World News

ABC News Goes Inside Gaza with an Israeli Armored Unit


File photo. Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesReporter's Notebook by ABC News' Terry Moran(GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip) -- “The Cruel Lady” rolled along.That’s the nickname the Israeli soldiers use to describe their armored personnel carrier, or APC -- it’s basically an oven on wheels. ABC News traveled into Gaza on an APC with troops from the Israeli Defense Forces’ 188 Armored Brigade today, witnessing a rarely-seen side of Israel’s conflict with Hamas, now in its third week.The soldiers in “The Cruel Lady” were accompanied by two tanks, all under the command of Col. Tomer Ifrah.Ifrah says he’s proud of the work he and his troops are doing.The mounting civilian casualties in Gaza, especially the children, affect him, he said."I see my own kids," he said. "A child is a child is a child. We do everything we can to avoid hurting innocents. It is the first thing we brief every day. But sometimes, it happens."The squad was commanded by Barak Lanes, 29, a veteran of Operation Cast Lead. Lanes said he was scared to go into Gaza today. He has a 1-year-old boy at home, and Lanes hopes his son never has to enter the army.The unit traveled from Kissufim Crossing, where incoming mortar fire sent us scrambling for shelter. The unit's destination today was a newly-discovered tunnel on the outskirts of Gaza City.On the way, we stopped. One of the tanks had spotted what they feared was a Hamas militant team with an anti-tank missile. The tank took cover. Ifrah assessed the situation. A school housing refuges was located nearby -- too close to engage the threat, Ifrah decided -- so another route was taken.The tunnel the soldiers visited was uncovered the day before when an armored vehicle sank into the sandy ground under what were once greenhouses, but now were sandy ruins. The IDF dug it out this morning.The tunnel stretched into darkness, sided in concrete and narrow.Two Israeli soldiers stood with their guns pointed down the shaft, scanning for potential threats. Hamas militants have been using the tunnels for sneak attacks, a main focus for the Israeli forces.The soldiers decided against entering the tunnel -- booby-traps are always a possibility. The Israelis believe there may be other entrances, too.Entrances to the tunnel had already been found at a nearby house. But at the moment, that location was too difficult to reach.As the soldiers stood at the tunnel’s entrance, sniper fire peppered down. The Israelis countered with suppressing fire and a smokescreen. We hustled back to our vehicles, and back to Israel.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Following Malaysia Airlines Tragedy, Is It Safe to Fly?


iStock/Thinkstock(MONTREAL) -- The United Nations agency that governs civil aviation is creating a task force aimed at improving security measures after the shoot-down of a Malaysia Airlines jet over eastern Ukraine.In an emergency meeting in Montreal, top officials from four international organizations discussed risks to civilian aviation in conflict zones.Airlines and international leaders are calling on nations to be more honest and quick with information about the safety of their skies. Some countries argue such releases could jeopardize their national security -- but International Air Transport Association CEO Tony Tyler disagreed.“When considering whether or not they will share information, of course they should if they know something,” Tyler said. “If it is not safe, how can they sit back and watch innocent people threatened in this way?”The July 17 Malaysia Airlines shoot-down -- which left 298 people dead -- has drawn attention to airline conflict zones. The air zone where the plane was shot down was not restricted above 32,000 feet, and the pilots followed known protocols.The shooting has left air passengers wondering if it’s safe to fly. That safety will be addressed at a high-level meeting scheduled for February 2015.“The world’s airlines are angry. And I suspect the same is true for each of the 3.3 billion people who will board aircraft this year,” Tyler said.While officials say that a more efficient system is needed, they also expressed concerns about over-regulation."We don't need to throw away 100 years of good experience because of one terrible and tragic incident," Tyler said. "We've identified that gap. Let's close that gap."Investigators remain unable to work the grisly scene of the downed plane. It’s too dangerous, with clashes ongoing between the region’s pro-Russia rebel leaders and the Ukraine government.“The recovery of the bodies and proper investigation from the event is still being hampered by the activities of people in control of that area,” Tyler said. “It is an appalling situation.”Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Israel Steps Up Campaign in Gaza


