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KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Russia said Monday it is drafting counterproposals to a U.S. plan for a negotiated solution to the Ukraine crisis, denouncing the new Western-backed government as an unacceptable "fait accompli" and claiming that Russian-leaning parts of the country have been plunged into lawlessness.
NEW YORK (AP) — Jurors at the terrorism trial of Osama bin Laden's son-in-law watched him threaten that there would be no end to the "storm of airplanes" on videotapes made in the days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks Monday just before a British man testified by video from London that he trained to blow up a plane in late 2001 with a shoe bomb.
EBay Inc on Monday rejected activist investor Carl Icahn's two nominees to its board, saying both were unqualified, and urged shareholders to vote against them at its next annual meeting. Icahn, who owns just over 2 percent of the e-commerce company, has been pressuring eBay for weeks to spin off its PayPal payments business. He has also repeatedly accused eBay of poor corporate governance. The chairman of eBay's corporate governance and nominating committee, Richard Schlosberg III, said the board considered both but rejected them because "neither nominee has relevant experience or expertise." EBay said since each Icahn nominee currently sits on four public company boards, they are not in compliance with eBay's guidelines on "overboarding." EBay founder and Chairman Pierre Omidyar in a statement urged shareholders to support the company's slate, which includes Chief Executive John Donahoe.
Google Inc will pay Finance Chief Patrick Pichette a $3 million annual bonus, and Chief Business Officer Nikesh Arora a $3.5 million bonus, a slight increase from the previous year, following a year in which the Internet company's stock surged nearly 60 percent. Google Chief Executive Larry Page and co-founder Sergey Brin will receive no bonus, the company said Monday in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, continuing the founders' practice of not taking a bonus. Page and Brin, who are each paid a $1 a year in salary, have a large portion of their personal wealth tied directly to Google's stock. Google's shares shot up 58 percent in 2013, breaking the $1,000 mark for the first time and outpacing the Nasdaq's 38 percent gain for the year.
SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (AP) — The arrival of Russian troops in Crimea has opened old wounds among the Crimean Tatars, who were deported during World War II. Fearing that once again they will be unwelcome in their homeland, some are organizing community-watch patrols to protect their families and homes in a place they strongly feel should remain part of Ukraine.
An emotional Oscar Pistorius became physically sick in court on Monday as he listened to harrowing testimony about the autopsy of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, whom he is accused of murdering. Sitting in the dock, the visibly shaken Paralympian retched and heaved into a blue bucket as a pathologist gave a detailed post-mortem account of the multiple bullet wounds Pistorius admits inflicting. University of Pretoria pathologist Gert Saayman said the double-amputee sprinter shot Steenkamp with "Black Talon" hollow-point bullets, which mushroom open like a jagged flower on contact to cause maximum tissue damage. Pistorius, 27, says he fired four shots at Steenkamp on February 14, 2013 through a locked toilet door, believing her to be an intruder.
Amnesty International accused President Bashar al-Assad's forces on Monday of perpetrating war crimes as part of a siege in southern Damascus which has killed nearly 200 people, mostly by starvation. Yarmouk, once home to hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees and Syrian nationals, is one of several districts on the edge of the Syrian capital which the army has surrounded to choke off rebel forces seeking Assad's overthrow. "The Syrian government has committed numerous war crimes as part of the siege of Yarmouk," Amnesty said in a report released on Monday.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The judge in the case against an Army general believed to be the highest-ranking U.S. military officer to be tried on sex assault charges is considering new evidence that a top lawyer at the Pentagon may have unlawfully interfered in a decision on whether to accept a plea agreement that was ultimately rejected.
By Paul Carsten BEIJING (Reuters) - Tencent Holdings Ltd's new partnership with China's No. 2 online retailer JD.com takes aim at dominant rival Alibaba's Achilles heel - its weakness in mobile - in a move set to reshape the country's e-commerce industry. The deal gives JD.com a headline slot on Tencent's WeChat app that dominates China's smartphones, an entry into eBay-style consumer-to-consumer shopping and a backer with the muscle to help it make the most of a logistics infrastructure that Alibaba lacks. It also burnishes the appeal of JD.com's planned $1.5 billion U.S. listing while taking some shine off Alibaba's own IPO, which is expected to be worth $15 billion.
HONG KONG (Reuters) - An online education company backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd said on Monday that a unit of Softbank Corp had made a strategic investment in the company for an undisclosed amount. The investment in TutorGroup from SBI Group, formerly known as Softbank Finance Group and one of Asia's biggest venture capital firms, follows a capital raising of nearly $100 million for TutorGroup in February from Alibaba, Singapore state investor Temasek Inc and China's Qiming Venture Partners. ...
By Joseph Ax NEW YORK (Reuters) - A New York businessman must face criminal fraud charges for trying to claim a billion-dollar stake in social media company Facebook Inc, a federal judge ruled on Friday. Paul Ceglia, 40, is accused of forging a 2003 contract with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that supposedly entitled him to part ownership of the company. After an hour-long hearing in New York, U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter rejected Ceglia's request to throw out the charges, finding he had failed to meet the "high standard" needed to dismiss a grand jury indictment. Ceglia sued Zuckerberg and Facebook in 2010 in a federal court in Buffalo, New York, claiming that he and Zuckerberg had signed a contract while Zuckerberg was a freshman at Harvard University for Ceglia to invest $1,000 in a planned social networking website.
Visa Inc and MasterCard Inc said they had launched a cross-industry group to improve security for card transactions and press U.S. retailers and banks to meet a 2015 deadline to adopt technology that would make it safer to pay with plastic. The move follows several data breaches at U.S. retailers, including one at Target Corp late last year involving the theft of about 40 million credit and debit card records. The new group - which includes banks, credit unions, retailers and industry trade associations - will initially focus on the adoption of 'EMV' chip technology, MasterCard and Visa said in a statement on Friday. However, the National Retail Federation, the world's largest retail trade association, said it had not joined the group because there were no plans to immediately implement the PIN option, making for a "half-baked solution." "They're not serious about reducing fraud, unless they put a pin on," said Mallory Duncan, the NRF's general counsel.
By Daren Butler and Humeyra Pamuk ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkey's president on Friday ruled out any ban on Facebook and YouTube after Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said the sites could be shut to stop his foes anonymously posting audio recordings purportedly exposing corruption in his inner circle. In the latest recording, released on YouTube late on Thursday, Erdogan is purportedly heard berating a newspaper owner over the telephone about an article and suggesting the journalists be sacked, in comments that will further stoke concerns over media freedom and Erdogan's authoritarian style of leadership. Erdogan, who rejects any accusations of corruption, blames U.S.-based Turkish Muslim preacher Fethullah Gulen, a former ally, for the wiretaps which he says have been "fabricated". Gulen, who denies any involvement, has many followers in Turkey, especially in the police and judiciary.