12-13-2018  10:55 am      •     
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With OK from Congress, US hemp market set to boom

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Hemp is about to become legal nationwide.A provision of the farm bill that received final approval in Congress on Wednesday removes hemp from the list of federally controlled substances and treats it like a regular crop.President Trump is expected to sign the bill into...

Apple deepens Austin ties, expands in other tech hotbeds

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Apple plans to build a jumi billion campus in Austin, Texas, in a decision expected to bring at least 5,000 jobs ranging from engineers to sales support and adding more cachet to a city that is already a major tech hub.The decision, announced Thursday, comes 11 months...

Domestic assault charges filed against Missouri player

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Missouri defensive end Tre Williams was charged Wednesday in a domestic assault case.The Columbia Daily Tribune reported that probable cause statement alleges Williams and his girlfriend argued early Sunday and that he hit her several times while she was driving and at...

Missouri DE Tre Williams arrested on assault charge

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Missouri defensive end Tre Williams has been arrested on suspicion of felony second-degree domestic assault and suspended by the team.The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the 21-year-old redshirt sophomore was arrested around 6 a.m. Sunday at his off-campus home. He...

OPINION

Don’t Let Small Dollar Loans Ruin Your Holidays

If holiday lists seem bigger than budgets, turning to a high-interest, “small dollar” loan can turn joy into a financial quagmire ...

5 Holiday Traditions to Share With Your Pet

Dr. Jasmine on how to make new memories with your pet this holiday season ...

Studying Black Identity in South Africa Transformed My Worldview

Of the more than 330,000 U.S. students studying abroad, only 6.1 percent are African American and 10 percent are Latino ...

The Congressional Black Caucus Needs to Get to Work on the Western Sahara

Once upon a time the CBC was one of the most significant so-called mainstream players in the realm of US foreign policy ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Negro League bobbleheads part of fundraising campaign

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Fans of the former Negro League are being asked to help a campaign to create bobbleheads of 30 stars from the league — with a goal of commemorating the league's upcoming centennial.Organizers of the effort, which was unveiled Wednesday, have created a team of...

Artificial intelligence's rise exposes gaping gender gap

The challenges of making the technology industry a more welcoming place for women are numerous, especially in the booming field of artificial intelligence.To get a sense of just how monumental a task the tech community faces, look no further than the marquee gathering for AI's top scientists....

Veteran investigative journalist Ron Nixon joins AP

NEW YORK (AP) — Ron Nixon, an acclaimed reporter, editor and data journalist, will join The Associated Press as its international investigations editor, based in Washington.Nixon, currently homeland security correspondent for The New York Times, will manage a team of reporters based in...

ENTERTAINMENT

AP names "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" its top TV show of 2018

NEW YORK (AP) — The top 10 TV shows of the year by Associated Press writer Alicia Rancilio.1. "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," on Amazon Prime. From its costumes to the dialogue to the music to the quirky characters, this show is a delight. Watch it to feel good.2. "This is Us," on NBC. Some...

Emily Blunt on the 'daunting' task of playing Mary Poppins

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — Emily Blunt loves a challenge, and in the world of movie musicals there's no greater trial than following in the footsteps of Julie Andrews to bring one of her most iconic, and beloved, roles to the screen for the first time in over half a century.It's only Mary...

Review: In 'The Mule,' Clint reflects on a life on the road

Both tender apologia and vigorous justification, Clint Eastwood's "The Mule" is a deeply, fascinatingly personal meditation from the 88-year-old director who, like his aged drug mule protagonist, has spent a long time on the road."The Mule" is the indefatigable Eastwood's second film just this...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

NEW YORK (AP) — Janet Jackson joins her brother Michael and the Jackson 5 as members of the Rock and Roll...

Apple deepens Austin ties, expands in other tech hotbeds

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Apple plans to build a jumi billion campus in Austin, Texas, in a decision expected to...

UK leader seeks EU lifeline after surviving confidence vote

BRUSSELS (AP) — British Prime Minister Theresa May was seeking a Brexit lifeline from European Union...

The Latest: Macron rules out changes to Brexit deal text

LONDON (AP) — The Latest on Brexit (all times local):3:30 p.m.French President Emmanuel Macron has ruled...

Sri Lanka's Supreme Court says president's actions unlawful

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lanka's Supreme Court ruled unanimously Thursday that President Maithripala...

Shooting near West Bank settlement kills at least 2 Israelis

JERUSALEM (AP) — A Palestinian gunman got out of a car and opened fire at a bus stop outside a West Bank...

Amy Teibel, Associated Press Writer

JERUSALEM – Israel agreed Thursday to ease its three-year-old land blockade of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, hoping to quell international outrage over its deadly raid on a flotilla bound for the Palestinian territory.
In one of the major changes, Israel will allow in more desperately needed construction materials for civilian projects, provided those projects are carried out under international supervision, government and military officials said. Israel has barely allowed in goods such as cement and steel, fearing Hamas militants could use them to build weapons and fortifications. The policy has prevented rebuilding thousands of homes and other buildings damaged in Israel's war with Hamas last year.
An Israeli military official told The Associated Press all foods would be allowed in to the impoverished territory, effective immediately. Authorities had previously allowed a short and constantly changing list of foods in, but the list has been growing incrementally in recent months.
Israel is maintaining its naval blockade intended to keep weapons shipments out of the hands of Hamas.
"This is a step in the right direction," said Cristina Galach, spokeswoman for the European Union presidency.
However, Hamas was not satisfied.
"We want a real lifting of the siege, not window-dressing," said Hamas lawmaker Salah Bardawil.
The easing is evidence of the intense pressure Israeli leaders felt after an international outcry over the raid on a blockade-busting flotilla on May 31. Israeli commandos killed nine pro-Palestinian activists and both sides claimed they acted in self-defense.
Israel imposed the blockade in 2007 after Hamas, which calls for Israel's destruction, violently seized control of Gaza. For the most part, only basic humanitarian goods have been allowed in for a population of 1.5 million. Egypt has cooperated by blockading its land border with Gaza, but it opened it days after the flotilla raid to allow thousands of Palestinians to leave.
Israel's shift came just one week after President Barack Obama, the country's most important ally, said the blockade was unsustainable and called for scaling it back dramatically. Israel made the decision after extensive consultations with European and American officials.
"This morning, the government of Israel took decisions to liberalize the system under which civilian goods may enter the Gaza Strip, to expand materials for projects inside Gaza which are under international supervision," government spokesman Mark Regev said.
"But of course we must remain with the security procedures that prevent the import into Gaza of weapons and war materials that strengthen the Hamas military machine," he said, indicating the naval blockade would remain in force.

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