News

Memos from Egypt's Interior Ministry leaked to journalists

CAIRO (AP) -- Memos from Egypt's Interior Ministry that were leaked to the media on Tuesday outline strategies for deflecting public outrage over recent arrests and suggest a gag order on the case of an Italian student abducted and killed in Cairo. Documents headlined as a normal news roundup were sent to reporters from the ministry's official email account, but inside were memos apparently written for internal consumption.

Attacks on Hospitals Are 'War Crimes,' UN Chief Says

(NEW YORK) -- Deliberate attacks on hospitals amount to "war crimes," UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said Tuesday just hours after a hospital was targeted in the Syrian city of Aleppo. "Let us be clear: Intentional and direct attacks on hospitals are war crimes. Denying people access to essential health care is a serious violation of international humanitarian law," Ban said in a speech to the UN Security Council in New York.

Chicago: Students can access bathrooms by gender identity

CHICAGO (AP) -- Chicago Public Schools will allow transgender students and employees to use bathrooms and locker rooms corresponding to their gender identities, according to guidelines released Tuesday by the nation's third-largest school district. The policy, which also applies to "gender non-conforming students," covers all education opportunities, including overnight field trips, and allows for alternative arrangements if requested, such as a single-stall restroom or separate changing schedule.

Appeals Court orders new sentencing for 16-year-old

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The N.C. Court of Appeals has ruled that a 16-year-old sentenced to life in prison without parole for murder will get a new sentencing hearing because the trial court judge didn't sufficiently explain the absence or presence of mitigating factors. In a unanimous ruling issued Tuesday, the court ordered a new trial for 16-year-old Harry Sharod James, who was indicted in June 2006 and convicted four years later.

3 Red Cross employees abducted in eastern Congo

KINSHASA, Congo (AP) -- Three employees of the International Committee of the Red Cross have been abducted in eastern Congo. The organization's Director of Operations Dominik Stillhart said Tuesday on Twitter it is doing everything it can to bring its staff back safely. The Congo-based Center of Study for the Promotion of Peace, Democracy and Human Rights said the three were working as drivers for the Red Cross.

Tampa Bay Times purchases main competitor, the Tampa Tribune

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Florida's largest newspaper, The Tampa Bay Times, said Tuesday it has purchased its main competitor, the Tampa Tribune, ending a decades-long newspaper rivalry. Times chairman and CEO Paul Tash said he intends to create one financially secure, locally owned daily newspaper in the Tampa Bay region. Tash did not disclose the purchase price. "The continued competition between the newspapers was threatening to both," Tash said in a statement.

Officials: Candles possible cause of NYC church fire

NEW YORK (AP) -- Fire department officials say the cause of a blaze that destroyed a historic New York City church is under investigation but it could have been candles. The Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of St. Sava (SAH'-vah) burned on Sunday, the same day Orthodox Christians around the world celebrated Easter.

Ex-49er Stubblefield denies sexually assaulting woman

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -- A former San Francisco 49er defensive lineman charged with raping a "developmentally delayed" woman denied the charges Tuesday, saying the episode was a consensual encounter with a mentally competent woman who asked for money and a job afterward. Dana Stubblefield is accused of raping the woman in his home in Morgan Hill, California, south of San Jose.

The Latest: Senators back order for opioid overdose fighter

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The Latest on a North Carolina state Senate committee debating a bill that would create a statewide standing order for a drug that cold block opioid overdoses (all times local): 3:10 p.m. North Carolina's health director says a statewide standing prescription for a drug that can block potentially fatal overdoses of heroin or OxyContin could save scores of additional lives annually. Dr.

'Blues Brothers' cartoon show tuning up for a television gig

NEW YORK (AP) -- "The Blues Brothers" could be coming to TV as a prime-time animated comedy series. Bento Box Entertainment Tuesday announced the project, co-created by executive producers Dan Aykroyd, former "Saturday Night Live" writer Anne Beatts and Judy Belushi, widow of Blues Brothers co-founder John Belushi.

Water Scarcity Can Lower GDP by 6% in Some Regions, Report Warns

(NEW YORK) -- Lack of water is not only a health issue for many regions of the world, it can have a huge economic impact, even lowering GDP by as much as 6 percent, according to a report issued Tuesday by the World Bank. Factors like growing populations and climate change could reduce water availability in cities by as much as two-thirds by 2050, compared to 2015 levels, according to the report.

Cate Blanchett Named UN Goodwill Ambassador

(NEW YORK) -- Cate Blanchett has been named a global goodwill ambassador for the United Nations' refugee agency. "I am deeply proud to take on this role," the Oscar winner said in a  video interview  shared by the UNHCR on Monday. "There has never been a more crucial time to stand with refugees and show solidarity." The two-time Oscar-winning actress recently returned from a mission to Jordan to meet with Syrian refugee families.

Report: Kerry Washington Is Pregnant with Second Child

(NEW YORK) -- Is the woman who portrays D.C.'s favorite fixer, fixing to expand her family? Actress Kerry Washington reportedly is pregnant again. According to E! News , sources say that the Emmy-nominated actress is expecting her second child with husband, former football player Nnamdi Asomugha. "The actress' baby bump was on display when she attended the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner in Washington, D.C., over the weekend," E! reports.

Daniel Aaron, groundbreaking scholar, dead at 103

NEW YORK (AP) -- Daniel Aaron, a founding scholar and ambassador of American studies who explored and explained his country through books, essays and diplomatic missions and helped preserve the literary canon as the first president of the Library of America, has died. Aaron, who received a National Humanities Medal in 2010, died Saturday at age 103 at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, according to his son, Paul Aaron.

Kerry condemns hospital attack in Aleppo; working on truce

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Secretary of State John Kerry is condemning a deadly hospital attack in the Syrian city of Aleppo. He says the missile appears to have been fired from rebel-controlled territory. Kerry says the U.S. won't accept violence against civilians, whether it's by the Syrian government or by Western-backed opposition. At least 20 people died Tuesday when rocket fire struck the maternity hospital in a government-held section of Aleppo.

Refs say they missed call on Waiters, plan to train for it

NEW YORK (AP) -- NBA referees say their missed foul on Oklahoma City's Dion Waiters as he inbounded the ball was a play they had never seen before. The referees union also said Tuesday on Twitter that they would incorporate the play into their training moving forward. The play began a wild final sequence in the Thunder's 98-97 victory over San Antonio on Monday in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals.

Gov. McCrory Launches Petition To Raise Average Teacher Pay To $50,000

On National Teacher Appreciation Day, Governor Pat McCrory has launched a petition asking North Carolinians to sign it and show support for his plan to raise average teacher pay in North Carolina to $50,000 that plus benefits.  Russell Peck, Gov. McCrory's campaign manager, said this is a smart move for the state of North Carolina…