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Franco calls selfies 'intimate,' not inappropriate
FILE - In this Aug. 31, 2013 file photo, actor and director James Franco poses for photographers on the red carpet for the screening of the film "Child Of God" at the 70th edition of the Venice Film Festival in Venice, Italy. (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini, File)NEW YORK (AP) — James Franco says his recent Instagram postings of him in bed — alone or not — are his way of sharing a "very kind of intimate portrait" of himself and to get people talking.

Russia starts border army drill after Ukraine attacks rebels
A pro-Russian armed man stands guard near the state security service building in SlavianskSlavyansk (Ukraine) (AFP) - Russia ordered new military exercises on the border of Ukraine Thursday and warned of "consequences" after Kiev launched a deadly assault against pro-Kremlin rebels occupying the flashpoint town of Slavyansk, in an escalation of the crisis. But Ukraine's president vowed to see through the military operation, telling Russia to "stop interfering" in the former Soviet republic, and declaring that Kiev would not yield to "the terrorist threat". The rocketing tensions sent oil prices up, as US President Barack Obama, who has deployed troops to boost NATO's defences in eastern European states, accused Russia of reneging on an agreement to defuse the crisis.

Residents of Wyoming town allowed to return home
This image provided by Rachel Anderson shows officials at the site of an explosion and fire at a natural gas processing facility and major national pipeline hub, Wednesday, April 23, 2014, in Opal, Wyo. Officials said there are no reports of injuries and the residents of Opal have been evacuated to an area about 3 miles outside the town as a precaution. Opal has about 95 residents and is about 100 miles northeast of Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rachel Anderson)OPAL, Wyo. (AP) — Residents were allowed to return home Thursday, nearly 22 hours after an explosion at a natural gas processing plant forced the evacuation of their small southwestern Wyoming town.

A look at deeds and words of John Paul II
A picture of late Pope John Paul II is displayed inside St. Sprit in Sassia church during a mass in Rome, Wednesday, April 23, 2014. Hundred thousands of pilgrims and faithful are expected to reach Rome to attend the scheduled April 27 ceremony at the Vatican in which Pope Francis will elevate in a solemn ceremony John XXIII and John Paul II to sainthood. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)VATICAN CITY (AP) — The most-traveled pope in history, John Paul II left his mark on the Catholic Church and non-believers worldwide. Here are some milestones along his path to sainthood:

Google's top social networking executive departs
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google's top social networking executive is leaving the Internet company after a nearly eight-year stint highlighted by an audacious challenge to Facebook.

Nasdaq not yet subpoenaed in N.Y. high frequency trading probe: CEO
Scaffolding is seen outside the NASDAQ MarketSite in Times Square in New YorkNEW YORK (Reuters) - Nasdaq OMX Group Inc has not to date received a subpoena from the New York attorney general as part of its industrywide probe into allegedly unfair technological advantages on Wall Street, Nasdaq Chief Executive Officer Robert Greifeld said on Thursday. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is seeking information on the relationships that exchanges and off-exchange platforms, known as dark pools, have with high-frequency trading firms, and has issued subpoenas to at least half-dozen firms, Reuters reported last week. (Reporting by John McCrank; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

Camilla's brother dies in New York of head injury
FILE - A June 24, 2010 photo from files showing Mark Shand, left, brother of The Duchess of Cornwall showing her an elephant sculpture titled Mr. Cameron as she is escorted around the Elephant Parade exhibition at Chelsea Hospital Gardens. Royal officials in Britain say that the brother of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, has died after sustaining a serious head injury following a fall in New York. Clarence House said that the 62-year-old Mark Shand died in the hospital Wednesday, April 23, 2014, after falling late Tuesday. (AP Photo/Ian Nicholson, Pool, File)NEW YORK (AP) — The Prince of Wales and his wife, Camilla, are "utterly devastated" by the death of her brother, who fell outside a Manhattan hotel bar and suffered a head injury, British royal officials said.

