This news blog is an educational exercise involving students at the University of Minnesota. It is not intended to be a source of news.

Recently in Notable Category

Hopkins High School was the scene of a student protest Friday, according to multiple news sources.

Nearly 150 students at Hopkins High School staged a walkout Friday afternoon to protest what they called unfair treatment of minority students at the 1,800-student school in Minnetonk, reported the Star Tribune.

Last week, prosecutors charged two Hopkins students with misdemeanors following a confrontation in the assistant principal's office. The confrontation arose following student complaints aimed at the school's handling of an incident in which they say several white students mocked black culture, reported Patch.

The school says it responded to the matter in a fair and appropriate way for all of the students involved, reported Kare 11. But many of the students who walked out Friday say more needs to be done, and the walkout is the start of bringing that to attention.

5 snowboarders killed in Colorado avalanche

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Five snowboarders were killed Saturday afternoon after apparently triggering an avalanche atop Colorado's Loveland Pass, a popular spot for backcountry enthusiast, reported multiple news sources.

Six snowboarders were ascending the pass together when the slope broke away, unleashing a deadly wave of snow 400 to 500 feet wide and 8 feet deep, reported The New York Times.

One of the snowboarders was able to escape, descend to a nearby highway, and flag down a truck for help, reported The New York Times.

It took 4 hours to rescue the bodies, which were all equipped with avalanche gear, including beacons to transmit their location when submerged under snow, reported The New York Times.

The bodies were taken to the Clear Creek coroner's office. The victims' identities weren't immediately known, reported Fox News.

Obama administration budget plan

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President Obama's new budget plan gives concessions to Republicans on Social Security and Medicare, reported multiple news sources.

The A.F.L.-C.I.O. President, Richard Trumka, called the proposed changes "wrong and indefensible," reported The New York Times. An email from House Representative Alan Grayson, Democrat of Florida, was headlined "President's Budget Breaks Promises to Seniors."

Angry supporters on the left have asked President Obama whether he is progressive at all, reported The New York Times.

But President Obama positioned his budget not as his ideal vision for how much the federal government ought to tax and spend, but rather as a compromise that seeks to respect the priorities of Democrats and Republicans, reported CNN.

President Obama's budget proposal illustrates how difficult it will be to raise taxes without affecting the middle-class. Some of his proposal will hurt the middle-class, but Obama said he also intends to increase the size of the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit, which will mitigate any harmful effect, reported CNN.

China shifts position on North Korea

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North Korea's latest threats have allowed the United States a rare opportunity to negotiate with China, reported multiple news sources.

In a whirlwind of exchange that included a recent phone call from President Obama to Mr. Xi, China's new president, the United States has set up antimissile defense systems near North to buffer against the North's provocations, reported The New York Times.

Beijing called North Korea's moves "regrettable" -- amounting to a slap from Pyongyang's strongest economic and diplomatic supporter, reported Fox News.

The crisis has given new rise to the White House's strategy to bolster U.S. economic and security in the region, reported Fox News.

Judging whether China has changed their position on North Korea is difficult, reported The New York Times. In the past China has to be receptive to American pressure, on to backtrack later.

Chinese analysts say there is infighting within the Communist Party and the military about how to deal with Mr. Kim, and how strongly to enforce the United Nations' economic sanctions that China signed on to last month, reported The New York Times.

North Korean officials vowed Saturday to close a factory jointly operated by both countries, and reiterated that it considered the Korean peninsula in "a state of war," reported multiple news sources.

The action is seen as a response to a mach munitions drop by two United States B-2 stealth bombers to South Korean troops on the front line, reported The Guardian. Hours later, North Korea's leader, Kim Jung-un, ordered his generals to put rockets on standby and threatened to strike United States targets if provoked.

South Korean officials restated that they were ready to respond if the North committed any military provocations, they said they saw no imminent sign of any such attacks, reported The New York Times. On Saturday, the Kaesong factory located on the border operated as normal despite the allegations.

Security officials, the White House and the Pentagon, have sought to play down the tenor of the crisis, portraying it as just the latest in a long cycle of such incidents, reported The Guardian.

