Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez dead at 58
Late President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela speaks at the United Nations in 2006.
March 5th, 2013
05:00 PM ET

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez dead at 58

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has died, Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Monday. He was 58.

Elections will be held in 30 days, and Vice President Nicolas Maduro will assume the presidency in the interim, Foreign Minister Elias Jaua said in a televised interview on state-run VTV.


What next? Chavez's death leaves many questions

U.S. open to 'more constructive relationship' with Venezuela

Chavez leaves a revolutionary legacy

Chavez's death draws sympathy, anger

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Filed under: Venezuela
Senate panel OKs Brennan for CIA director
The full Senate will now vote on the nomination of John Brennan as CIA director.
March 5th, 2013
03:39 PM ET

Senate panel OKs Brennan for CIA director

The Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday approved the nomination of John Brennan as CIA director, sending the matter to the full Senate for consideration.

The vote was 12-3.

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Filed under: Politics
March 5th, 2013
03:27 PM ET

TSA to allow small knives on flights

Beginning April 25, the Transportation Security Administration will allow knives with blades that are 2.36 inches (6 centimeters) or shorter and less than 1/2 inch in width on U.S. airline flights. Two golf clubs, toy bats or other sports sticks will also be allowed in carry-on luggage.

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U.S. commander: Iran sanctions not working
Gen. James N. Mattis testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday.
March 5th, 2013
02:24 PM ET

U.S. commander: Iran sanctions not working

Severe sanctions against Iran under fire for its nuclear activities are not working, the top U.S. commander in the Middle East said on Tuesday.

Gen. James Mattis, the commander of U.S. Central Command, made the statement in response to a question from U.S. Sen. James Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican.

Mattis said at a Senate hearing, he said, "we have to continue sanctions" to keep Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons capability, "but have other options ready."

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Filed under: Iran • Politics
Venezuela accuses enemies of Chavez plot
March 5th, 2013
01:50 PM ET

Venezuela accuses enemies of Chavez plot

[Updated at 2:57 p.m. ET] These are "the most difficult moments we have experienced" regarding Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's health since his December 11 cancer surgery, Vice President Nicolas Maduro said in a televised address Tuesday.

His remarks came after Maduro accused Venezuela's domestic and foreign enemies of "attacking" Chavez, who has publicly battled cancer since 2011. Maduro also said Venezuela has expelled a U.S. Embassy attache who he said was seeking military support for a plot against the government.

Read more about Maduro's address here.

[Updated at 1:46 p.m. ET] Venezuela accused the domestic and foreign enemies of Venezuela of somehow infecting ailing President Hugo Chavez and expelled a U.S. Embassy attache who it said was seeking military support for a plot against the government, Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Tuesday.

David Del Monaco, an Air Force attache for the U.S. Embassy, had been expelled Tuesday "for being implicated in conspiratorial plan, the information ministry said.

Some day, he told the press in a lengthy statement, there will be "scientific proof" that Chavez, fighting a battle with cancer, was somehow infected by outsiders. He also called Venezuela's political right-wing an "oligarchy" and an "enemy of the nation."

[Updated at 1:22 p.m. ET] Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Tuesday that eventually there will be "scientific proof" that President Hugo Chavez, fighting a battle with cancer, was infected by outsiders.

In an address shown on Venezuelan TV, Maduro also said Venezuela has expelled a U.S. Embassy attache who was seeking military support for a plot against the government.

[Posted at 12:35 p.m. ET] Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro is meeting with the country's top officials after the nation's information minister reported that the condition of President Hugo Chavez, fighting a battle with cancer, has worsened, state TV said Tuesday.

Chavez first announced he had cancer in 2011. He spent more than two months in treatment in Cuba recently, returning to Venezuela two weeks ago.

Since Chavez underwent surgery on December 11, government accounts about his health have been vague.

FULL STORY
March 5th, 2013
12:44 PM ET

Mattis wants 13K troops staying in Afghanistan

The top U.S. commander for the Afghanistan-Pakistan region has recommended to President Obama that 13,600 American troops stay in Afghanistan after 2014, a number that is potentially higher than what the administration wants to leave in the country.

At a NATO meeting in February, then-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said up to 12,000 troops could stay behind, but not all of those would be American troops necessarily. But Gen. James Mattis, head of the U.S. Central Command, revealed the new recommendation to the Senate Armed Service Committee on Tuesday at a hearing.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Military
Dow hits record high
March 5th, 2013
09:38 AM ET

Dow hits record high

[Updated at 9:58 a.m. ET] Records are falling Tuesday for the Dow Jones industrial average.

The Dow hit a new record high within the first few minutes of trading Tuesday, gaining nearly 100 points, rising as high as 14,226.20. That topped both the Dow's intraday and closing records that were set in October 2007.


