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NASA Pinpoints One of the Farthest Known Exoplanets from Earth

NASA Pinpoints One of the Farthest Known Exoplanets from Earth R. Hurt/JPL-Caltech/NASA(NEW YORK) -- It's not quite in a galaxy far, far away -- but the latest planet discovered by NASA is one of the most remote ones known to exist outside of the solar system.NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope worked with a telescope located in Chile to pinpoint the distant gas planet, which is located approximately 13,000 light years from Earth but still within the spiral-shaped Milky Way galaxy.Most known exoplanets exist much closer to our solar system in the Milky Way, making this discovery, which is farther away, significant to astrophysicists."We don't know if planets are more common in our galaxy's central bulge or the disk of the galaxy, which is why these observations are so important," Jennifer Yee, a NASA Sagan fellow, said in a statement.Spitzer is currently based 128-million miles from Earth, farther than the distance between our planet and the sun, and is on a path circling the giant star.The discovery was made thanks to microlensing, which is when one star passes in front of another. During this time, gravity acts as a lens, and intensifies the distant star's light.If a planet is in orbit, it may appear as a blip in the observation, NASA said.Spitzer can watch a microlensing event at the same time as the telescope in Chile and will see the star brighten at a different time due to the varied distances and views of both telescope, allowing NASA to better gauge distance.In the case of the newly discovered exoplanet, both telescopes saw the planetary blip 20 days apart from each other. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Al Qaeda Group Says Top Cleric Killed in Yemen

Al Qaeda Group Says Top Cleric Killed in Yemen iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Al Qaeda’s most lethal branch said on Tuesday that its top cleric, a man with a $5 million American bounty on his head, has been killed in Yemen, as the Arab nation falls deeper into chaos.The group said in a statement posted online that former Guantanamo Bay detainee Ibrahim al-Rubaysh, also spelled al-Rubaish, was killed in a “crusader strike” over the weekend “after he spent almost two decades carrying out jihad against America and its agents.” The statement did not say who exactly al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) believed carried out the purported strike.The U.S. has killed a number of high ranking AQAP leaders in recent years through targeted drone strikes, as part of its sustained counter-terrorism operations in the area. U.S. officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment for this report.Al-Rubaysh is described by the U.S. as a senior “sharia” official in AQAP who “provides the justification for attacks conducted by AQAP.” He is also accused of being the group’s “senior advisor for AQAP operational planning, and is involved in the planning of attacks.”Al-Rubaysh was held in Guantanamo Bay prison from 2002 to 2006. AQAP said after he was released, he “quickly joined his brethren at AQAP.”The spiritual leader appears to have played a similar role in AQAP as Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen who was a top cleric and recruiter in AQAP before he was killed in a CIA drone strike in September 2011. After his death, the U.S. said al-Awlaki too was involved in the terror group’s external operations.Al-Rubaysh’s alleged death comes amid widespread violence in Yemen where Saudi Arabia is now leading an Arab coalition effort, supported by U.S. intelligence and logistical support, to repel a Houthi rebel assault against the remnants of Yemeni government forces. Last week, the United Nations said the crisis was “getting worse by the hour.” In February, all U.S. government personnel left Yemen as the security situation deteriorated and the American embassy was closed.AQAP, the Yemen-based branch of al Qaeda, has been previously described by U.S. officials as the affiliate that posed the greatest threat to the American homeland. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Smartphone Hidden in Bathroom Gets Chess Grandmaster Booted from Tournament

Smartphone Hidden in Bathroom Gets Chess Grandmaster Booted from TournamentiStock/Thinkstock(DUBAI, United Arab Emirates) — You could say he pulled a George Costanza.The Seinfeld character who famously took a coffee table book into a bathroom at a bookstore and on another occasion passed an IQ test out the window to cheat would surely admire the alleged ingenuity of a Georgian chess player.Gaioz Nigalidze, 26, and a grandmaster from the country of Georgia, aroused suspicion by "oddly frequenting the toilet" after key moves during the sixth round of a tournament in Dubai, according to a statement Tuesday from the World Chess Federation.Officials said they did not find a device on Nigalidze when he was initially searched. However, a smartphone and a headset wrapped in toilet paper were later located in a bathroom stall.Nigalidze denied the smartphone belonged to him, according to the statement, however officials said when they opened the phone it was logged into a social networking site under the grandmaster's name.The ultimate check mate came when officials said they also discovered a chess application was open and appeared to be used to analyze his game.The Georgian was removed from the tournament and the matter has now been referred to the International Chess Federation's anti-cheating commission, which could potentially slap Nigalidze with a three-year ban.Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Boko Haram: How One Family Is Coping with Daughter’s Kidnapping

