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Jul 25 2011

Evening Edition

Evening Edition is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 Norway carnage suspect admits responsibility

By Pierre-Henry Deshayes and Charles Onians, AFP

19 hrs ago

The suspect in Norway’s twin attacks that killed at least 92 people admitted responsibility and said the carnage was long planned as the nation mourned victims of its worst violence since World War II.

Anders Behring Breivik, 32, was arrested for allegedly shooting at least 85 people dead at a youth Labour Party meeting on an island and killing seven more in a car bomb explosion which ripped through government buildings in Oslo.

“He admitted responsibility,” Behring Breivik’s lawyer Geir Lippestad told Norway’s NRK television channel. While there was no official confirmation of the man’s identity, he was widely named as Anders Behring Breivik by local media.

2 Focus on Islamists let other extremists go under radar

By Rita Devlin Marier, AFP

4 hrs ago

Security services in Norway and elsewhere in the region had recently shifted their focus to Islamist extremism, letting other forms of terror slip under the radar, experts said.

While there had been initial fears that Friday’s twin attacks might have been an act of revenge for Norway’s participation in the campaigns in Afghanistan and Libya, everything changed when it emerged the suspect was a native Norwegian.

Named by media as Anders Behring Breivik, the alleged killer has been described by police as a “fundamentalist Christian” whose political opinions leaned “to the right.” He had also been a member of the populist right-wing Progress Party (FrP) and was a member of a Swedish neo-Nazi Internet forum.

3 Euro debt deal brings relief, but dangers lurk

By Laurent Thomet, AFP

16 hrs ago

The ambitious steps taken by eurozone leaders pulled the euro from the brink of disaster, but dangers lurk before they can declare victory against the debt crisis.

The sweeping measures bring the 17-nation eurozone closer to the type of federal fiscal union that markets have demanded but that some nations, notably Germany, have resisted, analysts say.

Markets gave an initial thumbs up to the battleplan agreed at a summit Thursday: a new massive bailout for Greece, improved loan terms for bailed out nations and an overhaul of a crisis fund to react faster to crises.

4 Aid reaches drought-ravaged Somalia

AFP

5 hrs ago

The International Red Cross said Sunday it had handed out 400 tonnes of food in drought-hit parts of rebel-held southern Somalia as the UN prepares to host emergency talks on the crisis in the region.

“The distribution look place in the Bardera district and passed without incident, with the knowledge of the authorities and the recipients,” ICRC spokesman Yves Van Loo told AFP in Nairobi.

It is the first ICRC-led food drop direct to locals in Shebab-controlled zones since 2009, he said, adding that further food drops will take place in the coming days.

5 Hundreds of gay couples marry in New York

By Mariano Andrade, AFP

1 hr 40 mins ago

Hundreds of gay and lesbian couples excitedly became the first to tie the knot Sunday as a New York state law took effect and was hailed as a milestone toward legalizing gay marriage nationwide.

“We are not any more second-class citizens in the State of New York,” said Yolanda Potasinski, 55, who stood in line before sunrise with partner Nancy Mertzel, a 48-year-old lawyer, to exchange vows in Manhattan on the first day of the law legalizing same-sex marriage.

“There’s still work to do in the rest of the country,” she admitted, as the two who have lived together for 18 years were among 823 couples in New York City to say “I do.”

6 US rushes to avert disastrous default

By Olivier Knox, AFP

34 mins ago

The White House and top US lawmakers scrambled Sunday for a deal to stop the world’s richest country from ruinous default on its debt, hours before Asian financial markets opened.

President Barack Obama planned to meet with his top Democratic allies in Congress, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, at 6:00 pm (2200 GMT) with jittery world markets eyeing Washington for signs of a breakthrough.

While Republican House Speaker John Boehner was not going to be part of the talks, he spoke by telephone with Obama during the day, said his spokesman, Michael Steel.

