- Obama downplays IRS scandal, blames Obamacare rollout on ‘outdated’ agencies
- Pregnancies decline overall, up among older women
- Pentagon plans to destroy Syrian chemical arms on ship at sea
- Paris Metro issues ‘politeness manual’ to improve passengers’ behavior
- Justin Bieber, crew detained at Australian airport in drug search
- Lee Rigby trial: Muslim who machete-hacked soldier calls it ‘humane’ kill
- GM ending Chevy sales in Europe to focus on Opel and Vauxhall
- Putin’s diplomats to U.S. busted for living high life off $1.5M bilked from Medicaid
- Happy Meal: Couple goes to McDonald’s, leaves with bag packed with cash
- Boehner: It took me 3 to 4 hours to sign up for Obamacare
World Briefs: Nuclear plant operator gets billion-dollar bailout
TOKYO — The government approved a $12.5 billion public bailout Wednesday for the operator of Japan’s tsunami-devastated nuclear power plant and put it under temporary state control.
In exchange, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (Tepco) has appointed new management and pledged to cut costs while raising utility rates as it works to stabilize the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant and compensate tens of thousands of victims of the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl.
He stressed the need for Tepco to become more transparent amid criticism that it did not release complete and timely information about the disaster.
Tepco has come under fire for being unprepared for the massive earthquake and tsunami that ravaged Japan’s northeastern coastline last year.
The cooling systems at the plant failed, causing meltdowns of at least three reactor cores and the release of large amounts of radiation.
The plan calls for $41.3 billion of cost cuts over 10 years by Tepco.
Court rejects appeal of al Qaeda-linked cleric
LONDON — Europe’s highest appeals court Wednesday refused to hear a challenge by the radical Islamist cleric Abu Qatada against a British order that he be deported to Jordan.
The ruling marks a milestone in the legal wrangling over the suspected senior al Qaeda figure, effectively exhausting his efforts to have European judges intervene in the case. He could be sent to Jordan within months. Britain’s efforts to remove the radical preacher have dragged for more than a decade.
The Palestinian-Jordanian preacher has been in detention since his arrest last month. His lawyers applied Wednesday for bail, though no date for that hearing has been set.
The ruling Wednesday by judges in Strasbourg, France, clears the way for a fresh British deportation hearing for the Islamist cleric, who has been described in both Spanish and British courts as a leading al Qaeda figure in Europe.
Activists jailed after Victory Day protest
MOSCOW — Two leading opposition activists said they were sentenced to 15 days each in jail Wednesday after they were arrested along with dozens of others ahead of a tightly policed Victory Day parade.
Protest leader Alexei Navalny and radical left leader Sergei Udaltsov were among those detained at an unsanctioned gathering in a small park near Red Square.
The parade, which commemorates Russia’s 1945 defeat of Nazi Germany, was watched by newly inaugurated President Vladimir Putin.
In a Twitter message, Mr. Navalny’s lawyer, Nikolai Polozov, said his client had been give a 15-day sentence for disobedience. Mr. Navalny, himself, tweeted: “Of all my detentions this is the least like disobedience.”
Tymoshenko in hospital after ending hunger strike
KHARKIV — Yulia Tymoshenko ended a nearly three-week hunger strike Wednesday. The imprisoned former prime minister was moved from jail to a hospital for treatment of a severe back condition under the supervision of a German doctor.
The news was likely to allay at least some Western concerns over Tymoshenko’s health and handling in prison.
EU officials and some governments from the 27-nation bloc have vowed to boycott the European Championship soccer tournament, which begins in June and is co-hosted by Ukraine and Poland.
Ukraine had to cancel a regional cooperation summit this weekend after most heads of Central and Eastern European states canceled their visits because of the Tymoshenko case.
Tymoshenko, 51, the country’s top opposition leader, had been on hunger since April 27 to protest alleged abuse. Ukraine’s government has come under intense Western pressure to provide Tymoshenko with suitable medical care.
She was sentenced to seven years in prison on conviction of abuse of office while conducting natural gas import negotiations with Russia in 2009. The West has condemned the verdict as politically motivated.
Female prisoners accuse authorities of sex abuse
CAIRO — Women detainees and civil rights groups have accused Egyptian troops and prison authorities of sexual assault in the latest crackdown on demonstrations.
More than a dozen women were detained among some 300 protesters after a demonstration outside the Defense Ministry in Cairo last week.
A recently released female detainee told a parliamentary committee that soldiers groped her, knocked her unconscious and threatened her with sexual assault.
The ruling military government had no immediate comment.
•From wire dispatches and staff reports
Why such hatred toward America's freedom of religion?
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality: liberal group
- Inside China: Nuclear submarines capable of widespread attack on U.S.
- NAPOLITANO: Pope Francis should be saving souls, not pocketbooks
- CARSON: Getting to the top by starting at the bottom
- Activists encourage Obama to circumvent Congress, use more executive authority
- Russian diplomats busted bilking $1.5 million from Medicaid
- Democratic infighting erupts over 'we can have it all' fantasy on entitlements
- Obama returns to class warfare as poll numbers plunge
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Obama lived with Uncle Onyango Obama in the 1980s, White House admits
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
Understanding economic events with a free market explanation
John Wood illustrates a new American politics, and the path to get there.
Interviews and show reviews from the Los Angeles punk scene past and present. Los Angeles has always been rich in punk rock talent since punk rock was born.
White House pets gone wild!