Why America's middle class is losing ground


Why the Fed is failing to boost lending

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Filed under: Business • Economy
U.S., China reach deal on N. Korea sanctions
The U.N. Security Council, seen here on January 22, is expected to consider more sanctions against North Korea on Tuesday.
March 5th, 2013
09:09 AM ET

U.S., China reach deal on N. Korea sanctions

The United States and China reached a tentative deal for a proposed U.N. Security Council resolution on more sanctions for North Korea after its latest nuclear test, a senior Obama administration official told CNN.

The full council is expected to deal with the issue on Tuesday.

Report: North Korea threatens to end armistice

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Filed under: China • North Korea • Nuclear
Report: North Korea threatens to end armistice
This undated picture, released on March 10, 2012, shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waving his hand on a naval vessel.
March 5th, 2013
08:12 AM ET

Report: North Korea threatens to end armistice

North Korea is not pleased with U.S.-led moves to slap new sanctions against it over its recent nuclear test and because of this it's threatening to end its 60-year truce with South Korea, the South's Yonhap news agency reported.

The North's military said Tuesday it will also cut off direct phone links with South Korea at the inter-Korean border village of Panmunjom, Yonhap said, citing North Korea's news outlet. Both North and South Korea have technically been at war for decades. The 1950-53 civil war ended in a truce.

The U.N. Security Council is expected to meet Tuesday to consider a proposed resolution to authorize more sanctions against North Korea following the secretive regime's controversial nuclear test last month.

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Filed under: North Korea • South Korea
Sistine Chapel closing for conclave preparations
A prayer service is held in the Sistine Chapel on October 31, 2012.
March 5th, 2013
07:54 AM ET

Sistine Chapel closing for conclave preparations

The Sistine Chapel is closing to the public Tuesday afternoon so that Catholic officials can prepare for an eventual conclave to elect a new pope, the Vatican announced.

Catholic cardinals have yet to announce when the conclave to elect Pope Benedict XVI's successor would start. On Monday they began a series of meetings designed to, among other things, decide when the conclave will begin. They were due to continue these meetings, known as General Congregations, Tuesday and Wednesday.

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Filed under: Catholic Church • Christian • Religion • Vatican
March 5th, 2013
07:40 AM ET

Tuesday's live events

$85 billion in automatic across-the-board cuts became law last week, as President Obama and Congress struggle to find a solution to the crisis.  Watch CNN.com Live for continuing coverage on this story.

Today's programming highlights...

8:30 am ET - Menendez speaks at AIPAC - Embattled Sen. Robert Menendez returns to the public eye this morning as he addresses the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's policy conference in Washington.

FULL POST


Filed under: Barack Obama • Budget • Congress • Dollars & Sense • Economy • Politics
Suspect in ballet director's acid attack questioned
Sergei Filin, artistic director of the Russia's Bolshoi Ballet, was attacked with acid in January.
March 5th, 2013
06:03 AM ET

Suspect in ballet director's acid attack questioned

Police are questioning a suspect in connection with an acid attack that disfigured the artistic director of Russia's illustrious Bolshoi Ballet, Moscow authorities said Tuesday.

Sergei Filin was doused with acid by a masked assailant in January, an attack that caused severe burns.

Russian authorities gave little more detail on the investigation.

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Filed under: Art • Crime • Russia
Ex-Kabul Bank chiefs slapped with prison time
Former Kabul Bank CEO Khalilullah Ferozi attends at a court in Kabul on Tuesday.
March 5th, 2013
05:59 AM ET

Ex-Kabul Bank chiefs slapped with prison time

Two former Kabul Bank executives accused in a scheme that siphoned hundreds of millions of dollars now face years in prison and massive fines.

Investigators say the scheme cheated ordinary people's savings out of Kabul Bank in a case of "fraudulent lending and embezzlement."

Former Chief Executive Officer Khalilullah Ferozi was sentenced to five years and ordered to pay $530 million to a recovery fund to help the fraud victims, prosecutor Nasrrullah Hemad said.

The scandal that engulfed Kabul Bank has severely damaged the reputation of the Western approach to banking that it embodied in Afghanistan, one of the least developed countries in the world.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Crime • Justice
March 5th, 2013
01:37 AM ET

Parents: Bullying led to boy's death

Bailey O'Neill's parents just wanted him to see his 12th birthday.

The next day, they took him off life support.

The fatal injuries that led to Bailey's death Sunday were the tragic consequences of bullying at school, his parents say.

But Philadelphia-area detectives are still investigating whether the incident was, in fact, bullying or an altercation on the playground.

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Filed under: Crime • Education • Justice • Pennsylvania