Boko Haram: How One Family Is Coping with Daughter’s Kidnapping AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- One year from the day Boko Haram fighters swept into the Nigerian town of Chibok capturing more than 200 schoolgirls, the families of the kidnapped girls are becoming increasingly desperate with government efforts to bring them home.The family of Docas Yakubu says they will never forget her. Her father, Yakubu Lamidu Ponna, told ABC News, “I can’t forget Docas, she is my daughter.”Docas Yakubu would now be 17 years old. Her family has not heard from or seen her since the horrific events, which unfolded one year ago. They are marking this anniversary by traveling to the Nigerian capital Abuja to join the #BringBackOurGirls protest and to call on the country’s new leaders to do more to see them returned.Speaking to ABC News, Yakubu Lamidu Ponna estimated that between 200 to 300 family members of the missing girls are in Abuja Tuesday.The families are still plagued by the same fears sparked by the kidnapping one year ago. Yakubu said, “We are worried about them because we don't know where they are."The families have become hugely frustrated with Nigerian government efforts to find them.“We are not happy at all," he said. “They are telling us lies about the girls. First they tell us they know where they are and that they will bring them back, but then they do not."Speaking from Abuja, Yakubu said he wants "people to help us, we want the U.N., we want America to help the Nigerian government, because they have not been telling us the truth. This government of Nigeria, they are not willing to tell us the truth."Docas Yakubu is described as tall, slim, with a long face. She has many friends and is popular. Her family says she was sitting in exams for her arts subjects when she was kidnapped. Her ambition was to become a midwife or a nurse.Following the kidnapping, her mother Esther developed serious health problems and stopped eating. It took police officers almost a full month after the kidnapping to come and visit the Yakubu family and ask for photographic evidence of their missing daughter.In devastating news for the families, President-elect Muhammadu Buhari said on Tuesday that he can not promise to find the 219 who are still missing."We do not know if the Chibok girls can be rescued. Their whereabouts remain unknown," Buhari said. "As much as I wish to, I cannot promise that we can find them." Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Boko Haram: How One Family Is Coping with Daughter’s Kidnapping

Boko Haram: How One Family Is Coping with Daughter’s Kidnapping AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- One year from the day Boko Haram fighters swept into the Nigerian town of Chibok capturing more than 200 schoolgirls, the families of the kidnapped girls are becoming increasingly desperate with government efforts to bring them home.The family of Docas Yakubu says they will never forget her. Her father, Yakubu Lamidu Ponna, told ABC News, “I can’t forget Docas, she is my daughter.”Docas Yakubu would now be 17 years old. Her family has not heard from or seen her since the horrific events, which unfolded one year ago. They are marking this anniversary by traveling to the Nigerian capital Abuja to join the #BringBackOurGirls protest and to call on the country’s new leaders to do more to see them returned.Speaking to ABC News, Yakubu Lamidu Ponna estimated that between 200 to 300 family members of the missing girls are in Abuja Tuesday.The families are still plagued by the same fears sparked by the kidnapping one year ago. Yakubu said, “We are worried about them because we don't know where they are."The families have become hugely frustrated with Nigerian government efforts to find them.“We are not happy at all," he said. “They are telling us lies about the girls. First they tell us they know where they are and that they will bring them back, but then they do not."Speaking from Abuja, Yakubu said he wants "people to help us, we want the U.N., we want America to help the Nigerian government, because they have not been telling us the truth. This government of Nigeria, they are not willing to tell us the truth."Docas Yakubu is described as tall, slim, with a long face. She has many friends and is popular. Her family says she was sitting in exams for her arts subjects when she was kidnapped. Her ambition was to become a midwife or a nurse.Following the kidnapping, her mother Esther developed serious health problems and stopped eating. It took police officers almost a full month after the kidnapping to come and visit the Yakubu family and ask for photographic evidence of their missing daughter.In devastating news for the families, President-elect Muhammadu Buhari said on Tuesday that he can not promise to find the 219 who are still missing."We do not know if the Chibok girls can be rescued. Their whereabouts remain unknown," Buhari said. "As much as I wish to, I cannot promise that we can find them." Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Siberian Wildfires Kill at Least 23, Displace Thousands