File photo. Credit: David Silverman/Getty Images(JERUSALEM) -- Even as the United Nations relief agency for Palestinians warned of a grave humanitarian crisis, Israel intensified its air and ground offensive Tuesday against the militant group Hamas, striking key targets in Gaza.To reduce casualties, Israel says it is making a point of giving non-combatants advance notice of impending rocket attacks but so far has not been able to avoid mass fatalities.On Tuesday alone, more than 100 Palestinian were reported killed, bringing their death toll in the now 24-day conflict to more than 1,200. The Israelis have lost 53 soldiers in the fighting as well as three civilians killed by Hamas missile strikes.Meanwhile, the Palestinian Health Ministry alleged that 15 people where killed Wednesday morning when Israeli artillery struck a school the U.N. was using as a shelter. A spokesman for the Israeli military said he was investigating the claim.According to the U.N. Relief and Works Agency, more than 200,000 Palestinians are staying in 85 shelters throughout Gaza, having been displaced by the Israeli offensive. With thousands more expected to crowd into these facilities each day, the UNRWA is pleading with Israel to halt its military operation.However, all attempts at getting the two sides to stop fighting have not succeeded with only a few brief lulls to allow Palestinians to quickly gather necessities.Israel says it wants a guarantee of security from Hamas but failing that, is determined to demilitarize Gaza by destroying the group’s weaponry and tunnels that lead into Israel.Hamas says it won’t stop fighting until Israel agrees to lift a blockade of Gaza that was imposed when it took control of the region in 2007.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Militias Creating Havoc in Libya


iStock/Thinkstock(TRIPOLI, Libya) -- Libya has descended into chaos as armed militias fight for control of the embattled country.It is the worst siege of violence since dictator Moammar Gadhafi was overthrown and executed three years ago.Foreign nations, including the U.S., are pulling out their diplomats as the weak central government has had no luck in establishing any semblance of order among the militias fighting one another.Adding to the mayhem is a major fire at a fuel depot near Tripoli's airport that has raged out of control since last weekend. There are worries the blaze could reach a natural gas reservoir that, if ignited, could be unstoppable.Libya's appeal for international help to put out the fire is apparently contingent on a halt to the fighting that's not likely to happen.Mostly, the conflict is between Islamist extremists and supporters of ex-Libyan General Khalifa Haftar. While estimates of casualties are hard to determine due to the violence, it's believed the death toll is in the hundreds.It's estimated there are as many as 1,700 armed groups operating in Libya, many of whom captured weapons left behind by Gadhafi's military.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

White House Pushes Back Against GOP's Immigration Crisis Bill


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The White House is pushing back against a House Republican bill aimed at fixing the immigration crisis at the border. The GOP legislation would devote $659 million in emergency funding to deal with the influx of unaccompanied children -- far less than the $3.7 billion requested.White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest says, "They're refusing to take the kind of action that would ensure the administration has the necessary resources to deal with what they themselves describe as a serious problem."The bill would also change laws to make it easier to deport children from Central America and require that immigration hearings be held within one week of the children being apprehended by Border Patrol.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

US: North Korea's Push for Nuclear Weapons is Threatening Region


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The United States says that North Korea's push for nuclear weapons is a threat to the region.  At Tuesday's Defense Department briefing, Admiral Samuel Locklear, Commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, said, "The proliferation of activities that North Korea -- their desire for nuclear missiles and nuclear capabilities -- as we've said over and over again, are highly threatening to this global security environment."Locklear said that keeping North Korea in check is important."That denuclearization of North Korea is a central part of the way ahead in that -- this part of the world," he added.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Prince William Photobombs British Cyclist


Chris Jackson/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Prince William was caught photobombing a professional British cyclist at the Commonwealth Games.The Duke of Cambridge is all smiles in the background of Olympic cycling champ Chris Hoy's picture.Along with the photo, the cyclist tweeted, "Got to love a royal photobomb!"Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Teens Testify at South Korea Ferry Trial


NICOLAS ASFOURI/AFP/Getty Images(SEOUL, South Korea) -- Teenagers who survived April's deadly ferry sinking off the South Korean coast have been testifying in the trial of the ferry's 15 crew members.The crew members face charges of negligence and failing to carry out their duty of rescuing passengers.The disaster killed 304 people. Yoo Byung-un, a businessman whose family owned the doomed ferry, was found dead of unknown causes in an orchard back in June.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Child's Body Found in Wheelwell of US Military Aircraft That Landed in Germany


