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U.S. B-1B bomber flew over Korean peninsula: Yonhap

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(Reuters) - A U.S. B-1B bomber flew over the Korean peninsula on Wednesday as part of a large-scale joint aerial drill with South Korea, the South's Yonhap news agency reported, citing the South Korean military. [Source]

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Mudslide in southern Chile kills three; 15 others missing

SANTIAGO (Reuters) - A mudslide tore through a small village near a popular national park in southern Chile on Saturday, leaving three people dead and 15 missing after a night of torrential downpours, authorities said.

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U.N. council mulls call for U.S. Jerusalem decision to be withdrawn

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United Nations Security Council is considering a draft resolution that would insist any decisions on the status of Jerusalem have no legal effect and must be rescinded after U.S. President Donald Trump recognized the city as Israel's capital.

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Winds fuel California wildfire, state's third-largest on record

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A raging California wildfire on Saturday became the state's third-largest on record, with more devastation possible from a resurgence of the harsh winds that have fueled the deadly blaze since the beginning of the month.

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Zuma calls for party unity as ANC meets to elect new leader

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's Jacob Zuma gave his last speech as African National Congress head on Saturday, as the only party in power since the end of apartheid prepared to pick its next leader, and likely future president, in a vote that was too close to call.

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Canadian police probe mysterious deaths of billionaire pharma couple

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian police are investigating the mysterious deaths of pharmaceuticals billionaire Barry Sherman, founder of Apotex Inc, and his wife Honey, whose bodies were found in their Toronto mansion on Friday.

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NEWSMAKER-South Africa's nearly man Ramaphosa may lead country at last

JOHANNESBURG, Dec 16 (Reuters) - The nearly man of South African politics, Cyril Ramaphosa, is at last in with a chance of becoming president after being overlooked for years.

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Myanmar journalists' group to don black T-shirts over arrest of Reuters' reporters

YANGON (Reuters) - A group of Myanmar journalists said they would begin wearing black T-shirts on Saturday in protest at the detention of two Reuters reporters accused of violating the country's Official Secrets Act, as pressure builds on Myanmar to release the pair.

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South Africa to increase spending on higher education: Zuma

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa will raise subsidies to universities to 1 percent of gross domestic product over the next five years from nearly 0.7 percent at present as recommended by a commission on higher education funding, President Jacob Zuma said on Saturday.

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Wounded North Korean defector transferred to South Korean military hospital

SEOUL (Reuters) - A North Korean soldier who suffered critical gunshot wounds during a defection dash across the border to South Korea has been transferred to a military hospital, a South Korean intelligence official said on Saturday.

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Venezuela talks to resume in January after government, opposition fail to reach deal

CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's government and opposition leaders will hold a new round of talks in January after failing on Friday to reach an agreement to ease a deep political and economic crisis in the troubled OPEC country.

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North Korean hackers behind attacks on cryptocurrency exchanges, South Korean newspaper reports

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's spy agency said North Korean hackers were behind attacks on cryptocurrency exchanges this year in which some 7.6 billion won ($6.99 million) worth of cryptocurrencies were stolen, a newspaper reported on Saturday.

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Ramaphosa, Dlamini-Zuma in tight race to lead South Africa's ruling ANC

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's ruling African National Congress holds an election this weekend - seen as too close to call - to replace Jacob Zuma as party leader, with the winner also likely to become the next president.

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North Korean high-ranking official missing

Reports that North Korea's second most high-ranking official to Kim Jong Un has vanished. CNN's Brian Todd reports on his whereabouts.

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Myanmar faces mounting calls for release of Reuters journalists

UNITED NATIONS/YANGON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Friday that the United States was demanding "the immediate release" of two Reuters reporters arrested in Myanmar "or information as to the circumstances around their disappearance."

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Tillerson urges long halt to North Korea weapons tests before any talks

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Friday urged North Korea to carry out a "sustained cessation" of weapons testing to allow the two countries to hold talks about Pyongyang's nuclear and missile programs.

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Fed's rosy economic scenario leaves inflation puzzle for Powell

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - As incoming Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell works through his holiday shopping list, he might consider the nearly 50 percent discount he could get buying Calvin Klein underwear online instead of at the local mall.

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Special Report: At a hotel near you - Cadavers in the banquet room

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Florida (Reuters) - LAKE BUENA VISTA, Florida – Just outside the operating theater, the organizers of a medical conference wore Minnie Mouse ears.

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Big U.S. banks engage universities to fill unglamorous banking jobs

(Reuters) - Banks are grappling with how to recruit young people into businesses like trade finance and cash management, which are increasingly important drivers of revenue but perceived to be un-sexy compared with investment banking and trading.

