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Gunmen attack Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel, take hostages, deaths reported

Gunmen attack International hotel in KabulA group of as many as four gunmen attacked the Intercontinental Hotel in the Afghan capital Kabul on Saturday night, seizing hostages and exchanging gunfire with security forces as the building caught fire and residents and staff fled.

Hotel manager Ahmad Haris Nayab, who managed to escape unhurt, said the attackers had got into the main part of the hotel through a kitchen and people fled amid bursts of gunfire on all sides.


China rebukes U.S. military for alleged close encounter in South China Sea

hina rebukes US for close encounter at sea The Chinese Ministry of Defense said the United States violated their nation's sovereignty when the USS Hopper reportedly maneuvered near a Chinese island in the South China Sea this week.

While speaking Saturday, ministry spokesman Wu Qian warned the U.S. against causing "trouble out of nothing." Wu said a Chinese missile destroyer had to drive off the USS Hopper, a U.S. guided missile destroyer, after the ship ventured near Huangyan Island, which is near the western coast of the Philippines.


Pope accuses sex abuse victims of slander during South America trip

Pope accuses vitims of slander Pope Francis incited anger in Chile after accusing sexual abuse victims of slandering a bishop as he continued his visit to several South America countries.

Francis said there was no evidence against Bishop Juan Barros Madrid, who accusers say protected pedophile priest Rev. Fernando Karadima and was therefore complicit in his crimes.


3 dead as monstrous winds lash Europe, creating travel nightmare

Deadly wind storms hit Europe

Deadly storms driven by 90-mph wind gusts threw transportation across much of northern Europe into chaos Thursday, canceling hundreds of flights, shutting down rail lines and bringing havoc to roads and highways.

Two deaths in the Netherlands and one in Belgium were blamed on the storm.

Dutch broadcaster NOS posted frightening videos of a massive tree crashing down in the wind, barely missing a woman with a stroller. Other videos showed a construction trailer blowing over after a man stepped into it; a multiple-story sign blowing over, people tumbling in the wind through a town square; and bicycle commuters being blown away while waiting for lights to change at intersections.


Tillerson denies US plans to form Syria border force

Tillerson denies US plans to form Syruan wall

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that Washington owed Turkey an explanation over reports that it was creating a 30,000-strong border force in northern Syria, adding that the issue has been "misportrayed".

"That entire situation has been misportrayed, misdescribed, some people misspoke. We are not creating a border security force at all," Tillerson told reporters on his way back from giving a speech at Stanford University in California on Wednesday.


North and South Korea to field joint ice hockey team

North and South Korea to field joint hockey team

North and South Korea have agreed to form their first-ever joint Olympics team and march together under a "unification flag" at the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Games next month.

The breakthrough on Wednesday follows a year of escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula, amid several missile launches and a purported test of a hydrogen bomb by the North.

The two countries will field a single women's ice hockey Olympics team, South Korea's Yonhap news agency saidquoting a joint statement by officials from both countries.


Dolores O'Riordan of The Cranberries dies at age 46

Dolores Oriordan dies at 46Dolores O'Riordan, the lead singer of the Irish band The Cranberries, died in London on Monday, according to a statement from her publicist.

O'Riordan, who was 46, died "suddenly" according to the statement, but no details were given on the cause of her death.
The singer was in London for a short recording session, the statement added.
The Cranberries rose to global fame in the mid-1990s with a string of hits, including "Linger," "Zombie" and "Dreams." The group, from Limerick, has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide.

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