Member Login
The Daily Courier
 
News from the Associated Press
AP Top News at 6:45 p.m. EDT

Amid Russia warning, Ukraine is in a security bind
DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) - Russia's foreign minister warned Wednesday that attacks on Russian citizens or interests in Ukraine would bring a firm response and drew a comparison to the circumstances that opened the war with Georgia in 2008. "Russian citizens being attacked is an attack against the Russian Federation," Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said, a day after Ukraine announced it was re-launching a campaign against pro-Kremlin insurgents occupying government facilities in the mostly Russian-speaking east.


Syrian activists accuse Assad of new gas attacks
BEIRUT (AP) - Syrian government forces have attacked rebel-held areas with poisonous chlorine gas in recent weeks and months, leaving men, women and children coughing, choking and gasping for breath, according to Associated Press interviews with more than a dozen activists, medics and residents on the opposition side. Syria flatly denied the allegations, and they have yet to be confirmed by any foreign country or international organization. But if true, they highlight the limitations of the global effort to rid President Bashar Assad's government of its chemical weapons.


Party a century in the making for Wrigley Field
CHICAGO (AP) - There was a giant replica cake right next to the Ernie Banks statue, and an old-time band played as fans made their way through the main entrance. The famed marquee had a message, too.


Watch Top News Video




US weighs clemency for inmates jailed for 10 years
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration is encouraging many nonviolent federal prisoners to apply for early release - and expecting thousands to take up the offer. It's an effort to deal with high costs and overcrowding in prisons, and also a matter of fairness, the government says. On Wednesday, the Justice Department unveiled a revamped clemency process directed primarily at low-level felons imprisoned for at least 10 years who have clean records while in custody. The effort is part of a broader administration push to scale back harsh penalties in some drug-related prosecutions and to address sentencing disparities arising from the 1980s crack cocaine epidemic that yielded disproportionately tough punishment for black drug offenders.


Russian social media CEO quits, flees country
MOSCOW (AP) - The founder of Russia's leading social media network - a wunderkind often described as Russia's Mark Zuckerberg - has left his post as CEO and fled the country as cronies of President Vladimir Putin have made steady inroads into the company's ownership. The slow-motion ouster of Pavel Durov from the network known as VKontakte, or "In Contact," is the latest sign that independent media outlets in Russia have become increasingly imperiled.


Gun carry rights expanded in Ga. under new law
ELLIJAY, Ga. (AP) - Criticized by one group as the "guns everywhere" bill, Georgia took a big step Wednesday toward expanding where licensed carriers can take their weapons, with the governor signing a law that allows them in bars without restriction and in some churches, schools and government buildings under certain circumstances. Following mass shootings in recent years, some states have pursued stronger limits on guns while others like Georgia have taken the opposite path, with advocates arguing that people should be allowed to carry weapons as an issue of public safety. Republicans control large majorities in the Georgia General Assembly, and the bill passed overwhelming despite objections from some religious leaders and local government officials.


Facebook 1Q results soar; CFO to step down
NEW YORK (AP) - Facebook's earnings nearly tripled and revenue grew sharply in the first quarter, surpassing Wall Street's expectations thanks to an 82 percent increase in advertising revenue. It was the fourth quarter in a row that Facebook beat forecasts as it continues to barrel ahead in mobile advertising at a time when nearly 80 percent of its users are accessing it on smartphones and other portable gadgets.


Wellness programs grow more popular with employers
That little voice nagging you to put down the cake and lace up the running shoes is increasingly coming from your employer and is likely to grow louder with a looming change under the federal health care overhaul. More companies are starting or expanding wellness programs that aim to reduce their medical costs by improving their employees' health. They're asking workers to take physical exams, complete detailed health assessments and focus on controlling conditions such as diabetes. Along with that, many companies also are dangling the threat of higher monthly insurance premiums to prod workers into action.


Soldier convicted in WikiLeaks case gets new name
LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (AP) - An Army private convicted of providing classified documents to WikiLeaks won an initial victory Wednesday toward living as a woman when a Kansas judge granted a petition to change her name to Chelsea Elizabeth Manning. The decision clears the way for official changes to Manning's military records, but does not compel the military to treat the soldier previously known as Bradley Edward Manning as a woman.


Gacy probe helps solve unrelated Chicago-area case
MAYWOOD, Ill. (AP) - Ruth Rodriguez didn't want to believe her brother was one of more than 30 young men and boys John Wayne Gacy lured into his Chicago-area house and strangled, but she was willing to provide her DNA to find out. She and her father gave authorities samples as part of an effort to identify eight of Gacy's victims more than two years ago and learned none of the remains were those of her sibling, 22-year-old Edward Beaudion who went missing in 1978.