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Contract talks in Met Opera labor dispute extended
NEW YORK (AP) ? It's a drama worthy of the Metropolitan Opera: Frantic, last-minute labor negotiations aimed at averting a lockout that threatens to stop both pay and benefits for thousands of singers, musicians, stagehands and other workers.
At White House gala, Obama honors Special Olympics

Singer Katy Perry performs her song "Roar" at an event for the Special Olympics hosted by President Barack Obama in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, July 31, 2014. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)WASHINGTON (AP) ? Singers Katy Perry and Stevie Wonder joined other A-list celebrities, world-famous athletes and American legends who donned their best suits and gowns Thursday as President Barack Obama hosted a White House celebration honoring the Special Olympics.

Banksy's 'Spy Booth' artwork defaced

A view of the Banksy mural which targets the issue of Government surveillance with silver and red paint sprayed over it, Cheltenham, England, Friday, Aug. 1, 2014. A mural by street artist Banksy that sparked a local preservation campaign has been defaced. "Spy Booth" shows three agents in trench coats and trilby hats eavesdropping on a phone booth. It appeared in April on a wall in Cheltenham, western England, home of spy agency GCHQ. A local group formed to save the work after the building's owner attempted to have it removed and sold. Campaigner Angela De Souza said a local businessman had agreed to buy and preserve the work. But on Friday it was covered in scrawled graffiti letters. De Souza said conservators were in ?a race against time? to save it. Banksy works have fetched as much as $1.8 million at auction, and several of his outdoor pieces have recently been stripped from walls and sold. (AP Photo/Claire Hayhurst/PA Wire) UNITED KINGDOM OUTLONDON (AP) ? A mural by street artist Banksy that sparked a local preservation campaign has been defaced.

Russell Simmons, LL Cool J visit youth at NYC jail

Actor and music artist L.L. Cool J, left, talks with Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons on a visit to speak with youth at the juvenile detention center of Rikers Island, Thursday, July 31, 2014, in New York. Simmons, founder of the RushCard Keep the Peace initiative, was accompanied by L.L. Cool J to the detention center to offer advice to the inmates on reducing violence in their neighborhoods. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)NEW YORK (AP) ? A group of young people at a jail complex got some words of encouragement on Thursday from hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and actor LL Cool J.

'Godfather of Makeup' Dick Smith dead at 92

In this publicity image released by Warner Bros. Entertainment, Linda Blair portrays a possessed Regan MacNeil in a scene from, "The Exorcist." Dick Smith, the Oscar-winning make-up artist who amused, fascinated and terrified moviegoers by devising unforgettable transformations for Marlon Brando in "The Godfather" and Linda Blair in "The Exorcist," died Wednesday, July 30, 2014 in California of natural causes. He was 92. (AP Photo/Warner Bros. Entertainment)NEW YORK (AP) ? Dick Smith, the Oscar-winning "Godfather of Makeup" who amused, fascinated and terrified moviegoers by devising unforgettable transformations for Marlon Brando in "The Godfather" and Linda Blair in "The Exorcist" among many others, has died. He was 92.

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Latest press releases
Clazwork.com Is Now Accepting Online Math Tutors Applications for its Tutoring Marketplace
Henderson Property Management Opens New Offices in Fort Collins and Loveland
Henderson Property Management and Real Estate LLC (http://hmre.net) Opens New Office Locations in Fort Collins and Loveland to Support Northern Colorado Expansion and to Better Serve Its Customers.
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UK Candy has introduced a new product line of fun gumball machines to help make dispensing brightly coloured, wonderfully flavoured gumballs great fun this summer.
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4Patriots applauds the University of Wisconsin-Madison for taking disaster preparedness seriously.
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The Begum Law Group Launches Community Page On Website To Announce Important Recalls
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News Headlines
Israel declares Gaza truce over, 50 die in Gaza shelling
By Nidal al-Mughrabi and Jeffrey Heller GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel declared a Gaza ceasefire over on Friday and killed more than 50 Palestinians in renewed shelling, saying militants had breached the truce shortly after it began and apparently captured an Israeli soldier. The 72-hour break announced by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was the most ambitious attempt so far to end more than three weeks of fighting, and followed mounting international alarm over a rising Palestinian civilian death toll. The Israeli military said that 90 minutes into the truce, militants attacked soldiers searching for tunnels in the southern Gaza Strip used to infiltrate fighters into Israel. There was an exchange of fire," said Lieutenant-Colonel Peter Lerner, a military spokesman.
Experts start work at Ukraine crash site despite new fighting

