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Iraq Pope

Pope urges Iraq to embrace its Christians on historic visit

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Pope Francis opened the first-ever papal visit to Iraq on Friday with a plea for the country to protect its centuries-old diversity, urging Muslims to embrace their Christian neighbors as a precious resource and asking the embattled Christian community -- “though small like a mustard seed” -- to persevere. Francis… Read

World

Jobless benefits fight slows work on Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 aid bill

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A battle over extending federal jobless benefits during the coronavirus pandemic delayed progress in the U.S. Senate on Friday on President Joe Biden's$1.9 trillion COVID-19 aid bill, as senators jousted over the scope of competing proposals. After the Senate defeated a last-ditch attempt by some of Biden's fellow Democrats to… Read

World

Australia asks EU to stop blocking vaccine exports

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Australia is seeking assurances from the European Union's executive arm that future shipments of vaccines will not be blocked, after Italy banned a large export of the AstraZeneca coronavirus shots. The shipment to Australia of more than a quarter-million doses was blocked from leaving the 27-nation bloc — the first… Read

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Paris curbs outdoor drinking over COVID-19 risks

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Paris police warned Friday that alcohol consumption will be banned across large swathes of the capital this weekend, in the hope of avoiding a repeat of the huge crowds that have been gathering despite France's COVID-19 curfew. Authorities had already banned outdoor drinking in a handful of popular areas of… Read

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Reel excitement as New Yorkers return to movie theaters

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Movie enthusiast Cindy B was among the first in the door at the AMC Empire 25 off Times Square Friday as New York City's cinemas reopened a year after they were abruptly closed by coronavirus. "Oh my God, I'm so excited to be back. I'm not working so I gotta… Read

World

Canada approves Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine

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Canada on Friday authorized a fourth COVID-19 vaccine, adding Johnson & Johnson to its approved list alongside AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna shots. Produced by the U.S. pharmaceutical giant's subsidiary Janssen, it is the first single-dose COVID-19 vaccine to be authorized in this country, and has been cleared for use by… Read

World

Israel postpones drive to vaccinate Palestinian workers

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Israel on Friday postponed plans to vaccinate Palestinians who work inside the country and its West Bank settlements until further notice. COGAT, the Israeli military agency coordinating day-to-day affairs with the Palestinian Authority, attributed the postponement to “administrative delays,” adding that a new start date for the campaign would be… Read

World

Examination finds multiple cracks in part of United jet's engine

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Microscopic examination supports early suspicions that wear and tear caused a fan blade to snap inside one engine of a United Airlines plane that made an emergency landing shortly after takeoff last month in Denver, federal safety investigators said Friday. The National Transportation Safety Board said the blade found "multiple… Read

World

Saudi-led coalition says it downed six Houthi drones fired at Khamis Mushait

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The Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi group in Yemen said it intercepted six explosive drones fired towards the kingdom on Friday, with the Houthis claiming to have launched attacks into southern Saudi Arabia since dawn. Parts of the destroyed drones fell and injured a 10-year-old boy and also a man… Read

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Spacewalkers finish solar panel prep for station power boost

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Spacewalking astronauts completed the first round of prep work Friday for new solar panels, part of a major power upgrade at the International Space Station. NASA’s Kate Rubins and Japan’s Soichi Noguchi installed mounting brackets and struts for the improved solar wings due to arrive in June. They also tightened… Read

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