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Pakistan executes 2 militants after reinstating death penalty in wake of school massacre

ISLAMABAD — Pakistan hanged two convicted militants Friday in the country's first executions in years, while warplanes and ground forces pounded insurgent hideouts in a northwest region bordering Afghanistan — part of a stepped-up response to the Taliban slaughter of scores of schoolchildren.

Unchastened by criticism from all corners of the globe, the Taliban threatened earlier Friday to kill more children if executions were carried out as promised. READ

Israeli military says Gaza rocket strikes in first attack since September

The Israeli military says a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip struck southern Israel in the first such attack since September. READ

Woman arrested for murder in killings of 8 children in Australian home

An Australian woman was arrested for murder in the killings of eight children, seven of whom are believed to be her own, police said Saturday. The children were found dead inside the woman's home. READ

Palestinians tell Canada to back Geneva Conventions meeting on Israel

The top Palestinian diplomat in Canada says the Harper government should not have boycotted a United Nations conference this week that harshly criticized Israeli settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. READ

Australian leader says deadly siege may have been 'a preventable atrocity'

Australia's prime minister said Thursday that a deadly siege in a Sydney cafe may have been preventable, as the chorus of critics demanding to know why the gunman was out on bail despite facing a string of violent charges grew louder. READ

Boston marathon suspect Tsarnaev gets shout of encouragement

Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev returned to court Thursday for the first time since he was arraigned in July 2013, and he received a shout of encouragement from the mother-in-law of a man who was shot and killed while being questioned by law enforcement after the bombings. READ

Putin says West won't defang Russian bear

Sternly warning the West it cannot defang the metaphorical Russian bear, a confident-looking President Vladimir Putin promised Thursday to shore up the plummeting ruble and revive the economy within two years. READ

CF-18s hit targets as Kurds launch offensive to break Sinjar mountain siege

Canadian warplanes have been in action in Iraq once again, bombing enemy targets ahead of Kurdish Peshmerga forces who are pushing to completely break the siege in the Sinjar mountains. READ

Australian leader says siege gunman was dropped off nation's security watch list years ago

The gunman responsible for a deadly siege in a Sydney cafe was once on the national security agency's watch list, but was dropped off it years ago for reasons that remain unclear, Australia's prime minister said Wednesday. READ

Pakistan buries victims of school massacre as nation mourns young children

As they buried their children Wednesday, the families spoke of their dreams. One boy had just gotten high marks on his midterm and hoped to become a pilot. A 13-year-old wanted to become a doctor. Another kid just loved playing video games with his cousins. READ

Canadian oilsands exporters narrowly survive vote in European Parliament

Canadian oilsands exporters narrowly survived a vote in the European Parliament on Wednesday that could have once again penalized Alberta bitumen as dirty oil. READ

White House thanks Canada for hosting key meetings between U.S., Cuba

The White House is extending its thanks to Canada for hosting the meetings that let to the United States and Cuba agreeing to re-establish diplomatic relations and open economic and travel ties. READ

Obama says U.S. will normalize relations with Cuba

President Barack Obama announced the re-establishment of diplomatic relations with Cuba on Wednesday and declared an end to America's “outdated approach” to the communist island in a historic shift aimed at ending a half-century of Cold War enmity. READ

Hong Kong police remove barricades, make arrests as they shut last pro-democracy protest site

Hong Kong police tore down barricades, folded up tents and arrested some protesters Monday at a third and final pro-democracy protest camp, ending demonstrations that blocked traffic in the southern Chinese city's streets for 2 1/2 months. READ

Man suspected of killing 6, wounding 1 near Philadelphia at large

A man killed six people and seriously wounded another in three different homes outside Philadelphia and remained at large hours after the shootings, authorities said Monday. READ

Police say 3 people dead, including the gunman, as Sydney hostage siege ends

mid a barrage of gunfire, police stormed a cafe in the heart of Sydney early Tuesday to end a 16-hour hostage siege by an Iranian-born gunman. Police said three people were killed - the gunman and two of the hostages - and four others were wounded. READ

Not dead yet: Fight continues over EU effort to label oilsands as dirty oil

Like a movie monster from the black bog, a European Union directive that would stigmatize “dirty” imports of Canadian bitumen refuses to die. READ

Italian unions shut down basic services, march in 50 cities against govt economic reforms

Tens of thousands of union workers marched through more than 50 Italian cities on Friday to protest government economic reforms that they say erode their rights. READ

Terrorists fire dozens of shots at Israeli embassy in Athens, nobody hurt in pre-dawn attack

Unknown attackers fired dozens of bullets at the facade of the Israeli embassy in Athens without causing any injury in a pre-dawn, drive-by attack Friday on one of the Greek capital's best-guarded buildings. READ

London airspace briefly closed due to air traffic computer failure; flights delays linger

The airspace over London was briefly closed Friday afternoon due to what authorities said was a computer failure at one of Britain's two air traffic control centres. READ

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