By Topher Seguin GREGOIRE LAKE, Alberta (Reuters) - A massive wildfire that has forced the evacuation of all 88,000 people in the western Canadian oil city of Fort McMurray and burned down 1,600 structures has the potential to destroy much of the town, authorities said on Wednesday. With a few neighborhoods already in ruins, worsening fire conditions Wednesday pushed walls of flames towards thousands of more homes in the northeastern Alberta town, in the heart of Canada's oil sands region. Authorities said there had been no known casualties from the blaze itself, but fatalities were reported in at least one car crash among the evacuees.
By Phil Stewart STUTTGART, Germany (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said on Wednesday that Washington and its allies had agreed to do more in their campaign to defeat Islamic State but that more risks lay ahead. Carter made the comment following talks in Germany with defense ministers and representatives from 11 other nations participating in the alliance. "These risks will continue ... but allowing ISIL safe haven would carry greater risk for us all," he added, using an acronym for Islamic State.
#039;s President Dilma Rousseff reacts during a launch ceremony of Agricultural and Livestock Plan for 2016/2017, at the Planalto Palace in Brasilia" align="left" title="Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff reacts during a launch ceremony of Agricultural and Livestock Plan for 2016/2017, at the Planalto Palace in Brasilia" border="0" />By Anthony Boadle and Maria Carolina Marcello BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff's chances of remaining in office plummeted on Wednesday after a key senator recommended the leftist leader face an impeachment trial and a top prosecutor said she should be included in a vast corruption investigation. Rousseff, whose popularity has fallen in the last year due in large part to a deepening economic recession, is expected to become the first Brazilian president to fail to complete a presidential term in more than 20 years. Senator Antonio Anastasia, an opposition member tasked with recommending whether to put Rousseff on trial in the Senate for breaking budget laws, told a 21-member Senate committee that the charges were serious enough to remove her from office.
By Karen Lema and John Chalmers MANILA (Reuters) - It looks almost inevitable now that the Philippines' next president will be a man who has said he would kill his own children if they took drugs and has vowed to challenge China by jet-skiing to a disputed island to plant his country's flag. Rodrigo Duterte has a commanding lead in opinion polls ahead of the May 9 election, much to the dismay of business chiefs, investors and diplomats who see him as a clown with no clear economic policies and a possible liability for the country. Brash and openly scathing of the political establishment on the campaign trail, he has been likened to Donald Trump.
By Orhan Coskun and Ercan Gurses ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey's ruling party is set to replace Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu at an extraordinary congress in the coming weeks, officials said on Wednesday, signaling the end of his term as premier and plunging the country into political uncertainty. The decision, confirmed to Reuters by five AK Party officials, came after a meeting of more than 1-1/2 hours between Davutoglu and President Tayyip Erdogan that followed weeks of increasingly public tension between the two men. Erdogan wants an executive presidency in Turkey to replace the current parliamentary system, a plan for which Davutoglu has offered only lukewarm support.
#039;s nail neighbourhood" align="left" title="The Wider Image: Shanghai's nail neighbourhood" border="0" />On paper, the Guangfuli neighborhood is a real estate investor's dream: a plot in the middle of one of the world's most expensive and fast-rising property markets. The stalemate highlights a fundamental and unresolved problem in China's half-liberalized property regime: who owns the land? Long-time resident Luo Baocheng lives with his brother and family in a small three-story apartment building, which he said he inherited from his mother.
Médenine (Tunisia) (AFP) - Tunisia is confident that trade at the main border crossing with Libya will resume "very soon", local authorities said, nearly a week after the Libyan side imposed a blockade. "This problem will be resolved very soon," Tahar Matmati, the governor of Medenine, which lies on the principle route between Tunisia and Libya, told AFP. Discussions between the two sides are primarily focused on "the nature of products imported into Tunisia", Matmati said, adding that the Libyan side wanted a "single tax imposed on all products and that requires certain administrative procedures".
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — A bleeding pregnant woman dropped dead at the gates of Haiti's largest public hospital after failing to get help Wednesday amid a weeks-old strike by resident doctors, nurses and other staff.