File photo. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Melissa Sheffield)(RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany) -- The body of a male adolescent was found Sunday night in the wheel-well of a U.S. Air Force C-130 at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany after the plane had arrived from a flight that originated in Africa, a U.S. official confirmed Tuesday. The body was found trapped in a compartment above the aircraft’s rear landing gear, Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby said. The C-130 aircraft was on an eight-day journey, originating in Senegal and then stopping in Mali, Chad, Tunisia and Italy before arriving at Ramstein, according to Chief Master Sgt. Ellen Schirmer, a spokeswoman at Ramstein for the 86th Airlift Wing. It’s unclear whether the child was a stowaway or where the child had boarded the plane, military officials said. The boy's body was found as maintenance crews conducted a thorough post-flight check typical of long flights, Kirby said. "The cause of death as well the other circumstances surrounding this incident remain under investigation," Kirby said. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the young man’s family." The aircraft had been in Mali on a regular mission. Asked how a boy could have potentially sneaked onto the plane, Kirby noted that security measures at various airfields are not uniform. “The aircraft is a rugged aircraft designed to operate in austere locations. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anybody that the security at some of these fields is not going to be at the same level," he said. “We shouldn’t expect that the security environment in every location that these aircraft operate in will be at the same high standard.” German authorities will have the lead in the investigation, the official said. The U.S. Air Force is cooperating.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Kerry, Ukraine FM Condemn Pro-Russian Separatists


File photo. (ABC News)(WASHINGTON) -- During a press conference with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin on Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said that pro-Russian separatists have displayed an “appalling disregard for human decency” by allowing the remains of Malaysian Airlines crash victims to lay openly at the scene for days and barring international observers from accessing the site. Both Kerry and Klimkin said there is still debris and human remains at the crash site that need to be investigated. “They still can’t even ensure that all of the victims’ remains have been removed, and that is an unsupportable burden for any family to have to bear, and it is an unacceptable standard for behavior, period,” Klimkin said. Kerry added that the United States and the European Union are working on additional sanctions on Russia. When asked when they would be imposed, he responded “forthwith.”Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Israeli Airstrikes Slam Gaza; Power Plant Shelled


iStock/Thinkstock(JERUSALEM) -- Israel slammed Gaza with a barrage of airstrikes overnight, the heaviest bombardment in the three-week conflict.Symbols of Hamas control came under fire, including TV headquarters, government offices and the home of a top leader. Israel said it targeted over 70 sites and hit 10 “terror operatives.”Israeli troops also shelled Gaza Strip’s only power plant, hitting a fuel tank and causing the plant to shut down. Fire burned following the attack, with heavy smoke rising over Gaza City. Engineer Fatahi Khalil, from the electricity company, confirmed that it will take a year to fix the power plant. The damage will be assessed at a later time, he said.Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Monday in a televised speech of a "prolonged" campaign in Gaza.Hamas also signaled defiance. Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas leader whose house was struck in an airstrike early Tuesday, said in a statement that "destroying stones will not break our determination."The tough words by both sides came amid mounting international appeals for an unconditional cease-fire.However, Hamas has said it will not stop fighting until it wins international guarantees that a seven-year-old border blockade of Gaza will be lifted. Israel said its troops will not leave Gaza until they have demolished several dozen Hamas military tunnels under the Gaza-Israel border. Late Monday, Netanyahu signaled that Israel is intensifying its air- and ground campaign.The overall Gaza death toll rose past 1,100, according to the Palestinian health ministry, with another 6,500 injured.The Israeli military said five of its soldiers were killed Monday, raising the total death toll on the Israeli side to 56, including 53 soldiers.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

US Says Russian Missile Launch 'Serious' Violation of Treaty


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Obama administration is publicly accusing Russia of violating a 1987 nuclear missile treaty, a declaration likely to deepen tensions between the two countries already at odds over crises in Ukraine, Syria, and the Middle East.The allegations, raised by President Obama in a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, center on ground-launched cruise missile tests conducted in 2011, an administration official said.The United States determined those tests violated Russia's treaty agreement to not to, "possess, produce, or flight-test" missiles with a range of up to 5,500 kilometers. The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty was signed in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev."This is a very serious matter which we have attempted to address with Russia for some time now," an administration official said, requesting anonymity to speak ahead of the formal announcement Tuesday.The issue was first raised with Russia in early 2013 but its responses, "did not resolve our concerns," the official said.An annual State Department compliance report on arms control treaties, due out on Tuesday, is expected to outline in detail the U.S. findings of the alleged Russian treaty violation.While bilateral talks with Russia on a variety of topics have broken down in recent months, the White House has extended an invitation to Russian officials for high-level dialogue on the missile treaty effective immediately, officials said. The administration, which has informed Congress of its determination, believes Russia has the potential to return to treaty compliance if it chooses.The treaty violation allegations were first reported by The New York Times.The Obama administration's announcement comes as the U.S. and European Union impose another round of tighter economic sanctions against Russia this week over alleged Russian intervention in eastern Ukraine.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

