- Trump to meet with Senate leaders on Supreme Court pick
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump will meet with Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday to discuss his Supreme Court choice, McConnell said. Trump also planned to meet with Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, Politico reported, citing an unidentified administration official. White House spokesman Sean Spicer said at a news conference on Monday that there would be an update in the next week or so on a nominee to fill the high court vacancy created by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia. ...
- Trump signs orders reviving Keystone, Dakota pipelines
US President Donald Trump signed executive orders Tuesday reviving the construction of two controversial oil pipelines, but said the projects would be subject to renegotiation. "It is subject to a renegotiation of terms, by us," he said of the Keystone project.
- Dying from cancer: Could your location determine your fate?
CHICAGO (AP) — Cancer death rates are steadily rising in certain parts of the U.S. in grim contrast with the declining death rate across the nation as a whole, an exhaustive new analysis has found.
- Egypt's el-Sissi says he is alarmed by high divorce rates
CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's president said Tuesday he was alarmed by his country's high divorce rate, suggesting a ground-breaking legislation to delegalize divorces verbally declared by Muslim men to their spouses, the latest foray by the general-turned-president into thorny social and cultural issues in the most populous Arab nation.
- China's State Grid buys Brazil electricity firm CPFL
China's State Grid has concluded a deal to buy a majority stake in Brazil's electricity giant CPFL for $4.5 billion, the companies announced Tuesday. The purchase of a 54.64 percent stake in CPFL for 14.19 billion reals will advance the Chinese company's presence in Brazil, a huge market with some 200 million inhabitants. The world's largest utility company and China's largest state-owned enterprise, State Grid has pursued deals around the world.
- The Latest: Mulvaney says made 'mistake' on babysitter taxes
The Latest on activities in Congress (all times EST): 11:25 a.m. President Donald's Trump's pick for budget director says he failed to pay more than $15,000 in payroll taxes for a babysitter because he ...
- Israel plans 2,500 new settlement homes in occupied West Bank
By Ori Lewis JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel announced plans on Tuesday for 2,500 more settlement homes in the occupied West Bank, the second such declaration since U.S. President Donald Trump took office signalling he would be less critical of such projects than his predecessor. A statement from the Defence Ministry, which administers lands Israel captured in a 1967 war, said the move was meant to fulfil demand for new housing "to maintain regular daily life". Most of the construction, it said, would be in existing settlement blocs that Israel intends to keep under any future peace agreement with the Palestinians.
- Syria talks in Astana close with pledge to safeguard truce
ASTANA, Kazakhstan (AP) — Russia, Iran and Turkey — sponsors of talks in Kazakhstan between Syria and rebel factions — pledged Tuesday to consolidate the country's nearly month-old cease-fire and set up a three-way mechanism to ensure compliance of all sides.
- US stock indexes edge higher in morning trading; oil rises
Materials companies led U.S. stock indexes slightly higher in morning trading Tuesday as investors sized up the latest round of company earnings news. Energy stocks also rose as crude oil prices headed higher. Phone companies and health care stocks were among the biggest laggards.
- France, Saudi hope Syria talks lead to Geneva resumption
By Katie Paul RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia and France, both backers of Syrian rebels, said on Tuesday they hoped Syrian truce talks in Astana would lead to a resumption of U.N.-led peace efforts in Geneva and more aid to civilians suffering from five years of war. In a joint news conference, foreign ministers Jean-Marc Ayrault of France and Adel al-Jubeir of Saudi Arabia also suggested that cooperation with new U.S. President Donald Trump would be important on a range of Middle East issues.
- Puerto Rico tries to open no-man's-land to tourism
VIEQUES, Puerto Rico (AP) — A small island long known as a Navy bombing range is gradually trying to turn a no-man's-land into a booming tourist mecca.
- U.S. trade commission to probe Nokia complaint against Apple
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. International Trade Commission said on Tuesday it will investigate a complaint by Nokia Technologies alleging that Apple Inc has imported smart phones, tablet computers and other electronics that infringe upon its patents. The USITC said in a statement it had not yet made any decision on the merits of the case by the Finland-based Nokia Corp unit, which is seeking a cease and desist order and a limited exclusion order in the case. (Reporting by David Alexander; Editing by Susan Heavey)
- Former German President Herzog commemorated in state funeral
BERLIN (AP) — Former German President Roman Herzog has been commemorated in a state funeral in Berlin for his services to the country during his tenure in the 1990s.
- France's presidential hopeful Macron pushes for Syria talks
BEIRUT (AP) — French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron says his country needs a more "balanced" policy toward Syria.