Siberian Wildfires Kill at Least 23, Displace Thousands iStock/Thinkstock(MOSCOW) -- Massive wildfires have devastated a swathe of Siberia, destroying hundreds of homes and leaving as many as 5,000 people homeless. About 850 people have been injured and at least 23 killed by the fires, emergency services said on Tuesday.The huge blazes engulfed villages across the eastern Khakasiya region over the weekend, affecting 38 villages and destroying more than 1,200 homes. After an exceptionally dry winter, high winds rapidly drove the fires onto residential areas -- flames sometimes covered 30 meters in a second, the state news agency RIA Novosti reported.As the fires finally died down after two days of burning, people returned home to survey entire towns turned to scorched moonscapes. The regional governor told Russian state TV that it would cost almost $100 million to rebuild.Authorities believe the fires were started by the careless burning of grass on agricultural lands; police announced they had opened a criminal investigation.While most of the fires in Khakasiya are now out, fires are still continuing to rage across other Siberian regions. Around the far eastern city of Chita, the fires covered 90 miles in a matter of hours, leaving the city wrapped in smoke Tuesday and destroying at least 150 homes, according to local emergency services.Russia has become increasingly prone to serious wildfires. This year’s unusually dry winter has led experts to warn that the risks are particularly high. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

A Year After Kidnapping, Hundreds of Schoolgirls Remain Missing

A Year After Kidnapping, Hundreds of Schoolgirls Remain Missing PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — A year after Boko Haram militants kidnapped nearly 300 schoolgirls in the town of Chibok, international efforts have done little to stop the insurgency that now controls vast swaths of northeastern Nigeria.Of the known 276 schoolgirls taken in April of last year, only 50 have escaped on their own, leaving 219 still missing, although unconfirmed reports have claimed 50 of the girls were seen in the Gwoza Hills three weeks ago. The failure of the Nigerian government and the international community to locate the Chibok schoolgirls reflects the many ways in which the militant group has defied a year-long campaign to defeat them.Since April of 2014, Boko Haram has killed more than 6,000 people, controls 15 local government areas and nearly 8,000 square miles of territory, according to the Council on Foreign Relations. A UNICEF report published Monday claimed more than 1.5 million Nigerians have fled their homes in fear of Boko Haram, including 800,000 children. Watch the video below to get a fuller picture of how Boko Haram sustained its bloody insurgency over the last year: Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Robot Quits After Recording Footage Inside Fukushima’s Crippled Reactor

Robot Quits After Recording Footage Inside Fukushima’s Crippled Reactor KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images(OKUMA, Japan) — A robot probe sent into the crippled reactor at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant stopped working three hours into its 10-hour mission, but not before sending back the first pictures from inside.The haunting grainy footage released by the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) shows the robot moving through debris along a grated platform inside Fukushima’s No. 1 reactor. Steam is clearly shown rising from below where TEPCO believes the melted nuclear fuel rods are located.One of the main objectives was to collect data on radiation levels inside the reactor. On the video’s onscreen display, the radiation levels ticked up as high as 9.7 sieverts per hour, which is high enough to kill a human within an hour. Three hours into the operation, TEPCO said the robot became stuck and stopped operating. The robot developed by Hitachi was made to withstand high levels of radiation but it remains unclear why it stopped working. After attempts to retrieve the probe, TEPCO said it decided to cut off the cable connected to the device and abandon the robot inside. A second robot mission scheduled for this week has been postponed as engineers investigate the cause of the malfunction.TEPCO representative Teruaki Kobayashi said the silver lining of the operation was that officials found no major obstacles around an opening that leads to the underground part of the reactor. This will allow future robotic missions to possibly access the molten fuel rods for extraction.The No. 1 reactor is one of three reactors at the Fukushima-Daiichi plant that experienced a meltdown during and in the aftermath of the March 2011 earthquake-triggered tsunami.Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Kardashians Visit Armenia, Call for Genocide Recognition