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Israeli troops kill four Palestinians, wound 160 in protests over Jerusalem

GAZA (Reuters) - Israeli troops shot dead four Palestinians and wounded 150 others with live fire on Friday, medical officials said, as protests over U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital entered a second week.

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Israeli troops kill three Palestinians, wound scores in protests over Jerusalem

GAZA (Reuters) - Israeli troops shot dead three Palestinians and wounded 150 others on Friday, medical officials said, as protests over U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital entered a second week.

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Tillerson urges lull in North Korea 'threatening behavior' before any talks

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Friday called for a "sustained cessation of North Korea's threatening behavior" before talks could occur between Washington and Pyongyang, but did not specify a length of time for a lull.

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Suspected North Korean cyber group seeks to woo bitcoin job seekers

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The surging price of cryptocurrencies in global markets is catching the eye not just of ordinary retail investors but a cybercrime gang with links to the North Korean government, according to cyber researchers tracing the group's activities.

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Suspected N. Korean cyber group seeks to woo bitcoin job seekers

FRANKFURT, Dec 15 (Reuters) - The surging price of cryptocurrencies in global markets is catching the eye not just of ordinary retail investors but a cybercrime gang with links to the North Korean government, according to cyber researchers tracing the group's activities.

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Israeli troops wound more than 40 Palestinians in protests over U.S. Jerusalem move

RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) - Israeli troops shot and wounded more than 40 Palestinians in Gaza and the occupied West Bank on Friday, medical officials said, as protests over U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital entered a second week.

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In Syria, Russia securing position as Assad presses war

BEIRUT (Reuters) - With the map of Syria's conflict decisively redrawn in President Bashar al-Assad's favor, his Russian allies want to convert military gains into a settlement that stabilizes the shattered nation and secures their interests in the region.

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Exclusive: Italy plans big handover of sea rescues to Libya coastguard

ROME/TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Italy wants Libya's coastguard to take responsibility within three years for intercepting migrants across about a tenth of the Mediterranean even as Libyan crews struggle to patrol their own coast and are accused of making deadly mistakes at sea.

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South African regulator probes conduct of Steinhoff auditors

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA) is investigating Steinhoff's auditor following the retail group's disclosure of accounting irregularities, it said on Friday.

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Erdogan says Turkey seeking to annul Trump decision on Jerusalem at U.N.

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey is launching an initiative at the United Nations to annul a decision by the United States to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday.

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U.S. says concerned about Myanmar's silence over where Reuters journalists are being held

YANGON (Reuters) - The U.S. embassy in Myanmar said on Friday it was concerned that there had been no word on the whereabouts of two Reuters journalists three days after they were detained, and that authorities had not allowed their families to visit them.

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CSX CEO Hunter Harrison takes medical leave amid rail overhaul

(Reuters) - CSX Corp said on Thursday its Chief Executive Officer Hunter Harrison was taking medical leave, an announcement that comes amid of a controversial turnaround plan at the No. 3 U.S. railroad that has drawn customer criticism and scrutiny from regulators. The Jacksonville, Florida-based railroad said Harrison, 73, was taking a leave of absence due to unexpected complications from a recent unspecified illness.

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World trade order in a wobble as Washington snubs WTO status quo

BERLIN (Reuters) - The frustration of Roberto Azevedo was evident when, as director general of the World Trade Organization, he summed up the results of a three-day ministerial conference in Buenos Aires in the past week. There were simply none.

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Congo child soldiers awarded $10 million compensation in landmark ruling

THE HAGUE (Reuters) - International war crimes judges awarded $10 million in compensation on Friday to child soldiers recruited by convicted Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga - the largest reparation of it kind.

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Erdogan says Turkey starting initiatives at U.N. to annul U.S. decision on Jerusalem

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey is starting initiatives at the United Nations to annul a decision by the United States to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday.

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Kremlin: Putin and Trump agreed to exchange information on North Korea

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The Kremlin said on Friday that President Vladimir Putin and his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump had agreed in a phone call to exchange information about North Korea and cooperate on possible initiatives to resolve a crisis around the Asian nation.

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Mexico plots open trade course to escape Trump's NAFTA threats

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump's 'America First' brand of economic nationalism is pushing Mexico to seek sanctuary in more open commercial ties elsewhere to soften the blow of a possible breakdown of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Blacks nytimes.com

Op-Ed Columnist: Can Black Voters Turn the South Blue?

