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It's already 2017 in some spots...GOP Senators want stronger Russia sanctions...Utility finds malware

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UNDATED (AP) — 2017 is beginning its march across the globe, arriving already in New Zealand and many Pacific Islands. Sydney, Australia's celebration culminates shortly with fireworks set to the music of Prince and David Bowie, two of the many entertainers who sided in 2016. China is trying to keep things low-key and discourage large-scale reveling. A million people are expected in Times square later today.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A few Republican senators say they'll push for stronger sanctions against Russia than those imposed by President Barack Obama. Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina have released a statement saying they'll hold a hearing next week on "foreign cyber threats." President-elect Donald Trump is praising Russia's president for restraint in responding to the U.S. action.

BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — A state electric utility confirms it found a malware code on one of its laptops that the U.S. government says is used by Russian hackers. The Burlington Electric Department said U.S. utilities were alerted by the Department of Homeland Security on Thursday. The utility says the laptop was not connected to its grid.

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The most powerful nor'easter in nearly two years dumped heavy snow, powerful winds and even thunder and lightning, leaving tens of thousands of people in the dark yesterday and burying some towns under 2 feet of snow. More than 100,000 homes and businesses in Maine were without power at one point. Residents have been warned that it could take days to restore service.

BAGHDAD (AP) — Two suicide bombers blew themselves up in central Baghdad today and the Islamic State group is claiming responsibility for the deadly attack on a busy market that sold car accessories, food and clothes as well as agricultural seeds and machinery. Authorities say at least 28 people were killed and at least 54 were wounded.

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