As Attacks Continue, Netanyahu Says to 'Be Prepared for a Long Operation'


iStock/Thinkstock(JERUSALEM) --  Last week, Israel and Hamas blamed each other for explosions at a shelter that left at least 16 Palestinian civilians dead, and on Monday, fatal strikes near a hospital and refugee camp left 10 Palestinian children dead, according to Gazan health officials.The Israeli Army insists its air and land forces were not operating in the area of the Al-Shifa hospital and the Al-Shati refugee camp when those two explosions occured.Israeli military officials believes rocket misfires by Islamic Jihad were responsible for the fatal strikes at a park and hospital outpatient clinic.Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhari blamed Israeli airstrikes for the attacks while eyewitness reportedly saw a drone.In a press conference Monday, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israelis, "We must be prepared for a long operation."Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Liberia Woman Describes How She Lived Through Ebola


iStock/Thinkstock(MONROVIA, Liberia) -- The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has claimed the lives of at least 672 people in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, but one person who survived the virulent disease is shedding light on what it's like to battle the virus.Tawa Tamba, a mother of three in Liberia, was recently discharged after fighting off the potentially fatal disease.Tawa's husband became very ill and died about four weeks ago. Tawa then went to a clinic run by the group Samaritan's Purse when one of her children fell ill with symptoms similar to that of her husband's.Two of her children died, and she herself became very sick, according to Dr. Azaria Marthyman of Samaritan's Purse.Tawa eventually recovered and was discharged on July 20."Tawa expressed her gratitude to God foremost and to all those who helped," Marthyman wrote in a blog post on the group's website."Thank you for praying for me every time you treated me!" Tawa told the staff, according to Marthyman.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Palestinian-American Teen Held in Israeli Custody for 3 Weeks


iStock/Thinkstock(JERUSALEM) -- United States officials are "gravely concerned" about a Palestinian-American teen who has been in Israeli custody for three weeks, the State Department said Monday.Another teen, Tariq Khdeir, drew headlines when he was arrested and allegedly beaten by Israeli authorities, but the State Department said another teen, 15-year-old U.S. citizen Mohamed Abu Nie, was arrested in Israel on July 3 during protests in the Shoafat neighborhood of East Jerusalem."Considering his age, we are calling for a speedy resolution to this case," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Monday. "This 15-year-old has now been held for three weeks in Israeli custody and has seen his parents only once briefly during that night. And so we are certainly gravely concerned about the detention of an American citizen child."A U.S. consular official visited him on July 17 and attended a hearing on July 22, Psaki said, and the U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv is in contact with his lawyer. The teen did not immediately inform Israeli officials that he was an American citizen, Psaki said, resulting in his delayed consular access.He faces charges of, "rock-throwing, attacking police, carrying a knife and leading protests," Psaki said.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Report: Afghan Forces Lose Track of Deadly Weapons


