The Top 10 Stories of April 23, 2013

By Duane Shank 4-23-2013

Quote of the day.
"What we really do when we conserve all these varieties is conserve options for adapting agriculture in the future. It’s very clear that agriculture is facing major challenges these days." Marie Haga, executive director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, on why thousands of varieties of seeds are being saved in a global seed vault so they can be studied and used for future food needs.
(McClatchy News)

1. Suspect charged with using weapon of mass destruction.
The U.S. Justice Department charged Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Monday with killing people with a weapon of mass destruction, in a prosecution that could put the accused terrorist in prison for life or send him to the death chamber.
(Boston Globe)

2. More details sought on mute Boston bomb suspect.
The 19-year-old charged with the Boston Marathon bombing, his throat injured by a gunshot wound, wrote down answers to the questions of investigators about his motives and connections to any terror networks.
(Associated Press)

3. Flights delayed at major East Coast airports as furloughs begin.
After months of inside-the-Beltway drama, the impact of sequestration cutbacks moved to center stage America on Monday as the aviation system was slowed by the furlough of 1,500 air traffic controllers.
(Washington Post)

4. Heated questions and divisions emerge at immigration bill hearing.
At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the legislation Monday, a new set of divisions began to emerge, offering an early glimpse at the partisan politics likely to be on display as the immigration bill winds its way through the Senate.
(New York Times)

5. EPA criticizes environmental review of Keystone XL pipeline.
The Environmental Protection Agency on Monday criticized the State Department's environmental impact review of the Keystone XL pipeline, saying there was not enough evidence to back up key conclusions on gas emissions, safety, and alternative routes.
(Los Angeles Times)

6. Shrinking Europe military spending stirs concern.
Alarmed by years of cuts to military spending, the NATO secretary general, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, issued a dire public warning to European nations, noting that together they had slashed $45 billion, or the equivalent of Germany’s entire military budget, endangering the alliance’s viability, its mission, and its relationship with the United States.
(New York Times)

7. Iranian official says sanctions won’t impede Iran’s nuclear progress.
Iran’s economy is clawing its way back to health after nearly a year of harsh Western sanctions, the country’s top financial official said in an interview in which he insisted that no amount of outside pressure would force Tehran to change its nuclear policies.
(Washington Post)

8. Syrian bishops reportedly kidnapped by rebels.
State media in Syria has reported that two Syrian bishops who were carrying out humanitarian work in the northern province of Aleppo have been kidnapped. SANA news agency said the Syriac Orthodox and Greek Orthodox Archbishops of Aleppo, Yohanna Ibrahim and Paul Yazigi, were seized on Monday in the village of Kfar Dael.
(Al Jazeera)

9. U.S. rejects North Korean demand for nuclear status.
North Korea insisted on Tuesday that it be recognized as a nuclear weapons state, a demand the United States promptly dismissed as "neither realistic nor acceptable."

10. In Pakistan, a rare Christian retaliation against Muslim violence.
Earlier this month, in what observers and locals characterize as a very rare occurrence, Christians in the Francisabad neighborhood of Gujranwala stood their ground when a group of Muslims from nearby settlements began attacking their property.
(Christian Science Monitor)

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