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia's election campaign will officially start soon with climate change policy and union corruption in the national building industry shaping into key battlegrounds for the July 2 poll. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said Wednesday that he was likely to visit Governor-General Peter Cosgrove this weekend to lock down the date and officially start the election campaign. A heartening historical fact for Turnbull is that no Australian federal government has lost power after a single three-year term since the tumultuous early years of the Great Depression. But Australia is now in an extraordinary era of political volatility as it grapples to diversify an economy that thrived on a mining boom that has gone bust.
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Islamic State extremist group is looking to increase revenue from taxation, smuggling antiquities "and potentially kidnap for ransom" after losing some territory and oil revenue following the destruction of significant oil facilities, the chair of the U.N. committee monitoring sanctions against the militant group and al-Qaida said Wednesday.
#039; Dae-Ho Lee, center, is congratulated by Leonys Martin (12) and Kyle Seager, right, after hitting a two run home run off Oakland Athletics' John Axford in the seventh inning of a baseball game Wednesday, May 4, 2016, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)" align="left" title="Seattle Mariners' Dae-Ho Lee, center, is congratulated by Leonys Martin (12) and Kyle Seager, right, after hitting a two run home run off Oakland Athletics' John Axford in the seventh inning of a baseball game Wednesday, May 4, 2016, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)" border="0" />OAKLAND, California (AP) — Even with a four-run deficit, Nelson Cruz hollered through the dugout some words of confidence.
By Katy Migiro NAIROBI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Over the years, Ethiopian mother-of-three Hana Mekonnen has received all sorts of aid designed to free her from the bitter trap of poverty and hunger: goats, cash transfers, resettlement and, of course, sacks of grain. Hana's one-year-old son was diagnosed with malnutrition in October, usually a time of plenty in Ethiopia's mountainous Amhara region, when the main harvest starts to come in. The Horn of Africa nation's worst drought in 50 years has left her destitute, reduced to arguing with neighbors over the allocation of aid rations.
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — The 11th round of Super Rugby may later be remembered as a point of transition between the Highlanders reign as champions and the Chiefs emergence as successors to their title.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Wildlife advocates on Wednesday said they will seek a court order halting a United States government program that allows tens of thousands of pelts from bobcats and a small number of gray wolves to be exported annually for sale on the international fur market.
Gambia's main opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) demanded on Wednesday authorities release its leader Ousainou Darboe and about 40 followers arrested after protests last month, as prosecutors filed fresh charges over the demonstrations. Some of the activists were detained on April 14 after a rare opposition protest demanding political reforms in the small west African nation ruled with an iron fist by President Yahya Jammeh. The others were taken into custody following a demonstration two days later against the death of UDP official Solo Sandeng, who is reported to have died suspiciously in custody, according to his party and human rights groups.
The Canadian city of Fort McMurray remained under threat from catastrophic wildfires Wednesday, authorities warned, after more than 80,000 residents were forced to flee the raging inferno sweeping through Alberta's oil sands region. "This fire is absolutely devastating," said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Alberta emergency services announced shortly before midnight Tuesday that all of Fort McMurray, a city of about 100,000, was under a mandatory evacuation order.
By Topher Seguin GREGOIRE LAKE, Alberta (Reuters) - Thousands of people fleeing wildfires in a remote Canadian oil town faced shortages of fuel and food on Wednesday but the frantic evacuation also brought stories of shared resources and babies born in work camps. About 88,000 residents of the western Canadian city of Fort McMurray have been evacuated as a massive wildfire tore through the city, burning down 1,600 structures amid hot and dry weather in the heart of the oil sands industry. With some fleeing north to work camps operated by energy companies and others clogging the one highway south out of the city, evacuees scrambled to find gasoline and a place to sleep as ash rained down upon the roads and the smell of soot permeated the air.
A Malian court has sentenced two men to five years in jail for beating up Mali's former interim president, Dioncounda Traore, during the occupation of his palace in May 2012 by protesters demanding he resign, the Justice Minister said on Wednesday. The court on Tuesday acquitted a third man of involvement in the attack, which followed a military coup that allowed separatists and Islamists to take control of parts of northern Mali. The two men were convicted of charges including criminal conspiracy and attempted assassination, Justice Minister Sanogo Aminata Malle said in a statement.
