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Jordan still holding prisoner demanded by Islamic State as deadline passes

AMMAN/TOKYO - Jordan said on Thursday it was still holding an Iraqi would-be suicide bomber as a deadline passed for her release set by Islamic State militants who threatened to kill a Jordanian pilot unless she was handed over by sunset. | Video

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Obama budget seeks boost for military, domestic programs

WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama will call for a 7 percent rise in U.S. domestic and military spending in his budget that would end caps known as 'sequestration,' the White House said on Thursday, setting up a new source of conflict with Republicans in Congress.

5:36pm EST

Israel, Hezbollah signal their flare-up is over

JERUSALEM/BEIRUT - Israel and Hezbollah signaled on Thursday their rare flare-up in fighting across the Israel-Lebanon border was over, after the Lebanese guerrillas killed two Israeli troops in retaliation for a deadly air strike in Syria last week. | Video

Israel, Lebanon, World 1:26pm EST

Exclusive: U.S. armed drone program in Yemen facing intelligence gaps

WASHINGTON - The United States is facing increasing difficulty acquiring intelligence needed to run its stealth drone program in Yemen, undermining a campaign against the most lethal branch of al Qaeda after Houthi rebels seized control of parts of the country’s security apparatus, U.S. officials say.

World, Yemen 5:23pm EST

U.S. jobless claims drop sharply to near 15-year low

WASHINGTON - The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits tumbled last week to its lowest level in nearly 15 years, adding to bullish signals on the labor market.

11:48am EST

U.S. lawmakers seek to end restrictions on travel to Cuba

WASHINGTON - Eight Republican and Democratic U.S. senators introduced legislation on Thursday to repeal all restrictions on U.S. citizens' travel to Cuba, the first step in Congress toward ending the U.S. embargo since President Barack Obama moved toward normal relations last month.

Politics, Cuba 1:53pm EST
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U.S. funding impasse blocks Secret Service hires: Homeland Security chief

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Secret Service cannot hire new agents for the next presidential election or make improvements at the agency until Congress settles a dispute over funding, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said on Thursday.

Twenty-seven killed in attacks in Egypt's North Sinai, Suez

CAIRO - Twenty-seven people were killed in four attacks in Egypt's North Sinai and Suez, security and medical sources said, in some of the worst anti-state violence in months and after commemorations around the anniversary of the 2011 uprising turned deadly this week.