Britain's Labour party leader fires shadow foreign secretary LONDON (AP) - British Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn has fired his shadow foreign secretary amid a dispute over his leadership in the aftermath of Britain's vote to leave the European Union. Hilary Benn told the Press Association Sunday that Corbyn dismissed him after he told him he had lost confidence in his ability to lead the party. Benn said that "following the result of the EU referendum, we need strong and effective leadership of the Labour Party that is capable of winning public support." The dismissal follows claims in the Observer newspaper that Benn was plotting against Corbyn. The opposition leader has faced accusations from his own lawmakers that he led a weak campaign in Britain's EU referendum and is facing a motion of no confidence.
The Latest: Britain's Labour party in turmoil after EU vote Britain's shadow health secretary has resigned from the shadow cabinet amid a dispute over Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's leadership in the aftermath of Britain's vote to leave the European Union. The Press Association reported Heidi Alexander announced her resignation Sunday, shortly after Corbyn fired shadow foreign secretary Hilary Benn. The BBC reports that up to half of the shadow cabinet is set to resign in a bid to force Corbyn to step down. The opposition leader has faced accusations from his own lawmakers that he led a weak campaign in Britain's EU referendum and is facing a motion of no confidence.
Pope nears Armenia's closed border with Turkey on last day YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) - Pope Francis wrapped up his trip to Armenia on Sunday with an open-air liturgy and a visit to the Orthodox country's closed border with Turkey amid new tensions with Ankara over his recognition of the 1915 "genocide." Turkey issued a harsh rebuttal late Saturday to Francis' declaration that the slaughter of Armenians by Ottoman Turks a century ago was planned genocide. Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli called the comments "greatly unfortunate" and said they bore the hallmarks of the "mentality of the Crusades." Turkey rejects the term genocide, saying the 1.5 million deaths cited by historians is an inflated figure and that people died on both sides as the Ottoman Empire collapsed amid World War I.
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Death toll may rise in destructive California wildfire LAKE ISABELLA, Calif. (AP) - Lighter winds are helping firefighters make gains on a voracious and deadly wildfire in central California that has burned 150 homes and claimed two lives. The toll may rise. Firefighters may have found human remains Saturday when they began going through neighborhoods to count houses and mobile homes incinerated by the blaze. In an unrecognizable mobile home, they found what appears to be a set of human remains, but because they were so badly burned forensic investigators will have to determine whether they belonged to a person or animal, Kern County Sheriff's spokesman Ray Pruitt said.
Obama OKs federal aid for West Virginia; at least 24 dead CLENDENIN, W.Va. (AP) - Offering his condolences, President Barack Obama approved federal aid for the West Virginia communities devastated by floods that have killed at least 24 people and rendered many more homeless. Obama's signature Saturday on the federal disaster declaration lets residents in three counties get aid for temporary housing and home repairs, receive low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and qualify for other assistance for individuals and business owners. Federal money to help the state and local governments is also available on a cost-sharing basis. Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's administration still believes there are people missing in Greenbrier County, and the death toll there rose by one Saturday, said Tomblin chief of staff Chris Stadelman.
Kuwait mosque hit by IS suicide bomb reopens as fears remain KUWAIT CITY (AP) - The wood paneling bearing Quranic verses gleams inside the Imam Sadiq Mosque and the carpeting is soft underfoot for worshippers who come to pray in what is one of Kuwait's oldest Shiite mosques - and the site of the country's worst militant attack in modern history. It's been a year since an Islamic State suicide attacker, his explosives' vest hidden under traditional male white robes, interrupted prayers to shout "God is Great" in Arabic before blowing himself up. He killed at least 27 people and wounded 227 in a day of violence during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a day that also saw shootings on a Tunisian beach resort and an attack on a U.S.-owned factory in France.
Spain votes again in attempt to break government stalemate MADRID (AP) - Spaniards were heading to the polls Sunday for an unprecedented repeat election that aims to break six months of political deadlock after a December ballot left the country without an elected government. Opinion polls in recent weeks have unanimously predicted the new ballot will also fail to deliver enough votes for any one party to take power alone. That would likely consign Spain to another period of protracted political negotiations - and, possibly, another election if there is no breakthrough. Polls are prohibited in the last week of campaigning, but the most recent ones suggested the conservative Popular Party would win most votes but would again fall short of the parliamentary majority it had from 2011 to 2015.
Panama Canal opens $5B locks, bullish despite shipping woes PANAMA CITY (AP) - Authorities are hosting a big bash Sunday to inaugurate newly expanded locks that will double the Panama Canal's capacity in a multibillion-dollar bet on a bright economic future despite tough times for international shipping. Nearly two years late due to construction delays and labor strife, the $5.25 billion project formally launches with the transit of a 158-foot-wide (48.2 meters), 984-foot-long (300 meters), Chinese-owned container ship, one of the modern class of mega-vessels that will now be able to use the canal. With 30,000 people and eight foreign heads of state expected to attend the festivities, officials are bullish.
At gay pride parades, a year to weave sorrow and celebration NEW YORK (AP) - A year after New York City's jubilant pride parade celebrated a high point for gay Americans with the nationwide legalization of same-sex marriage, the atmosphere surrounding the annual march couldn't be more different. Sunday's parades in New York, San Francisco and other cities are unfolding two weeks after a gay nightclub in Florida became the site of the nation's deadliest mass shooting by a single gunman in modern U.S. history. Celebrations planned around such themes as supporting transgender people and pressing for economic justice have quickly taken on new meanings. Parade-goers will see increased security, anti-violence messages and tributes to those killed in Orlando.
Messi, Argentina face Chile in Copa America final rematch EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - Another year, another final for Lionel Messi and Argentina. They made it to the championship match at the 2014 World Cup - and lost 1-0 in extra time to Germany. They made it to the 2015 Copa America final - and lost on penalty kicks after a 0-0 draw against Chile. Two games, and no goals for Messi, or any of his teammates. Now with a special Centennial Copa America celebrating the 100th anniversary of South America's championship, La Albiceleste get a rematch against Chile on Sunday at MetLife Stadium, seeking their first major title in 23 years.