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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama plans an optimistic final State of the Union message, though he may be at odds with most Americans, 7 in 10 of whom see the United States heading in the wrong direction. Polls show steep concerns about national security and terrorism. Others worry about the quick pace of social change. The president is expected to speak about what he feels the U.S. can and should aspire to, as a sort of rebuttal to the sense of pessimism.
NORTHFIELD CENTER, Ohio (AP) — There's no hint from authorities in Ohio about what they think caused a house explosion that killed couple and their two daughters, aged 8 and 12 in Northfield Center Township in Summit County. Neighbors reported hearing the blast around 8:30 p.m. on Monday. A baby sitter described the children as "very outgoing and nice."
ISTANBUL (AP) — Turkish officials say at least 10 people are dead and 15 wounded in an explosion in an area of Istanbul popular with tourists. State-run TRT television reports it was likely caused by a suicide bomber but officials haven't confirmed any cause. The Sultanahmet neighborhood is Istanbul's main sightseeing area.
BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq's prime minister says the government will "spare no efforts" to expel Islamic State group forces from the country following a suicide attack on a shopping mall in the capital, Baghdad, that killed 18 people. Haider al-Abadi (HY'-dahr ahl ah-BAH'-dee) toured the mall in the eastern Shiite-dominated area of New Baghdad today. He described the attack as an act of desperation. Separate attacks in other areas Monday killed another 29 people.
LONDON (AP) — England is coping with its first doctors' strike in 40 years after thousands of junior doctors walked off the job for 24 hours in a dispute over pay and working conditions. The strike involves some 50,000 junior doctors who represent a third of the medical workforce. The doctors argue patients will be put at risk by new work schedules, while the government says the National Health Service needs more flexibility.
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