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25 Jun 11 Asteroid to Pass Extremely Close By Earth On Monday Chávez Illness Sparks Succession Talk Syria: Deadly protests erupt against Bashar al-Assad Egypt drops plans for IMF loan amid popular distrust New York governor signs law approving gay marriage EU tells crisis-hit Greeks to unite for new bail-out House rebukes Obama but won't halt funds for Libya Car bomb outside Afghan clinic kills at least 25 NY Legislature legalizes gay marriage Souris River Overcomes Levees, Floods Minot Homes Why the Eurozone and the Euro Are Both Doomed Obama steps into high-stakes debt-limit talks
Here's something to dwell on as you head to work next week: A small asteroid the size of a tour bus will make an extremely close pass by the Earth on Monday, but it poses no threat to the planet The asteroid will make its closest approach at 1:14 p.m. EDT (1714 GMT) on June 27 and will pass just over 7,500 miles (12,000 kilometers) above the Earth's surface, NASA officials say.
Venezuelan officials scrambled Thursday to reassure compatriots that President Hugo Chávez was not seriously ill after his brother said the president would remain in a Cuban hospital for up to 12 more days, making it likely that Mr. Chávez will be away from the country for nearly a month.
At least 15 people are said to have died in renewed protests across Syria against President Bashar al-Assad. Activists said security forces fired tear gas and bullets after Friday prayers in Damascus and elsewhere, but Syrian state TV blamed unidentified gunmen for some deaths. Meanwhile, the EU has expanded sanctions against the Assad government.
Egypt has dropped plans to seek loans from the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, Finance Minister Samir Radwan has said. The move comes after the planned deficit in the 2011-12 budget was revised down from 11% to 8.6% of GDP, Mr Radwan told Reuters news agency. An adviser told AFP news agency the decision had been partly a response to the "pressure of public opinion".
Governor Andrew Cuomo made same-sex marriages legal in New York on Friday, a key victory for gay rights ahead of the 2012 presidential and congressional elections. New York will become the sixth and most populous US state to allow gay marriage. State senators voted 33-29 on Friday evening to approve marriage equality legislation and Cuomo, a Democrat who had introduced the measure, signed it into law.
EU leaders have urged all Greek politicians to support new spending cuts and tax hikes, saying there is no alternative if debt-laden Athens is to qualify for a second massive bail-out. The second rescue is being negotiated in Brussels. It is expected to be about 120bn euros (£107bn; $171bn).
Challenging presidential power, a defiant U.S. House voted overwhelmingly Friday to deny President Barack Obama the authority to wage war against Libya. But Republicans fell short in an effort to actually cut off funds for the operation in a constitutional showdown reflecting both political differences and unease over American involvement.
A suicide attacker blew up his sport utility vehicle packed with explosives outside of a small medical clinic in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, killing at least 25 people, Afghan authorities said. Some reports put the death toll as high as 60.
New York lawmakers narrowly voted to legalize same-sex marriage Friday, handing activists a breakthrough victory in the state where the gay rights movement was born. New York will become the sixth state where gay couples can wed and the biggest by far. "We are leaders and we join other proud states that recognize our families and the battle will now go on in other states," said Sen. Thomas Duane, a Democrat.
The epic Minot, North Dakota flood is in full-destructive force Friday, already flooding some 2,500 homes before the day ends. Another 1,500 homes, or a total of about 4,000 homes, are projected to be flooded by the end of Friday. About 11,000 people, or a quarter of Minot’s population, have been evacuated.
Papering over the structural imbalances in the Eurozone with endless bailouts will not resolve the fundamental asymmetries. Beneath the endless announcements of Greece's "rescue" lie fundamental asymmetries that doom the euro, the joint currency that has been the centerpiece of European unity since its introduction in 1999.
Struggling to break a perilous deadlock, President Barack Obama took direct control Friday of national debt-limit negotiations with both Republicans and Democrats. With the White House warning the nation's economic stability is at stake, it's one of the most severe tests yet of Obama's presidency.
25 Jun 11
Asteroid to Pass Extremely Close By Earth On Monday
Chávez Illness Sparks Succession Talk
Syria: Deadly protests erupt against Bashar al-Assad
Egypt drops plans for IMF loan amid popular distrust
New York governor signs law approving gay marriage
EU tells crisis-hit Greeks to unite for new bail-out
House rebukes Obama but won't halt funds for Libya
Car bomb outside Afghan clinic kills at least 25
NY Legislature legalizes gay marriage
Souris River Overcomes Levees, Floods Minot Homes
Why the Eurozone and the Euro Are Both Doomed
Obama steps into high-stakes debt-limit talks
Yes! Jesus is Coming!