Kardashians Visit Armenia, Call for Genocide Recognition Cindy Ord/NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment(YEREVAN, Armenia) -- This week, it’s been the Kardashians keeping up with international disputes.Reality TV stars Kim and Khloe Kardashian picked possibly the most controversial time of year to visit their ancestral homeland of Armenia: just before the April 24 centennial of the 1915 mass killings of as many as 1.5 million Armenians by Ottomans in present-day Turkey, which the Armenians call genocide -- a term Turkey vehemently rejects.The junket also came as Pope Francis called the killings “the first genocide of the 20th century." That comment angered the Turks so much that they recalled their ambassador to the Vatican, with the Turkish foreign ministry issuing a statement that the comment was “based on prejudice” and “distorts history.”Turkey maintains that while the Ottomans killed many Armenians as they sought to relocate them during their fight for independence in 1915, there was not an Ottoman policy of ethnic-driven genocide. Proponents of the use of the word “genocide” say the Ottomans systematically relocated Armenians in an effort to eliminate them.Back in Armenia, the Kardashian sisters, touring with their two cousins, Kara and Kourtni Kardashian, were no less demonstrative in using the controversial word to refer to the killings.“An emotional day at the genocide museum,” Kim Kardashian tweeted Saturday along with a picture of Khloe and herself laying flowers at the Dzidzernagapert Armenian Genocide monument’s eternal flame.On the same day, Khloe Kardashian posted a message via Twitter: “My sister and I are trying to bring awareness not only to our Armenian genocide but genocides and human slaughter, in general. Knowledge is power!”President Obama has not used the word “genocide” in his annual statement recognizing the killings, but 43 American states have proclaimed or passed legislation identifying them as genocide.Armenians both in Armenia and abroad said they hoped the pop culture icons’ trip would bring further awareness to the issue."The Kardashian family trip to Armenia has helped shine a global spotlight on Armenia and the Armenian Genocide -- sharing the historical facts and the need for justice for that crime with millions,” said Elizabeth Chouldjian, communications director of the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).“The Kardashians have helped strike a powerful blow at Turkey's campaign of genocide denial," she added.The sisters also met with Armenia’s prime minister, Hovik Abrahamyan. Abrahamyan’s office released a statement praising the sisters as unofficial ambassadors of Armenia to the U.S.“The premier hailed Kardashian family’s contribution to the cause of international recognition and condemnation of the Armenian genocide, highlighting their visit’s importance in the run-up to the genocide centennial,” the statement said, in part.The reality-show diplomacy continued when Kim Kardashian’s husband, Kanye West, gave an impromptu concert in the capital city of Yerevan, jumping into a lake and getting mobbed by fans.Armenian TV reportedly returned the favor by calling West “our nation's son-in-law". Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

See Lion Up-Close Moments Before It Tried Attacking Nature Photographer in Pakistan

See Lion Up-Close Moments Before It Tried Attacking Nature Photographer in Pakistan Photographer Atif Saeed said he captured this photo of an adult male lion while in a safari in Lahore, Pakistan on Jan. 24, 2012. Courtesy Atif Saeed(LAHORE, Pakistan) -- A man from Pakistan was almost attacked by a lion after going inside its home in Lahore Zoo Safari to get up-close and take photographs.The photograph, taken just moments before the lion made an offensive move, is now going viral on the Internet.Nature photographer Atif Saeed, 38, told ABC News Monday the exhilarating experience was "indescribable."Saeed said he captured the breathtaking photo in January of 2012 when he was granted the opportunity to go inside the lion's habitat to take a photo.He drove his car in and sat on the ground near the car with the door left open, he said, adding he was only a "jump away from the lion.""The feel of the aggressive, approaching lion from the camera is something that can't be described," Saeed said. "I was witnessing every small detail of movement that no photograph or movie can show."Saeed said the lion seemed to treat him like prey and after a few minutes, the lion "offensively moved" in an attempt to attack him, so he immediately jumped in the car and luckily escaped unscathed."It was a pretty close encounter," he said. "I was laughing afterwards at the time, but I don't think I'd ever be able to do something like that again." Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

State Department Dealing with ‘Security Challenges’ in Yemen with American Citizens Still There

State Department Dealing with ‘Security Challenges’ in Yemen with American Citizens Still There PeterHermesFurian/iStock/Thinkstock(SANA'A, Yemen) -- While the U.S. Embassy in Yemen suspended operations and removed its staff earlier this year, some Americans remain stuck in Yemen, with limited means of leaving.State Department spokesperson Marie Harf said on Monday that the department had sent 27 security messages and travel warnings since January 2014, warning Americans to defer travel to Yemen or to leave the country if they were already there. Still, the U.S. government has said it does not intend to run evacuation missions for those Americans still in the country."We've been warning Americans for a very long time not to go to Yemen," Harf said at Monday's press briefing. "We are currently also warning them that the safest thing to do might be to shelter in place.""There are security challenges here with trying to use American assets to do this, and those are the kinds of factors we consider."Some Americans -- about 140 in total -- have been able to get on boats dispatched by other nations and made it safely to Djibouti, the State Department says. Those Americans are receiving "full consular service." The department also expects more Americans to make it to Djibouti.Asked whether the State Department felt it was no longer obligated to help protect American citizens abroad, Harf said that "there are factors you have to take into account when you determine whether an American asset should be sent to a country, and this has been our determination about what's safest right now."She was further pressed, asked whether the department had to decide whether "the people are actually worth saving."Harf called that idea "an absolutely offensive assertion," saying that one concern the department has is that if a group of Americans gather in one place -- say, for an evacuation mission -- they could become a target for violence. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