Stocktrek Images/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Afghan armed forces are not keeping proper track of the hundreds of thousands of weapons given to them by the U.S. military, prompting fears U.S.-supplied arms could be falling into the hands of insurgents, a new U.S. government report says.The report, from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), details troubling discrepancies in various inventory systems used by Afghan security forces to track the $626 million-worth of small arms and auxiliary equipment provided by the U.S. -- some discrepancies indicating hundreds of weapons are unaccounted for.In one case, an audit found over 900 weapons listed in the property book at the Afghan National Army’s Central Supply Depot weren’t actually there. The missing small arms included 740 M16 rifles and all 112 M23 pistols.“ANSF [Afghan National Security Forces] record-keeping and inventory processes are poor and, in many cases, we were unable to conduct even basic inventory testing at the ANSF facilities we visited,” the SIGAR report says. “Although CSTC-A [Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan] has established end use monitoring procedures, the lack of adherence to these procedures, along with the lack of reliable weapons inventories, limits monitoring of weapons under Afghan control and reduces the ability to identify missing and unaccounted for weapons that could be used by insurgents to harm U.S., coalition, and ANSF personnel.”Sometimes the Afghan forces had a surplus of weapons from the U.S. For instance, in the same depot as the 900 weapons that were unaccounted for, the Afghan military had an excess of nearly 200 M48 rifles and 80 M24 rifles.SIGAR also found that some 80,000 AK-47s are floating around the Afghan military unnecessarily after the U.S. decided to stop providing those weapons in favor of NATO-standard weapons. There is no plan to round them up, SIGAR said.“Given the Afghan government’s limited ability to account for or properly dispose of these weapons, there is a real potential for these weapons to fall into the hands of insurgents, which will pose additional risks to U.S. personnel, the ANSF, and Afghan civilians,” the SIGAR report states.In the report, SIGAR called on the DoD to audit the systems that track the delivery of supplied arms and to perform a full inventory check.In a response included in the SIGAR report, the Department of Defense said it agreed with a reevaluation of record keeping systems and aims to consolidate their databases, but says the U.S. military does not have the authority to require Afghan National Security Forces to reevaluate inventory, or to recover or destroy Afghan weapons.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Kerry: 'No Apologies' for Engagement in Israel/Gaza Conflict


ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Facing down domestic criticism of the U.S. response to the conflict in Israel and Gaza, Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that America “will make no apologies” for the role it has played in the region. “Make no mistake,” Kerry said. “When the people of Israel are rushing to bomb shelters, when innocent Israeli and Palestinian teenagers are abducted and murdered, when hundreds of innocent civilians have lost their lives; I will and we will make no apologies for our engagement.”Kerry made the remarks at an event inaugurating the Center for American Progress' India: 2020 program, his second public address since returning from the Middle East and Paris. A recent Gallup poll out last Thursday showed general support for Israel’s actions against Hamas in the current conflict, with 42 percent calling its actions ‘justified’ and 39 percent considering them "unjustified."But inside that figure is notable dissent within the Democratic Party and especially among younger people, with only 31 percent supporting Israel’s actions among Democrats and just 25 percent of 18-29 year olds considering Israel’s actions "justified."Kerry called out those in opposition to American involvement, saying, “This is who we are and this is what we do.” “There are some in America who question America’s efforts,” Kerry said. “They question our efforts to bring peace to various conflicts around the world. I think the question they ought to ask is what’s the alternative?” Kerry is set to make a three-day trip to India starting Wednesday this week. In a short preview of his trip, Kerry said he will stress trade, climate change and women’s equality in his meetings with the nation’s leaders in an effort to strengthen American relations there.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

West Africa's Ebola Outbreak: What You Need to Know


Hemera/Thinkstock(LONDON) -- The world’s worst ever Ebola outbreak continues to spread in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea, where at least 1,093 people having contracted the virus and 660 people have died, according to the latest numbers from the World Health Organization. Two American aid workers are among the victims of the growing outbreak, which has taken a heavy toll on health care providers treating the sick and working to contain the outbreak. Liberia's president has closed all but three land border crossings, restricted public gatherings and quarantined communities heavily affected by the Ebola outbreak in the West African nation. The Ebola virus continues its grim march across west Africa as the first two Americans were reported to be infected and a top Liberian doctor died this past weekend. Officials are also concerned after an infected man managed to board a plane from Liberia to Nigeria, potentially spreading the deadly virus to a fourth country.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

S. Korean Baseball Team So Bad It's Putting Robots in Seats


Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- You know it's bad when robotic fan proxies are brought in to liven up the atmosphere. The long suffering Hanwha Eagles baseball team has turned to a crew of robo-fans to help boost spirits at the South Korean team's games. In the past five years, the team has lost more than 400 times and has consistently ranked last in their league. Solution: Bring in the robots. Hanwha supporters who just can't be bothered to come to the stadium can project their face onto a robot from the comfort of their own homes and can even control some of the machine's movements. They can also hold up digital signs and coordinate group cheers.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Muslims Mark the End of Ramadan


Paula Bronstein/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Eid al-Fitr, a celebration marking the end of Ramadan, will be widely observed Monday in North America, though some Muslims will observe it on Tuesday.The celebration, also known as Id al-Fitr or Eid ul-Fitr, is a festival of merriment and thanksgiving in which Muslims will gather with friends and family and prepare sweet delicacies in honor of the end of the fast.Follow @ABCNewsRadio !function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="http://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs"); Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio




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