Doug Jones’ victory shows the importance of investing in African-American turnout.

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South Korea's Kakao to issue GDRs of up to $1 billion for M&A

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean messaging app service provider Kakao Corp said on Friday it is targeting raising up to $1 billion overseas for use in global mergers and acquisitions.

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South Africa's governing ANC to announce party leader on Sunday

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's ruling African National Congress (ANC) will announce current president Jacob Zuma's successor as party leader on Sunday as it looks to conclude a bruising leadership battle and focus on policy, a party spokesman told radio station 702 on Friday.

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Moves in South Korea to make cryptocurrency trading more transparent

SEOUL (Reuters) - A South Korean blockchain association announced on Friday measures to boost transparency in trading of cryptocurrencies, agreed by 14 exchanges in the country including the world's busiest virtual currency exchange, Bitthumb.

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South Korea blockchain association announces virtual currency transparency measures

SEOUL (Reuters) - A South Korean blockchain association announced on Friday measures to boost transparency in trading of cryptocurrencies, agreed by 14 exchanges in the country including the world's busiest virtual currency exchange, Bitthumb.

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Putin, Trump discuss bilateral relations, Korean Peninsula situation: Kremlin

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump discussed bilateral relations and situation in the Korean Peninsula during a telephone call, the Kremlin said in a statement early on Friday.

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While focus is on North Korea, China continues South China Sea buildup: think tank

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - While attention in Asia has been distracted by the North Korean nuclear crisis in the past year, China has continued to install high-frequency radar and other facilities that can be used for military purposes on its man-made islands in the South China Sea, a U.S. think tank said on Thursday.

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Two dead, several wounded in stabbing in southern Dutch city Maastricht: police

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - At least two people were killed and several others wounded by stabbings in the southern Dutch city of Maastricht on Thursday evening, police said.

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Southwest Airlines would use tax savings on planes, share buybacks

NEW YORK, Dec 14 (Reuters) - Southwest Airlines Co would use savings from a potential cut to the U.S. corporate tax rate to buy new planes and fund share buybacks, Chief Executive Gary Kelly said on Thursday.

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One dead, several injured in stabbing in southern Dutch city Maastricht: police

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - One person was killed and several others injured in a stabbing incident in the southern Dutch city of Maastricht on Thursday evening, police said.

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Homegrown attacks rising worry in U.S. as Islamic State weakens abroad

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The online video's message was clear: Supporters of Islamic State who could not travel overseas to join the militant group should carry out attacks wherever they were in the United States or Europe.

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'Bad news for our enemies': EU launches defense pact

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union nations, now unfettered by Britain's decision to quit, achieved a 70-year-old ambition on Thursday to integrate their defenses, launching a pact between 25 EU governments to fund, develop and deploy armed forces together.

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World shares little changed amid slate of central bank meetings

NEW YORK (Reuters) - World stock markets were little changed on Thursday after policy meetings from major central banks in Europe, while some U.S. shares were buoyed by news that the Republicans' tax legislation could face final votes in Congress before year-end.

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Train collides with school bus in southern France: local townhall

PARIS (Reuters) - A train collided with a school bus outside the town of Perpignan in southern France on Thursday and emergency services were at the scene, a local official said.

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Arms supplied by U.S., Saudi ended up with Islamic State, researchers say

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Arms provided by the United States and Saudi Arabia to Syrian opposition groups frequently ended up in the hands of Islamic State, an arms monitoring group that analyzed weapons found on the battlefield said on Thursday.

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UPDATE 4-South Africa's Sibanye-Stillwater to be No. 2 platinum miner with Lonmin buy

* Lonmin underperforms peers: http://bit.ly/2zbL36M (Adds deal detail, updates shares)

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Saudi hopes purge will help push to join anti-illicit funding body

DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia has high hopes that a campaign of arrests to crack down on corruption will improve its chances of joining the Financial Action Task Force, a global body dedicated to combating illicit money flows.

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Seven decades in the making, a defense pact comes to the EU

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union nations are set to achieve a 70-year-old ambition to integrate their defenses on Thursday, signing a pact between 25 EU governments to fund, develop and deploy armed forces together after Britain's decision to quit the bloc.

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U.S. retail sales surge; weekly jobless claims fall

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. retail sales increased more than expected in November as the holiday shopping season got off to a brisk start, pointing to sustained strength in the economy that could pave the way for further Federal Reserve interest rate hikes next year.

California Today nytimes.com

California Today: California Today: North vs South, That Fading Rivalry

Thursday: A debate over NorCal versus SoCal, fire-resistant Getty Center, waiting for rain, Tavis Smiley show suspended and finally, Jewish humor for Christmas.

