Tuesday, January 23, 2018
News Roundup

Koreas cancel talks in dispute over delegation

South Korea

Koreas cancel talks in dispute over delegation

The Koreas' first high-level talks in years were scrapped Tuesday because the sides didn't agree on the delegation leaders, South Korea said. The cancellation of the talks, which were to start today, deflated hopes that the rivals would improve ties after years of rising hostility. North Korea said it wasn't sending its officials to Seoul for the two-day meeting because the South had changed the head of its delegation, said Kim Hyung Suk, a spokesman for Seoul's Unification Ministry. South Korea said it was still open to dialogue. The North did not issue a statement about the canceled talks.

Colorado

Fires burn homes, force evacuations

At least four major wildfires broke out along the front of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado on Tuesday, burning a handful of houses and chasing people from thousands of homes in hot, gusty weather. Thick smoke plumes visible for miles billowed from fires near Colorado Springs, in southern Colorado, and in Rocky Mountain National Park to the north. A wildfire in a residential area northeast of Colorado Springs forced mandatory evacuations of 2,530 homes, including some worth more than $1 million, El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said.

Washington

U.S. blocks online al-Qaida magazine

U.S. intelligence operatives covertly sabotaged a prominent al-Qaida online magazine last month in an apparent attempt to sow confusion among the group's followers, according to U.S. officials. The operation succeeded, at least temporarily, in thwarting publication of the latest issue of Inspire, the English-language magazine distributed by al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. When it appeared online, the text on the second page was garbled and the following 20 pages were blank. The sabotaged version was quickly removed from the online forum that hosted it, according to independent analysts who track jihadi websites. It's unclear how the hacking occurred.

Greece

Government shuts state TV, radio

Under pressure from its creditors to cut public employment, the Greek government said Tuesday that it was closing its state-run television and radio broadcaster, idling 2,900 people — less than 1 percent of the public workforce. The move outraged the country's powerful labor unions.

Russia

Bill targets public discussion of gays

The Russian parliament passed a bill Tuesday that imposes a fine for what it calls the propagandizing of "nontraditional" sexual relationships among minors. While the bill does not clarify the meaning of "nontraditional," in colloquial Russian it usually means gay, and the bill's intent was clear: to discourage open discussion of homosexuality in public places or in media accessible by children.

Elsewhere

Princeton, N.J.: A phoned-in bomb threat forced Princeton University to shutter its campus for several hours Tuesday, but it later reopened after a search by law enforcement officials turned up no explosives.

Nevada: Twenty-seven vehicles slammed into each other during a sandstorm on Interstate 80 in rural northern Nevada on Monday evening, killing a truck driver and seriously injuring several people, officials said.

Times wires

Comments

Column: #MeToo in Tampa, 1973

I graduated from Robinson High School in Tampa in 1970 and then started my freshman year of college. As a result of having changed majors, I was out of sequence in my design program at the University of Florida after the fall quarter of ’72. I would ...
Updated: 7 minutes ago
Targeted by false filings, Pinellas judge takes witness stand

Targeted by false filings, Pinellas judge takes witness stand

LARGO — In his eight years as a circuit judge, Thomas Minkoff has handled family and civil cases. He oversaw more than 14,000 foreclosure hearings at the height of the Great Recession.He was in court once again on Tuesday, but not in his usual perch ...
Updated: 9 minutes ago

Parents of defendant in Seminole Heights killings ‘devastated’ he faces death penalty

TAMPA — The father of Seminole Heights killings suspect Howell Donaldson III hopes the state attorney will reconsider his decision to seek the death penalty in the case, attorneys for the family said Tuesday."It’s upsetting to the family to know that...
Updated: 15 minutes ago
The Diary of Anne Frank opens at Stage West

The Diary of Anne Frank opens at Stage West

Anne Frank became one of the most notable victims of the Holocaust after the publishing of her diary, which chronicled more than two years of the Jewish teen’s life in hiding in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam during World War II. Her story will come to life...
Updated: 19 minutes ago
ScarFace the Osprey scarfs up prized neckwear to make Coquina Key home

ScarFace the Osprey scarfs up prized neckwear to make Coquina Key home

ST. PETERSBURG — Some 25 feet up in the air, towering over Coquina Key Island sits an osprey surveying the park below. It is on the hunt for any bit of material so it can to prepare a nest for future hatchlings. Whether it be sticks, hay, palm leaves...
Updated: 20 minutes ago
Man sentenced for smuggling king cobras in potato chip cans

Man sentenced for smuggling king cobras in potato chip cans

LOS ANGELES — A Southern California man has been sentenced to five months in federal prison for smuggling three highly venomous king cobras hidden in potato chip canisters through the mail.In a plea agreement, Rodrigo Franco admitted smuggling anothe...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Suspect in custody after man fatally shot in Holiday

HOLIDAY — A man is in custody after a fatal shooting in Holiday on Tuesday afternoon.Pasco County deputies say a male victim died of gunshot wounds at 3519 Richboro Drive.A preliminary investigation indicates the shooting may have stemmed from a disp...
Updated: 1 hour ago
He drove into Tampa Bay and walked away uninjured, troopers say

He drove into Tampa Bay and walked away uninjured, troopers say

A Miami resident lost control of his truck and tumbled into Tampa Bay Tuesday morning — and walked away unscathed.According to the Florida Highway Patrol, Osvaldo Jares, 25, fell asleep at the wheel of his 2002 Ford F150 before losing control and dri...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Tampa micro housing advocates find big demand for living small

Tampa micro housing advocates find big demand for living small

TAMPA — When Omar Garcia announced plans to transform a vacant downtown office building into 120 micro apartments of about 300 square feet each, the calls and checks poured in."We got 90 reservations like that," Garcia said Tuesday, snapping his fing...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Hillsborough State Attorney will seek death penalty in Seminole Heights killings

Hillsborough State Attorney will seek death penalty in Seminole Heights killings

TAMPA — Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren will seek the death penalty for Howell Emanuel Donaldson III, the man charged with killing four people last year in southeast Seminole Heights."The death penalty is for the worst of the worst, crimes ...
Updated: 2 hours ago