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Friday, Apr 29th

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N. Korea Jails Another U.S. Citizen for spying

Kim Dong Chul jailed in N. KoreaNorth Korea has sentenced a US man to 10 years of hard labour for spying.  Kim Dong-chul, a 62-year-old naturalised US citizen born in South Korea, was arrested last October.

Kim had made an apparent confession in Pyongyang last month in front of reporters, saying he was paid by South Korean intelligence officers.

The US has previously accused North Korea of using its citizens as pawns in a diplomatic game. Pyongyang denies the accusations.

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Belgium Issues Iodine Pills to All Citizens in Nuclear Emergency Plan

Belgians to get anti radiation pillsBelgium is to issue iodine tablets to its entire population as part of a revised nuclear emergency plan, a measure unveiled just months after it emerged that ISIS-linked bombers spied on a top scientist and hoped to build a "dirty bomb."

A dose of iodine, which helps to limit the effects of radiation on the body, will be made available to all 11 million people in the small country, Health Minister Maggie De Block told reporters Thursday.

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Pentagon disciplines 16 of its own for Kunduz hospital airstrike

Pentagon disciplines own for hospital hitThe Pentagon has disciplined 16 service members following an airstrike that killed 42 at a Doctors Without Borders hospital in northern Afghanistan last fall.

A six-month internal investigation of the devastating Oct. 3 incident led to the punishment of a two-star general, the crew of an Air Force AC-130 gunship and Army special forces members, the Los Angeles Times reported.

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Cost for new oral cancer drugs skyrocketed in last decade

Cost of oral cancer drug sky rocketedA new drug for cancer introduced in 2014 costs about six times the price of a new drug in 2000, with the cost of many other drugs to treat the disease increasing in price significantly during that time, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of North Carolina found the skyrocketing prices line up with changes in health insurance making patients responsible for more of the cost and potentially put people in the position of not being able to afford treatment.

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Natural gas explosion in Salem Township: Injuries reported, evacuations underway

gas explosion in SalemCrews are responding to a natural gas explosion Friday in Salem Township, Westmoreland County, where at least one injury has been reported and evacuations are underway in the immediate area.

The blast and resulting fire happened around 8:30 a.m. in the area of Route 22 at Route 819. The total number of people injured and the severity of the injuries is unknown.

The explosion involved a pipeline owned by Texas Eastern, which has shut off the gas and sent personnel to the site, according to Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection spokesman John Poister.

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Aleppo onslaught: New air strikes hit medical facility

New strike on medical facility in AleppoAn air strike hit a clinic in a rebel-held district of Aleppo on Friday, the civil defence said, the second time this week a medical facility in Syria's second city has been hit.

The strike on the Al-Marja neighbourhood wounded several people, including at least one nurse, the civil defence, known as the White Helmets, said.

Local sources said that at least five people had been killed.  The clinic had been providing dental services and treatment for chronic illnesses for about five years.

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Violence follows California Trump rally, about 20 arrested

Violence at CA Trump rallyRaucous protesters and supporters of Donald Trump violently confronted each other in California leading to some 20 arrests as the Republican presidential contender brought his campaign to conservative Orange County.

Dozens of protesters were mostly peaceful Thursday during the speech. Late in the evening, however, the demonstration grew rowdy and spilled into the streets.

Approximately 20 people were arrested by Costa Mesa police, according to a tweet from the Orange County Sheriff's Department. One Trump supporter had his face bloodied in a scuffle as he tried to drive out of the arena. One man jumped on a police car, leaving its front and rear windows smashed and the top dented in and other protests sprayed graffiti on a police car and the Pacific Amphitheatre's marquee.

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Russia's nuclear nightmare flows down radioactive river

ChernobylAt first glance, Gilani Dambaev looks like a healthy 60-year-old man and the river flowing past his rural family home appears pristine. But Dambaev is riddled with diseases that his doctors link to a lifetime's exposure to excessive radiation, and the Geiger counter beeps loudly as a reporter strolls down to the muddy riverbank.

Some 50 kilometers (30 miles) upstream from Dambaev's crumbling village lies Mayak, a nuclear complex that has been responsible for at least two of the country's biggest radioactive accidents. Worse, environmentalists say, is the facility's decades-old record of using the Arctic-bound waters of the Techa River to dump waste from reprocessing spent nuclear fuel, hundreds of tons of which is imported annually from neighboring nations.

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New York Times boss sued over alleged ageist, racist and sexist hiring practices

Mark ThompsonMark Thompson, the chief executive of the New York Times and former director-general of the BBC, is facing a multimillion-dollar class action lawsuit alleging that he introduced a culture of “deplorable discrimination” based on age, race and gender at the newspaper.

The lawsuit, filed on behalf of two black female employees in their sixties in New York on Thursday, claims that under Thompson’s leadership the US paper of record has “become an environment rife with discrimination”.

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