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China says war must not be allowed on Korean peninsula

BEIJING (Reuters) - War must not be allowed to break out on the Korean peninsula and the issue must be resolved through talks, Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Thursday, while U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned of the danger of "sleepwalking" into conflict.

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South Korea’s Leader, Meeting Xi Jinping, Seeks ‘New Start’ With China

President Moon Jae-in of South Korea was working to end an unofficial trade war over his country’s antimissile system.

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Russia's Putin, on track for easy re-election, laments dearth of rivals

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he faced no credible high-profile political opponents as he prepared to run for re-election in March, but would work to try to create a more balanced political system.

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UPDATE 2-South Korea's Moon tries K-Pop and TV stars in China charm offensive

* Charm offensive includes K-Pop and TV stars (Adds memorandum on trade agreement)

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U.N. chief says arrest of Reuters journalists shows erosion of press freedom in Myanmar

TOKYO (Reuters) - The arrest of two Reuters journalists in Yangon this week was a signal that press freedom is shrinking in Myanmar and the international community must do all it can to get them released, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Thursday.

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U.N. probes alleged abduction of North Korean restaurant workers, official says

SEOUL (Reuters) - A senior United Nations human rights official on Thursday said he was investigating North Korea's allegations that a dozen restaurant workers who arrived in the South from China last year were abducted against their will.

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Putin says will run as independent candidate for new Kremlin term

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin, seeking a new term in office in a March election, said on Thursday he would run as an independent candidate while hoping for support from more than one political party.

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In-flight sexual assaults often unreported; airlines need to step up

SINGAPORE/NEW DELHI (Reuters) - When a 17-year-old Bollywood actress took to social media this week alleging she was sexually assaulted on an airplane, she appeared to catch the airline industry off-guard.

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Israel closes Gaza border crossings after Palestinian rocket strikes

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel announced the closure of its Gaza border crossings on Thursday in response to daily rocket fire from the enclave over the past week after U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital stoked Palestinian anger.

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South Africa's Zuma appeals court ruling on state prosecutor's appointment: local media

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's President Jacob Zuma has filed an appeal against a court ruling that his appointment of a state prosecutor to decide whether to reinstate corruption charges against him was not valid, local media reported on Thursday.

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Suicide bomber kills at least 15 at police academy in Somalia's capital

MOGADISHU (Reuters) - A suicide bomber disguised as a policeman blew himself up inside a police training camp in Somalia's capital Mogadishu on Thursday and killed at least 15 officers, officials said.

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BRIEF-Blocktrade: Alphamin ‍Confirms Close Of South African Private Placement

* ‍CONFIRMS THAT SOUTH AFRICAN PRIVATE PLACEMENT CLOSED AT 12:00 ON 11 DECEMBER 2017​

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U.N.'s Guterres warns against 'sleepwalking' into war over North Korea

TOKYO (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, warning against the danger of "sleepwalking" into war, said on Thursday that Security Council resolutions on North Korea's nuclear and missile programs must be fully implemented by Pyongyang and other countries.

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South Korea prosecutors seek four-year jail term for Lotte group chief

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's prosecutors are seeking a four-year jail term for Lotte Group chief Shin Dong-bin, the corporate group's spokesman said by telephone on Thursday.

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U.N. resolutions on North Korea must be fully implemented: Guterres

TOKYO (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Thursday that United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding North Korea's nuclear and missile programs must be fully implemented by Pyongyang and other countries.

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Suicide bomber kills at least 13 in police academy attack in Somali capital

MOGADISHU (Reuters) - A suicide bomber in police uniform blew himself up inside a police training camp in Somalia's capital Mogadishu on Thursday, killing at least 13 police officers, officials said.

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South Korea's Moon tries K-Pop and TV stars in China charm offensive

SEOUL, Dec 14 (Reuters) - South Korean President Moon Jae-in will unveil an array of TV talent and K-Pop celebrities at events, including a state dinner, in China on Thursday as he attempts to smooth out a year of difficult diplomacy with a star-laden charm offensive.

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U.S. agency to vote on net neutrality rules despite outcry

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Internet service providers clashed with Democrats and celebrities like "Star Wars" actor Mark Hamill ahead of a vote on the Trump administration's plan to revoke net neutrality rules barring the blocking or slowing of internet traffic.

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Accused N.Y. bomber's family says attack 'our worst nightmare'

DHAKA (Reuters) - Zulifikar Haider hoped his daughter would live the American dream when she married a fellow Bangladeshi living in the United States, but that dream turned into a nightmare when the family saw pictures of her husband wounded after allegedly trying to set off a bomb in a crowded New York commuter hub.

