American Scene: Facebook makes it easier to become organ donor

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NEW YORK — Facebook users in the United States and the United Kingdom can enroll as organ donors via links to official registries on the world’s biggest social networking site, said CEO Mark Zuckerberg. The links should make it easier for people who want to donate their organs to sign up.

Facebook users who are already organ donors can add that information to their profile page, now known as their timeline.

Mr. Zuckerberg said his friendship with Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs, who had received a liver transplant before he died last year, helped develop the idea, as did talks with his girlfriend Priscilla Chan, a medical student.

At least 112,000 Americans are waiting for organs and 18 people die every day from the lack of available organs, according to Donate Life America, a nonprofit that is teaming with Facebook.

Mr. Zuckerberg announced the organ donor update to Facebook on “Good Morning America” Tuesday.

Facebook Inc., based in Menlo Park, Calif., is busy readying an initial public stock offering said to be pegged at $5 billion. Facebook’s IPO could place the company’s value at $100 billion.

OHIO

Charity accused of ties to Hamas settles U.S. suit

TOLEDO — An Ohio-based charity accused by the U.S. of having ties to the militant Islamic group Hamas has settled its lawsuit against the federal government.

The agreement announced Tuesday will remove the charity from the government’s list of terrorist organizations.

The settlement comes six years after the Treasury Department essentially closed the charity’s operation by ordering U.S. banks to freeze the group’s assets. It accused the group of funneling money to terrorist-affiliated organizations.

The leaders of KindHearts for Charitable Humanitarian Development in Toledo denied being connected to any terrorist group and sued the government after it refused to say why the charity’s money was frozen.

The charity said in January that it had shut down, and the settlement says it will remain closed.

NEW YORK

Police captain, wife, daughters die in fire

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