U.S. President Barack Obama's call for an end to the economic embargo against Cuba drew resistance from the Republicans. File photo
U.S. President Barack Obama's call for an end to the economic embargo against Cuba drew resistance from the Republicans. File photo

U.S., Cuba restore ties after 50 years

President Barack Obama calls for an end to the long economic embargo against its old Cold War enemy »
In this Nov. 27, 2012, file photo provided by U.S. lawyer James L. Berenthal, jailed American Alan Gross poses for a photo during a visit by Rabbi Elie Abadie and Berenthal at the Finlay military hospital as he serves a prison sentence in Havana, Cuba. Alan Gross was released on Wednesday after 5 years in prison.

Alan Gross released from Cuban prison

As part of the secret negotiations to secure his release, the U.S. was releasing three Cubans jailed in Florida for spying. »
Obama signs bill $1.1 trillion government spending bill

Obama signs $1.1 trillion government spending bill

U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday signed a $1.1 trillion spending bill passed by Congress last week that lifted the threat of a government shutdown. »
BOSTON, December 17, 2014

NY premiere of ‘Kim assassination film’ cancelled

The New York premiere of The Interview, a Sony Pictures comedy about the assassination of North Korean President Kim Jong-un, has been cancelled and a source said one theatre chain had scra... »
MOSCOW, December 17, 2014

Russian rouble firms, but remains volatile

Russia’s rouble strengthened on Wednesday after dramatic falls against the dollar in the previous two days, but remained extremely volatile and fears of a prolonged crisis remained. The r... »
A group of tango dancers hold a banner reading in Italian 'A tango for Pope Francis', as they wait for the pontiff's weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican on Wednesday.
VATICAN CITY, December 17, 2014

Pope gets cake, tango, chicken for birthday

Pope Francis is being treated to a cake, cards and a tango demonstration for his 78th birthday and 800 kilograms of chicken meat for the poor. The Vatican said Wednesday the meat... »
Kabul/Islamabad, December 17, 2014

Terrorists using Afghan soil against us: Pakistan army chief

Pakistani Army Chief General Raheel Sharif Wednesday said terrorists were using Afghan soil to carry out attacks in Pakistan, media reported.General Sharif, who went to Kabul Wednesday after... »    
Pope Francis blows candles on a birthday cake on the occasion of his 78th birthday as he arrives for his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino
Vatican City, December 17, 2014

Pope Francis celebrates 78th birthday

Pope Francis turned 78 Wednesday and although there was no planned celebration, he will receive congratulations from the public gathered at the weekly general audience held in St. Peter’s Square.... »
Paris, December 17, 2014

France dismantles 13 French jihadi networks

France’s top security official says the country has dismantled 13 jihadi networks recruiting young people for fighting in Syria since fall 2013, but the number of departures keeps growing. <... »
Istanbul, December 17, 2014

Tourist dies in Turkey hot air balloon accident

Turkish news agencies say a hot air balloon fell in the popular tourist region of Cappadocia, killing one person and injuring five. State—run Anadolu Agency says the balloon took off Wed... »
Floral tributes and personal notes written by members of the New South Wales police force are left on a fence near the site of the Sydney cafe siege in Martin Place, on Wednesday. Australia ordred a sweeping probe after tough new national security laws failed to prevent a deadly hostage crisis in the heart of Sydney this week.
SYDNEY, December 17, 2014

Australia orders sweeping probe after system fails hostages

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Wednesday ordered a sweeping investigation into Monday’s deadly hostage crisis after tough new security laws and the courts failed to stop a convicted felo... »
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott
SYDNEY, December 17, 2014

System failed to track Sydney gunman: Abbott

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott acknowledged Wednesday that the nation’s security system failed to keep track of a gunman responsible for a deadly siege at a Sydney cafe, and promised a tran... »
PESHAWAR, December 17, 2014

Ghastly act of cowardice, says Pakistan Army chief

Pakistan Army’s chief General Raheel Sharif called the attack a “ghastly act of cowardice” and said the militants have hit at the heart of the nation. “But let me reiterate they can’t in... »