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After Alabama upset, Democrats see new prospects in U.S. South

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The solidly Republican South suddenly looks a little less solid.

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U.S. judge orders accused New York bomber detained ahead of trial

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Bangladeshi man accused of attempting a suicide bombing in a busy New York City commuter hub will remain in federal custody while he awaits trial on charges that include supporting a foreign terrorist organization, a judge ruled on Wednesday.

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U.N. expert says torture persists at Guantanamo Bay; U.S. denies

GENEVA (Reuters) - An independent U.N. human rights investigator said on Wednesday that he had information about an inmate being tortured at the U.S. Guantanamo Bay detention facility, despite Washington banning "enhanced interrogation techniques" almost 10 years ago.

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Muslim leaders call on world to recognize East Jerusalem as Palestinian capital

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Muslim leaders condemned U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel on Wednesday and called on the world to respond by recognizing East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine.

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Accused NYC bomber to formally face terrorism charges as soon as Wednesday

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Bangladeshi man accused of attempting a suicide bombing in one of New York City's busiest commuter hubs is expected to be formally charged as early as Wednesday with supporting a foreign terrorist organization and other crimes.

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U.N. expert says inmate U.S. torture continues at Guantanamo Bay

GENEVA (Reuters) - An inmate at the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay is still being tortured, the U.N. special rapporteur on torture Nils Melzer said in a statement on Wednesday.

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U.N. expert says U.S. torture continues at Guantanamo Bay

GENEVA (Reuters) - An inmate at the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay is still being tortured, the U.N. special rapporteur on torture Nils Melzer said in a statement on Wednesday.

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In another blow to Zuma, South African top court orders influence-peddling inquiry

PRETORIA (Reuters) - South Africa's High Court ruled on Wednesday that President Jacob Zuma, under fire for alleged corruption, must set up a judicial inquiry into state influence-peddling within 30 days.

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BRIEF-South Atlantic Bancshares To Acquire Atlantic Bancshares

* SOUTH ATLANTIC BANCSHARES, INC. TO ACQUIRE ATLANTIC BANCSHARES, INC.

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Palestinian leader says Trump's Jerusalem 'crime' prevents U.S. peace role

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told Muslim leaders on Wednesday that a U.S. decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital was a crime which showed that Washington should no longer play a role in Middle East peace talks.

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Iran urges Muslim nations to defend Palestinians after Trump move

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday all Muslim nations should work together to defend the rights of Palestinians following Donald Trump's decision last week to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

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After fires, Southern California faces risk of mudslides

CARPINTERIA, Calif./LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Firefighters in Southern California are slowly gaining control of one of the largest wildfires in state history, but residents may not enjoy much relief as experts said the flames are laying the groundwork for the next disaster - mudslides.

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Tech sector loses champion in death of San Francisco mayor

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - San Francisco technology companies including Twitter, Salesforce.com, Uber and Airbnb lost an important ally on Tuesday with the sudden death of Mayor Ed Lee.

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Trump's Jerusalem decision shows lack of respect for Palestinian nation: Iran's Rouhani

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital shows the United States lacks any respect for the legitimate rights of the Palestinian nation, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani tweeted on Wednesday.

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Exclusive: After Grenfell fire, same builders rehired to replace dangerous cladding, Reuters finds

LONDON (Reuters) - Some building companies that installed dangerous cladding on social housing blocks across Britain are now winning new contracts following the Grenfell Tower blaze to remove their original work and install panels that can pass safety tests, a Reuters review shows.

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South Korean firms flock to Beijing hoping summit will hasten thaw with China

SEOUL (Reuters) - Hoping a thaw in relations with China will reopen opportunities after a diplomatic spat earlier this year cost many of them business, some 300 South Korean executives joined President Moon Jae-in for the start of his four-day trip to China on Wednesday.

Martial Law nytimes.com

Philippines Extends Martial Law in South for Another Year

President Rodrigo Duterte said continued military rule on the southern island of Mindanao was needed to ensure the “total eradication” of militancy there.

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U.S. prepares to open doors on billion-dollar London embassy

LONDON (Reuters) - The United States' diplomatic team in London, custodians of one of the most significant bilateral relationships of the last 100 years, will next month move into a new home: a billion-dollar, 12-storey glass cube overlooking the River Thames.

cnn.com

Presumed North Korean ghost ship washes ashore

Another presumed North Korean vessel has washed up on Japan's shores, with at least one dead body on board.

