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Iraqi forces try to seal off Islamic State around Tikrit

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 16:07:29 GMT

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Thousands of Iraqi soldiers and Shi'ite militiamen sought to seal off Islamic State fighters in Tikrit and nearby towns on Tuesday, the second day of Iraq's biggest offensive yet against a stronghold of the radical Sunni Islamist militants.

Russians stand in line to mourn by coffin of slain Nemtsov

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 16:05:10 GMT

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Thousands of Russians, many carrying red carnations, on Tuesday filed past the coffin of Boris Nemtsov, the Kremlin critic whose killing last week, friends say, showed the hazards of speaking out against Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Fugitive ex-U.S. spy Snowden in talks on returning home: lawyer

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 16:02:12 GMT

MOSCOW (Reuters) - A Russian lawyer for Edward Snowden said on Tuesday the fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor who leaked details of the government's mass surveillance programs was working with American and German lawyers to return home.

Hillary Clinton may have broken federal record-keeping laws: NY Times

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 16:00:13 GMT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton may have violated federal records laws by using a personal email account for all of her work messages, the New York Times reported on Monday.

Iran calls Obama's 10-year nuclear demand 'unacceptable'

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 15:56:42 GMT

MONTREUX, Switzerland (Reuters) - Iran on Tuesday rejected as "unacceptable" U.S. President Barack Obama's demand that it freeze sensitive nuclear activities for at least 10 years, but said it would continue talks aimed at securing a deal, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported.

Citi to sell OneMain to Springleaf for $4.25 billion

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 15:50:59 GMT

(Reuters) - Citigroup Inc said it has agreed to sell its consumer finance unit OneMain Financial Holdings Inc to subprime lender Springleaf Holdings Inc for $4.25 billion in cash.

North Korea warns U.S. about pre-emptive strike 'if necessary'

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 15:50:19 GMT

GENEVA (Reuters) - North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Su Yong said on Tuesday that his country had the power to deter an "ever-increasing nuclear threat" by the United States with a pre-emptive strike if necessary.

Israel's Netanyahu to address Congress on Iran, faces partial boycott

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 15:36:13 GMT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Almost a quarter of Democratic U.S. lawmakers are expected to boycott Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday as he escalates his campaign against President Barack Obama's Iran diplomacy in a speech to Congress that has put unprecedented stress on the two leaders' already strained ties.

Supreme Court set to hear second major Obamacare challenge

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 15:19:19 GMT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court will weigh a second major case targeting President Barack Obama's healthcare law on Wednesday when it considers a conservative challenge to tax subsidies critical to the measure's implementation.

Egypt court defers parliamentary election: judicial sources

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 14:56:16 GMT

CAIRO (Reuters) - An Egyptian court on Tuesday deferred a long-awaited parliamentary election due in March indefinitely after another court declared the election law's provision on voting districts as unconstitutional, judicial sources said.

Boehner says U.S. House to vote on security bill: source

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 14:53:18 GMT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner told Republican members the House would vote Tuesday on the Senate's plan to fund the Department of Homeland Security, which could end the impasse over the agency, according to a person who was at the meeting.

Best Buy profit beats estimates on higher-margin TV sales

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 13:28:20 GMT

(Reuters) - Best Buy Co Inc , the largest U.S. consumer electronics chain, reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by improved sales of higher-margin products such as large-screen TVs and mobile phones during the holiday shopping season.

Exclusive: China investigates second top officer for graft - sources

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 12:22:04 GMT

BEIJING (Reuters) - China is investigating a second former top military officer on suspicion of corruption, two independent sources told Reuters, as President Xi Jinping widens his campaign against deep-rooted graft in the country.

Final stage of jury selection set for Boston bombing trial

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 12:03:27 GMT

BOSTON (Reuters) - The long-running process of choosing a jury to hear the trial of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is due to wrap up on Tuesday with the judge and lawyers for both sides selecting the panel of 12 jurors and six alternates.

Three Ukrainian soldiers killed in past 24 hours: Ukraine military source

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 08:57:03 GMT

KIEV (Reuters) - Three Ukrainian servicemen were killed and nine were wounded in the last 24 hours in the country's east where government troops are fighting with pro-Russian rebels, a Ukrainian military source told Reuters on Tuesday.

Investor survey shows 38 percent chance of euro zone break-up in 12 months

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 07:50:14 GMT

LONDON (Reuters) - Investor expectations of the euro zone breaking apart have risen to their highest level in two years, a survey showed on Tuesday, even after Greece agreed a financial lifeline with its euro zone partners.

Ben Carson creates committee to explore presidential bid: WSJ

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 07:48:47 GMT

(Reuters) - Ben Carson, a retired surgeon popular with Tea Party conservatives, has formally created an exploratory committee to run for president, according to his campaign chief executive, Terry Giles, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Exclusive: Obama sharply criticizes China's plans for new technology rules

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 07:47:38 GMT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Monday sharply criticized China's plans for new rules on U.S. tech companies, urging Beijing to change the policy if it wants to do business with the United States and saying he had raised it with President Xi Jinping.

Brent crude up $1 to over $60.50 as global markets firm

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 06:46:58 GMT

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Brent crude oil prices rose more than a dollar to above $60.50 a barrel on Tuesday, tracking firmer Asian markets, but analysts warned the market remained oversupplied.

Georgia halts execution of state's only female death row inmate

Tue, 03 Mar 2015 05:40:24 GMT

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Georgia halted the planned Monday execution of the only woman on death row in the state due to problems with the drugs to be used in the lethal injection, officials said.