Hunt suspended for African warlord kony
Ugandan and American troops have suspended their joint hunt for war crimes suspect Joseph Kony and his Lord's Resistance Army, delivering a major setback to efforts to capture a notorious warlord accused of abducting tens of thousands of children. The Ugandan military and the U.S. State Department separately announced Wednesday they had temporarily halted the search because of political turmoil in the Central African Republic, where Kony and his deputies are thought to be hiding. Rebel groups unaffiliated with Kony seized power in the country last week and are refusing to cooperate.
Audit: Katrina aid possibly misspent
Federal investigators said Wednesday that as much as $700 million in federal aid intended to help some 24,000 Louisiana families elevate their homes after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005 may have been misspent. A report by the Housing and Urban Development Department's inspector general said some homeowners who got grants of up to $30,000 used the money for something else, and that others didn't provide sufficient documents to show the work was done.
Judge to retire after email flap
A Montana federal judge will retire after an investigation into an email he forwarded in February 2012 that included a racist joke involving President Barack Obama. U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull had said he would step down as chief circuit judge and take a reduced caseload, but he informed the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals he now intends to fully retire May 3. His decision came after the appellate court's Judicial Council issued a March 15 order on the investigation.
Sex abuse files to be released
The Archdiocese of Milwaukee said Wednesday it will publicly release thousands of pages of documents tied to sexual abuse lawsuits, including depositions with some of its former top officials. The archdiocese, which had been fighting the release, made its announcement a day before a hearing on the matter in U.S. bankruptcy court. The archdiocese filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January 2011 to deal with about 500 sex abuse claims. The documents to be released include depositions by New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who once led the Milwaukee archdiocese.
Washington: Senate opponents of a treaty regulating the multibillion-dollar global arms trade said Wednesday they have the votes to block ratification of the pact.
Cuba: A Cuban dance official confirmed that seven members of the National Ballet of Cuba defected last month while on a performing tour in Mexico. Cuban exile blog "Cafe Fuerte" reported that six of the seven subsequently traveled to the United States.
South Africa: Nelson Mandela "continues to make steady improvement" after being hospitalized a week for a recurring lung infection that developed into pneumonia, the government said.
Ohio: A portrait of Jesus that has hung in a southern Ohio school district since 1947 was taken down Wednesday because of concerns about the potential costs of a federal lawsuit against its display, the Jackson City schools superintendent said.