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U.S. jobless claims point to firmer labor market

WASHINGTON - The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly fell last week, suggesting the labor market continued to strengthen.

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Israel's Lieberman says hopes Palestinians return to talks

PRAGUE - Israel hopes the Palestinians come back to the negotiating table, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Thursday, calling a U.N. Security Council draft resolution seeking a peace deal within a year counter-productive.

10:00am EST

Suspected Boko Haram gunmen kidnap 100 over women, children in Nigeria

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria - Suspected Boko Haram gunmen kidnapped more than 100 women and children and killed 35 other people on Sunday during a raid on the remote northeast Nigerian village of Gumsuri, a security source and resident said on Thursday.

World, Africa 10:05am EST

EU's top court opens door to some stem cell patents

BRUSSELS/LONDON - Europe's top court has opened the door to certain stem cell patents in the European Union by ruling that an organism incapable of developing into a human being is not a human embryo and may be patented.

8:23am EST

U.S., Cuba restore ties after 50 years

HAVANA/WASHINGTON - The United States and Cuba agreed on Wednesday to restore diplomatic ties that Washington severed more than 50 years ago, and President Barack Obama called for an end to the long economic embargo against its old Cold War enemy. | Video

World, Politics, U.S. 5:53am EST

Putin says deal on Iran's nuclear program 'very close'

MOSCOW - Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday the six world powers and Iran were "very close" to reaching an agreement on Tehran's nuclear program.

7:14am EST