Caller told FBI Florida shooting suspect 'going to explode' WASHINGTON (AP) - A woman close to the man charged with killing 17 people at a Florida high school warned the FBI in chilling detail that he had a growing collection of guns and a temper so uncontrollable she worried about him "getting into a school and just shooting the place up." The Associated Press on Friday obtained a transcript of the Jan. 5 tip to the FBI's call center. The FBI acknowledged it failed to investigate the tip about 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, but the transcript provides the fullest glimpse yet into the seriousness of the woman's concerns. "I know he's going to explode," she told the call-taker.
Democrats release memo rebutting GOP on Russia probe WASHINGTON (AP) - Two weeks after President Donald Trump blocked the full release of a classified Democratic memo, the House intelligence committee published a redacted version of the document that aims to counter a narrative that Republicans on the committee have promoted for months - that the FBI and Justice Department conspired against Trump as they investigated his ties to Russia. The Democratic memo's release on Saturday was the latest development in an extraordinary back and forth between Republicans and Democrats about the credibility of not only the multiple inquiries into links between the Trump campaign and Russia, but also about the integrity of the nation's top law enforcement agencies.
NRA, Florida face backlash after latest school shooting NEW YORK (AP) - The National Rifle Association, and now the State of Florida, faced a growing backlash Saturday as companies cut ties to the gun industry following the latest school massacre, and student survivors called for tourism boycotts of their home state until gun control measures are enacted. The latest companies to end their ties with the NRA were Delta and United Airlines, two of the three largest U.S.-based airlines. Corporate ties to the NRA aren't the only elements undergoing scrutiny after a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 dead on Valentine's Day.
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IOC upholds doping ban; Russians can't march under own flag PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) - The International Olympic Committee on Sunday upheld the ban of Russia from the Pyeongchang Winter Games because of doping, denying the 168 athletes competing here as "Olympic Athletes from Russia" the right to march in the closing ceremony under their country's flag. The IOC's full membership unanimously approved the recommendation of the executive board just hours before the final competition and the closing ceremony. Fifty-two of the IOC's 100 members were present for the vote on the fallout from the massive Russian doping scandal, which has tarnished the IOC and raised doubts about its ability to protect clean athletes.
School shooting survivors target NRA-linked companies Survivors of a mass shooting at a Florida high school are hoping to expand the reach of their gun control movement by seeking a boycott of companies doing business with the NRA and urging tourists to boycott the Sunshine State. As the #BoycottNRA movement grew on Twitter, with petitions circulating against companies that offer discounts to NRA members, a growing number of those businesses announced they are cutting or reducing ties with the association. Both Delta and United said Saturday that they will no longer offer discounted airfares to NRA members to attend their annual meetings, and both have asked the gun rights group to remove any references to their companies from the NRA website.
Iraq's ethnic, religious groups fragmented as elections near BAGHDAD (AP) - Long beset by toxic divisions, Iraq seems to be growing even more fragmented ahead of national elections scheduled for May, with Iranian influence set to grow and the minority Sunnis seething as they fend for themselves in areas of the country shattered by the three-year war against the Islamic State group. The Sunnis, many of them in displacement camps, bore the brunt of the war's destruction and have been left so bereft that many don't even have the papers needed to register to vote. If they don't end up feeling the vote was fair, that could badly undermine the international community's goal of bringing about the more inclusive government critical to maintaining a unified state and avoiding a repeat of the IS disaster.
Avant-garde mosque angers hard-liners in Iran TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - A newly built avant-garde mosque in the heart of Iran's capital would have hard-liners shouting from the minarets - if there were any. The architects behind the Vali-e-Asr mosque dispensed with the traditional rounded domes and towering minarets, opting instead for a modern design of undulating waves of gray stone and concrete, which they say complements the surrounding architecture and evokes the austerity of early Islam. The new structure has infuriated hard-liners, who see it as part of a creeping secular onslaught on the Islamic republic. An editorial posted on the Mashregh news website compared the curvature to that of a Jewish yarmulke, accusing authorities of "treason" for approving it.
Damascus suburb strikes kill scores, UN votes for cease-fire BEIRUT (AP) - A new wave of airstrikes and shelling on eastern suburbs of the Syrian capital Damascus left at least 22 people dead and dozens wounded Saturday, raising the death toll of a week of bombing in the area to 500, as the U.N. Security Council unanimously approved a resolution demanding a 30-day cease-fire across Syria. The weeklong bombardment has overwhelmed rescuers and doctors at makeshift hospitals, many of which have also been bombed. Activists say that terrified residents have been hiding in underground shelters where dozens of people can be crammed into small places. The latest wave of bombings came after the U.N.
Billy Graham's body arrives at namesake library CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Admirers took photos on their phones, fire trucks parked on freeway overpasses and police officers saluted as a motorcade carrying the body of the Rev. Billy Graham crossed the evangelist's beloved home state of North Carolina for four hours Saturday from his mountain chapel to namesake library in the state's largest city. Residents in some of Graham's most cherished places paid tribute to "America's Pastor," starting at the training center operated by his evangelistic association in Asheville. The motorcade rolled through Black Mountain, where he shopped and caught trains, and Montreat, where he lived. Well-wishers lined sidewalks and medians as the motorcade reached Charlotte.
After years of dejection, proponents of gun laws see hope PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) - The progression has become numbingly repetitive - mass bloodshed unleashed by a gunman, followed by the stories of the fallen, the funerals, the mourning, the talking heads and the calls for change that dwindle into nothingness. The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, though, has some pondering the improbable: Could this latest carnage actually lead to gun reforms? Alongside the familiar refrains stemming from earlier shootings, the Feb. 14 attack in Parkland, Florida, came with something else: young survivors immediately pleading for nationwide action. They have led walk-outs, confronted politicians and garnered the support of celebrities, linking their sorrowful, eloquent, outraged voices to the gun debate.