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South Korea considers cryptocurrency tax as regulators grapple with 'speculative mania'

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea said on Wednesday it may tax capital gains from cryptocurrecy trading as global regulators worried about a bubble, with Australia's central bank chief warning of a 'speculative mania" that has seen the digital asset making rip-roaring gains.

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Tillerson says U.S. ready to talk to North Korea; Japan wants pressure

WASHINGTON/SEOUL (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson offered to begin direct talks with North Korea without pre-conditions, backing away from a key U.S. demand that Pyongyang must first accept that giving up its nuclear arsenal would be part of any negotiations.

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Tillerson says U.S. ready to talk to North Korea; Kim promises more weapons

WASHINGTON/SEOUL (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson offered to begin direct talks with North Korea without pre-conditions, backing away from a key U.S. demand that Pyongyang must first accept that giving up its nuclear arsenal would be part of any negotiations.

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South Korea to hold emergency meeting on cryptocurrencies, measures expected Friday

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's government has called an emergency meeting to discuss the trading of cryptocurrencies, and measures on the market will be announced on Friday, a central bank official said on Wednesday.

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North Korea's Kim Jong Un fetes rocket scientists, promises more weapons

SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un vowed to develop more nuclear weapons on Tuesday while personally decorating scientists and officials who contributed to the development of Pyongyang's most advanced intercontinental ballistic missile, the Hwasong-15.

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BRIEF-Capital Southwest Says Net Proceeds Of Increased Public Offering Will Be About $48.5 Mln

* CAPITAL SOUTHWEST CORPORATION PRICES AN INCREASED PUBLIC OFFERING OF $50,000,000 - 5.95% NOTES DUE 2022

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Crucial details of Republican tax plan in flux as deal deadline looms

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Crucial details of the Republican tax plan, including the proposed corporate rate, were in flux late on Tuesday as negotiators from the U.S. Congress rushed to finalize the plan ahead of a self-imposed Wednesday deadline.

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Tillerson, in new overture to North Korea, says ready to talk without pre-conditions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson offered on Tuesday to begin direct talks with North Korea without pre-conditions, backing away from U.S. demands that Pyongyang must first accept that any negotiations would have to be about giving up its nuclear arsenal.

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BRIEF-SmartFinancial Inc To Acquire Southern Community Bank

* SMARTFINANCIAL, INC. TO ACQUIRE TULLAHOMA, TN-BASED SOUTHERN COMMUNITY BANK

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Multiple earthquakes hit southeastern Iran: USGS

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Iran's southeastern province of Kerman was hit by multiple strong quakes on Tuesday and Wednesday, injuring at least 18 people and damaging some 20 houses, state media reported.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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South Africa's Zuma rejects reports his office is drafting emergency laws

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South African President Jacob Zuma has rejected local news reports that his office has started drafting regulations for a state of emergency, the president's office said on Tuesday.

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Tight race as South Africa's ANC prepares to elect Zuma successor

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's ruling African National Congress holds an election this weekend to replace Jacob Zuma as party leader in a closely fought contest whose winner is likely to emerge as the nation's next president.

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BRIEF-Capital Southwest Announces Offering Of Notes

* CAPITAL SOUTHWEST CORP- TO USE NET PROCEEDS FROM OFFERING TO REPAY OUTSTANDING INDEBTEDNESS UNDER EXISTING CREDIT FACILITY Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Magnitude 6.2 quake hits southeast Iran

BEIRUT (Reuters) - An earthquake of magnitude 6.2 hit Kerman province in southeast Iran on Tuesday, injuring 15 people and causing the walls of some houses to collapse, state media reported.

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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.

environmentNews reuters.com

South China chemical producer halts ammonia output as gas crisis deepens

BEIJING (Reuters) - A major Chinese chemical producer based in the southern province of Yunnan said it has halted production of synthetic ammonia and urea due to natural gas shortages as China's winter heating crisis deepens.

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Bitcoin exchange Bithumb says 'right' regulations in South Korea would boost market

SEOUL (Reuters) - The Seoul-based operator of the world's busiest virtual currency exchange Bithumb said on Tuesday it will fully comply with potential regulations from the South Korean government and adequately capitalize itself to protect its clients.

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Japan air force drills with U.S. bombers, stealth fighters near Korean peninsula

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese F-15 fighters on Tuesday held drills with U.S. B1-B bombers, F-35 stealth aircraft and F-18 multirole combat jets

Colbert, Stephen nytimes.com

Best of Late Night: Stephen Colbert Taunts the ‘Failed’ New York Bomber

“The worst you did is make the subways run late — and the M.T.A. does that just fine without your help,” the “Late Show” host said.