Members of a group of international experts walk past wreckage at the site where the downed Malaysia airlines flight MH17 crashed in Donetsk regionBy Natalia Zinets and Gabriela Baczynska KIEV (Reuters) - International experts started recovery work at the wreckage site of a downed Malaysian airliner in east Ukraine on Friday despite clashes nearby between government forces and pro-Russian rebels. In the latest clashes, the rebels killed at least 10 Ukrainian paratroopers in an ambush after midnight near Shakhtarsk, one of the closest towns to the wreckage site, the Ukrainian military said. The rebels said they had pushed back government forces around Shakhtarsk, where fighting has raged for several days. The recovery mission included 70 experts from Australia and the Netherlands, whose countries suffered a big loss of life in the shoot-down, as well as representatives of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

Exclusive: China's Xi likely to promote army general who exposed graft - sources

General Liu Yuan leaves the Great Hall of the People in BeijingBy Benjamin Kang Lim and Ben Blanchard BEIJING (Reuters) - President Xi Jinping is likely to promote a corruption whistleblower to China's top military decision-making body to underscore his determination to tackle graft inside the country's rapidly modernizing armed forces, two sources said. General Liu Yuan, 62, the eldest son of late president Liu Shaoqi, is set to be appointed to the Central Military Commission during a meeting of the Communist Party's elite 205-member Central Committee in October, a source close to the leadership and a second source with ties to the military said. Security had been stepped up around Liu after he had received death threats for exposing the worst military graft scandal in modern China, which involved the widespread selling of positions in the People's Liberation Army (PLA), three separate sources added. His crackdown accelerated this week when the party said it was investigating former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang for breaching party discipline, a euphemism for corruption.

Gas blast in Taiwan kills 25, injures 267, topples buildings

A view from a rooftop shows the road after an explosion occurred in KaohsiungA series of explosions caused by a gas leak killed 25 people and injured 267 in Taiwan's second city on Friday, sending flames shooting 15 storeys into the air, setting ablaze entire blocks and reducing small shops to rubble. Rescue authorities said police and soldiers had been drafted in to help firefighters after the midnight explosion and blaze gutted a district in the port city of Kaohsiung packed with shops and apartment buildings. Four firefighters were among the dead. President Ma Ying-jeou pledged tough measures to prevent any recurrence of the incident.

Islamic State imposes media controls in Syrian province

A fighter of the ISIL holds a flag and a weapon on a street in MosulIslamic State, the al Qaeda splinter group which has seized parts of Syria and Iraq, has told activists in Syria's Deir al-Zor province they must swear allegiance to it and submit to censorship, a monitoring group said on Friday. International media organizations have little presence in Syria and rely on activists and other sources to provide information on what is happening in the country. Islamic State also told the activists they must recognize the caliphate, based on their strict interpretation of Islam, that it has declared in the parts of Iraq and Syria it controls.

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News Headlines
Militants 'seize Israeli soldier'
Israeli forces search for a soldier believed captured in fighting that ended a short-lived humanitarian truce in Gaza.
MH17 crash investigators get to work
A team of 70 Dutch and Australian forensic experts finally get to work at the site of the flight MH17 crash in east Ukraine as fighting continues.
Sassoon war diaries published online
Twenty-three journals belonging to the war poet Siegfried Sassoon, many written in the trenches, are being published online for the first time.
US economy adds 209,000 jobs in July
The US economy added 209,000 jobs in July, latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal, adding to optimism that the US economy is roaring once more.
Uganda court annuls anti-gay law
Uganda's Constitutional Court annuls a tough anti-gay law that had drawn widespread criticism by Western governments and human rights activists.
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