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AP Top News at 9:51 p.m. EST

Spy's parents search for son after Cuba-US deal
HAVANA (AP) - When convicted spy Rolando Sarraff Trujillo failed to call home from prison, his parents went to the jail to see if their son had fallen ill. Officials told the elderly couple not to worry, saying only that he was better off. A former intelligence official in the United States on Thursday publicly identified their son as the unnamed spy traded for three Cuban intelligence agents jailed in the United States, one who U.S. President Barack Obama hailed as one of Washington's most valuable assets.


Hope and some fear in Cuba amid thaw with US
HAVANA (AP) - The restoration of diplomatic ties between Cuba and the United States unleashed expectations Thursday of even more momentous changes on an island that often seems frozen in a past of classic cars and crumbling Art Deco buildings. On the first full day after the surprise announcement, many Cubans expressed hope that it will mean greater access to jobs and the creature comforts taken for granted elsewhere, and lift a struggling socialist economy where staples like meat, cooking oil and toilet paper are often hard to come by.


10 Things to Know for Friday
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday: 1. NEWLY FREED CUBAN WHO SPIED FOR US PORTRAYED AS VITAL ASSET


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Next steps on Cuba: Normalizing could take awhile
WASHINGTON (AP) - How does one end almost 54 years of hostility toward a next-door neighbor? That's about to become clear as the Obama administration and the communist government of Raul Castro move to normalize more than a half-century of bitter animosity between the United States and Cuba.


Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?
WASHINGTON (AP) - The detective work blaming North Korea for the Sony hacker break-in appears so far to be largely circumstantial, The Associated Press has learned. The dramatic conclusion of a Korean role is based on subtle clues in the hacking tools left behind and the involvement of at least one computer in Bolivia previously traced to other attacks blamed on the North Koreans. Experts cautioned that hackers notoriously employ disinformation to throw investigators off their tracks, using borrowed tools, tampering with logs and inserting false references to language or nationality.


Sony film took aim at North Korea's biggest taboo
TOKYO (AP) - If the U.S. government's claim is correct that North Korea was involved in the unprecedented hack attack on Sony Pictures that scuttled Seth Rogen's latest comedy, no one can say they weren't warned. The movie, "The Interview," pushed all of North Korea's buttons. No country would welcome a movie portraying the glib and graphic assassination of its leader.


Review: 'The Interview' deserves to be seen
That I was one of the relative few to see "The Interview" is not a boast I take any pleasure in. It's with heavy sadness, not pride, that I review Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg's North Korean farce. As of Thursday morning, the film has been shelved just a week ahead of its planned release due to terrorist threats by hackers said to be connected to North Korea. The movie's prospects of ever seeing the light of day are very much in doubt.


Tsarnaev appears in court for 1st time since 2013
BOSTON (AP) - Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev returned to court Thursday for the first time since he was arraigned in July 2013, and he received a shout of encouragement from the mother-in-law of a man who was shot and killed while being questioned by law enforcement after the bombings. Security was tight at the federal courthouse in Boston for Tsarnaev's final pretrial conference. Tensions ran high, and one bombing victim had a testy exchange with protesters outside.


Dow industrials have their best day in three years
NEW YORK (AP) - The Dow Jones industrial average had its biggest surge in three years Thursday, its second straight triple-digit gain following the Federal Reserve's reassurance that it was in no hurry to raise interest rates. Bullish earnings from technology giant Oracle also drove the rally, which has helped stocks erase an early-December slump. Industrial and health care stocks also logged big gains. Even the energy sector advanced, despite another drop in the price of oil.


2 states challenge Colorado marijuana legalization
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska and Oklahoma on Thursday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to declare Colorado's legalization of marijuana unconstitutional, saying the drug is being brought from Colorado into the neighboring states. Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning said the states filed a lawsuit seeking a court order to prevent Colorado from enforcing the measure known as Amendment 64, which was approved by voters in 2012. The complaint says the measure runs afoul of federal law and therefore violates the Constitution's supremacy clause, which says federal laws trump state laws.

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