US Plane Intercepted by Russian Jet in ‘Unsafe and Unprofessional Manner’

US Plane Intercepted by Russian Jet in ‘Unsafe and Unprofessional Manner’ Ana Abrao/Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The U.S. is unhappy with the "unsafe and unprofessional manner" in which a Russian pilot reportedly intercepted a U.S. reconnaissance plane last week.According to U.S. European Command, a U.S. RC-135U was flying "a routine route in international airspace" when it was approached by a Russian SU-27 Flanker. The Russian plane intercepted the American one, which is not uncommon. Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren said that what was different was the "sloppy airmanship" displayed by the Russian pilot. He speculated that the pilot may have been poorly trained or "wanted to prove something," noting that the Russian plane performed a rolling maneuver to show off its weapons load. It also approached the American plane "at a high rate of speed [and] conducted some aerial maneuvers in the vicinity of our aircraft that the crew determined was exceptionally unsafe and a blatant display of unprofessionalism."U.S. European Command said that the U.S. "is raising this incident with Russia in the appropriate diplomatic and official channels." Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Putin Allows Export of Air Defense Missile Systems to Iran

Putin Allows Export of Air Defense Missile Systems to Iran ALEXEI NIKOLSKY/AFP/Getty Images(MOSCOW) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an executive order on Monday allowing the transportation of air defense missile systems to Iran in the wake of the framework of a nuclear deal being agreed to last week.The executive order amends a previous order by lifting a ban on the transit of S-300 air defense systems from Russia to Iran. The delivery of those missiles can begin immediately. The U.S. has long opposed the export of such advanced systems to Iran, as they could make air-strikes on Iranian nuclear facilities more difficult.After the framework was agreed to last week, Russia called for the lifting of weapons embargoes on Iran. Pentagon spokesperson Col. Steve Warren said the U.S. remains against the sale of heavy arms to Iran. "Our opposition to this sale has long been public," he said, "we believe it's unhelpful. We are raising this through all appropriate diplomatic channels.""Any sale of advanced technology is cause for concern to us," Warren added. "We've been very clear over the years, when this sale was first announced years ago, what our objections were then and what our objections are now." Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

What NASA Learned from Bright Spots on Dwarf Planet Ceres

What NASA Learned from Bright Spots on Dwarf Planet Ceres UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA/JPL-Caltech/NASA(NEW YORK) -- From a distance, the dwarf planet Ceres looks gray and drab, but a newly released photo from NASA's Dawn mission shows the cosmic mass in color.The array of colors seen on the surface of Ceres indicates the dwarf planet, located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, was likely once fully active."This dwarf planet was not just an inert rock throughout its history. It was active, with processes that resulted in different materials in different regions," Chris Russell, principal investigator for NASA's Dawn mission, said in a statement. "We are beginning to capture that diversity in our color images."NASA has been able to determine from the photos and the surface mapping that Ceres has mysterious bright spots, along with hot and cold spots, which would not be found on an asteroid.Nearly 600 miles in diameter, about 25 percent of Ceres' mass is believed to be ice. NASA's Dawn mission has been orbiting Ceres since March and will continue studying the dwarf planet through June 2016. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Sultan of Brunei’s Son Gets Married in Lavish Wedding

Sultan of Brunei’s Son Gets Married in Lavish Wedding iStock/Thinkstock(BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, Brunei) -- There are royal weddings and then there are royal weddings of the sultan's family in Brunei. One particular example of the latter began on April 5 and will continue through April 15.Prince Adul Malik, 31, the youngest son of the Sultan of Brunei Hassanal Bolkiah and Queen Saleha, married a data analyst, Dayangku Raabi'atul 'Adawiyyah Pengiran Haji Bolkiah, 22, Sunday in the capital Bandar Seri Begawan.Festivities will continue until Wednesday.The bride's shoes were French Christian Louboutin heels, with the famous red-soles, encrusted with Swarovski crystals.The lavish wealth of the royal family was evident in the diamond and gem-encrusted wedding clothing on the bride and groom, and the banquet in the palace hall, which can accommodate 5,000 guests. The absolute Islamic monarchy has most of its wealth from oil and gas, having gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1984.Among the bride's wedding jewelry was a diamond tiara with six teardrop-shaped emeralds and a diamond necklace with three large emeralds and a matching brooch. Instead of flowers, she carried a bouquet of gems.For another outfit, she wore a diamond and ruby necklace with another matching brooch, under a veil.The lavish event took place in the 1,788-room residential palace called Istana Nural Iman. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Friends, Fellow Royals Could Be Godparents to New Royal Baby

