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March marks Chicago's deadly year...Russia urges world to settle Syrian conflict in 2017...New Year's celebrations underway


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CHICAGO (AP) — Hundreds of people have marched quietly through downtown Chicago, carrying crosses for each person slain in the city this year. Each 3-foot-tall cross was engraved with the name of a homicide victim. The silence of the march was broken by demonstrators saying the names aloud. Authorities say more than 760 people were killed in Chicago in 2016.

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Russia's U.N. ambassador is urging the international community to ensure that a political settlement of the conflict in Syria is reached in 2017. Vitaly Churkin says Russia is convinced that if the world's nations are guided by this objective, the interests of the Syrian people and the stability of the region, "then we can achieve success." The U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution today supporting Russian and Turkish efforts to end the fighting in Syria and jump-start peace talks.

BERLIN (AP) — German police say they have arrested a man who shouted "bomb, bomb, bomb" at Berlin's massive open-air New Year's party. Tens of thousands of people are celebrating the New Year near Berlin's Brandenburg Gate amid tight security. Large concrete blocks have been place around the security cordon to prevent a repeat of the truck attack that killed 12 people in Berlin before Christmas.

NEW YORK (AP) — Revelers are starting to pack into New York's Times Square to secure good spots hours before the annual New Year's Eve ball drop. Extra security is in place for the event, which is expected to draw up to a million people. Outgoing U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (bahn kee-moon) will press the button that drops the ball at midnight.

HONOLULU (AP) — President Barack Obama and his successor have at least one thing in common: Both are spending part of their New Year's Eve playing golf. Obama started the last full day of his Hawaiian vacation on a Marine Corps base course known for its views of the Pacific coastline. President-elect Donald Trump slipped away to his golf club in Jupiter, Florida, without informing reporters.

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