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SOCHI, Russia (AP) — Russian officials continue to insist that a human error or technical fault brought down a military plane that crashed into the Black Sea, leaving all 92 people aboard presumed dead. Those killed include dozens of singers in Russia's world-famous military choir. The plane crashed shortly after takeoff on a flight from Sochi to Syria.
CHICAGO (AP) — The northern Plains and some Western states may be able to start digging out today from their white Christmas. Most of the Dakotas and southwest Minnesota turned into a slippery mess with highways closed and people without electricity. A blizzard warning is in effect for most of North Dakota, western South Dakota and a small section of eastern Montana through today, with expected snow totals of 8 to 15 inches.
BATANGAS, Philippines (AP) — The powerful typhoon that ruined Christmas in parts of the Philippines is now out in the South China Sea, leaving at least six people dead and hundreds of thousands hunkering down in shelters instead of enjoying Christmas with family. Power is out in five Philippine provinces.
BEIRUT (AP) — The Russian Defense Ministry military police it sent into Aleppo to help the Syrian government claim to have evidence of mass graves "atrocious torture and massacre." A Russian Defense Ministry spokesman says some of the bodies have been mutilated and some had gunshot wounds. He also claims rebels who were ousted from Aleppo left behind booby traps that are a threat to civilians.
LONDON (AP) — George Michael's manager says the 53-year-old pop music icon died of heart failure. The death announced yesterday stunned the music world and tributes have poured in from all over. Michael shot to stardom at an early age in the teen duo WHAM! and moved smoothly into a solo career. He also faced health issues and drug use during his life.
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