PARIS (AP) - The bloody three-day hostage standoff at a natural gas plant in the Sahara took a dramatic turn Friday as Algeria's state news service reported that nearly 100 of the 132 foreign workers kidnapped by Islamic militants had been freed.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The Weinstein Co. has asked a toy maker to discontinue a line of "Django Unchained" action figures after receiving complaints that they were offensive.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The University of California has again received a record number of applications for undergraduate admission, attracting strong interest from inside and outside the state, school officials said Friday.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California lawmakers have adjourned for the long holiday weekend, but they will keep getting daily expense payments even while they're not in Sacramento.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Attorneys for victims of the deadly San Bruno pipeline explosion are meeting with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. to negotiate a possible global settlement to resolve the remaining civil suits filed in the wake of the blast.
PARK CITY, Utah (AP) - Gael Garcia Bernal has journeyed north to the Sundance Film Festival in Utah to share the tragic story of another traveler.
Nine more children or teens have died of the flu, bringing the nation's total this flu season to 29, health officials reported Friday.
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) - House Republicans may seek a quick, short-term extension of the government's debt limit, a move that would avoid an immediate default by the Treasury as the party seeks to maximize leverage in negotiations over spending cuts with President Barack Obama this spring, officials said Thursday.
ALGIERS, Algeria (AP) - The bloody three-day hostage standoff at a Sahara natural gas plant took a dramatic turn Friday as Algeria's state news service reported that nearly 100 of the 132 foreign workers kidnapped by Islamic militants had been freed.
WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. builders started work on homes in December at the fastest pace in 4 ½ years and finished 2012 as their best year for residential construction since the early stages of the housing crisis.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A federal judge considering San Francisco's public nudity ban rejected arguments Thursday that simply disrobing in public was protected political speech akin to flag burning.
CHICAGO (AP) - Lance Armstrong confessed to using performance-enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France during an interview with Oprah Winfrey, reversing more than a decade of denial.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Pentagon is stepping up aid for Mexico's bloody drug war with a new U.S.-based special operations headquarters to teach Mexican security forces how to hunt drug cartels the same way special operations teams hunt al-Qaida, according to documents and interviews with multiple U.S. officials.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration appeared to be in the dark Thursday about a hostage situation at a natural gas plant in Algeria, where Algerian forces launched a military assault to free dozens of foreign hostages, including an unknown number of Americans, held by Islamist militants.
AURORA, Colo. (AP) - The Colorado cinema where 12 people were killed and dozens injured in a shooting rampage nearly six months ago reopens Thursday with a remembrance ceremony and a private screening of the fantasy film "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" for survivors - but for some Aurora victims, the pain is still too much, the idea too horrific.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Eight million people have signed up for health care through new insurance exchanges and the proportion of younger applicants has increased, President Barack Obama said Thursday. The enrollments exceeded expectations and offered new hope to Democrats who are defending the law ahead of the midterm elections.
MIAMI (AP) - The smugglers who helped Los Angeles Dodgers star Yasiel Puig leave Cuba on a speedboat have made death threats against him and against a Cuban boxer who says he defected with Puig, according to court documents.
MEXICO CITY (AP) - Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez crafted intoxicating fiction from the fatalism, fantasy, cruelty and heroics of the world that set his mind churning as a child growing up on Colombia's Caribbean coast.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Call it the year of the baby: Chelsea Clinton and her husband, Marc Mezvinsky, are expecting their first child later this year.
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) - Toy maker Mattel says weak sales of Barbie and markdowns to clear out excess inventory left over from a sluggish holiday season led to an unexpected first-quarter loss.
MERCED, Calif. (AP) - A Central Valley dentist accused of groping four female patients while they were sedated is facing three years in prison after pleading no contest to sexual battery charges.
GENEVA (AP) - High-level talks aimed at calming soaring tensions over the crisis in Ukraine went into overtime on Thursday with top diplomats from the United States, European Union, Russia and Ukraine attempting to forge a common position on how to de-escalate the situation.
MOKPO, South Korea (AP) - An immediate evacuation order was not issued for the ferry that sank off South Korea's southern coast, likely with scores of people trapped inside, because officers on the bridge were trying to stabilize the vessel after it started to list amid confusion and chaos, a crew member said Thursday.
PARIS (AP) - David Cronenberg deconstructs Hollywood, Tommy Lee Jones goes Western and reclusive New Wave legend Jean-Luc Godard returns in 3-D in films competing at next month's Cannes Film Festival.
BRUSSELS (AP) - NATO is strengthening its military footprint along its eastern border immediately in response to Russia's aggression in Ukraine, the alliance's chief said Wednesday.
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) - SpaceX is shooting for another launch attempt Friday to deliver supplies to the International Space Station.
NEW YORK (AP) - Muslim groups and civil liberties advocates applauded the decision by New York Police Department officials to disband a controversial unit that tracked the daily lives of Muslims as part of efforts to detect terrorism threats, but they said there were concerns about whether other problematic practices remained in place.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The title character of "Jessie" heads in an unprecedented direction for a Disney Channel series: toward the altar.
MOKPO, South Korea (AP) - Koo Bon-hee could see the exit. For half an hour, as the doomed ferry filled with water and listed severely on its side, the crew told passengers to wait for rescuers.
FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - Advocates for the gray wolf in California will have to wait 90 days before learning if the animal will be listed as endangered, a state board decided Wednesday. Ranchers and state wildlife officials oppose granting the species legal protections.