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BC-AP Americas Digest
Associated Press
2014-01-17 01:22 PM

TOP STORIES:

OHIO EXECUTION

LUCASVILLE, Ohio (AP) -- An attorney for the family of a killer whose Ohio execution by lethal injection was marked by several minutes of unprecedented gasping and unusual sounds plans to sue the state over what happened. By Andrew Welsh-Huggins.

KERRY-SYRIA

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Secretary of State John Kerry urges the Syrian opposition to attend next week's peace conference in Switzerland and said any individual chosen to lead a political transition in the war-torn country must be acceptable to both the government and opposing forces. By Deb Reichmann. AP Photos.

MEXICO-VIGILANTES

TANCITARO, Mexico -- Armed vigilantes who have taken control of territory in lawless Michoacan could turn into the very sort of organized crime forces they're fighting, a Mexican official assigned to clean up the violence-wracked state says. By Mark Stevenson. AP Photos.

NUCLEAR MISSTEPS

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. Air Force has disclosed that 34 officers entrusted with the world's deadliest weapons have been removed from launch duty for allegedly cheating -- or tolerating cheating by others -- on routine proficiency tests. The announcement was a stunning setback for a nuclear missile force already beset by missteps and leadership lapses. By Robert Burns and Lolita C. Baldor. AP Photos.

ARGENTINA-SILENT PRESIDENT

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- A puzzling silence has descended around Argentine President Cristina Fernandez. As of Thursday, it had been 37 days since she last spoke in public. And she hadn't posted any messages to Twitter since Dec. 13, when she fired off a typical volley of 20 tweets. That has been feeding speculation in Argentina about her health in the wake of surgery on her head in October. By Almudena Calatrava. AP Photos.

OBIT-SULIMAIN

MEXICO CITY -- Jose Sulaiman, the longtime head of the World Boxing Council who promoted renowned fighters and introduced rules to protect boxers, has died. He was 82. By Carlos Rodriguez. AP Photo.

CUBA-FREEDOM TO TRAVEL

HAVANA -- In January 2013 Cuba scrapped a longstanding exit visa requirement that made it difficult for islanders to travel overseas. A year later there has been no mass exodus as some feared, though Cubans are traveling in increasing numbers and many have not returned. Meanwhile dissidents are coming and going and raising their international profiles -- and money -- but there has been little discernible impact on their ability to effect political change back home. By Peter Orsi. AP Photos.

GERMAN SOCIALITE SLAIN

WASHINGTON (AP) -- An eccentric German man who pretended to be an Iraqi army general and often boasted of his political and diplomatic connections was convicted Thursday of killing his 91-year-old socialite and journalist wife. By Eric Tucker. AP Photos.

BUSINESS and FINANCE:

EARNS-GOLDMAN SACHS

Goldman Sachs reported Thursday that its fourth-quarter profit dropped 21 percent as revenue from mortgages and trading in bonds and other securities weakened.

CANADA-US PIPELINE

TORONTO (AP) -- Canada's foreign minister says it's time for the Obama administration to make a decision on the controversial Keystone XL pipeline even if the answer is no. By Rob Gillies.

ENTERTAINMENT:

OSCAR NOMINATIONS

The con-artist comedy "American Hustle" and the 3-D space odyssey "Gravity" lead the Academy Awards with 10 nominations each, with the historical epic "12 Years a Slave" trailing closely with nine nominations. By Jake Coyle.

CHRIS BROWN ASSAULT

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Police have opened an internal affairs investigation into statements made by an officer who responded to reports that singer Chris Brown had punched a man outside a Washington hotel. By Eric Tucker. AP Photos.

OBIT-RUSSELL JOHNSON

NEW YORK (AP) -- Actor Russell Johnson, who became known to generations of TV fans as "The Professor," the fix-it man who kept his fellow "Gilligan's Island" castaways supplied with gadgets, has died. He was 89.

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