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  • UK's Cameron 'delighted' with new EU chief's reform pledge

    By Adrian Croft and Jan Strupczewski BRUSSELS (Reuters) - British Prime Minister David Cameron said he was "delighted" with a promise from Polish premier Donald Tusk, newly elected to a top European Union post, to address his demands for reforming the EU to keep Britain in the bloc. Two months after suffering a severe and very public setback when he failed to block the appointment of another EU leader whom he judged hostile to his reform drive, Cameron was upbeat about the choice of the Polish center-right leader as head of the European Council, the body representing the 28 EU governments. Immediately after being appointed by EU leaders at a Brussels summit on Saturday, Tusk held out an olive branch to Britain, saying he was prepared to compromise on British concerns in order to keep the country in the EU. "I am delighted obviously with what Donald Tusk has said about the importance of reform in the EU and addressing the concerns that Britain has in the EU and I look forward to working with him in the months and the years ahead," Cameron told reporters as he left the meeting early on Sunday.

  • Families of Russian troops in Ukraine want answers
    Families of Russian troops in Ukraine want answers

    MOSCOW (AP) — The last time Valeria Sokolova saw her husband, the 25-year-old paratrooper told her that he and his fellow soldiers were heading for military exercises in southern Russia, near the Ukrainian border.

  • Joan Rivers 'serious' in New York hospital
    Joan Rivers 'serious' in New York hospital

    Joan Rivers, the acerbic US stand-up comic and octogenarian television presenter, remained seriously ill in a New York hospital for a second day on Friday, her daughter said. Brooklyn-born Rivers, 81, reportedly stopped breathing while undergoing a medical procedure on her vocal cords at a clinic in New York on Thursday and was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital. "Her condition remains serious but she is receiving the best treatment and care possible," said daughter Melissa Rivers in a statement released by the hospital. A long-time New York resident, Rivers has spared no one her razor-sharp wit and is considered one of the best at delivering a cutting one-liner with a well-timed zinger.

  • Sweden raises military alert level due to Ukraine crisis

    Sweden put its top military staff on higher alert on Friday as a result of the situation in Ukraine, the armed forces said. It is already participating in international maneuvers in Finland, which borders Russia, and has moved its quick-response fighter jets to the island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea, off Sweden's southeast coast. "Given the serious nature of the development in Ukraine, the Swedish military is responding by among other things a higher alert status for the General Staff at headquarters and intensified intelligence gathering," Forsvarsmakten, Sweden's military authority, said in a statement. A spokesman for the military declined to give any more details of what Sweden was doing to prepare for any eventual spillover in the region from the conflict.

  • Poland bars Russian plane from its airspace

    WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland prevented a plane carrying Russia's defense minister from traveling through its airspace Friday, drawing an angry response from Moscow.

  • Rebuilding Gaza will take 20 years, group says
    Rebuilding Gaza will take 20 years, group says

    JERUSALEM (AP) — An international organization involved in assessing post-conflict reconstruction says it will take 20 years under current levels of restrictions to rebuild the Gaza Strip's battered and neglected housing stock following the war between Hamas and Israel.

  • Iran president calls US sanctions an 'invasion'
    Iran president calls US sanctions an 'invasion'

    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called Western sanctions an "invasion" Saturday after Washington imposed new penalties over the country's contested nuclear program, though he promised negotiations with world powers would go on.

  • Obama family attends long-time aide's wedding to TV journalist

    President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and their two daughters on Saturday attended the wedding of their long-time friend and food guru Sam Kass to media personality Alex Wagner at a farm outside New York City, the White House said. Kass is officially Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition Policy and executive director of Let's Move, Michelle Obama's child health initiative that seeks to combat childhood obesity. He has a been a friend of and cook for the Obama family since the 2000s, when he began preparing food for the family in their Chicago home. Wagner is the host of "Now with Alex Wagner," a liberal-leaning show in the cable channel MSNBC.

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