Friends, Fellow Royals Could Be Godparents to New Royal Baby Chris Jackson/Getty Images(LONDON) -- As the world awaits the birth of the second child of Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, many questions are swirling.Among them: What will the child’s gender be? What will the couple name the child? And who will be the new little prince or princess’ godparents?A royal godparent traditionally makes his or her first big appearance at the christening, and they’re expected to play a big role in a young royal’s life.“There's a feeling that because of their role as members of the royal family that they need as many confidants as they can get apart from their parents,” said Robert Jobson, royal editor of The Evening Standard.So who’s possibly on the shortlist?Royal babies traditionally have about six godparents. William and Catherine, like Princess Diana, are thought to want their newest child’s godparents to be a blend of traditional and more modern choices. That's how they chose godparents for their year-old son, George, which means everyone from other royals to the couple’s close friends from school and college could be up for consideration.Many people would like to see Pippa Middleton, the duchess’ younger sister, as well as Prince Harry, William’s younger brother, selected, but royal experts say that’s unlikely.“Tradition for godparents is not to choose members of the family, certainly not the immediate family,” said Victoria Murphy, royal correspondent for The Daily Mirror and ABC News' royal contributor.Still, William’s step-siblings -- Duchess Camilla’s daughter, Laura Lopes, and her son, Tom Parker Bowles -- are possibilities. Another possibility is Princess Eugenie, the daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson.The friends who are likely to make the cut include William’s longtime pal, Thomas van Straubenzee. Catherine and William, who first became sweethearts in college, could also pick from friends they met together.“I think it is possible she might choose a good friend from university this time,” Murphy said, referring to Catherine.They pair could pick one of their most trusted aides -- such as Catherine’s chief of staff, Rebecca Deason, or William’s chief of staff, Miguel Head.Whomever they pick, one thing is certain. The godparents will need to be prepared.“When they pick people to be godparents, they're putting them into the spotlight and some of their friends really don’t want that be in the spotlight, so it will definitely be someone who is kind of willing to take that on,” Murphy said. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

