Secret Service chief quits due to security lapses WASHINGTON (AP) - Secret Service Director Julia Pierson abruptly resigned Wednesday in the face of multiple revelations of security breaches, bumbling in her agency and rapidly eroding confidence that the president and his family were being kept safe. President Barack Obama "concluded new leadership of that agency was required," said spokesman Josh Earnest.
Ebola-infected passenger was sent home from ER DALLAS (AP) - The airline passenger who brought Ebola into the U.S. initially went to a Dallas emergency room last week but was sent home, despite telling a nurse that he had been in disease-ravaged West Africa, the hospital said Wednesday in a disclosure that showed how easily an infection could be missed. The decision by Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital to release the patient, who had recently arrived from Liberia, could have put others at risk of exposure to Ebola before the man went back to the ER a couple of days later, when his condition worsened.
US sharply criticizes new Israeli housing project WASHINGTON (AP) - In a striking public rebuke, the Obama administration warned Israel on Wednesday that plans for a controversial new housing project in east Jerusalem would distance Israel from "even its closest allies" and raise questions about its commitment to seeking peace with Palestinians. The harsh criticism came just hours after President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met at the White House. Obama spokesman Josh Earnest said the president privately raised his concerns with Netanyahu though the two leaders made no mention of the matter in their public comments to reporters.
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Hong Kong protesters threaten to occupy buildings HONG KONG (AP) - Raising the stakes in their standoff with the authorities, Hong Kong's pro-democracy protesters threatened to occupy key government buildings unless the territory's top official resigns by the end of the day Thursday. The Chinese government, meanwhile, appeared to be losing patience. An editorial solemnly read Wednesday on state TV said all Hong Kong residents should support authorities in their efforts to "deploy police enforcement decisively" and "restore the social order in Hong Kong as soon as possible."
AP-GfK Poll: Divided voters still focus on economy WASHINGTON (AP) - It's not Obamacare or climate change. It's not yet terrorism or fear of the Islamic State group. Those issues are on the minds of voters as they begin casting ballots in this year's midterm elections, but nothing matters to American voters as much the economy. In a new Associated Press-GfK poll released Wednesday, 9 in 10 of those most likely to go to the polls or mail in a ballot in this year's midterm elections call the economy an extremely or very important issue.
Iraqi Kurds fight Islamic State with aged weapons MAHMOUDIYAH, Iraq (AP) - The exhausted Kurdish fighters leaned against a pair of antiquated green cannons on a hill overlooking this northern Iraqi village, the ground around them littered with shrapnel from fierce battles with Islamic State militants. One of them, Moustafa Saleh, tapped the cannon with his mud-caked boots. "Russian-made," he said, with a smirk. "My grandfather used the same one."
Minneapolis community fights recruiters for jihad MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Every evening after work, Abdirizak Bihi strolls through neighborhood parks where young Somalis shoot hoops and play soccer. He tells jokes, urges them to clean up their trash and even grabs the basketball to take a few shots. It may seem like fun, but Bihi's eyes are scanning the playgrounds and ball courts of Minneapolis for something sinister - anyone who might try to recruit these kids to join a jihad overseas.
AP PHOTOS: Trash pickers worry about end of dump BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) - Against a distant skyline of high-rise buildings, huge vultures dive over the nearly 9 tons of rubbish that arrive daily at the huge dump in Brazil's capital as nearly 3,000 trash pickers set aside recyclable plastic, metal and paper to sell. Known in Portuguese as "catadores," the people who find their livelihoods at the 430-acre (174-hectare) Estrutural landfill worry about how they'll survive once the open-air dump closes. Lying just 9 miles (15 kilometers) west of Brazil's ultramodern Planalto Presidential Palace, which was designed by the late architect Oscar Niemeyer, the dump is set to shut down on a still-unannounced date, the closure postponed because a replacement site is not ready.
AP PHOTOS: Cavaliers fans welcome back LeBron CLEVELAND (AP) - They waited in line to see him, and when LeBron James ran onto the new court inside Quicken Loans Arena for the first time in four years wearing the Cavaliers' wine and gold colors, Cleveland fans welcomed him back with a thunderous roar they've been waiting to unleash. James has returned to where he began his NBA career, focused on leading the Cavs to the city's first pro sports championship since 1964.
Bumgarner, Giants silence Pirates 8-0 to advance PITTSBURGH (AP) - The San Francisco Giants know what it takes to win this time of year. The Pittsburgh Pirates are still learning. Madison Bumgarner and Brandon Crawford provided a powerful lesson on the difference during the National League wild-card game.