Judge orders Texas hospital to remove life support from pregnant, brain-dead woman
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) -- A judge on Friday ordered a Texas hospital to remove life support for a pregnant, brain-dead woman whose family had argued that she would not want to be kept in that condition.
Judge R. H. Wallace Jr. issued the ruling in the case of Marlise Munoz. John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth has been keeping Munoz on life support against her family's wishes. The judge gave the hospital until 5 p.m. CST Monday to remove life support. The hospital did not say Friday whether it would appeal.
Munoz was 14 weeks pregnant when her husband, Erick Munoz, found her unconscious Nov. 26, possibly due to a blood clot. Both the hospital and the family agree that she meets the criteria to be considered brain-dead -- which means she is dead both medically and under Texas law -- and that the fetus could not be born alive this early in a pregnancy.
But the hospital had not pronounced her dead and continues to treat her over the objections of both Erick Munoz and her parents, who sat together in court Friday.
"Mrs. Munoz is dead," Wallace said in issuing his ruling, adding that meant the hospital was misapplying a state law that prohibits the removal of life-sustaining treatment from a pregnant patient.
Bombings rock Egypt, killing 6 and raising fears of spreading militancy; 14 killed in clashes
CAIRO (AP) -- A truck bomb struck the main security headquarters in Cairo on Friday, one of a string of bombings targeting police within a 10-hour period, killing six people. The most significant attack yet in the Egyptian capital fueled a furious backlash against the Muslim Brotherhood amid rising fears of a militant insurgency.
The mayhem on the eve of the third anniversary of Egypt's once-hopeful revolution pointed to the dangerous slide Egypt has taken since last summer's military ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi: A mounting confrontation between the military-backed government and Islamist opponents amid the escalating violence.
In the hours after the blast, angry residents -- some chanting for the "execution" of Brotherhood members -- joined police in clashes with the group's supporters holding their daily street protests against the government. Smoke rose over Cairo from fires, and fighting around the country left 14 more people dead.
Saturday, the anniversary of the start of the 18-day uprising that ousted autocrat Hosni Mubarak, raised the potential for new violence, as both military supporters and the Islamists vowed to take to the streets with rival rallies.
After Friday's blasts, interim President Adli Mansour vowed to "uproot terrorism," just as the government crushed a militant insurgency in the 1990s. The state "will not show them pity or mercy," he said. "We ... will not hesitate to take the necessary measures."
Syrian government and opposition to meet together 'in the same room,' UN mediator says
GENEVA (AP) -- Bending to intense international pressure, Syria's government and the Western-backed opposition agreed Friday to face each other for the first time since the start of the uprising against President Bashar Assad.
After three days of hostile rhetoric and five hours spent assiduously avoiding contact within the United Nations, the two sides will meet "in the same room," said the U.N. mediator trying to forge an end to the civil war that has left 130,000 people dead since 2011.
Mediator Lakhdar Brahimi met separately with Assad's delegation and representatives with the Syrian National Coalition, who arrived at the U.N. European headquarters five hours apart to ensure their paths would not cross.
"We never expected it to be easy and I'm sure it's not going to be, but I think the two parties understand what's at stake," Brahimi said. "Their country is in very, very bad shape."
Brahimi, a famously patient mediator, is credited with efforts to stabilize Iraq and Afghanistan after the U.S. ousted their governments. But he faces a formidable task to build peace in Syria, which has been flooded with al-Qaida-inspired militants. The conflict has become a proxy war between regional powers Iran and Saudi Arabia.
US stocks fall again, extending a global slump as investors flee emerging markets
Fear is back in the market.
Investors are worried about slower economic growth in China, a gloomier outlook for U.S. corporate profits and an end to easy-money policies in the United States and Europe. They're also fretting over country-specific troubles around the world -- from economic mismanagement in Argentina to political instability in Turkey.
Those fears converged this week to start a two-day rout in global markets that was capped by a 318-point drop in the Dow Jones industrial average Friday. It was the blue-chip index's worst day since last June. The Dow plunged almost 500 points over the two days.
The Dow finished down 2 percent at 15,879 Friday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 38 points, or 2.1 percent, to 1,790. The Nasdaq composite fell 90 points, or 2.2 percent, to 4,128.
As investors shunned risk, small-company stocks fell even more than the rest of the market, and bond prices rose.
Ukraine clashes resume, fireballs from burning barricades light up night sky
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) -- As riots spread from Ukraine's embattled capital to nearly half of the country, President Viktor Yanukovych promised Friday to reshuffle his government and make other concessions -- but a top opposition leader said nothing short of his resignation would do.
Hours after the president's comments, huge fireballs lit up the night sky in central Kiev and plumes of thick black smoke rose from burning tires at giant barricades erected by protesters.
Clashes resumed at the barricades, which are just yards from lines of riot police and also made up of bags of ice and scraps of furniture.
Angry demonstrators hurled firebombs, rocks and fireworks at officers. Riot police responded with tear gas and several dozen protesters were rushed to a makeshift medical triage area to be treated.