(Reuters) - The wildfire that raged unchecked on Wednesday in the city of Fort McMurray in the heart of the Canadian oil sands region has disrupted oil company operations nearby. While oil sands facilities are not in the fire's path, a number of companies have curbed activities to allow workers and others to get to safety. Following is a list of what oil producers and pipeline companies have said about nearby operations.
#039;s former military dictator Efrain Rios Montt is pictured during a court hearing in Guatemala city on November 19, 2013" align="left" title="Guatemala's former military dictator Efrain Rios Montt is pictured during a court hearing in Guatemala city on November 19, 2013" border="0" />A closed-door retrial of Guatemala's former military dictator Efrain Rios Montt on charges of genocide was suspended on Wednesday after plaintiffs won a battle to have his case judged separately from that of his intelligence chief. Rios Montt is accused of being ultimately responsible for the murders of 1,771 indigenous Ixil-Maya people in 1982-1983, at the height of Guatemala's 36-year civil war which ended in 1996. Now aged 89, he had been on trial in absentia since March 16 in Guatemala City.
#039;s Gareth Bale, left, and Cristiano Ronaldo, right, celebrate with their teammates at the end of the Champions League semifinal second leg soccer match between Real Madrid and Manchester City at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Wednesday May 4, 2016. Real Madrid won 1-0. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)" align="left" title="Real Madrid's Gareth Bale, left, and Cristiano Ronaldo, right, celebrate with their teammates at the end of the Champions League semifinal second leg soccer match between Real Madrid and Manchester City at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Wednesday May 4, 2016. Real Madrid won 1-0. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)" border="0" />MADRID (AP) — Real Madrid turned another Champions League final into a crosstown derby on Wednesday, beating Manchester City a day after Atletico Madrid had sealed its place in the decider for European soccer's biggest prize.
PHOENIX (AP) — In cross-country running, your team is only as fast as your slowest athlete. Slain Navy SEAL Charlie Keating IV took that to heart in his youth as a track star, turning around to cheer on his teammates after he crossed the finish line.
By Timothy Gardner FLINT, Mich. (Reuters) - President Barack Obama sipped filtered water in Flint, Michigan, on Wednesday and assured angry residents that their children would be fine in the long term despite the "complete screw-up" that contaminated their drinking water with lead. Obama made the trip to the mostly African-American community to demonstrate that the water there was safe even as he predicted it would take more than two years to replace the city's aging pipes. Flint, with a population of about 100,000, was under control of a state-appointed emergency manager in 2014 when it switched its water source from Detroit's municipal system to the Flint River to save money.
By Marc Frank HAVANA (Reuters) - The number of U.S. visitors to Cuba has nearly doubled this year, its tourism minister said on Wednesday, as the island races to build hotels and expand Havana airport to keep up with booming demand. Tourism has taken off since Cuba and the United States announced they would work to bury the Cold War hatchet in December 2014. The Caribbean island received a record 3.5 million visitors last year.
By Aidan Lewis and Ayman al-Warfalli TUNIS/BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) - By defiantly attempting to export their own oil and dispatching troops toward the center of the country, Libya's eastern factions may be gambling on force as they bid for a larger stake under a U.N.-backed unity government. It could be a costly bet, one that ignites renewed conflict between east and west over territory, slashes oil production, and pushes Libya closer to a split that has threatened the country since the uprising that ousted Muammar Gaddafi five years ago. The unity deal, signed in December despite opposition from hardliners, was meant to end the divide between rival governments in Tripoli and the east who have vied for control over the country and its oil resources since 2014, backed by competing factions of former anti-Gaddafi rebels.
