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Tuesday, May 26th

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Mexico Gunfight Kills At Least 43, As Government Hits Jalisco Cartel Suspects Hard

Mexico gunfightGovernment security forces killed 42 suspected drug cartel henchmen and suffered one fatality in a firefight in western Mexico on Friday, an official said, one of the bloodiest shootouts in a decade of gang violence wracking the country.

National Security Commissioner Monte Alejandro Rubido said one federal policeman died and another was injured in the three hour battle on a ranch just inside the Michoacan state border with Jalisco, home of Guadalajara, Mexico's second-biggest city.

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BlackBerry cuts jobs worldwide as it consolidates businesses

Blackberry cutting jobs worldwideCanadian smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd is cutting jobs across the world, the company said on Friday, as it consolidates its software, hardware and applications business.

The company did not specify how many employees would be affected.  BlackBerry, which reported a 16.8 percent fall in quarterly revenue in March, had about 6,225 full-time employees as of Feb. 2015, according to its website.

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Vandals damage California dam, release 50 million gallons of water

inflatable dam vandalizedVandals damaged an inflatable dam holding back some 50 million gallons of drinking water, releasing enough water to serve 500 families for an entire year.

Police said the vandals entered a restricted area to damage the thick, rubber dam that was constructed in 1971. Police have no suspects or reasons for the damage. Repairs are expected to cost $3 million.

The vandalism comes as California struggles with a severe drought and is under unprecedented water restrictions.

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Ohio patrolman acquitted in 2 deaths amid 137-shot barrage

Ohio patrolman acquittedA patrolman charged in the shooting deaths of two unarmed suspects during a 137-shot barrage of gunfire was acquitted Saturday in a case that helped prompt the U.S. Department of Justice determine the city police department had a history of using excessive force and violating civil rights.

Michael Brelo, 31, faced as many as 22 years in prison had the judge convicted him on two counts of voluntary manslaughter. Before issuing his verdict, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge John P. O'Donnell said he would not "sacrifice" Brelo if the evidence did not merit a conviction.

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Ireland votes to legalize gay marriage, both sides say

Ireland gay marriage voteIrish voters have resoundingly backed amending the constitution to legalize gay marriage, leaders on both sides of the Irish referendum declared Saturday after the world’s first national vote on the issue.

As the official ballot counting continued, the only question appeared to be how large the “yes” margin of victory from Friday’s vote would be. Analysts said the “yes” support was likely to exceed 60 percent nationally when official results are announced later Saturday.

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U.S. oil platform catches fire in Gulf of Mexico

oil rig fireA small offshore oil platform caught fire in shallow water near the coast of Louisiana on Friday and an oil sheen was seen in the sea after workers were evacuated, officials said.

The fire was still burning at midday Friday with response vessels on site. It was unclear how much oil had leaked, but the Coast Guard said it had seen a 1.4 nautical mile "rainbow sheen" drifting southwest of the platform.

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Judge may rule to end detention of families seeking asylum in US

Asylum seekers detainedA court ruling is expected in the coming days after a group of immigrant families sued the U.S. government over its detention of women asylum-seekers and their children.

Thousands of undocumented women and children from Central America arrived in the United States last year in an attempt to escape rising violence in countries including El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras — which have some of the world’s highest homicide rates and face rising gang violence.

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Tobacco firms get partial win over claims on smoking effects

Tobacco adAmerica's largest tobacco companies must inform consumers that cigarettes were designed to increase addiction, but not that they lied to the public about the dangers of smoking, a federal appeals court ruled on Friday.

The ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is a partial win for cigarette makers in the long-running legal fight that began in the Clinton administration in 1999. In this latest round, the companies objected to running court-ordered advertisements that would have branded themselves as liars.

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All Las Vegas freeway ramps reopen after 5.3-magnitude earthquake

Las Vegas earthquakeAll Las Vegas freeway ramps have reopened after a 5.3 magnitude earthquake hit about 125 miles north near Caliente, where the temblor rattled windows and dishes.

The quake, which struck at 11:47 a.m. today, was centered about 24 miles south-southwest of Caliente in Lincoln County but was felt across the Las Vegas Valley.

The freeway transition ramp from southbound U.S. 95 to southbound Interstate 15 near downtown Las Vegas was closed after the quake, as was the ramp from U.S. 95 southbound to I-15 northbound and the Martin Luther King on-ramp to southbound I-15, according to the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada. Officials announced at about 5 p.m. that all the ramps were open.

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