"We will force the authorities to respect us," 27-year-old protester Artur Kapelan said. "Not they, but we will dictate the conditions of a truce."
Bombing in Egyptian capital damages 1 of the world's rarest collection of Islamic artifacts
CAIRO (AP) -- Centuries-old glass and porcelain pieces were smashed to powder, a priceless wooden prayer niche was destroyed and manuscripts were soaked by water spewing from broken pipes when a car bombing wreaked havoc on Cairo's renowned Islamic Art Museum.
Experts scrambled to try to save thousands of priceless treasures as ceilings crumbled in the 19th-century building, which had just undergone a multimillion-dollar renovation.
The explosions, which targeted police and the main security headquarters, shook the museum located in the nearby old Cairo district of Bab el-Khalq, propelling steal and ceiling plaster onto its glass cases and wooden artifacts.
"The museum was totally destroyed and needs to be rebuilt," Egypt's Minister of Antiquities Mohammed Ibrahim said.
"I am in a shock and speechless. Imagine if an attack struck the Metropolitan, what would happen? This museum is just like the Metropolitan in its significance," said former museum official Mohammed el-Kilani.
Police: Student shot to death outside SC State University dorm; searching for 4 suspects
ORANGEBURG, S.C. (AP) -- A student was shot and killed Friday outside an on-campus dormitory at South Carolina State University, and police were looking for four men who left campus.
Brandon Robinson, 20, died not long after he was shot outside of the Hugine Suites around 1:30 p.m., authorities said. The gunmen left campus before police could catch them, but authorities decided to lock down the campus so they could not return, said University Police Chief Mernard Clarkson.
"Our students are secure and safe as we keep looking for these individuals," Clarkson said.
Clarkson said police haven't figured out what led to the shooting. He said his officers know one person they want to talk to, but he wasn't ready to release a name.
The shooting shocked the entire campus, university President Thomas Elzey said. Grief counselors will be brought in to talk to students and staff.
GOP activists defend Christie -- but far from ready to say he'll be their presidential nominee
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Chris Christie may have been nearly 200 miles away, but his struggles in New Jersey buzzed through the hallways of a Washington hotel this week as hundreds of Republican officials gathered to debate the GOP's future.
Party activists from Mississippi to Massachusetts defended Christie's leadership, insisting this is no time to write his political obituary. But they also said it's far too soon to grant him presidential front-runner status.
Christie's popularity has fallen in recent weeks amid revelations that senior members of his administration helped create massive traffic jams last fall, apparently to exact political retribution against a Democratic New Jersey mayor. Additional allegations of political bullying have emerged as federal prosecutors and Democratic legislators probe the matter. Four people close to Christie have been fired or have resigned.
A roadblock for a possible presidential run? More like a speed bump, one activist said Friday. It could even help Christie among party conservatives by turning him into a martyr, said another. But he still faces resistance among some of those conservatives.
A senior Christie adviser at the Republican National Committee meeting suggested the high-profile governor has already overcome the worst of his challenges, although federal prosecutors have subpoenaed his recent campaign and Democrats are pressing an abuse-of-power investigation.
Quebec firefighters search icy ruins of burned-out retirement home; 8 dead, 30 missing
L'ISLE-VERTE, Quebec (AP) -- Using steam to melt the ice, investigators searched the frozen-over ruins of a retirement home Friday for victims of a fire that left at least eight people dead and about 30 missing.
The tragedy cast such a pall over the village of 1,500 that psychologists were sent door to door.
"It's absolute desolation," Mayor Ursule Theriault said.
The cause of the blaze that swept through the three-story building early Thursday was under investigation, and police asked the public for any videos or photos that might yield clues.
Witnesses told horrific tales of people trapped and killed by the flames. Many of the 50 or so residents were over 85 and used wheelchairs or walkers. Some had Alzheimer's.
Carmelo Anthony breaks Knicks, MSG records with 62 points as Knicks roll past Bobcats
NEW YORK (AP) -- Carmelo Anthony scored a career-high and franchise-record 62 points, most at the current Madison Square Garden, and the New York Knicks beat the Charlotte Bobcats 125-96 on Friday night to stop a five-game losing streak.
"It's an unbelievable feeling," Anthony said in an interview on MSG Network immediately after the game. "It's just a zone that you get into sometimes. Only certain people know what that zone feels like."
Anthony made 23 of 35 shots, one when he leapt from halfcourt to beat the halftime buzzer, and even added 13 rebounds in the NBA's highest-scoring performance this season.
Anthony had 56 after three quarters, bettering Kevin Durant's previous season high of 54, and stayed in for the first few minutes of the fourth to break Bernard King's Knicks record of 60 points and Kobe Bryant's arena record of 61, set five years ago.
"I came into this game locked in," Anthony said. "I didn't know I was going to have that type of performance. ... It's a special moment. I know Bernard King is somewhere smiling at me. ... I was just taking it one possession at a time. ... My teammates found me. I've got to thank them."