- The Latest: Italy helicopter crash kills all 6 aboard
FARINDOLA, Italy (AP) — The Latest on rescue efforts at Italian hotel struck by an avalanche (all times local):
- Existing US home fell in December as supplies at 17-year low
WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans retreated from purchasing homes in December, as the number of properties listed for sale sank to its lowest level since 1999.
- All 6 dead in helicopter crash in central Italy
A helicopter ferrying an injured skier off the slopes crashed Tuesday into a mountainside in central Italy, killing all six people aboard in the latest tragedy to hit a region slammed by recent earthquakes, ...
- Israel approves 2,500 West Bank settlement homes
Israel said Tuesday it approved plans to build 2,500 new settler homes in the West Bank, signaling a major ramp-up of construction just days after the swearing-in of U.S. President Donald Trump, whose ...
- Israel plans 2,500 settler homes in post-Trump expansion
Israel has approved 2,500 settler homes in the occupied West Bank, officials said Tuesday, marking a major settlement expansion following the election of US President Donald Trump. The planned new homes approved by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman may be the largest number to have been given the green light since 2013, said settlement watchdog Peace Now. Settlements in both the West Bank and east Jerusalem are viewed as illegal under international law and major stumbling blocks to peace as they are built on land the Palestinians want for their own state.
- New study: Trump to inherit $559B deficit, stable economy
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump has inherited a stable economy and a government that is on track to run a $559 billion budget deficit for the year, congressional analysts said Tuesday.
- The Latest: Settler leader welcomes new West Bank homes
The Latest on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, after Israel announced the construction of 2,500 new settler homes in the West Bank (all times local): 6 p.m. A leader of the West Bank settlement movement ...
- Hong Kong to return Singapore's seized troop carriers, easing tensions
By Anshuman Daga SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Hong Kong said on Tuesday it would release the nine Singaporean armoured vehicles it seized in November on their way home from military exercises in Taiwan, easing tensions between China and Singapore. After the troop carriers had been seized, Beijing, which regained sovereignty over the former British colony of Hong Kong in 1997, warned countries against maintaining military ties with Taiwan, which it views as a wayward province. Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong wrote to Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying requesting the return of the carriers, and Hong Kong said it would handle the matter in accordance with its laws.
- Germany: Social Democrats leader won't run for chancellor
BERLIN (AP) — The leader of Germany's Social Democratic Party said Tuesday he won't stand as the party's candidate for chancellor in this fall's national election, shaking up the political landscape on the same day the country's president confirmed the election will be held Sept. 24.
- Verizon earnings, subscriber additions fall short of estimates
Shares of Verizon, a Dow Jones Industrial Average component, were down 4.3 percent at $50.15 on Tuesday. Verizon added a net 591,000 retail postpaid subscribers - those who pay their bills on a monthly basis - in the quarter, far fewer than the 726,000 analysts had expected, according to market research firm FactSet StreetAccount. "The soft results in wireless serve as a stark reminder that, despite all of the understandable enthusiasm around possible regulatory reform, tax reductions, and possible consolidation, the wireless industry is still a relatively inhospitable place," wrote Craig Moffett, analyst at MoffettNathanson.
- E-cigarettes may encourage teenagers to smoke
E-cigarettes may entice teenagers who would not have touched tobacco to smoke. According to a US study published in the journal Pediatrics, the arrival of e-cigarettes on the market has not contributed to a reduction in teenage smoking. The new study conducted by researchers from the University of California San Francisco, which surveyed 140,000 high school students between 2004 and 2014, confirms previous studies that found that e-cigarettes amount to a "gateway" to smoking addiction.
- U.N. "racing" to prepare aid for civilians ahead of battle for west Mosul
By Maher Chmaytelli BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The United Nations said on Tuesday it is "racing against the clock" to prepare emergency aid for hundreds of thousands of endangered civilians in Mosul with an Iraqi army offensive looming to oust Islamic State from the western half of the city. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi confirmed on Tuesday that government forces had taken complete control of eastern Mosul, 100 days after the start of the U.S.-backed campaign to retake Iraq's second largest city from Islamic State (IS) insurgents who seized it in 2014.
- Judges rule UK parliament must approve start of Brexit
The British government must win parliament's approval before starting talks to leave the EU, the Supreme Court ruled Tuesday, in a landmark judgement and setback for Prime Minister Theresa May. The legal case has revived divisions within British society after last June's referendum which saw 52 percent vote to leave the European Union after a bitter campaign that split the country. May had wanted to start the Brexit process -- invoking Article 50 of the EU treaty -- without a vote in parliament, but she failed to overturn a High Court ruling that said lawmakers must be consulted. "The Supreme Court rules that the government cannot trigger Article 50 without an act of parliament authorising it to do so," Supreme Court president David Neuberger said in London.