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Death toll from fighting in South Sudan's Great Lakes rises to 170

JUBA (Reuters) - The death toll from inter-clan fighting in South Sudan's Great Lakes region last week - a new source of violence in a country devastated by a four-year civil war - has reached at least 170, officials said on Tuesday.

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Exclusive: South Africa's Steinhoff considers sale of PSG, KAP stakes to lift liquidity -sources

JOHANNESBURG/ FRANKFURT (Reuters) - South Africa's Steinhoff is considering selling stakes worth a combined $1.4 billion in local companies PSG Group and KAP Industrial to help plug a liquidity gap at the retailer, two sources familiar with the matter said.

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South Korea conducts anti-terror drills ahead of Winter Games

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (Reuters) - Set to host the Winter Olympics in February, South Korea conducted a series of security drills on Tuesday to prepare against terror attacks ranging from a hostage situation, a vehicle ramming a stadium and a bomb-attached to a drone.

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Death toll from fighting in South Sudan's Great Lakes region rises to 170: official

JUBA (Reuters) - The death toll from intercommunal fighting between two clans in South Sudan's Great Lakes region last week has reached at least 170, an official said, up from 45, reflecting a new source of violence in a country devastated by a four-year civil war.

Economic Conditions and Trends nytimes.com

Op-Ed Contributor: Jacob Zuma and the Theft of South Africa

The A.N.C. needs to move away from the president’s corrupt politics and look for solutions not based on crude nationalism and racial essentialism.

environmentNews reuters.com

Firefighters hold back massive Southern California wildfire

VENTURA, Calif. (Reuters) - Firefighters, taking advantage of a lull in the winds, on Monday held in check a massive Southern California wildfire that has torched hundreds of buildings and charred an area larger than New York City.

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South Korea's Moon, China's Xi to talk North Korea, trade in Beijing summit

SEOUL/BEIJING (Reuters) - Reining in North Korea's nuclear ambitions will top South Korean President Moon Jae-in's agenda in Beijing during a visit this week aimed at breaking the ice after a furious row with China over Seoul's deployment of a U.S. anti-missile system.

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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.

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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.

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'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.

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Yankees confirm slugger Stanton as newest Bronx Bomber

(Reuters) - Slugger Giancarlo Stanton is officially a New York Yankee, the Major League Baseball team confirming on Monday they had obtained the reigning National League most valuable player in a trade with the Miami Marlins.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

Refugees and Displaced Persons nytimes.com

Fearing the Worst, China Plans Refugee Camps on North Korean Border

A Chinese county has a blueprint in place if a crisis in North Korea results in thousands of refugees crossing the border.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

Defense and Military Forces nytimes.com

North Korean Submarine Missile Threat Prompts U.S.-Led Military Drills

The joint exercises are in response to growing concerns that North Korea is making progress developing hard-to-detect submarine-launched missiles.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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

After a rare North Korea visit, a UN envoy warns that tensions on the peninsula must be resolved quickly

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Japan, U.S., South Korea to hold missile tracking drill amid North Korea crisis

TOKYO (Reuters) - The United States, Japan and South Korea will hold two days of missile tracking drills this week, Japan's Maritime Self-Defence Force said on Sunday, as tensions rise in the region over North Korea's fast-developing weapons programs.

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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

South Korea's Hyundai says faces headwinds from weaker yen next year

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korean automakers face a major headwind from a weakening Japanese yen, which will boost rivals like Toyota Motor Corp. next year, a Hyundai Motor think tank said.

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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.

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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.

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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.

cnn.com

South gets several inches of rare, pre-Christmas snow

The South got a early taste of winter before other regions this year, but the Northeast won't have to wait for too long.

Cosmetics and Toiletries nytimes.com

Opinion: I Grew Up Around Korean Beauty Products. Americans, You’ve Been Had.

The pedestrian origin story of the triple cleanse and snail slime face serum.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Soccer: Japanese and North Korean fans brush off 'irrelevant' politics

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan and North Korea met on Saturday in what had the potential to be a tumultuous soccer match but spectators largely shrugged off the tensions between the two countries and focused on supporting their teams.

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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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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.

Writing and Writers nytimes.com

Profile: Eluding Censors, a Magazine Covers Southeast Asia’s Literary Scene

Mekong Review’s contributors include some of the best-known authors, journalists and academics who follow the region.

