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Taliban attack in Pakistan...Mourning and questions in Australia...Manhunt in Philadelphia suburbs

By The Associated Press | Posted - Dec. 16, 2014 at 3:01 a.m.



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PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — The Taliban has carried out a major attack on a military-run school in the northwestern city of Peshawar. Officials in the area say at least 84 people were killed today when Taliban gunmen stormed the school and began shooting at random. The school has student from grades 1 through 10, and most of those killed are said to be children. The fighting is said to be ongoing.

SYDNEY (AP) — Mourners have laid mounds of flowers at the site in Sydney, Australia, where two hostages were killed. Police stormed the cafe where they and 15 others were being held at gunpoint by an Iranian-born man. Prime Minister Tony Abbot describes Man Haron Monis as a deeply disturbed man carrying out a "sick fantasy." Abbot says he wants to figure out why a man with "a long and checkered history" was not on a watch list. Meanwhile, Australians visiting the area say the incident is likely to leave a permanent scar on the country's psyche.

PENNSBURG, Pa. (AP) — A man suspected of shooting to death his ex-wife and five of her relatives in suburban Philadelphia yesterday remains on the loose. Investigators have expanded the search for Bradley William Stone, but they say they don't know where he is or how he's getting around. One local school district has canceled classes for today as a precaution, while residents of nearby communities have been asked to shelter in place.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Obama administration is urging dismissal of a lawsuit that would dismantle the president's immigration program. The initiative is designed to spare nearly 5 million people in the U.S. illegally from deportation. But Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio (ahr-PEYE'-oh) contends that President Barack Obama's program serves as a magnet for more people to enter the U.S. illegally and commit crimes. The Justice Department says the sheriff's theory is speculative and unsubstantiated and his lawsuit is "meritless."

WASHINGTON (AP) — The health insurance industry says companies will give customers more time to pay their health premiums for January in an effort to avoid a new round of consumer headaches with President Barack Obama's health care law. America's Health Insurance Plans says the voluntary steps include a commitment to promptly refund any overpayments by consumers who switched plans and may have gotten double-billed by mistake.

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The Associated Press

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