7 Watching the debate, US markets show no panic yet

By Charlotte Raab, AFP

1 hr 29 mins ago

Market experts are closely following the US debt ceiling talks, but they appear more worried about the economic impact of failure to reach an accord rather than a dramatic slide in the stock market.

Still, it is the fear of a dramatically lower stock market opening Monday that has helped propel congressional leaders and the White House to try to finish hammering out a long-term deficit reduction plan this weekend.

Market analysts told AFP that while the markets might be nervous, they are hardly on the verge of panic, just 10 days before an August 2 deadline for the United States to default on its debt.

8 Evans seals historic Tour de France for Australia

By Justin Davis, AFP

4 hrs ago

Cadel Evans sealed an historic first Tour de France victory for his native Australia after the 21st and final stage of the epic race on Sunday.

Britain’s Mark Cavendish, of HTC-Highroad, took his third consecutive stage win on the Champs Elysees where Evans, who rides for BMC, maintained his lead of 1min 34sec over Andy Schleck of Luxembourg who rides for Leopard.

In third place was Frank Schleck, 31, who finished 2:30 behind to make sure the Schlecks make history as the first brothers on the race podium.

9 Norway mourns victims of anti-Islam "Crusader"

By Victoria Klesty and Gwladys Fouche, Reuters

2 hrs 51 mins ago

SUNDVOLLEN, Norway (Reuters) – Norway mourned on Sunday 93 people killed in a shooting spree and car bombing by a Norwegian who saw his attacks as “atrocious, but necessary” to defeat liberal immigration policies and the spread of Islam.

In his first comment via a lawyer since his arrest, Anders Behring Breivik, 32, said he wanted to explain himself at a court hearing on Monday about extending his custody.

In a rambling manifesto before the attacks, Breivik said he was part of a crusade to fight a tide of Islam.

10 Norway rescuer shot at making life or death choice

By Victoria Klesty and Gwladys Fouche, Reuters

4 hrs ago

UTVIKA, Norway (Reuters) – Otto Loevik had to decide who to pick up on his boat and who to leave behind as he came under fire trying to rescue teenagers fleeing a massacre in which 86 were killed by a far-right Norwegian gunman.

“He remembers the faces of the youths he left behind,” Loevik’s wife, Wenche, told Reuters.

He rescued some 40 to 50 terrified youths fleeing Anders Behring Breivik’s killing spree on Utoeya island. He came under fire himself and saw the bodies of dead youths floating in the water, his wife said.

11 New York state celebrates first same-sex marriages

By Basil Katz and Neale Gulley, Reuters

1 hr 49 mins ago

NEW YORK/NIAGARA FALLS, New York (Reuters) – Wedding fever hit New York on Sunday, as hundreds of gay and lesbian couples lined up to be married on the first day that same-sex marriage was legal in the state.

In western New York, two grandmothers became the state’s first legally wed same-sex couple, one month after Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a law making New York the nation’s sixth, and largest, state to allow gay marriage.

Kitty Lambert, 54, and Cheryle Rudd, 53, from Buffalo, New York, were married just after midnight at Niagara Falls’ State Park’s Luna Island, with the traditional honeymoon capital Niagara Falls as a backdrop.

12 China sacks 3 senior officials after train crash

By Royston Chan and Maxim Duncan, Reuters

4 hrs ago

WENZHOU, China (Reuters) – China sacked three senior railway officials Sunday after a collision between two high-speed trains killed at least 35 people and raised new questions about the safety of the fast-growing rail network.

A bullet train Saturday night hit another express which lost power following a lightning strike, state media said, in the country’s deadliest rail disaster since 2008.

The power failure knocked out an electronic safety system designed to alert trains about stalled locomotives on the line.

13 U.S. airlines fight prospect of higher security fees

By John Crawley, Reuters

3 hrs ago

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. airlines are fighting the prospect of sharply higher passenger security fees that could be part of any deficit-reduction plan.