In a response that could become a full-fledged bank-run, anxious Cypriot depositors crowded cash machines to withdraw money hours after European officials in Brussels required that part of a new $13 billion bailout will be paid for directly from the bank accounts of ordinary savers, reported multiple news sources.

Cyprus is the fifth country to be bailed-out since the beginning of the European financial crisis 3 years ago, reported The New York Times.

Officials have struggled to settle an agreement that would rescue Cyprus, which accounts for just half of a percent of the euro region's economy, without disturbing investors in larger countries and sparking a new round of market hysteria, reported Bloomberg News.

The deposit tax is set at 9.9 percent on bank deposits exceeding $130,000 and at 6.7 percent on anything below that. It is slated to take place on Tuesday after a bank holiday on Monday, reported Bloomberg News.

The deposit tax, which is projected to raise 5.8 billion euros, appeared aimed at gaining large amounts of cash from the bank accounts of wealthy Russians, who have continually routed deposits into Cypriot banks in the past several years, reported The New York Times.


North Korea threatens in response to sanctions

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In wake of United Nations sanctions North Korea responded with threats of firing nuclear missiles at South Korea, reported multiple news sources.

The United States exhorted North Korea to resist "further provocative actions" on Friday after Pyongyang, North Korea's capital, vowed to cancel an armistice with South Korea and planned to disconnect a crisis hotline in reaction to the new sanctions, reported The Guardian.

Two recent opinion polls show that two-thirds of South Koreans support South Korea developing its own nuclear arsenal, reported The New York Times.

The opinion represents a sentiment of hardening attitudes since North Korea's Feb. 12 underground nuclear test, its third since 2006, reported The New York Times.

Newborn with H.I.V. cured

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A baby born in rural Mississippi was cured of H.I.V. after receiving treatment 30 hours after birth, reported multiple news sources.

The mother did not know she had H.I.V. and had not visited the hospital during her pregnancy. The baby was treated aggressively with antiretroviral drugs, a course that is not usually taken in the U.S. because most mothers take prophylactic drugs while pregnant to prevent infection, reported The New York Times.

If further study shows this works in other babies, it will almost certainly change the way newborns of infected mothers are treated all over the world, reported The New York Times.

Dr Hannah Gay, who cared for the child at the University of Mississippi medical center, told the Guardian the case amounted to the first "functional cure" of an HIV-infected child. A patient is functionally cured of HIV when standard tests are negative for the virus, but it is likely that a tiny amount remains in their body.

"We expect that this baby has great chances for a long, healthy life. We are certainly hoping that this approach could lead to the same outcome in many other high-risk babies," she added, reported the Guardian.

A spokesman for Hamid Karzai said the Afghan government has banned elite American forces from the Wardak province, which is seen by many as a strategic outpost for the Taliban, reported The New York Times.

The ban was in response to complaints from local villagers who said American special forces were torturing, harassing and even murdering innocent people in the province, said Aimal Faizi, spokesman for Hamid Karzai, reported Reuters.

The measure taken by Karzai could further complicate negotiations between the U.S. and Afghanistan over the presence of U.S. troops in the country after NATO forces leave by the end of 2014, reported Reuters.

Karzai has repeatedly warned his western backers in the country that if civilians are killed civilian support for foreign troops will dissipate and fuel the insurgency, reported Reuters.

White House shares backup immigration plan

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The White House is drafting a backup immigration bill in case the bipartisan bill, being drafted in the Senate, fails to be agreed on, an Obama administration official said on Sunday, according to The New York Times.

Denis McDonough, President Obama's chief of staff, said Mr. Obama's aides are continuing to work with a bipartisan group of eight senators despite harsh criticism on Saturday night from Sen. Marco Rubio after the USA Today reported what it said were details of the administration's plan, reported The New York Times.

The White House has declined to confirm any details on their immigration proposal, but McDonough said it would all be revealed if the bipartisan Senate group failed to agree on a plan, reported the Chicago Tribune.

The USA Today said on Saturday that the White House immigration proposal would allow illegal immigrants to become legal permanent residents within eight years, reported the Chicago Tribune.

Latinos favored Obama over Republican candidate Mitt Romney in the November 6 election by 71 percent to 27 percent, helping tip politically divided states in favor of the Democratic incumbent, reported the Chicago Tribune.


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