- German SPD chief Gabriel makes way for Schulz to run against Merkel
By Madeline Chambers and Holger Hansen BERLIN (Reuters) - The leader of Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) will put forward Martin Schulz, the former president of the European Parliament, to challenge conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel in a national election on September 24, sources said on Tuesday. Sigmar Gabriel's decision, reported by Stern magazine and confirmed by party sources, will make Germany's election less predictable and also signals the SPD wants to end its role as junior partner in Merkel's current right-left coalition.
- Foreign powers back Syria truce deal, war erupts among rebels
By Suleiman Al-Khalidi, John Irish and Olzhas Auyezov ASTANA (Reuters) - Russia and regional powers Turkey and Iran backed a shaky truce between Syria's warring parties on Tuesday and agreed to monitor its compliance, but on the ground rebels faced continued fighting on two fronts which could undermine the deal. After two days of deliberations in Astana, Kazakhstan's Foreign Minister Kairat Abdrakhmanov said the powers had a agreed in a final communique to establish a system "to observe and ensure full compliance with the ceasefire, prevent any provocations and determine all modalities of the ceasefire." While welcoming the text, the Syrian government's chief negotiator Bashar Ja'afari said an offensive against rebels west of Damascus would carry on.
- Spanish PM warns Brexit a 'serious threat' to economy
Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy warned Tuesday that Britain's exit from the EU posed a severe threat to the country's recovering economy, and made a plea for cohesion in Europe. "Brexit is a serious threat," Rajoy told a Madrid gathering organised by conservative daily ABC. "Without wanting to go into other considerations, I will only tell you that one in five tourists who come to Spain are British, and close to 17 million Britons visited Spain last year." The Brexit-related fall of the value of the pound in recent months has caused concern that fewer Britons may travel, and has British retirees in Spain worried about their declining purchasing power.
- EU to Trump: Trade barriers, building walls 'doomed to fail'
The European Union on Tuesday told President Donald Trump that his "America First" and protectionist trade policies are "doomed to fail" and said the kind of trade deals like the one ...
- COOKING ON DEADLINE: Filet Mignon with Pistou, Green Salad
Wow, does this dish look classy, right? But look at the ingredient list — not too long. And look at the steps — pretty darn simple.
- Verizon still not sure what to do about $4.8B Yahoo deal
Verizon says it's still mulling what to do about its $4.8 billion Yahoo deal after the internet company revealed massive hacks of customer information. The telecom giant had wanted Yahoo and its huge user ...
- Design show features projects meant to lift communities
NEW YORK (AP) — "By the People: Designing a Better America" is not your typical design show. There is no posh furniture, and any glitz comes intertwined with grit. The show is a paean to local ingenuity and "can do" spirit.
- Trump plans to keep Comey as FBI director - source
President Donald Trump intends to keep FBI Director James Comey in his post, a person familiar with the decision said on Tuesday, amid reports that U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies are scrutinizing Trump associates over their ties to Russia. Comey, a Republican, drew furious criticism from Democrats for announcing just 11 days before the Nov. 8 election that the FBI was looking at additional emails related to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's use of a private server. Four days after the election, Clinton privately blamed Comey for her election loss to Trump, telling donors Trump was able to use the FBI chief's comments about the emails to attack her in the waning days of the campaign.
- Germany's Social Democrat leader Gabriel will not challenge Merkel in poll
The leader of Germany's Social Democrats, Sigmar Gabriel, made the surprise announcement Tuesday that he would not run against Chancellor Angela Merkel in September's general election. Gabriel told Die Zeit newspaper that he would recommend that former European Parliament president Martin Schulz take his place as SPD party chairman and candidate for chancellor. The 57-year-old Gabriel is currently vice chancellor and economy minister in Merkel's loveless "grand coalition" government, as well as chairman of the SPD, Germany's oldest party which is riven by disputes between its leftist and centrist wings.
- Trump budget pick Mulvaney faces Senate hearing
WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Mick Mulvaney, President Donald Trump's staunchly conservative choice to lead the White House budget office, says the government's "debt is a problem that must be addressed sooner, rather than later."
- Uzbekistan pardons 40,000 in mass amnesty
Ex-Soviet Uzbekistan has granted a mass amnesty to almost 40,000 convicted prisoners and detainees awaiting trial, the country's Supreme Court said Tuesday. It said the amnesty focused on women, minors, men over 60 and foreign nationals and was timed to coincide with 24 years since the passing of the country's Constitution. Uzbekistan has held regular amnesties since soon after its late leader Islam Karimov came to power in 1991.