Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are taking their increasingly heated fight for the Democratic presidential nomination back to the debate stage Thursday night. The former secretary of state is banking on support from minorities to help her blunt Sanders' broad appeal with young voters and liberals. Sanders' challenge is to prove that he can run a viable campaign outside of the overwhelmingly white states that kicked off the nominating process. The Democratic contenders next go before voters in Nevada on Feb. 20 and in South Carolina on Feb. 27. But both campaigns are already eying contests in March, when more than half of all delegates up for grabs in the primary are at stake.
Diplomats trying to secure a ceasefire for the civil war in Syria fell short in organizing an immediate truce but agreed to try to work out details and implement a temporary "cessation of hostilities" in the coming week.
Foreign ministers from the International Syria Support Group also sealed an agreement early Friday to "accelerate and expand" deliveries of humanitarian assistance to seven besieged Syrian communities. Those deliveries are to begin immediately after a working group meets on the matter Friday in Geneva.
Speaking for the group, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry hailed the results but noted they were "commitments on paper."
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A rookie police officer who shot an unarmed man dead in a darkened public housing stairwell was convicted Thursday of manslaughter in a case closely watched by advocates for police accountability.
The courtroom audience gasped and Officer Peter Liang, who had broken into tears as he testified about the 2014 shooting of Akai Gurley, buried his head in his hands as the verdict came after 17 hours of jury deliberations. The manslaughter charge carries up to 15 years in prison. The shooting happened in a year of debate nationwide about police killings of black men, and activists have looked to Liang's trial as a counterweight to cases in which grand juries have declined to indict officers.
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The mayor of Cleveland apologized Thursday to the family of Tamir Rice, a black 12-year-old boy fatally shot by a white Cleveland police officer, for the city having sent the administrator of the boy's estate a "decedent's last dying expense" claim of $500 for ambulance services.
Mayor Frank Jackson said at a news conference that filing the claim was part of a routine but that supervisors should have been alerted and the claim never filed.
"It was a mistake in terms of us flagging it, but not a mistake in terms of the legal process," Jackson said.
A probe of a mine waste accident in Colorado that fouled rivers in three states with arsenic, lead and other toxic substances has found further evidence that government workers knew a spill from the gold mine was possible, according to documents released Thursday by a U.S. House committee.
Hays Griswold, a U.S. Environmental Protection agency official in charge of the Gold King mine at the time of the August accident, said in an email that he "personally knew" the plugged, inactive mine could contain large volumes of water.
The email was sent Oct. 28 to other EPA officials. It was obtained Thursday by The Associated Press as the House Natural Resources Committee released the findings of its Republican-led probe.
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The gas well above Porter Ranch that has been leaking since October has been temporarily capped, Southern California Gas Company said Thursday. Thousands of households have been relocated after residents complained of ailments they believe are linked to the natural gas leak at the utility’s Aliso Canyon facility. The blowout at the largest natural gas storage facility west of the Mississippi River has released more than 2 million tons of methane into the air above the San Fernando Valley. Residents complained of headaches, nausea, nosebleeds and other symptoms.
Protecting the privacy of law-abiding citizens from the government is a pillar of Ted Cruz's Republican presidential candidacy, but his campaign is testing the limits of siphoning personal data from supporters.
His "Cruz Crew" mobile app is designed to gather detailed information from its users' phones — tracking their physical movements and mining the names and contact information for friends who might want nothing to do with his campaign.
That information and more is then fed into a vast database containing details about nearly every adult in the United States to build psychological profiles that target individual voters with uncanny accuracy.
A 94-year-old former SS sergeant went on trial Thursday in western Germany on 170,000 counts of accessory to murder, based on accusations that he served as a guard in the Auschwitz death camp as hundreds of thousands of Hungarian Jews and others were gassed to death there.
Reinhold Hanning seemed in good condition for his age, walking into the court in the city of Detmold without even the help of a cane and appearing to listen attentively as the indictment against him was read aloud.
Rep. John Lewis said Thursday he never saw Sen. Bernie Sanders during the most tumultuous years of the civil rights movement, NBC News reported.
"I never saw him. I never met him," the Georgia congressman said. "I was chair of the student non-violent coordinating committee for 3 years, from 1963 to 1966. I was involved in the sit-ins, the freedom ride, the march on Washington, the march from Selma to Montgomery and directed the board of education project for six years."
Sanders was a prominent figure during the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s, and was arrested for trying to desegregate school housing.
The charge comes as both Sanders and Hillary Clinton are vying for African-American support moving into the South Carolina primary — and as the Congressional Black Congress PAC endorsed Hillary Clinton.
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The four remaining occupiers at an Oregon wildlife refuge surrendered Thursday morning after hours of tense negotiations, bringing an end to the weekslong protest over land rights and personal liberties.
Federal officials said Jeff Banta, Sean Anderson, Sandy Anderson and David Fry were taken in without incident after FBI agents surrounded the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge overnight.
The occupation came to an emotionally heated conclusion as Fry, the last to leave, threatened suicide in a phone conversation with self-described "liberty activist" Gavin Seim and conservative radio host KrisAnne Hall that streamed live on YouTube.
"Unless my grievances are heard I will not surrender," Fry screamed. "Liberty or death."
All four arrested are expected to face an arraignment before a magistrate judge in Portland on Friday.
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American millennials are buying more wine, which is helping to spur the wine industry, NBC News reported.
The group, between the ages of 21 to 38, consumed almost 160 million cases, or 42 percent, of all wine drunk in the U.S. last year, according to a survey by the Wine Market Council. The survey also showed 17 percent of millennials were spending more on wine than baby boomers.
"It's not an exaggeration to say the millennial American consumer has the most varied set of tastes of any wine drinker in history," wrote Wine Spectator.
As for their tastes, millennials are generally favoring new-world producers such as Chile, Argentina and New Zealand.
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