The approach is among a handful involving aviation that have swirled around the ever-changing complexion of efforts by Congress and the White House to avert a debt default.

While those proposals would cover only a fraction of any deficit remedy, they represent flashpoints in relations between industry and government over aviation policy.

14 Analysis: Companies churn out profits but jobs don’t follow

By Steven C. Johnson, Reuters

39 mins ago

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The sluggish pace of hiring may be hobbling the economy, but it’s not been holding back big U.S. companies’ profits thanks to growth overseas and cost controls at home. And that’s bad news for the more than 14 million Americans without jobs.

Big businesses would normally be desperate for surging job growth as it would feed into domestic demand but these aren’t normal times. Massive growth opportunities overseas, especially in China and other buoyant Asian economies, have some of the largest American companies on track for record profits, even if they’re businesses are mostly treading water in the U.S.

The message last week from the chief financial officer of one of the nation’s industrial giants couldn’t be clearer.

15 Officials scramble for debt deal, markets on edge

By Caren Bohan and Richard Cowan, Reuters

20 mins ago

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – White House officials and Republican leaders scrambled on Sunday to reassure global markets the United States would avert a debt default, but the two sides gave no sign they were moving closer to a deal.

White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley warned that there would be a “few stressful days” ahead for financial markets, with the deadline to lift the $14.3 trillion U.S. borrowing limit now only nine days away.

Daley, appearing on the CBS television program “Face the Nation, quickly added: “In the end there’s no question in my mind the government of America will not default.”

16 Norway suspect wanted European anti-Muslim crusade

By BJOERN AMLAND, SARAH DiLORENZO, Associated Press

43 mins ago

OSLO, Norway (AP) – The man blamed for killing at least 93 people during terrorist attacks on Norway’s government headquarters and an island retreat for young people wanted to trigger an anti-Muslim revolution in Norwegian society, his lawyer said Sunday.

A chief surgeon treating the wounded from Friday’s mass shooting, meanwhile, said he believes the attacker used special “dum-dum” bullets that cause massive internal injuries. The doctor told The Associated Press that the killer’s chosen ammo “exploded inside the body.”

The manifesto that 32-year-old suspect Anders Behring Breivik published online ranted against Muslim immigration to Europe and vowed revenge on those “indigenous Europeans” whom he deemed had betrayed their heritage. The document said they would be punished for their “treasonous acts.”

17 Couples wed on 1st day gay marriage is legal in NY

By CHRIS HAWLEY, Associated Press

23 mins ago

NEW YORK (AP) – Hundreds of gay couples dressed in formal suits and striped trousers, gowns and T-shirts recited vows in emotion-choked voices and triumphantly hoisted their long-awaited marriage certificates on Sunday as New York became the sixth and largest state to recognize same-sex weddings.

Couples began saying “I do” at midnight from Niagara Falls to Long Island, though New York City became the sometimes raucous center of action by daybreak Sunday as couples waited on a sweltering day for the chance to exchange vows at the city clerk’s office.

Thousands of protesters rallied in several cities around the state, a signal that the long fight for recognition may not be over just yet.

18 Boehner: GOP ready to act alone on debt deal

By BEN FELLER, DAVID ESPO, Associated Press

24 mins ago

WASHINGTON (AP) – With bipartisan debt-limit talks deadlocked, House Republicans and Senate Democrats readied rival emergency fallback plans Sunday in hopes of reassuring world financial markets the U.S. government will avoid an unprecedented default.

Republicans said Speaker John Boehner had legislation under consideration to raise the nation’s debt limit by $1 trillion and enact slightly more in federal spending cuts, with the promise of additional progress on both sides of the ledger if Congress can agree.

Across the Capitol, Democratic officials said Majority Leader Harry Reid was at work on legislation to raise the government’s debt limit by $2.4 trillion – enough to assure no recurrence of the current crisis until 2013 – and reduce spending by slightly more. They said that plan envisioned no higher taxes.

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