For Americans Trapped in Yemen, a Desperate Search for Freedom

For Americans Trapped in Yemen, a Desperate Search for Freedom Saffa Eltaieb(DJIBOUTI) -- Saffa Eltaieb is 24, pregnant and trapped in Yemen with her new husband, two kittens and two huskies named Phoenix and Miska.The Brooklyn, New York native describes the last two weeks as a blur of window-rattling bombings -- but mostly misinformation, disconnected phone lines and automated emails.“It’s been a big mess,” she says. “And I’m sorry, it’s really f----- up.”Saffa is one of at least 400 Americans still in Yemen, according to the Council on America-Islamic Relations (CAIR), an Arab American group who, along with the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, have filed lawsuits against the U.S. State Department and Department of Defense for failing to evacuate its citizens.Back in Brooklyn, Saffa's sister Amber, 32, added her to the list of plaintiffs and wrote the State Department an urgent appeal to its Yemen emergency email address.She received a one-line email three days later: "Their first priority is to stay safe. We have no way to assist with their evacuation."Following advice from the still active U.S. Embassy in Sana’a’s website, Saffa got in touch with the Indian Embassy last week to try and nab a spot on the numerous evacuation flights Air India flew from Sana’a to Djibouti. In total, Air India evacuated more than 5,000 people from 41 different countries. Saffa wasn’t one of them.Stories of chaos and confusion have emerged across Yemen as Americans -- furious at the U.S. government -- scramble to find a way out. When asked why they stayed behind after the U.S. shuttered its embassy in February, the remaining Americans agree that Yemen has been dangerous for years, but this level of unrest was unexpected."We didn’t know Yemen was going to go this far,” Motahar, 65, told ABC News.The Indian Embassy, meanwhile, had assured Saffa it would be willing to take all nationalities with them, including her Syrian husband."We went and apparently missed it by 15 minutes. They said they’d call the next day, but no call came,” she said.The cellphone number she was given for the Air India flights has been disconnected for days and is no longer operating.Also at the airport that day was Shaif and his 15-year-old American son, Hamzah, born in Columbia, South Carolina. But they were turned away and told the flights were overbooked. When Shaif tried to follow up, the number was switched off. Shaif wrote to the State Department and was told there was nothing authorities could do.Those remaining in Yemen also cite past American evacuations, primarily the nearly 15,000 Americans evacuated from Lebanon in 2006.“I just don’t get it,” Saffa said. “This is historically what has happened -- when a situation gets really bad, they get us out. It’s just embarrassing.”The State Department has said repeatedly that it gave ample warning to U.S. citizens in Yemen. In Friday’s State Department briefing, Deputy Spokesperson Jeff Rathke told reporters: “We are unfortunately in a situation where access to Yemen is extremely difficult, and to do so with U.S. government assets could put other lives at risk and so we are doing the best with the circumstances as they exist.”Arwa Al Iriani, also a plaintiff in CAIR’s lawsuit, says no one really takes those State Department travel warnings seriously. “They all say the same thing: don’t travel to Yemen!” she quipped.Arwa arrived in Yemen with her Yemeni husband and their 1-year-old daughter to visit her in-laws in February as the U.S. was yanking its own personnel.“It was sudden, we were fine -- there was nothing wrong, then all of a sudden I was asleep and my husband comes in -- Saudi Arabia is bombing Yemen,” she said.Americans in Yemen say the situation completely changed when the Saudi-led coalition began airstrikes on the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who took over the capital in January. That’s when things got really scary, they say.Arwa contacted the U.S. Embassy and "got an automated emails -- as per usual,” she said, and they panicked. “The next email I got read: there’s a boat and it’s somewhere in Hodeidah city.” They never located it, Arwa said.The U.S. Embassy in Sana’a's website has been putting out semi-regular messages for American citizens and on Friday, advised American citizens to contact the International Organization of Migration (IOM), offering up a hotline to call.Arwa and Saffa both reached out to IOM about possible flights, but both are married to husbands who are not citizens.“They want me to fly without my husband,” Saffa said -- not an option for either family.Holed up in her house in the capital of Sana’a all day, Saffa’s left to care for her four pets and listen to the airstrikes approaching. Their neighborhood of expats and NGO staff has been largely evacuated. Earlier this week, two mortar shells landed on the family’s roof.As basic resources dwindle, her husband still goes to work at his family’s nearby dairy shop. She adds wryly: if she’s going to be trapped, at least she’ll have cheese. Saffa rules out a boat ride to Djibouti because it’s a dangerous nine-hour drive to the coast from Sana’a, and a drive to Saudi Arabia is out of the question.“So I guess, we’re just waiting on an airplane -- any kind of airplane –--from anywhere,” she said.Arwa, who is currently at her in-laws' in the port city of Hodeideh with her 1-year-old, heard that an Indian vessel was arriving to transport evacuees. When they arrived at the port, a tugboat ahead of the Indian vessel was violently seized and the boat was blocked from entering the port. Her other options? A fishing boat to Djibouti, which makes her nervous with a toddler, or driving to Saudi Arabia, but the road from Hodeidah to the Saudi border is too dangerous.Shaif in Sana'a isn’t willing to wait for a plane for his son.“This has taken a toll on all of us,” he says, noting that his daughter is on panic attack medications and his son isn’t sleeping. "That feeling of unsafe.” Shaif has started planning a drive to the Saudi border from Yemen and flying onwards to Amman, Jordan.In the central city of Ibb, Yemen, Talal, 31, and his Yemeni wife see few good options. Talal is considering driving to the airport in Sana’a but has scant details on any flights taking off. A DV Lottery Visa winner in 2007, he’s been living and paying taxes in America for the last eight years. “This is not what I expected at all when I moved to the States,” he said."I expected what I see in movies 'we protect our citizens and move navy fleets for them -- anywhere in the world,'” Talal said over the crackling phone line from the Yemeni city of Ibb. “It’s literally hell on earth here.” Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Gay Couple in Hillary Clinton Campaign Clip Prompts ’18+’ Age Warning on Russian TV

Gay Couple in Hillary Clinton Campaign Clip Prompts ’18+’ Age Warning on Russian TV Morne de Klerk/Getty Images(MOSCOW) — The launch of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign has proved an unexpected test of Russia’s controversial so-called “gay-propaganda” law.The independent, opposition TV channel, Dozhd TV, decided it was obliged to include an “18+” age-rating on the video announcing the launch of Clinton’s campaign because it features a gay couple holding hands. Clinton’s campaign released the video Sunday to formally announce her run.As the video briefly shows the gay couple holding hands, a voice-over from one of the men says, "I’m getting married this summer to someone I really care about."A spokesperson for Dozhd TV told ABC News that it had decided to include the age warning in order to avoid risking falling foul of the Russia’s so-called “gay propaganda” law, which bans the promotion of “non-traditional” relationships to minors.In practice, the law is so loosely worded as to effectively prohibit the showing of homosexuality in any form to people under 18. Those convicted of violating the law face a sizeable fine. Russian children’s books and sex education manuals have previously been deemed in breach of the law and their authors prosecuted.Dozhd said that it had acted preemptively and that it had received no instructions from the Russian authorities.Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