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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.

worldNews reuters.com

Japan arrests North Korean crew amid mystery boat arrivals

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese police arrested three crew of a North Korean boat on Saturday for stealing a generator from a hut on an uninhabited island, public broadcaster NHK said, the latest drama amid increasing arrivals of North Korean fishing boats off Japan.

Far East, South and Southeast Asia and Pacific Areas nytimes.com

Southeast Asia’s Ride-Hailing War Is Being Waged on Motorbikes

In Indonesia’s traffic-ridden capital, one start-up makes it easy to get around — or not to have to in the first place.

environmentNews reuters.com

No respite in sight from fast-moving Southern California wildfires

VENTURA, Calif. (Reuters) - Exhausted fire crews made little headway on Friday in containing the most troublesome of six major wildfires burning in South California as dry winds fanned flames that ravaged avocado farms, racehorse stables and a retirement community.

worldNews reuters.com

U.S. envoy for North Korean affairs travels to Japan, Thailand

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. envoy for North Korea will travel to Japan and Thailand next week to discuss how to increase pressure on Pyongyang after its latest ballistic missile test, the U.S. State Department said on Friday.

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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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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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At least 45 killed in ethnic fighting in South Sudan: official

JUBA (Reuters) - At least 45 people have died in fighting between ethnic groups in South Sudan's northern state of Western Lakes, a local official said, in a new source of violence in a country already devastated by a four-year civil war.

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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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South African court rules Zuma appointment of state prosecutor invalid

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's High Court ruled on Friday that President Jacob Zuma's appointment of a state prosecutor to decide whether to reinstate corruption charges against him was not valid and should be set aside immediately.

environmentNews reuters.com

Firefighters battle intense wildfires in Southern California

FARIA BEACH/LILAC, Calif. (Reuters) - Firefighters battled several intense wind-driven wildfires early on Friday across densely populated Southern California that have destroyed at least 500 structures and chased tens of thousands of people from their homes over the past five days.

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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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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.

worldNews reuters.com

South Africa's high court rules Zuma appointment of state prosecutor invalid

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa's High Court ruled on Friday that President Jacob Zuma's appointment of a state prosecutor responsible for deciding whether to reinstate corruption charges against him was not valid and should be set aside immediately.

environmentNews reuters.com

Firefighters battle intense wildfires ravaging southern California

FARIA BEACH/LILAC, Calif. (Reuters) - Firefighters battled several intense wind-driven wildfires early on Friday that have swept across densely populated Southern California, destroying at least 500 structures and chasing 190,000 people from their homes over the past five days.

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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.

cnn.com

US developing weapon that could disable N. Korean missiles

With Kim Jong Un pushing aggressively to develop missiles that could hit the United States with nuclear warheads, pressure has been mounting on US officials to answer the threat. One effective countermeasure could lie in an obscure military lab in New Mexico.

companyNews reuters.com

South Africa's rand stumbles in bear plays ahead of U.S. jobs data

JOHANNESBURG, Dec 8 (Reuters) - South Africa's rand weakened early on Friday as the case to sell mounted ahead of the U.S. jobs data, seen set to lift the dollar, while short positioning by traders eyeing key economic and political events on the horizon also pressured the currency.

cnn.com

It's snowing in south Texas

Big and fluffy snowflakes fell across parts of south Texas on Thursday, including San Antonio and Austin.

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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.

companyNews reuters.com

BRIEF-Verizon - Customers In Southern California Areas Hardest Hit By Wildfires Will Be Offered Free Unlimited Talk, Text And Data from Dec 7-Dec 10

* VERIZON -CUSTOMERS IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA AREAS HARDEST HIT BY WILDFIRES WILL BE OFFERED FREE UNLIMITED TALK, TEXT AND DATA FROM DEC 7 THROUGH DEC 10​ Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:

domesticNews reuters.com

Be 'ready to GO!' Southern California warns residents as fires rage

FARIA BEACH, Calif. (Reuters) - Fanned by gusting winds, wildfires raged in densely populated Southern California for a fourth day on Thursday, forcing 200,000 people to flee their homes with dangerous conditions forecast until Sunday.

Wildfires nytimes.com

‘It Burns and It Keeps Burning’: Scenes From Southern California’s Wildfires

Wildfires have burned more than 100,000 acres in Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. Fighting them were professionals and homeowners with garden hoses.

domesticNews reuters.com

Ex-South Carolina cop gets 20 years in prison for black motorist's death

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Reuters) - The white former policeman caught on video shooting an unarmed black man in the back after a 2015 traffic stop in South Carolina was sentenced on Thursday to 20 years in prison, with a federal judge ruling that the killing amounted to murder.

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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.