Rivers refuses to apologize to women held captive
CLEVELAND (AP) — Joan Rivers refuses to apologize for comparing living in her daughter's guest room with the captivity of three women kidnapped in Cleveland.

Tea time again in London as Unilever brews up a drinks revival
A woman pours tea in a T2 shop in LondonBy Martinne Geller LONDON (Reuters) - Consumer goods giant Unilever opened its first European tea shop in London on Thursday, aiming to cash in on the growing appeal of unusual and luxury cuppas and ignite fresh enthusiasm for the national drink. A new generation of Britons drink more coffee than tea since the arrival of the mighty Starbucks, and a host of imitators that now crowd high streets. But with Starbucks opening a tea bar in New York last October and talking about a $90 billion (53.5 billion pounds) global market, the tide may be turning. Unilever, whose Lipton brand is the world's top-selling tea, bought Australia's T2 tea chain - where the menu ranges from a 5.75 pound box of English Breakfast to Japanese Gyokuro teas costing upwards of 25 pounds a tin - in September and hopes to appeal to the same consumers interested in upscale coffee that fuelled the last drinks boom.

South Korea ferry disaster may cloud Obama visit
U.S. President Barack Obama stands in front of a large model of the Earth as he attends a youth science event at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, known as the Miraikan, in Tokyo on Thursday, April 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)TOKYO (AP) — When President Barack Obama arrives in South Korea on Friday, he will be thrust anew into the role of consoler in chief in a time of crisis, a responsibility he has become all too accustomed to in the United States.

Chicago doctor among those killed in Afghanistan
Chicago Doctor Shot And Killed In AfghanistanCHICAGO (AP) — An American pediatrician killed when an Afghan security guard opened fire Thursday at a Kabul hospital was dedicated to helping poor children, volunteering in Afghanistan to train young doctors and periodically returning to Chicago to work in a Christian clinic on the city's southwest side.

Proposed US rules leave open Internet fast lanes
A woman uses her smartphone in a starbucks in Silver Spring, Maryland, on May 9, 2012Internet fast lanes that defy the ideal of "net neutrality" would be allowed under rules proposed by US regulators eager to keep broadband service providers from abusing their power. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Thursday laid out a proposal to make sure Internet service providers don't discriminate when it comes to data coursing through online pipes. The rules wouldn't prevent Internet service providers (ISPs) from letting technology titans such as Netflix or Google pay for faster data speeds but would require competing traffic move at "reasonable" speeds. The "open Internet notice of proposed rule making" sent from FCC chief Tom Wheeler to the full commission was pounced on by critics as a betrayal of the goal of keeping the Internet "neutral" by preventing some online traffic from getting priority over other content.

Stocks are mixed in choppy trading; Apple up
Tripp Mancuso, 4, works with his trader father Peter Mancuso on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, during the NYSE Working Parents/Caregivers Employee Resource Group's annual Take Your Child to Work Day program, Thursday, April 24, 2014. Mixed earnings from a large number of U.S. companies left the stock market without direction early Thursday, despite positive results from a handful of names including Apple and Caterpillar. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks were mixed in choppy trading Thursday afternoon as investors balanced positive earnings results out of Apple and Caterpillar against disappointing reports from other companies including Raytheon and 3M. Investors also kept a close watch on Ukraine, where tensions with Russia were escalating.

For airlines not named United, it was a great 1Q
FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 14, 2011 photo, an American Airlines Boeing 767 takes off from Miami International Airport, in Miami. American Airlines Group Inc. releases quarterly financial results before the market opens on Thursday, April 24, 2014. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)DALLAS (AP) — Even with the turbulence of severe winter storms and stubbornly high fuel prices, many of the major airlines are cruising and their stock prices are soaring.

Nevada rancher condemned for racist remarks
LAS VEGAS (AP) — A Nevada rancher who has become a conservative folk hero for resisting the federal government's attempts to round up his cattle faced sharp criticism Thursday for racist comments published in a New York Times article.

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