NASA astronauts begin urgent spacewalking repairs CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) - Astronauts ventured out Saturday on the first of a series of urgent repair spacewalks to revive a crippled cooling line at the International Space Station. The two Americans on the crew, Rick Mastracchio and Michael Hopkins, will need to perform two and, quite possibly, three spacewalks to replace an ammonia pump containing a bad valve.
US military aircraft hit in S. Sudan, 4 wounded NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) - Gunfire hit a U.S. military aircraft trying to evacuate American citizens in a remote region of South Sudan that on Saturday became a battle ground between the country's military and renegade troops, officials said. Four U.S. service members were wounded in the attack in the same region that gunfire downed a U.N. helicopter the day before. The U.S. military aircraft was about to land in Bor, the capital of the state of Jonglei and scene of some of the nation's worst violence over the last week, when it was hit. One American service member was reported to be in critical condition.
San Francisco transit, union leaders reach deal SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit officials and labor union leaders announced a new deal early Saturday, saying the final issue in their ongoing dispute has been resolved. The transit system and its two largest unions have been involved in months-long negotiations that stalled recently over paid medical leave time for employees.
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Gay couples wed in Utah after judge overturns ban SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Elisa Noel rushed to the county clerk's office with her partner immediately after learning that a federal judge overturned Utah's ban on gay marriage. They waited in line for a wedding license and were married in an impromptu ceremony punctuated with Noel giving the officiant a high-five. "I can't believe this is Utah," Noel said moments after a ceremony that took place about 3 miles from the headquarters of the Mormon church.
Obama focuses on a tough year's ups, not its downs WASHINGTON (AP) - Has the fifth year of his presidency been its worst? President Barack Obama laughs off such questions even as he acknowledges many months of frustrating ups and down. "That's not how I think about it," Obama told reporters during his annual end-of-the year news conference.
California girl to be kept on life support OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - A 13-year-old California girl declared brain dead after complications from a tonsillectomy should be kept on life support for the time being, a judge has ruled. The family of Jahi McMath says doctors at Children's Hospital Oakland wanted to disconnect life support after Jahi was declared brain dead on Dec. 12.
US holiday travelers brace for foul, wet weather CHICAGO (AP) - Freezing rain. Snow. Thunderstorms. Even tornadoes. Much of the nation braced for foul weather on one of the busiest travel weekends of the year, as a wet winter storm created travel worries from Chicago and Detroit to Boston and New York. Forecasters were predicting everything from freezing rain and snow in the north to torrential rain in the Ohio Valley and Appalachia and possibly even tornadoes in the South.
Memorials to mark Lockerbie attack anniversary LONDON (AP) - Bagpipes played and wreaths were laid in Scotland's town of Lockerbie Saturday, as the families of those who died in the deadly airliner bombing over the town 25 years ago gathered to remember the victims. Pan Am 103, which was bound for New York, exploded over the southern Scottish town less than an hour after takeoff from London on the evening of Dec. 21, 1988, killing 270 people either aboard the plane or on the ground. Many of the victims were American college students flying home for Christmas. The attack remains the deadliest terror attack to have taken place in Britain.
Things you didn't know about reindeer HELSINKI (AP) - Reindeer are featured on Christmas cards and in movies worldwide this time of year, galloping across the sky with Santa's sleigh in tow. But on Europe's northern fringe, the migratory mammals are part of everyday life all year round as they roam the fells of Lapland - the Arctic homeland of the indigenous Sami people of Norway, Sweden, Finland and northwest Russia.
AP's Top 10 photos of 2013 How to sum up an entire year of news in just 10 photos? The very notion is daunting when we consider that the AP's award-winning team of hundreds of staff photographers, freelancers and photo editors sends out some 3,000 photos every 24 hours - over 1 million photos a year - to our subscribers around the globe. Photo editing is, of course, a subjective process of comparison and selection. It involves aesthetics, journalism, impact and memory.