By Rod Nickel EDMONTON, Alberta (Reuters) - Fort McMurray, the Canadian oil town engulfed by wildfires, was already crippled by a collapse in crude prices before flames raced into the once-booming city, burning hundreds of homes to the ground and chasing residents into bush camps for safety. Dubbed Fort McMoney when its oilsands industry was flourishing and residents were among the wealthiest in Canada, Fort McMurray had been hemorrhaging workers and wealth for 18 months before fires forced the evacuation of the entire city's 88,000 residents. "Fort McMurray was really the ground zero of all that was happening related to oil and gas," said Sandeep Agrawal, urban studies and regional planning professor at the University of Alberta.
#039;s ordered an investigation into the alleged use of foreign mercenaries by opposition politician Moise Katumbi, a likely contender in presidential elections due this year" align="left" title="DR Congo's ordered an investigation into the alleged use of foreign mercenaries by opposition politician Moise Katumbi, a likely contender in presidential elections due this year" border="0" />DR Congo's justice minister said on Wednesday he had ordered a probe into the alleged use of foreign mercenaries by opposition politician Moise Katumbi, who later announced his candidacy for president. Katumbi hit back at the mercenary allegations describing as a "grotesque lie" claims his camp were recruiting mercenaries specialised in "training and the use of weapons, as security guards or bodyguards". "It's a disgrace, a grotesque lie... they are simply looking to harm me.... Never will I, Moise Katumbi, take up arms for power," he told AFP, adding that his "struggle is democratic and peaceful out of respect for the constitution".
#039;s military dictatorship, is escorted by police in handcuffs to his trial where he is accused of crimes against humanity in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Wednesday, May 4, 2016. The trial investigates Graffigna and two of his former subordinates for the forced disappearances of Patricia Roisinblit, who was eight months pregnant, and her husband Jose Manuel Perez Rojo. Roisinblit's son, who was born in captivity, was raised by one of the men on trial. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)" align="left" title="Omar Graffigna, who was head of the Air Force during Argentina's military dictatorship, is escorted by police in handcuffs to his trial where he is accused of crimes against humanity in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Wednesday, May 4, 2016. The trial investigates Graffigna and two of his former subordinates for the forced disappearances of Patricia Roisinblit, who was eight months pregnant, and her husband Jose Manuel Perez Rojo. Roisinblit's son, who was born in captivity, was raised by one of the men on trial. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)" border="0" />BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — The former head of Argentina's air force and two ex-subordinates are on trial for alleged abduction and disappearance of activists during the South American nation's 1976-1983 dictatorship.
#039;s primary" align="left" title="Donald Trump knocked out his only serious Republican challenger, Ted Cruz, in Indiana's primary" border="0" />Billionaire Donald Trump pledged Wednesday to unify the fractured Republican Party following a bruising primary season, as he declared the battle for the White House starts now against likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Trump's path to the GOP presidential nomination is clear after his command victory in Indiana's primary Tuesday pushed remaining challengers Ted Cruz and then Ohio Governor John Kasich out of the race.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ecuadoreans immigrants are asking the Obama administration to allow their fellow citizens living in the United States illegally to stay here and work while the South American country recovers from a magnitude-7.8 earthquake.
#039;s heavily fortified "Green Zone" on April 30, 2016" align="left" title="Iraqi protesters climb over a concrete wall surrounding the parliament (unseen) after breaking into Baghdad's heavily fortified "Green Zone" on April 30, 2016" border="0" />Iraq's premier sacked the commander of special forces in Baghdad's Green Zone after protesters breached the fortified area, a military statement said on Wednesday. The removal of Staff Lieutenant General Mohammed Ridha may indicate that security forces will take a harder line against demonstrators who are expected to protest later this week. Angry demonstrators, most of them supporters of Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, broke into the Green Zone and stormed parliament on Saturday in an unprecedented security breach.
A former regional governor, Moise Katumbi, on Wednesday accepted an opposition coalition's nomination as its candidate to run against Democratic Republic of Congo President Joseph Kabila in elections due before the end of the year. Democratic Republic of Congo authorities are under pressure from the international community to hold the polls as planned in November before Kabila's second -- and constitutionally last -- mandate ends. Popular and charismatic, the 51-year-old wealthy businessman is also head of the prestigious Tout-Puissant Mazembe football club, three-time winner of the African Champions League.