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Activists: Fighting, airstrikes target southern Syrian city

BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian government forces battling insurgents carried out a series of airstrikes on Wednesday on a city in southern Syria, an area named as a safe zone under a recent Russia-sponsored deal, opposition activists and an independent monitor said. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said government forces carried out at least 12 airstrikes and dropped at ... Read More »

Women CEOs earned more last year, but few were in top job

NEW YORK (AP) — Women CEOs earned big bucks last year, but there’s still very few of them running the world’s largest companies. The median pay for a female CEO was $13.1 million last year, up 9 percent from 2015, according to an analysis by executive data firm Equilar and The Associated Press. By comparison, male CEOs earned $11.4 million, ... Read More »

Ivanka Trump asks trafficked women what US can do to help

ROME (AP) — Ivanka Trump met Wednesday met with a group of African women who were trafficked into Italian prostitution rings, a private encounter said to have moved her to tears. Trump visited the Rome headquarters of the Sant’Egidio Community, a Catholic humanitarian organization that serves the poor, the elderly and migrants, after a morning visit to the Vatican. Sant’Egidio ... Read More »

Mulvaney defends Trump budget’s social safety net cuts

Mick Mulvaney

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney told lawmakers on Wednesday that President Donald Trump’s plans to slash social programs are designed to increase economic growth to 3 percent and put “taxpayers first.” Mulvaney told the House Budget Committee that he went “line by line” through the federal budget and asked “Can we justify this to the folks ... Read More »

Home sales fell in April amid supply squeeze

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans pulled back their pace of home-buying in April, as the shrinking number of houses for sale and rising prices are putting them in a bind as their options dwindle. The National Association of Realtors said Wednesday that sales of existing homes declined 2.3 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million. Still, ... Read More »

Somalia car bomb kills at least 4 in capital, police say

MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — A Somali police officer says at least four people have been killed and more than 10 injured in a car bomb blast in the capital, Mogadishu. Capt. Mohamed Hussein says the car had been parked outside a restaurant near the city’s port. There is no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast. But the al-Qaida-linked al-Shabab ... Read More »

UK investigates ‘network’ of alleged Manchester attackers

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — British security forces raided a building Wednesday in central Manchester as they investigated “a network” of people allegedly behind the city’s concert bombing. Hundreds of soldiers were sent to secure key sites across the country, including Buckingham Palace and the British Parliament at Westminster. Home Secretary Amber Rudd said the bomber, Salman Abedi, “likely” did not ... Read More »

Ryan rejects Trump’s branding of Comey as ‘nut job’

Paul Ryan

WASHINGTON (AP) — Breaking with President Donald Trump, House Speaker Paul Ryan said Wednesday he rejects Trump’s assessment that former FBI Director James Comey is a “nut job.” “Yeah, I don’t agree with that. And he’s not,” Ryan, R-Wis., told the Axios website. Ryan said he likes Comey, who was fired by Trump two weeks ago amid an FBI investigation ... Read More »

Islamic State-linked militants besiege Philippine city

ILIGAN CITY, Philippines (AP) — Islamic State group-linked militants swept through a southern Philippine city, beheading a police chief, burning buildings, seizing a Catholic priest and his worshippers and raising the black flag of IS, authorities said Wednesday. President Rodrigo Duterte, who had declared martial law across the southern third of the nation, warned he may expand it nationwide. At ... Read More »

Washington consultant charged in insider trading case

NEW YORK (AP) — A Washington consultant is among five people charged in an insider trading case stemming from secrets leaked from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Charges including conspiracy and securities fraud against consultant David Blaszczak are in an indictment unsealed Wednesday in federal court in New York City. Also charged is former CMS employee Christopher Worrall, ... Read More »