Chandrika Kumaratunga fears skulduggery on election day

Sydney siege victims lauded for courage, kindness

Failed London subway bombers lose appeal bid

7 terror suspects held in Spain, Morocco

British Embassy in Cairo reopens to public

The spectre of hunger in Britain

Abbott pays homage to Sydney siege victims

Australia foreign office building evacuated over suspicious package

India third on black money list: report

Upturned chairs and blood stains on the floor of the Army Public School
auditorium on Wednesday, the day after Taliban gunmen stormed the school in
RAWALPINDI, December 17, 2014

Pakistan’s political, military leadership rush to act

Lying on cots under the open skies, young boys in Peshawar donated so much blood for those injured and fighting for their lives after Tuesday’s school attack that hospitals ran out of storage spac... »    
Peshawar, December 17, 2014

Kept away from school by a faulty alarm clock

A faulty alarm clock has saved the life of a 15-year-old boy who failed to wake up in time for school, becoming the only student in class IX of the army-run school where Taliban suicide bombers ma... »  
Libby Lane pauses as she delivers a speech in the Stockport Town Hall, after the announcement by the Church of England that she will be appointed as the first female bishop, in Stockport, England, Wednesday Dec. 17, 2014. File photo
London, December 17, 2014

Church of England announces first female bishop

The first female bishop in the Church of England was announced Wednesday, ending the history of only a male being the bishop of the church.Downing Street announced Wednesday that Rev. Libby... »
“The small irritations or indignities that we experience are nothing compared to what a previous generation experienced,” U.S. President Barack Obama said about racism in an interview to People magazine.
Washington, December 17, 2014

As a black man, have been mistaken for valet: Obama

He may be President now, but Barack Obama says he’s a black man who has been mistaken for the valet. “There’s no black male my age, who’s a professional, who hasn’t come out of a restaur... »
RAMALLAH, West Bank, December 17, 2014

Palestinians to submit draft for UN vote

An Arab—backed draft resolution on ending Israel’s occupation of lands captured in 1967 is to be submitted later Wednesday to the U.N. Security Council for a vote, the Palestinian foreign ministe... »
BRUSSELS, December 17, 2014

EU court takes Hamas off terrorist list

A European Union court on Wednesday ordered the Palestinian group Hamas removed from the EU terrorist list for procedural reasons, but says the bloc can maintain asset freezes against Hamas mem... »

Washington, December 17, 2014

Whales may ‘sing’ for their supper

Humpback whales make “tick-tock” noises while hunting together at night in deep, pitch-black water which help draw their prey — eel-like fish — out of hiding, a new study has found. Susan... »
Relatives of a school student who was killed during an attack by Taliban gunmen on the Army Public School, mourn at his house in Peshawar on December 16, 2014.
December 17, 2014

World condemns Peshawar school massacre

Leaders across the world including eminent personalities on Wednesday condemned the Tuesday’s deadly Taliban attack on a military-run school in Peshawar. Reactions from around the world.... »    
CINCINNATI, December 17, 2014

Family files lawsuit over fatal shooting at Ohio Wal-Mart

The family of a black man fatally shot by a white police officer as he held an air rifle inside a Wal-Mart filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday charging negligence and violation of the man’s civil righ... »
People carry the casket of a victim of Taliban attack in a school, after receiving it from a local hospital in Peshawar.
RAWALPINDI, December 17, 2014

Proud Pakhtuns stand defiant in moment of crisis

At a time when Pakistanis thought they had no more tears left to shed, the whole nation from Khyber to Karachi was united in grief, the enormity of this act of terror too big for people to compreh... »    

‘No devolution possible under Rajapaksa’

First batch of Indian railway officers begin training in Beijing

New Silk Road needs SCO security cover, says China

'Deluded' Sydney hostage-taker saw himself as a martyr

Robin Williams' suicide seizes the year on Google

Sydney Siege: 17 hours of horror

Sydney cafe gunman had long history of violent crime: Abbott

Threat leads to partial closure of Zurich airport