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Tropical Storm Rafael on path for Bermuda

U.S. Virgin Islands

tropical storm on path for Bermuda

The outer bands of Tropical Storm Rafael drenched the Caribbean's Northern Leeward Islands on Sunday as its center steadily moved over open ocean on a possible track toward Bermuda.

There were no immediate reports of any significant damage or injuries in the Caribbean islands as the tropical storm churned toward the north-northwest at about 10 mph. By late Sunday, it was about 225 miles north-northeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and was packing winds of roughly 65 mph.

Forecasters at the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Rafael could strengthen into a hurricane by late today as it spins over the open Atlantic.

Rafael could then approach the wealthy British Atlantic territory of Bermuda late Tuesday. The Bermuda Weather Service issued a tropical storm watch for the storm-hardened territory of about 70,000 people.

New York

Victims' kin invited to watch Gitmo hearings

The families of people killed in the Sept. 11 attacks have been invited to military installations in four states to watch pretrial hearings in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for five men charged with planning or assisting the terrorist strike.

The hearings, which begin today, are closed to the public, but relatives who register in advance can watch on closed-circuit television at forts in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland and New York City.

The suspects include Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the self-professed mastermind of the attacks.

Chicago

Study finds no link between sex, vaccine

Shots that protect against cervical cancer do not make girls promiscuous, according to the first study to compare medical records for vaccinated and unvaccinated girls.

The researchers looked at "markers" of sexual activity after vaccination against the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus, or HPV. Specifically, they examined up to three years of records on whether girls had sought birth control advice; tests for sexually transmitted diseases or pregnancy; or had become pregnant. The results were published online today in Pediatrics.

russia

Opposition is weak in local elections

The political opposition that emerged on Russian streets nearly a year ago apparently has been unable to turn discontent with President Vladimir Putin into victory at the ballot box, according to early results from Sunday's regional and local elections.

Russians, voting for five governors, along with a number of mayors, regional parliaments and city councils, were largely sticking with Putin's United Russia party, which has been working hard to solidify its grip on power since a dismal showing in December elections for the national parliament.

Elsewhere

Los Angeles: After a dramatic three-day parade through city streets marked by repeated lengthy delays, the space shuttle Endeavour was greeted by thousands of cheering spectators on Sunday as it pulled up to its new home at the California Science Center.

Israel: The military claimed a significant blow against al-Qaida-inspired militants in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, killing Hisham Saidani, one of the most influential leaders from an extreme branch of Islam that has targeted Egypt and Gaza's Hamas rulers as well as Israel.

Times wires

Tropical Storm Rafael on path for Bermuda

10/15/12 [Last modified: Monday, October 15, 2012 12:24am]

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