World’s top news stories for today from Washingtonian post (March 23, 2016)
3 Brussels airport bombers identified
The surviving suspect, Najim Laachraoui, was reportedly arrested in Anderlecht, Belgium, and the other two — identified by Belgian state broadcaster RTBF as brothers Khalid and Brahim El Bakraoui — blew themselves up in the attack. The brothers were reportedly known to the police, though for organized crime not terrorism. The two explosions, plus a third at a metro station, killed at least 34 people and wounded about 250 others. CNN
Obama arrives in Argentina
Obama has been openly effusive about the recent change of leadership in Argentina, with President Mauricio Macri taking over in December from his more leftist, America-wary predecessor Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. “President Macri recognizes that we’re in a new era, and we have to look forward,” Obama said before landing in Buenos Aires. Obama’s trip is scheduled to include a meeting with young Argentinians, a state dinner, and a family visit to the southern town of Bariloche. The Associated Press
US Presidential election
Jeb endorses Cruz: On Wednesday morning, Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas) received the formal endorsement of former GOP presidential rival Jeb Bush. “Ted is a consistent, principled conservative who has demonstrated the ability to appeal to voters and win primary contests,” Bush said in a statement. “The only way Republicans can hope to win back the White House and put our nation on a better path is to support a nominee who can articulate how conservative policies will help people rise up and reach their full potential.” Bush also took a slap at “the divisiveness and vulgarity Donald Trump has brought into the political arena.” Cruz, in the same statement, said he is “truly honored to earn Gov. Jeb Bush’s support.”
GOP election result: Donald Trump won Tuesday’s Arizona Republican primary. With 92 percent of precincts reporting, Trump has 47 percent of the vote, followed by Ted Cruz with 25 percent, Marco Rubio with 14 percent, and John Kasich with 10 percent. Rubio dropped out of the race last week, but Arizona offers residents the chance to cast early ballots. In Utah, with 85 percent of precincts reporting, Cruz has been projected the winner, with 69 percent of the vote, versus 17 percent for Kasich and 14 percent for Trump. The Associated Press
Democrat election result: Hillary Clinton won the Arizona Democratic primary and Bernie Sanders took the Utah and Idaho caucuses on Tuesday. With 92 percent of precincts in Arizona reporting, Clinton is leading Sanders 58 percent to 40 percent. In the Utah caucus, with 76 percent of precincts reporting, Sanders has an enormous lead, with 79 percent of the vote to Clinton’s 20 percent. All the votes are counted in Idaho, and Sanders topped Clinton, 78 percent to 21 percent.
Mindful meditation helps manage chronic back pain
U.S. health agencies are encouraging doctors and patients to explore alternative ways to reduce pain. A new study shows that mindful meditation and cognitive behavioral therapy can work better and the results can last longer than standard care for chronic back pain.
Daniel Cherkin, a senior investigator at the Group Health Research Institute in Seattle and lead author of the study, said: “One of the most important new understandings of chronic pain and chronic low back pain is that the mind plays a very important part.”
Three hundred forty-two people with chronic back pain participated in the study. Cherkin said a third of them participated in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), which “focuses on helping people learn how to change how they think about their pain and helps promote concrete activities that people can do to better manage it.” VOA News
Nigeria’s state Oil Firm withholding $25B from government
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) owes the Nigerian government $25 billion in back payments on revenue generated from the sale of crude oil, according to the country’s fiscal watchdog agency.
Ibrahim Mohammed, a spokesman for Nigeria’s Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), released a statement Monday saying the NNPC’s unremitted liability was from the 2011-15 period. The Guardian obtained a copy of the statement.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari came into power a year ago after promising voters he would crack down on corruption at the NNPC and break up the massive organization into several smaller agencies. Shortly after assuming office, Buhari fired the NNPC’s board and named himself the country’s petroleum minister. He has yet to appoint new members to the board.
Nigeria is Africa’s largest oil producer. VOA News
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