International

Putin, Ukraine leader break crisis ice at D-Day event

(Reuters) – The leaders of Russia and Ukraine held their first talks on Friday since Moscow annexed Crimea, discussing ways to end their four-month conflict in a brief encounter during commemorations in France of the World War Two D-Day landings. French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel brought together Russia’s Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian president-elect Petro Poroshenko for a 15-minute meeting before they joined other dignitaries for lunch. The meeting was the culmination […]

Chinese military spending exceeds $145 billion, drones advanced: U.S.

By Phil Stewart (Reuters) – China’s military spending exceeded $145 billion last year as it advanced a program modernizing an arsenal of drones, warships, jets, missiles and cyber weapons, the Pentagon said on Thursday, offering a far higher figure than Beijing’s official tally. The Pentagon’s estimate, using 2013 prices and exchange rates, was 21 percent above the $119.5 billion figure announced by China. It was detailed in an annual report to Congress that cited steady progress in […]

Military jet crashes in Southern California, damages homes

(Reuters) – A U.S. military jet crashed in a Southern California desert town on Wednesday, damaging homes, according to military officials and local media. An AV-8B Harrier jet from the Marine Corps Air Station in Yuma, Arizona, crashed at about 4:20 p.m. local time in Imperial, California, said Corporal Melissa Lee of the San-Diego based Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. As of Wednesday night, eight homes were evacuated, but no injuries had been reported, the […]

Bergdahl had left his unit before, but returned: sources

(Reuters) – A U.S. military investigation of Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl’s capture by the Taliban found he had slipped away from his unit before but had always returned, raising questions about whether or not he was deserting when he disappeared in 2009, people familiar with the findings said on Thursday. Bergdahl, 28, was freed after five years as an Afghanistan war prisoner on Saturday when the Obama administration agreed to release five Taliban leaders from Guantanamo prison […]

Global warming damages corals vital to small islands: UN

(Reuters) – Global warming is causing trillions of dollars of damage to coral reefs, aggravating risks to tropical small island states threatened by rising sea levels, a U.N. report said on Thursday. The rise in sea levels off some islands in the Western Pacific was four times the global average, with gains of 1.2 cms (0.5 inch) a year from 1993 to 2012, due to shifts in winds and currents, said the United Nations’ Environment […]