140 Americans Have Arrived in Djibouti as Yemen Sinks Deeper into Chaos

140 Americans Have Arrived in Djibouti as Yemen Sinks Deeper into Chaos Courtesy US Embassy in Djibouti (DJIBOUTI) — Some 140 Americans fleeing unrest in Yemen have arrived in Djibouti, officials said, but hundreds of others are believed to still remain behind in Yemen.The families in Djibouti are exhausted, getting food and water and will receive "full consular services," authorities said.   140 Amcit evacuees from Yemen have made it to #Djibouti. #US_Emb_Djibouti is providing consular service. pic.twitter.com/L0bOhibhzs — Tom Kelly (@USAmbDjibouti) April 12, 2015   Americans could be seen smiling, grasping hands with U.S. Embassy staff members in Djibouti after fleeing from Yemen.Ambassador Tom Kelly shared photos on social medial showing some of the American citizens who've reached Djibouti.   Consular officers from #US_Emb_Djibouti are at port when Amcit evacuees and their family members arrive in #Djibouti. pic.twitter.com/sOeXrFc2ut — Tom Kelly (@USAmbDjibouti) April 12, 2015     Aboard the INS Tarkash, which evac'd 500+ from Aden to #Djibouti this a.m. Many Amcits on board. USA thanks #India! pic.twitter.com/OE4unGF4es — Tom Kelly (@USAmbDjibouti) April 11, 2015     Diplomats from @US_Emb_Djibouti welcome US citizen evacuee from Yemen. Thanks to Djiboutian authorities for the help. pic.twitter.com/EFTMvTDaZc — Tom Kelly (@USAmbDjibouti) April 7, 2015   Hundreds of Yemeni refugees are arriving in Djibouti, as well.The United Nations has said the crisis in Yemen is "getting worse by the hour," with tens of thousands of people trying to escape the rapidly disintegrating nation. The U.N. refugee agency estimates some 130,000 people will flee the country in the next six months.“The current conflict in Yemen takes place against the backdrop of a humanitarian crisis of a protracted nature and of a size and a complexity which is amongst the largest in the world,” the United Nations humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, Johannes van der Klaauw, told reporters Friday in Geneva.Yemen is the poorest country in the Arab world, and before the recent conflict, more than 60 percent of the population required humanitarian assistance, according to Oxfam, one of the largest NGOs working on the ground. More than 13 million people do not have access to clean water and nearly nine million people are unable to access basic medical care.The strengthening Saudi Arabian-led air campaign against the Iranian-backed Houthis now in control is systematically destroying much of the country’s infrastructure. Anything that had been left of basic services, including health care, is all but gone, the U.N. said.The International Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders have sent supplies and surgical teams into Aden, Yemen, the epicenter of the recent violence, but it’s a dangerous trip.Last week, more than 50 U.S. citizens filed lawsuits last week against the State Department and Department of Defense for failing to evacuate them. As the situation unraveled, the website www.StuckInYemen.com was launched to help identify those still left behind and #StuckInYemen is gaining momentum on Twitter. ABC Breaking US News | US News Videos Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Surveillance Video Reveals New Details About London Jewel Heist

Surveillance Video Reveals New Details About London Jewel Heist Digital Vision/Thinkstock(LONDON) — Newly-released surveillance video reveals clues about how a gang of jewel thieves made off with a major haul on Easter weekend.The group stole jewelry from the vaults of the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit Company building in London’s jewelry quarter. Authorities are having difficulty determining the exact amount of the jewels taken, but the total amount has been estimated in the $100- to $150 million range.The British newspaper The Daily Mirror, which first obtained the surveillance footage, used pet names to identify six of the bandits seen in the footage: Mr. Ginger, the Gent, Mr. Strong, Mr. Montana, the Tall Man and the Old Man.Over the course of four days, the team can be seen hauling all sorts of gear -- including a large monkey wrench and what appears to be bolt-cutters. Duffel bags, plastic bins and a getaway vehicle are also visible in the surveillance footage.Police say the group descended an elevator shaft before using a diamond-tipped drill to cut through six feet of reinforced concrete to access the vault, where the group raided dozens of safety deposit boxes.Police are under fire after admitting they didn’t respond to the first alarm -- and now an internal investigation is underway to find out why.Meanwhile, Scotland Yard is scouring surveillance video, looking for any clues leading to the men behind one of the biggest heists in British history. Follow @ABCNewsRadio Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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