Lead Stories

The Two-Way
9:04 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Jailed Saudi Blogger Granted Another Reprieve From Flogging; Reason Unclear

Originally published on Fri January 30, 2015 2:55 pm

Saudi authorities have once again canceled the scheduled flogging of blogger Raif Badawi, who is being punished for insulting Islam, according to Amnesty International, the human rights group that has been closely following the case.

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The Two-Way
8:55 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Boston Marathon Winner Rita Jeptoo Banned 2 Years For Doping

Rita Jeptoo of Kenya crosses the finish line to win the Women's Elite division of the 118th Boston Marathon on April 21.
Timothy Clary AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 30, 2015 11:42 am

One of the marathon world's brightest stars has been banned for two years, after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug.

Athletics Kenya, the body that governs running in the country, said Rita Jeptoo tested positive for erythropoietin, or EPO, which stimulates the production of red blood cells.

Jeptoo has won the Boston Marathon three times and she won her second Chicago Marathon in October.

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The Two-Way
8:26 am
Fri January 30, 2015

China Cracks Down On University Textbooks Promoting 'Western Values'

A Chinese paramilitary police stands in front a portrait of late Chinese leader Mao Zedong outside the Forbidden city, Beijing, China, in November.
Aaron Favila AP

Originally published on Fri January 30, 2015 9:12 am

China's education minister has told universities to stop using textbooks that promote Western values in a move seen as part of a larger ideological crackdown, reports NPR's Frank Langfitt from Shanghai.

At an educational forum, Yuan Guiren said universities should also forbid criticism of China's leaders and the country's political system, according to the Xinhua News Agency.

Frank says the edict comes as the government disrupts virtual private networks, or VPNs, which help people access foreign websites that China's Internet cops have already blocked.

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The Two-Way
7:54 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Songwriter, Poet Rod McKuen Dies At 81

Ezio Petersen UPI /Landov

The obituary in The Los Angeles Times describes Rod McKuen as "prolific" and that may well be an understatement considering the many compositions he churned out.

McKuen is credited with more than 200 albums and more than 30 collections of poetry.

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The Two-Way
7:30 am
Fri January 30, 2015

As Deadline Passes, The Fate Of ISIS Hostages Is Uncertain

As a deadline came and went, the fate of two hostages being held by the Islamic State is uncertain.

As we've reported, Jordan has indicated it was willing to release a convicted terrorist in exchange for the release of a Jordanian prisoner. On Thursday, Jordan demanded proof of life from the Islamic State, which had demanded the exchange take place by sundown on Thursday.

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