China protests 'illegal,' 'provocative' U.S. South China Sea patrolChina's Defense Ministry said that a patrol by a U.S. warship in the South China Sea on Friday was "illegal" and "provocative" and that it had lodged a protest with the United States. In a statement on its website, the ministry said two Chinese warships had warned the U.S. warship to leave during the patrol. U.S. defense officials said the guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur challenged "excessive maritime claims" in a patrol near the Paracel Islands, among a string of islets, reefs and shoals over which China has territorial disputes with its neighbors.
U.S. warship challenges China's claims in South China Sea
By Idrees Ali and Matt Spetalnick WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. navy destroyer sailed near islands claimed by China in the South China Sea on Friday, drawing a warning from Chinese warships to leave the area. The U.S. action was the latest attempt to counter what Washington sees as Beijing's efforts to limit freedom of navigation in the strategic waters, U.S. officials said. The Chinese Defense Ministry called the move "illegal" and "provocative," saying that two Chinese warships had warned the U.S. destroyer to leave.
Trump attorneys seek to bar his campaign comments at trialSAN DIEGO (AP) ? Donald Trump's lawyers don't want any statements he made during the presidential campaign mentioned in an upcoming civil trial over Trump University.
Dueling Missouri tobacco tax initiatives causing confusionST. LOUIS (AP) ? Missouri voters are facing the confusing prospect of two separate proposals on the same ballot that would increase the state's lowest-in-the-nation tobacco tax by different amounts.
94-year-old who has been fire chief since 1953 is retiringGREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) ? A Pennsylvania fire chief is announcing his retirement just ahead of his 95th birthday.
AT&T bids for Time Warner, 21st Century Fox not interested: sources
AT&T, which sells wireless phone and broadband services, has already made moves to turn itself into a media powerhouse, buying satellite TV provider DirecTV last year for $48.5 billion. Time Warner has a market value of about $70 billion and AT&T has a market value of about $230 billion. Time Warner Chief Executive Jeff Bewkes rejected an $80 billion offer from Twenty-First Century Fox Inc in 2014, but sources said on Friday that the former suitor had no plans to renew its bid.
Obama White House hosting final musical event with BET
Best and worst jokes from Trump, Clinton at white-tie affair
NEW YORK (AP) ? Every four years, the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner is meant to be a campaign cease-fire, when the presidential nominees share the stage a final time before Election Day and trade warm-hearted jokes.
Europe's Mars probe destroyed after plunging to surface
By Maria Sheahan FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Images taken by a NASA Mars orbiter indicate that a missing European space probe was destroyed on impact after plummeting to the surface of the Red Planet from a height of 2-4 km (1.2 to 2.5 miles), the European Space Agency said on Friday. The disc-shaped, 577-kg (1,272 lb) Schiaparelli probe, part of the Russian-European ExoMars program to search for evidence of life on Mars, descended on Wednesday to test technologies for a rover that scientists hope to send to the surface of the planet in 2020. "Schiaparelli reached the ground with a velocity that was much higher than it should have been, several hundred kilometers per hour, and was then unfortunately destroyed by the impact," ExoMars Flight Director Michel Denis told Reuters TV.
Canada blasts 'incapable' EU as trade talks fail
Canada blasted the European Union as incapable of signing international agreements, as talks to persuade the Belgian region of Wallonia to sign up to a huge trade deal broke down Friday. Chrystia Freeland, the Canadian trade minister, appeared on the verge of tears after walking out of negotiations with the head of the French-speaking Belgian region on a deal that has been seven years in the making. "It seems obvious to me, to Canada, that the European Union is incapable now of having an international agreement, even with a country with such European values as Canada, and even with a country as kind and patient as Canada," Freeland said.