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Storms bring flooding...Family disputes police account...Wishes for peace in Bethlehem



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LAGRANGE, Ga. (AP) — Authorities say heavy rains have caused a mudslide on a mountain in north Georgia, flooded a movie theater lobby and inundated and closed several roads across the state. The heavy rains are part of a line of severe thunderstorms moving across the Southeast. At least 10 people have died in the storms.

DETROIT (AP) — The mother of an unarmed black man fatally shot by suburban Detroit police says her son had been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and wasn't a threat. Valerie Johnson says she and her family dispute police claims that her son, 35-year-old Kevin Matthews, was involved in a theft in Dearborn that led to yesterday's foot chase and shooting in Detroit. A police watchdog group is calling for the officer's suspension.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A spokesman for the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport says there's no reason to think there will be a repeat of yesterday's protests that caused traffic backups outside the terminals and the shutdowns of security checkpoints inside. The demonstrations were organized by Black Lives Matter to protest the police killing of a young black man in Minneapolis. They were supposed to take place at the Mall of America -- but organizers say that was just a decoy, and that the protest had really been planned for the airport.

BETHLEHEM, West Bank (AP) — The Palestinian tourism minister says Bethlehem "is the birthplace of the king of peace, so what we want is peace." But Bethlehem in recent months has been a focal point for clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinian protesters amid violence gripping the region. Today, thousands of people have crowded into Manger Square for Christmas Eve festivities. One visitor from Jerusalem said she's relieved to escape the threat of attacks there, and that she feels safe in Bethlehem.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge in Washington is refusing to dismiss charges against Ahmed Abu Khattala (hah-TAH'-lah). He's the suspected Libyan militant who is facing charges in the 2012 Benghazi attacks that killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans. His lawyers asked the judge to throw out all but one charge in an 18-count indictment. Among other things, they said the Justice Department was charging Khattala with crimes that had occurred abroad, rather than in the United States.

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The Associated Press

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