South Africa grants parole to apartheid death squad leader

FILE - In this Sept. 14, 1998 file photo, Eugene de Kock, the head of a covert police unit that tortured and killed dozens of people, attends an amnesty hearing of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in Pretoria, South Africa. Eugene de Kock, a death squad leader for the apartheid state, has been granted parole after two decades in jail, the South African government announced Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell, File)

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The South African government Friday granted parole to Eugene de Kock, the head of an apartheid state covert unit responsible for dozens of deaths, saying his freedom is in the i

Murder trial begins 35 years after 6-year-old vanished in NY

FILE - This May 28, 2012, file photo shows a newspaper with a photograph of Etan Patz at a makeshift memorial in the SoHo neighborhood of New York where Patz lived before his disappearance on May 25, 1979. The memorial was set up near a building that housed a convenience store where Pedro Hernandez, accused of killing Patz, told police 33 years after they boy's disappearance, that he choked the 6-year-old and put the still-living boy into a plastic bag, boxed up the bag and left it on a street. Opening statements in Hernandez's trial are set for Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Thirty-five years after the disappearance of a 6-year-old boy in Manhattan ushered in an era of protectiveness for America’s children, trial began Friday for a mentally ill man with

NYC to pay $5M to kin of man killed in ‘Mafia cops’ case

File- This file photo from March 13, 2006, shows former New York City police detective Louis Eppolito entering Brooklyn federal court on the first day of his trial in New York. Nicholas Guido was showing off his new car outside his mother's home on Christmas Day 1986 when he was gunned down because he'd been mistaken for a mobster with the same name. The bad information, prosecutors said, came from two decorated police detectives who would later be convicted of moonlighting as hit men for the mob. Twenty-nine years later, the city has reached a $5 million settlement with Guido's family in part of the fallout from one of the most stunning police corruption cases in New York history. Guido's killers had him confused with an enemy of a mob underboss who paid then-detectives Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa to be his criminal "crystal ball," a source of help killing eight of their patron's foes between 1986 and about 1990, Brooklyn federal prosecutors said. (AP Photo/ Louis Lanzano, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Nicholas Guido was showing off his new car outside his mother’s home on Christmas Day 1986 when he was gunned down because he’d been mistaken for a mobster with the same name.

US mulls Middle East-North Africa category for 2020 census

Hassan Jaber, Executive Director, ACCESS and a member of a census advisory board on racial and ethnic populations is shown in Dearborn, Mich., Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015. Arab Americans seeking to be counted by the Census are making progress on the policy front but still face political and public obstacles. A proposed Middle Eastern or North African category on the 2020 Census is expected to be tested nationally later this year and the bureau is currently inviting comments on the collection of this and other information. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

DETROIT (AP) — The federal government is considering allowing those of Middle Eastern and North African descent to identify as such on the next 10-year census, which could give Arab-Americans and o

Australian paper mocked for obit of ‘The Thorn Birds’ author

FILE - In this March 1, 1977 file photo, Australian author Colleen McCullough laughs during a news conference in New York. Australia's largest newspaper was facing sharp criticism over its obituary of the nation's most famous author, whom the paper described as plain and overweight. The Australian newspaper's obituary of Colleen McCullough, whose novel "The Thorn Birds" sold 30 million copies worldwide and who died on Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015 at age 77 after a long illness, opened not with a list of her myriad accomplishments, but with a description of her appearance. (AP Photo/File)

SYDNEY (AP) — Australia’s main national newspaper was facing sharp criticism over its obituary of the nation’s most famous author, whom it described as plain and overweight.

IS hostage drama shows change in propaganda technique

FILE - In this Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015 file photo, a passerby is silhouetted against a large TV screen broadcasting a news program in Tokyo reporting on a video posted on YouTube by jihadists on Tuesday, Jan. 27, that purports to show a still photo of Japanese hostage Kenji Goto holding what appears to be a photo of Jordanian pilot 1st Lt. Mu'ath al-Kaseasbeh. Far from the high-tech, slickly edited videos involving beheaded Western hostages through which the group impressed supporters and terrorized opponents, recent messages purporting to be from Japanese hostage Kenji Goto have been through digitized, audio dispatches featuring either still photos or text. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko, File)

BEIRUT (AP) — The latest Islamic State hostage drama involving a veteran Japanese war correspondent and a young Jordanian pilot marks the first time the group has publicly demanded prisoner release

Artillery fire kills at least 12 civilians in Donetsk

A rebel comforts a wife of a killed civilian in shelling in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. Artillery fire in the rebel stronghold of Donetsk killed at least 12 civilians on Friday afternoon, the city hall in the rebel stronghold said, as fighting intensifies between pro-Russia separatists and government troops. (AP Photo/Vadim Braydov)

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First lady defends ‘American Sniper’ at veterans event

First lady Michelle Obama speaks during the launch event for "Got Your 6," a multifaceted program that includes encouraging film and television to include characters who are veterans, Friday, Jan. 30, 2015, at the National Geographic Society in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

NEW YORK (AP) — First lady Michelle Obama urged Hollywood to give a more accurate portrayal of veterans and defended the Oscar-nominated “American Sniper,” which has received criticism for its depi

White House grapples with fraught terrorism language

President Barack Obama speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. Twice this month, the White House has publicly grappled with the politically fraught language of terrorism. In the days after a deadly terror spree in Paris, President Barack Obama was criticized for purposely avoiding calling the attacks an example of Islamic extremism, settling for the more generic violent extremism. This week, the White House struggled to explain why the administration sometimes classifies the Afghan Taliban as a terrorist organization _ and sometimes does not. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Twice this month, the White House has publicly grappled with the politically fraught language of terrorism.

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