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Stars, educators lead effort for kids to see ‘Black Panther’

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — For years, Zavier Thompson has followed Marvel superhero movies. But the 16-year-old student in Albuquerque has always wanted to see a popular film with a black superhero and black themes. Thanks to an Albuquerque educator, the aspiring hip-hop and spoken word artist finally got his wish Thursday when he was given tickets …

Ex Arkansas judge faces prison term in sexual favours case

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A former Arkansas judge who’s set to be sentenced Wednesday for giving lighter sentences to male defendants in return for sexual favours had been investigated for similar crimes while a part-time prosecutor more than two decades ago, but federal prosecutors decided not to charge him because he agreed to step down, …

Leader of movement to remember Holocaust victims dies at 93

NEW YORK — Holocaust survivor Sam Bloch, who dedicated his life to preserving the memory of the victims of Nazi atrocities, has died at age 93. He died of congestive heart failure on Feb. 4 at his home in New York, said his son-in-law, Menachem Rosensaft. Bloch, who grew up in an area that was …

US: North Korea cancelled meeting with Pence at last minute

WASHINGTON — Vice-President Mike Pence was all set to hold a history-making meeting with North Korean officials during the Winter Olympics in South Korea, but Kim Jong Un’s government cancelled at the last minute, the Trump administration said Tuesday. A potential meeting between Pence and the North Koreans had been the most highly anticipated moment …

Trump urges ban on gun devices like bump stocks

WASHINGTON — As a grieving Florida community demanded action on guns, President Donald Trump on Tuesday directed the Justice Department to move to ban devices like the rapid-fire bump stocks used in last year’s Las Vegas massacre. It was a small sign of movement on the gun violence issue that has long tied Washington in …

Illinois to pick state’s ‘200 greatest’ to mark bicentennial

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Illinois residents are invited to help choose the 200 greatest people, place and things in state history as part of Illinois’ bicentennial celebration. The public will get to cast votes online for a new category every two weeks. By early December voters will have selected 10 favourites in 20 categories. Voting opened …

Police arrest Vegas man suspected in attacks on homeless men

LAS VEGAS — The man suspected of fatally shooting two homeless men in Las Vegas, wounding a third and shooting a fourth north of the city earlier this year is now in federal custody, authorities announced Tuesday. Police identified the suspect for the first time as Las Vegas resident Joshua Castellon. He was arrested Friday …

Japan sees transfer at sea that may violate NKorea sanctions

TOKYO — Japan’s military has witnessed a ship-to-ship transfer on the high seas that it “strongly suspects” violates U.N. sanctions on North Korea, in the third such incident reported by Japan in the past month. A maritime Self-Defence Force PC-3 surveillance plane and an escort ship saw a North Korean-flagged tanker alongside a smaller ship …

Australia resettles Cambodian activist’s family as refugees

CANBERRA, Australia — Australia continued to work effectively with Cambodia, an Australian minister said on Wednesday after news that a murdered Cambodian political activist’s family had been accepted as refugees. Kem Ley’s wife and five children arrived in the Australian city of Melbourne from Thailand on Saturday, state officials said on Tuesday. Kem Ley was …

Vatican investigator meets with Chilean sex abuse victims

SANTIAGO, Chile — The Vatican’s sex abuse investigator on Tuesday began a series of meetings in Chile with victims and others who have opposed the appointment of a bishop accused of covering up for the country’s most notorious pedophile priest. Pope Francis has strongly backed Bishop Juan Barros, who is accused by victims of witnessing …

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