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Arrests in second night of protests...Pope laments suffering of children...Women drivers sent to terror court

By The Associated Press | Posted - Dec. 25, 2014 at 7:50 a.m.



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BERKELEY, Mo. (AP) — The police chief in Berkeley, Missouri, is reporting six to eight arrests in a second night of protests following the fatal shooting of a black 18-year-old by a white police officer. Chief Frank McCall provided that number to a TV station (KMOV). Police have said that Antonio Martin pointed a gun at the officer before he was shot. Last night, dozens of protesters held a vigil at the gas station in the St. Louis suburb where the shooting took place. And they briefly blocked traffic on Interstate 170 during a march, before returning to the station.

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis is recognizing that this isn't a joyous holiday season for people in many parts of the world. In his Christmas Day speech, delivered to a crowd of tens of thousands in St. Peter's Square, he spoke of children who are "made objects of trade and trafficking" or who are forced to become soldiers. And he decried the persecution of ancient Christian communities in Iraq and Syria, along with those from other ethnic and religious groups.

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — The Islamic State militants still haven't said anything about the fate of the Jordanian pilot they captured yesterday, after his plane went down in Syria while he was taking part in air strikes against the group. The pilot's father today pleaded for his release -- reminding the militants that his son is also a Muslim.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Two women in Saudi Arabia who've been detained for nearly a month for defying a ban on driving by women have been referred to a court that was set up to try terrorism cases. That word comes from several people close to the defendants. They say the women are being sent to the terrorism court not for defying the driving ban, but for opinions they voiced online. Activists say it marks the first time that women drivers have been referred to that court. They say the women have been held longer than any other woman ever charged with violating the ban.

NEW YORK (AP) — As the stock market takes a breather for the Christmas holiday, the Dow is at its highest level of the year -- and, in fact, its highest level ever. A sixth straight gain yesterday, in a holiday-shortened session, left the index over the 18,000 mark for a second day. One strategist says investors are "still giddy" over Tuesday's report estimating that the economy grew in the third quarter of the year at the fastest pace in 11 years.

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The Associated Press

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