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Syria says Israel fired missiles toward Damascus, hit airport warehouse

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Syrian state news agency said Israeli warplanes fired a number of missiles toward the Damascus area on Friday, triggering Syrian air defense that shot down most of them. “The results of the aggression so far were limited to a strike on one of the warehouses at Damascus airport,” the SANA news agency cited a military source as saying. The attack took place at 11:15 p.m.(2115 GMT), it said. Syrian state media broadcast footage of what it said were the air defenses firing, with bright lights seen shooting across the night sky. Explosions were heard in one of the videos. Israel has mounted attacks…

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Florida governor suspends sheriff for response to school massacre

TAMPA, Fla. (Reuters) - Florida Governor Ron DeSantis on Friday suspended the local sheriff criticized for the police response to last year’s mass shooting that left 17 dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. FILE PHOTO: Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel speaks before the start of a CNN town hall meeting at the BB&T Center, in Sunrise, Florida, U.S. February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Michael Laughlin/Pool/File PhotoDeSantis said Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel showed leadership failures in the shooting that left 14 students and three adults dead at the hands of a lone gunman on Feb. 14, 2018. “The massacre might never have happened had Broward had…

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Texas tent city that holds migrant teens to close

EL PASO, Texas (Reuters) - A tent city in Texas for migrant teens will close, the U.S. government said on Friday, and the children held in what had become a controversial symbol of President Donald Trump’s migration policy will be transferred to sponsors or other shelters. FILE PHOTO: Immigrant children are led by staff in single file between tents at a detention facility next to the Mexican border in Tornillo, Texas, U.S., June 18, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File PhotoThe shelter in Tornillo, Texas opened in June to house migrant children, many of whom were Central Americans who crossed the border alone. Immigration advocates raised concerns about how long…

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Monster snowstorm to blanket more than half of United States

NEW YORK/TAOS, N.M. (Reuters) - A massive winter storm hit the U.S. Rockies and Plains on Friday then punched east, with snow set to assault a 1,800-mile (1,609 km) corridor through the weekend, creating transportation “havoc” in the middle of the country. The system started as rain from Mexico and turned to snow as it met icy air. Up to 18 inches (45 cm) of snow were expected in the Sangre de Cristo mountains south of Denver, according to the National Weather Service. As the storm heads east, up to 16 inches (41 cm) of snow were likely in western Missouri and St. Louis. Areas to the…

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Syria says Israeli fired missiles toward Damascus, hit airport warehouse

BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Syrian state news agency said Israeli warplanes fired a number of missiles toward the Damascus area on Friday, triggering Syrian air defenses that shot down most of them. “The results of the aggression so far were limited to a strike on one of the warehouses at Damascus airport,” the SANA news agency cited a military source as saying. The attack took place at 11:15 p.m. (2115 GMT), it said. Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by Sandra MalerOur Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Trump stops short of emergency declaration in border wall fight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump said on Friday he would not declare a national emergency “right now” to end a standoff over border security that has idled large swaths of the U.S. government, all but guaranteeing that he will preside over the longest shutdown in U.S. history. The dispute has disrupted everything from air travel to tax collection and suspended pay for 800,000 government workers. Trump has repeatedly described the situation at the U.S.- Mexico border as a “humanitarian crisis” as speculation has increased this week that he would circumvent Congress to begin building his signature wall - a move that would be sure to draw…

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As government shutdown drags on, where is Senator McConnell?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - When President Donald Trump stormed out of a White House meeting with congressional leaders last Wednesday, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sat there silently, uttering not a word as the talks blew up, according to others in the room. U.S. President Donald Trump departs with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Mike Pence after addressing a closed Senate Republican policy lunch as a partial government shutdown enters its 19th day on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., January 9, 2019. REUTERS/Jim YoungThe No. 1 Republican in Congress, who rose to power on his reputation as a master of legislative wrangling, has…

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Wisconsin girl, missing for three months, escapes captor

(Reuters) - A 21-year-old Wisconsin man was charged on Friday with holding a 13-year-old girl captive for three months after murdering her parents, one day after the teen managed to escape and was discovered by a woman walking her dog. Thousands of volunteers and hundreds of law enforcement officers had searched around the clock around the small town of Barron after Jayme Closs’ parents were found shot dead in their home, the front door open and the girl gone. Relying on what Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald called “the will of a kid to survive,” a disheveled Closs escaped a house in the tiny town of Gordon…

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U.S. stocks pause after five-day rally; dollar rebounds

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street ended little changed on Friday, taking a breather following a five-day winning streak, while the dollar rebounded against most currencies from earlier losses tied to expectations the U.S. central bank is in no hurry to raise interest rates. Earlier weakness in stocks and data showing a decline in U.S. consumer prices in December stoked investor appetite for Treasuries, pushing their yields lower. Stocks have rallied this week, helped by promises of patience from the Federal Reserve, the ECB mulling more cheap money, and progress in trade talks between Washington and Beijing. “These risks seem more under control,” said Kristina Hooper, chief…

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Kidnapped children make headlines, but abduction is rare in U.S.

FILE PHOTO: A U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) missing person poster shows Jayme Closs, a 13-year-old Wisconsin girl, missing since her parents were discovered fatally shot three months ago, has been located in Gordon, Wisconsin, U.S. as seen in this poster provided January 11, 2019. FBI/Handout via Reuters(Reuters) - A 13-year-old Wisconsin girl who escaped her captor this week nearly three months after her parents were killed and she was kidnapped has drawn international headlines, but abductions of children by strangers remain rare, according to U.S. data. On average, fewer than 350 people under the age of 21 have been abducted by strangers in the United…

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