Social affairs

FILE – In this Dec. 24, 2017, file photo, Canadian Lt. Maj. Chris Hache takes a call while volunteering at the NORAD Tracks Santa center at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colo. Hundreds of volunteers will help answer the phones again when the program resumes on Monday, Dec. 24, 2018, for the 63rd year. Children from around the world call to ask when Santa Claus will get to their house. (Jerilee Bennett/The Gazette via AP, File)
December 23, 2018 - 5:45 am
DENVER (AP) — The government may be partially shut down, but that won't stop hundreds of volunteers dressed in Christmas hats and military uniforms Monday from taking calls from children around the world who want to know when Santa will be coming. The military says the NORAD Tracks Santa won't be...
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A man inspects his house damaged by a tsunami in Carita, Indonesia, Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018. The tsunami occurred after the eruption of a volcano around Indonesia's Sunda Strait during a busy holiday weekend, sending water crashing ashore and sweeping away hotels, hundreds of houses and people attending a beach concert. (AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)
December 23, 2018 - 3:29 am
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — The Latest on a tsunami that hit the coast around Indonesia's Sunda Strait (all times local): 6:25 p.m. Pope Francis has prayed for the dead, the missing and the homeless in the tsunami that struck Indonesia. Francis told tourists and pilgrims in St. Peter's Square on...
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The setting sun illuminates clouds behind the White House during a partial federal shutdown, Saturday, Dec. 22, 2018, in Washington. The partial federal shutdown was expected to drag into Christmas as President Donald Trump and congressional leaders remained stuck in a standoff over his border wall with Mexico. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
December 22, 2018 - 4:33 pm
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the government shutdown (all times local): 7:30 p.m. The federal government is expected to remain partially shut down past Christmas. The standoff over President Donald Trump's demand for $5 billion to build a border wall with Mexico deepened on Saturday. Democrats...
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Cuba's President Miguel Diaz-Canel, left, Cuban First Vice President Salvador Valdes Mesa, second left, and Cuban Vice President Ramiro Valdez, center, attend the session to debate the draft of a new Constitution, at the Convention Palace in Havana, Cuba, Friday, Dec. 21, 2018. The draft will be submitted to a popular referendum on Feb. 24, 2019. Cuba's government said Tuesday that language promoting the legalization of gay marriage will be removed from the draft after widespread popular rejection of the idea. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)
December 22, 2018 - 3:49 pm
HAVANA (AP) — Cuba's National Assembly on Saturday approved an update of the country's constitution, the final step before a national referendum expected to approve the new charter in February. The new constitution contains more continuity than change, although it recognizes the de-facto...
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December 22, 2018 - 3:42 pm
MANAGUA, Nicaragua (AP) — The director of a TV station critical of President Daniel Ortega was accused Saturday of inciting terrorism after authorities raided and shut down the station's offices in their latest salvo against independent media and nongovernmental organizations. Miguel Mora's wife,...
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A man stands on a pier with Alcatraz Island at rear in San Francisco, Saturday, Dec. 22, 2018. A partial federal shutdown has been put in motion because of gridlock in Congress over funding for President Donald Trump's Mexican border wall. The company that provides ferry services to Alcatraz Island kept its daytime tours but canceled its behind-the-scenes and night tours for Saturday. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
December 22, 2018 - 1:32 pm
NEW YORK (AP) — The huddled masses are still able to visit the Statue of Liberty. The Grand Canyon is open for business. The government says other national parks "will remain as accessible as possible," although some roads at Rocky Mountain National Park are closed as snow goes unplowed. But, while...
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Moroccans lay flowers and messages during a candlelight vigil outside the Norwegian embassy in Rabat for two Scandinavian university students who were killed in a terrorist attack in a remote area of the Atlas Mountains, Morocco, Saturday, Dec. 22, 2018. Moroccans gathered Saturday in front of the Norwegian and Danish embassies in Rabat in a candlelight vigil to honor two Scandinavian university students killed in a terrorist attack in the Atlas Mountains. (AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)
December 22, 2018 - 1:16 pm
RABAT, Morocco (AP) — Moroccans gathered Saturday in front of the Norwegian and Danish embassies in Rabat in a candlelight vigil to honor two Scandinavian university students killed in a terrorist attack in the Atlas Mountains. Hundreds of people brought flowers and shed tears Saturday in a show of...
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December 22, 2018 - 11:22 am
RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas pledged on Saturday to implement a court ruling and dissolve the parliament controlled by his rival Hamas movement, triggering warnings of chaos from the Islamic militant group. Abbas' announcement is the latest in a series of bitter...
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Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, center left, attends a closed-door synod of three Ukrainian Orthodox churches to approve the charter for a unified church and to elect leadership in the St. Sophia Cathedral in Kiev, Ukraine, Saturday, Dec. 15, 2018. Poroshenko has told the crowd "the creation of our Church is another declaration of Ukraine's independence and you are the main participants of this historic event." (Mikhail Palinchak, Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Pool Photo via AP)
December 22, 2018 - 8:12 am
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine's president on Saturday signed a bill that orders the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to change its name to reflect its ties to Moscow. The Ukrainian church has been part of the Russian Orthodox Church for centuries, but some Ukrainian orthodox clerics, with government...
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People at the Tower of London on the picket line as staff from Royal Palaces take industrial action over pay. Friday, Dec. 21, 2018. The strikers carried placards but did not close the popular tourist attraction. There were also strikers outside Hampton Court Palace and Kensington Palace, which both remained open. It was the first Beefeaters job action since the 1960s. (Pete Summers/PA via AP)
December 22, 2018 - 7:53 am
LONDON (AP) — London's famed Beefeaters and other workers at several Royal Palaces have gone on a rare strike in a dispute over pension payments. There were picket lines Friday at the Tower of London, a UNESCO World Heritage site popular with tourists, and more work actions are planned for January...
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