Russia during a visit to Europe on Thursday, saying in front of his Russian counterpart that Washington would keep sanctions in place until Russian forces withdraw from Ukraine.

politicsNews reuters.com

Trump faces off with Democrats over potential government shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump will face off with Democratic leaders of Congress on Thursday in a high-stakes White House meeting intended to bridge differences over a spending bill and prevent a government shutdown.

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Hamas calls for Palestinian uprising in response to Trump's Jerusalem plan

JERUSALEM/GAZA (Reuters) - The Islamist group Hamas urged Palestinians on Thursday to abandon peace efforts and launch a new uprising against Israel in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as its capital.

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Tillerson: Russia sanctions will stay until it withdraws from Ukraine

VIENNA (Reuters) - U.S. sanctions against Moscow will remain in place until Russia withdraws from Ukraine, United States Secretary of state Rex Tillerson said on Thursday, speaking in front of his Russian counterpart at a security conference in Vienna.

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China's Sinopec sues Venezuela in sign of fraying relations

(Reuters) - Sinopec USA, a subsidiary of Chinese oil and gas conglomerate Sinopec, has sued Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA in a U.S. court, claiming it never received full payment for an order of steel rebar.

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France and Qatar sign deals worth 12 billion euros -- Macron

QATAR, Dec 7 (Reuters) - France and Qatar signed commercial contracts worth around 12 billion euros ($14.15 billion) on Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron said, adding that the deals underscored the close relationship between the two countries.

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UPDATE 1-Companies prepare for disorderly Brexit as talks stall

LONDON, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Big companies are stepping up their plans in case Britain crashes out of the European Union without a deal as Prime Minister Theresa May struggles to get talks back on track after a major setback.

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UPDATE 1-Norway wealth fund makes first Asia property deal with Tokyo acquisition

OSLO, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Norway's $1-trillion sovereign wealth fund has made its first real estate investment in Asia by acquiring a 70-percent stake in five properties in Tokyo, it said on Friday.

worldNews reuters.com

Pro-Kurdish opposition leader goes on trial in Turkey on terror-related charges

ANKARA (Reuters) - The jailed leader of Turkey's pro-Kurdish opposition went on trial on Thursday, 13 months after his arrest on terrorism-related charges, facing up to 142 years in prison in a case closely watched by rights groups and Western governments.

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Norway wealth fund makes first Asia property deal with Tokyo acquisition

OSLO, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Norway's $1 trillion sovereign wealth fund has made its first real estate investment in Asia by acquiring a 70-percent stake in five properties in Tokyo, it said on Friday.

worldNews reuters.com

Syrian govt delegation to return to Geneva on Sunday for peace talks: SANA

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's negotiating team is set to arrive in Geneva on Sunday to participate in peace talks, Syria's state news agency SANA reported on Thursday, quoting a foreign ministry source.

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Companies prepare for disorderly Brexit as talks stall

LONDON, Dec 7 (Reuters) - Big companies are stepping up their plans in case Britain crashes out of the European Union without a deal as Prime Minister Theresa May struggles to get talks back on track after a major setback.