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Tue. 9:08 a.m.: The Santa experience this year is a mix of laps, distancing

NEW YORK (AP) — Santa is back this year, but he pleads caution as he continues to tiptoe through the pandemic. "Be smart. Be caring. If you have the tiniest tickle in your throat, the tiniest feeling, worry about yourself and worry about everybody else, and know Santa will always be there ...

Tue. 8:48 a.m.: UN nuclear watchdog chief presses for more access in Iran

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — The head of the United Nations' atomic watchdog met today with Iranian officials to press for greater access in the Islamic Republic ahead of diplomatic talks restarting over Tehran's tattered nuclear deal with world powers. Rafael Mariano Grossi of the International ...

Tue. 8:31 a.m.: German soldiers face vaccine mandate as COVID cases rise

BERLIN (AP) — The German military is making coronavirus shots compulsory for troops amid a growing debate in the country about whether to introduce a general vaccine mandate to counter rising infection and hospitalization rates. The Defense Ministry today confirmed a report in the German ...

Tue. 8:23 a.m.: US to release 50 million barrels of oil to ease energy costs

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden this morning ordered 50 million barrels of oil released from the strategic reserve to help bring down energy costs, in coordination with other major energy consuming nations, including China, India, and the United Kingdom. The move is aimed at global ...

Tue. 8:16 a.m.: Bus crashes, catches fire in Bulgaria; at least 45 dead

SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — A bus carrying people home to North Macedonia from a tourist trip to Istanbul crashed and caught fire in western Bulgaria early today, killing at least 45 people, authorities said. Seven people were taken to hospitals for treatment. The accident happened around 2 a.m. ...

Tue. 8:08 a.m.: Ex-South Korean strongman Chun Doo-hwan dies at age 90

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Former South Korean military strongman Chun Doo-hwan, who seized power in a 1979 coup and brutally crushed pro-democracy protests before going to prison for misdeeds while in office, died today. He was 90. Chun, who suffered in recent years from Alzheimer's disease ...