PARIS (Reuters) - France and Morocco will resume their judicial and legal cooperation, the French justice ministry said in a statement on Saturday. Morocco had suspended cooperation agreements in protest at an attempt by French authorities to question the head of Morocco's domestic intelligence service over torture allegations while he was visiting Paris a year ago.
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — An African Union official says African leaders have agreed to send 7,500 troops to fight the Boko Haram insurgency in northeast Nigeria.
An Egyptian court on Saturday banned the armed wing of the Palestinian group Hamas and listed it as a terrorist organisation. Hamas is an offshoot of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood which the authorities have also declared a terrorist group and have repressed systematically since the army ousted one of its leaders, Mohamed Mursi, from the presidency in 2013. "The court ruled to ban the Qassam Brigades and to list it as a terrorist group," said the judge of the special Cairo court which deals with urgent cases.
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Serena Williams won her 19th Grand Slam title, continued her unbeaten run in six Australian Open finals and extended her decade-long domination of Maria Sharapova with a 6-3, 7-6 (5) victory despite a hacking cough on Saturday night.
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Stars from the sports and entertainment world mingled Friday night at ESPN's lavish pre-Super Bowl party, which featured an energetic performance from pop newcomer Charli XCX.
ROME (AP) — Sergio Mattarella, constitutional court justice, is elected Italy's president by lawmakers .
VATICAN CITY (AP) — A new Vatican outreach initiative to women hit a sour note before it even got off the ground: The sexy blonde on its Internet promo video came under such ridicule that it was quickly taken down.
Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis has moved forward to Saturday a planned trip to Paris that launches the new anti-austerity government's search for EU allies, his office said. "The minister will travel to Paris on Saturday instead of Monday," a spokesman told AFP, adding that Varoufakis was expected to hold meetings on Sunday. Varoufakis, a maverick economist opposed to fiscal cuts, was originally due to meet with French counterpart Michel Sapin and Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron on Monday afternoon. The new government of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras was elected Sunday on a platform of renegotiating Greece's unpopular EU-IMF bailout and erasing half the country's debt.
MANTEO, N.C. (AP) — The U.S. Coast Guard says it rescued five people from a sailboat after the boat's mast broke about 200 miles off the coast of North Carolina.
BERLIN (AP) — Former German President Richard von Weizsaecker, who declared Germany's World War II surrender a "day of liberation" for his country as he urged it to confront the Nazi past, and promoted reconciliation during a 10-year tenure that spanned the reunification of west and east, has died. He was 94.
By Siva Govindasamy, Kanupriya Kapoor and Tim Hepher SINGAPORE/JAKARTA/PARIS (Reuters) - The captain of the AirAsia jet that crashed into the sea in December was out of his seat conducting an unusual procedure when his co-pilot apparently lost control, and by the time he returned it was too late to save the plane, two people familiar with the investigation said. The captain eventually resumed the controls, but a person familiar with the matter said he was not in a position to intervene immediately to recover the aircraft from its upset.
Serena Williams won her sixth Australian Open and 19th career Grand Slam with a hard-fought win over bitter rival Maria Sharapova on Saturday, consolidating her place among the game's legends. The 6-3, 7-6 (7/5) triumph means the American world number one overtakes 18-time major champions Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert to go clear second on the all-time Open-era Grand Slam winners' list, three behind Steffi Graf.
Hosts Australia won the Asian Cup after beating South Korea 2-1 in extra time of an electrifying final on Saturday, substitute James Troisi smashing home a dramatic winner. Troisi broke Korean hearts with the last kick in the first period of extra time after Son Heung-Min had snatched a dramatic injury-time equaliser at the end of normal time. Australia's triumph gave the Socceroos a first title since defecting from Oceania nine years ago, while South Korea's anguish continued after failing to break a hoodoo in the tournament stretching back to 1960. Australia, runners-up to Japan in 2011, had been on the brink of victory after a stunning strike from Massimo Luongo on the stroke of half-time, triggering wild celebrations from the waves of fans in green and gold in a crowd of 76,000.
Melbourne (AFP) - 11:32 GMT - AFP IS CLOSING THIS LIVE REPORT after Serena Williams produced one of the great performances of her career to beat fierce rival Maria Sharapova and win her sixth Australian Open final, sealing her 19th Grand Slam title.
Fighting raged in eastern Ukraine on Saturday as pro-Russian separatists sought to tighten the circle around government forces clinging on to a rail center, with 15 Ukrainian soldiers killed in the past 24 hours. Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak said separatists were keeping up intense pressure on Debaltseve, a major rail and road junction north-east of the big city of Donetsk, as well as on the neighboring town of Vuhlehirsk. "The toughest situation is in the Vuhlehirsk area where the terrorists are trying to seize the town and occupy positions to move forward and encircle Debaltseve," military spokesman Andriy Lysenko said in a separate briefing. The renewed violence followed intense fighting on Friday in which more than 20 civilians were killed in separate shelling attacks in Donetsk, Debaltseve and other areas.
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