Malaysia jet victims' bodies arrive in Netherlands EINDHOVEN, Netherlands (AP) - Victims of the Malaysian jetliner shot down over Ukraine returned at last Wednesday to Dutch soil in 40 wooden coffins, solemnly and gently carried to 40 identical hearses, flags at half-staff flapping in the wind. The carefully choreographed, nearly silent ceremony contrasted sharply with the boom of shells and shattered glass around eastern Ukraine as pro-Russian rebels fought Wednesday to hang onto territory - and shot down two Ukrainian fighter jets. The bold new attack showed they are not shying away from shooting at the skies despite international outrage and grief at the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.
A kiss, a prayer: The last hours of MH17's victims In a bedroom in a townhouse near Amsterdam, Miguel Panduwinata reached out for his mother. "Mama, may I hug you?" Samira Calehr wrapped her arms around her 11-year-old son, who'd been oddly agitated for days, peppering her with questions about death, about his soul, about God. The next morning, she would drop Miguel and his big brother Shaka at the airport so they could catch Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, the first leg of their journey to Bali to visit their grandmother.
US pushes for truce as Gaza battle rages GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) - Israeli troops battled Hamas militants on Wednesday near a southern Gaza Strip town as the top U.S. diplomat reported progress in efforts to end fighting that has so far killed more than 680 Palestinians and 34 Israelis. But neither side appeared to be backing down, after Palestinian rocket fire led several international airlines to cancel flights to Tel Aviv and Israeli troops clashed with Hamas near the Gaza town of Khan Younis in heavy fighting that forced dozens of families to flee. Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal later demanded Gaza's borders be open and an end to the blockade against it, calling Palestinians "the true owners of the land."
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Honduran families deported back to a bleak future TOCOA, Honduras (AP) - Elsa Ramirez already had lost two brothers to violence in this remote Caribbean region when co-workers handling clandestine cocaine flights from South America murdered her husband four months ago. Then the killers came looking for her.
APNewsBreak: Medicaid enrollees strain Oregon PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Low-income Oregon residents were supposed to be big winners after the state expanded Medicaid under the federal health care overhaul and created a new system to improve the care they received. But an Associated Press review shows that an unexpected rush of enrollees has strained the capacity of the revamped network that was endorsed as a potential national model, locking out some patients, forcing others to wait months for medical appointments and prompting a spike in emergency room visits, which state officials had been actively seeking to avoid.
Porch shooter's lawyer says he feared for his life DETROIT (AP) - A suburban Detroit man who killed an unarmed woman on his porch was rocked out of sleep by a series of "boom, boom, boom" pounding sounds outside his home, causing him to grab a shotgun, open the front door and fire, a defense lawyer told jurors during opening statements Wednesday. Theodore Wafer is on trial and claiming self-defense in the death last year of Renisha McBride, 19, in Dearborn Heights. But prosecutors have charged the 55-year-old with second-degree murder, saying there was no reason to use deadly force instead of calling police.
Plane crashes while landing in Taiwan, killing 47 TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) - A plane attempting to land in stormy weather crashed on a small Taiwanese island late Wednesday, killing 47 people and wrecking houses and cars on the ground. The ATR-72 operated by Taiwan's TransAsia Airways was carrying 58 passengers and crew when it crashed on Penghu in the Taiwan Strait between Taiwan and China, authorities said. The plane was arriving from the city of Kaohsiung in southern Taiwan.
Nazi war suspect, 89, dies as extradition OK'd PHILADELPHIA (AP) - An 89-year-old Nazi war crimes suspect died in custody hours before a U.S. ruling Wednesday that he should be extradited to Germany to face trial. Johann Breyer died Tuesday night at a Philadelphia hospital, where he had been transferred Saturday after a month in jail, his lawyer and the U.S. Marshals Service said. His death was disclosed Wednesday just as U.S. Magistrate Timothy Rice approved the extradition request, which would still have needed final U.S. government review.
Death sentence given in AP photographer's killing KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - A Kabul court announced Wednesday that the Afghan police officer charged with killing Associated Press photographer Anja Niedringhaus and wounding veteran AP correspondent Kathy Gannon has been convicted and sentenced to death. It was the first court hearing in the case and, under Afghan law, the verdict and sentence are subject to several stages of review.
Seniors share homes for cost saving, companionship NEW YORK (AP) - It's not exactly "The Golden Girls," but for Marcia Rosenfeld, it'll do. Rosenfeld is among thousands of aging Americans taking part in home-sharing programs around the country that allow seniors to stay in their homes and save money while getting some much-needed companionship.