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Tianjin explosions: sodium cyanide on site may have been 70 times allowed amount

700 tons of cyanide in China blastChinese officials have found what they believe to be hundreds of tonnes of sodium cyanide at two locations within the site of Wednesday’s deadly blasts in Tianjin as a massive cleanup effort continues, state media reported on Sunday.

The discovery came after reports claimed that up to 700 tonnes of the chemical – 70 times the permitted amount – were stored at the site, with some reports suggesting the company that owned the warehouse where the blasts originated, Rui Hai International Logistics, may have been illegally transporting chemicals.


DNA frees Pennsylvania man imprisoned 34 years for girl's rape, murder

wrongful imprisonmnetA man convicted of raping and killing a teenage girl almost 40 years ago was released from a Pennsylvania penitentiary this week after a new round of DNA testing led a judge to scrap his sentence.

Lewis Fogle was arrested five years after the 1976 murder of 15-year-old Deann Katherine Long in Cherry Tree, Pa. -- and received a life sentence, without parole, following his conviction in 1982.

In other words, Fogle was sentenced to die in prison. After just seven minutes in a Pennsylvania court Thursday, though, he regained his freedom.


Volkswagen recalls 420,000 vehicles in U.S.

Volkswagon recallThe recall of some 420,000 vehicles in the United States and 41,000 in Canada is for eight models including the Golf and GTI (2011 to 2014), Passat and Tiguan (2010 to 2014) and Jetta (2010 to 2013).

Volkswagen said a spring in the steering wheel assembly can rip a cable that controls the electrical connection to the front air bags. This will not allow the airbag to deploy correctly.


Twin blasts kill anti-Taliban Pakistani minister, 13 more

Pakistani minister killedA pair of suicide bombers detonated their explosives at the home of an anti-Taliban provincial minister, killing him and 13 others in eastern Pakistan, officials said.

Shuja Khanzada's body was retrieved from the rubble of the collapsed building in his hometown of Shadi Khan in Attock district, some 80 kilometers (50 miles) northwest of the capital, Islamabad, government official Saeed Elahi said.


Iran meets key deadline in sanctions relief deal

Iran meets key deadlineIran on Saturday gave the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) documents linked to the agency's probe of allegations that Tehran tried to develop atomic arms.

The handover meets a key deadline Iran has committed to as part of its overarching deal with six world powers promising Tehran sanctions relief in exchange for nuclear concessions.

The July 14 deal's main focus is curbing Iran's present nuclear program that could be used to make weapons. But a subsidiary element obligates Tehran to cooperate with the IAEA in its probe of the allegations.


Airliner with 54 aboard goes missing in eastern Indonesia

IndonesianAn Indonesian airliner carrying 54 people went missing Sunday after losing contact with ground control during a short flight in bad weather in the country's mountainous easternmost province of Papua, officials said.

Local villagers told authorities that they saw a plane crash into a mountain, and scores of rescuers were heading to the remote area and will begin searching there Monday morning. An air search for the missing plane was suspended and will resume Monday as well.


AT&T has 'extraordinary, decades-long' relationship with NSA – report

ATT helped NASAThe telecoms giant AT&T has had an “extraordinary, decades-long” relationship with the National Security Agency, it was reported on Saturday.

Citing newly disclosed NSA documents dating from 2003 to 2013, the New York Times said in a story published with ProPublica that AT&T was described as “highly collaborative” with an “extreme willingness to help” with government internet surveillance.


At least 40 migrants dead at sea, 320 others rescued

Immigrants die on shipAt least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others on the same boat were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said.

Migrants by the tens of thousands are braving the perilous journey across the Mediterranean this year, hoping to reach Europe and be granted asylum. They are fleeing war, persecution and poverty in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.


Arkansas governor cuts state contracts with Planned Parenthood

Planned parenthoodArkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson on Friday canceled the state's contracts with Planned Parenthood, making his the third Southern state to do so since anti-abortion activists released a series of videos that they say suggests the organization sells fetal tissue.

"It is apparent that after the recent revelations on the actions of Planned Parenthood, that this organization does not represent the values of the people of our state and Arkansas is better served by terminating any and all existing contracts with them," Hutchinson, a Republican, said in a statement.


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