May 3rd, 2010
10:10 PM ET

Latest Updates: Flooding and storms in the Southeast

Heavy rains and floods killed 15 people in Tennessee. Now the storm is drenching Atlanta, Georgia.

[Updated at 10:08 p.m.] The severe weather was blamed for at least 27 deaths - 18 in Tennessee - across the Southeast between Saturday and Monday, emergency officials said. Ten of those deaths occurred in Davidson County including Nashville, the Nashville mayor's office said.

Nashville residents said that despite forecasts of rain going into the weekend, they had little time to prepare for the floodwaters that crept into homes, washed away roads, prompted evacuations of hotels and displaced thousands of people.

"We all knew that there was going to be heavy rains this weekend, but Nashville normally gets about 5 inches of rain in the month of May and nobody could have predicted 15-16 inches of rain in 48 hours," resident John Rives said.

Read the full story

iReport: Are you there? Send photos, videos | Check airport delays

[Updated at 7:05 p.m.] A collection of iReport accounts from affected areas in the Southeast.


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Filed under: Weather
May 3rd, 2010
10:04 PM ET

Latest Updates: Reports and perspectives on Gulf oil spill

Workers in Louisiana place an oil boom into the water to try and protect the coast line from the massive oil spill.

[Updated at 10:01 p.m.]  BP chief executive Tony Hayward vowed that the oil giant would "absolutely be paying for the cleanup operation" of the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico. 

"Where legitimate claims are made, we will be good for them," he told NPR's "Morning Edition." 

The U.S. government was leaving little to chance. Attorney General Eric Holder said Monday that Justice Department employees were in the Gulf region "to ensure that BP is held liable." 

Allen said BP "is the responsible party" and "will bear all the costs" of the cleanup. 

Still, the promises failed to quell the fears. "I hope we can weather the storm," said Keith Delcambre, owner of seafood market Bozo's in Pascagoula, Mississippi 

See a timeline of the oil spill in the Gulf

[Updated at 9:56 p.m.] BP this week is going to attempt an unprecedented engineering feat to try and stop the oil spill, reports CNN's Brian Todd. It involves lowering a four-story metal container onto the leaking pipe to try to suck in the flowing oil. 

[Updated at 9:31 p.m.]'s Steve Almasy reports that environmental scientists say the effects of the spill in the Gulf of Mexico could have ecological and biological consequences for years, if not decades. 


May 3rd, 2010
09:26 PM ET

iReport snapshot: Metro mania in Mumbai

iReporter Shripada Bhat shot this video during an apparent transportation strike in Mumbai, India on Monday. The “scene was noisy and warlike,” Bhat writes. “I wanted to share the chaotic moment when motormen go on strike in Mumbai because, here, local trains are the lifeline of business.”

Watch the video

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Filed under: India • iReport • World
May 3rd, 2010
09:20 PM ET

Latest Updates: Times Square car bomb scare

[Updated 6:32 a.m. ET] Authorities removed three passengers from a Dubai-bound flight late Monday, according to a spokesman for Emirate Airlines. An airline official said the three included Faisal Shahzad, the suspect arrested in connection to the foiled bomb attempt at Times Square. The other two passengers were allowed back on the flight, the official said.

[Updated 5 a.m. ET] Investigators searched a house in Bridgeport, Connecticut, early Tuesday morning in connection with the foiled bomb attack in New York's Times Square over the weekend.

Speaking to reporters, FBI Special Agent in Charge Kim Mertz would not disclose any details of the search.

"Our first misison was to ensure the safety of the public and our law enforcement officials," she said. "That is complete and the public is safe."

Along with several patrol cars, a Connecticut State Police bomb squad truck was called to the two-story building at Sheridan Street and Boston Avenue.

[Updated 4:19 a.m. ET] Faisal Shahzad is believed to be the person who drove the sports  utility vehicle into Times Square, a law enforcement official said.

The  Nissan Pathfinder had its Vehicle Identification Number removed from the dashboard. Police climbed under the SUV and retrieved the VIN from  the bottom of its engine block. This, said the official, led  investigators to the registered owner of the vehicle and then to Shahzad  who purchased the SUV.

Another law enforcement source  said Shahzad is claiming he acted alone in the incident.

[Updated 1:46 a.m.] A U.S. citizen has been arrested in Times Square bombing probe, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced early Tuesday.  Faisal Shahzad was arrested at JFK airport in New York as he prepared to board a flight to Dubai, Holder said.

[Updated 12:39 a.m.] An arrest has been made in a failed attempt to set off a car bomb in New York's Times Square over the weekend, a law enforcement official told CNN early Tuesday.

[Updated 9:18 p.m.] CNN has learned the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) is considering the possibility that the incident in Times Square was more than just a lone wolf and that there is a connection to Pakistan according to a source familiar with the investigation.

Investigators believe this was an intended terrorist attack to set off explosives in Times Square—that the individuals intended for the tanks to explode but didn’t have the expertise to detonate it.

[Updated at 6:07 p.m] From CNN's Alan Chernoff: Former NYPD Bomb Squad member Kevin Barry says the bomb found in an SUV Saturday night in Times Square "had no known signature," meaning it was not constructed in a fashion used by known terror organizations. In particular, Barry refers to the fact that the bomb had two timers.

"It's the first device of this type in quite a while. So we have no signature yet. Were we to see two or three more of these in the area, or within the U.S. then we might say, 'Listen we have a new group and they have somebody that is building these for them,'” said Barry.


May 3rd, 2010
08:57 PM ET

The day's most popular stories

The five most popular stories during the last 24 hours, according to Newspulse.

SUV in Times Square bomb inquiry bought for cash: The sport-utility vehicle used in the unsuccessful Times Square bomb plot was sold three weeks ago in a cash deal with no paperwork exchanged, a law enforcement source with knowledge of the investigation said Monday.

Flood washes away building: Flood waters in Tennessee turn an interstate into a river, washing away cars and a building.

Why the 'rich' aren't feeling so rich: On Tax Day, April 15th, I picked up the Wall Street Journal and was amazed to see an editorial titled "A Message from HENRY" by a California financial advisor. The author, Mike Donahue, condemned the big and growing tax burden shouldered by high-earners like himself, a group he identified as "the HENRYs," in words so scorching that steam practically rose from the page. "We may be only a small percentage of the population, but we pay a large portion of the taxes and employ many," Donahue concluded. "If you take the incentives away, you will lose the HENRYs."

United and Continental to merge: UAL Corp.'s United Airlines announced on Monday it will merge with Continental Airlines in a deal worth $3.2 billion, creating the world's largest airline.

At least 19 dead as storms pound Southeast: Much of downtown Nashville remained under a blanket of murky water Monday after a massive system of rain and thunderstorms pounded much of Tennessee over the weekend.

Filed under: Most Popular
May 3rd, 2010
08:44 PM ET

Stocky rally, oil prices inch higher

A look at highlights from the day's business news:

Stocks rally on Greek bailout

Stocks rallied Monday, bouncing back after a big selloff last week as investors welcomed news that European leaders agreed to provide Greece with $146 billion in aid over the next three years.

A number of better-than-expected economic reports and some positive monthly sales numbers from the nation's automakers added to the gains.

The Dow Jones industrial average rallied 143 points, or 1.3 percent. The S&P 500 index gained 15 points or 1.3 percent, surpassing 1,200, a key psychological level.

The Nasdaq composite rose 37 points or 1.5 percent.


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Filed under: Economy
May 3rd, 2010
08:31 PM ET

2 dead, 11 wounded in Baghdad bombings

Two civilians were killed and 11 were wounded in three bombings Monday in Baghdad, Iraqi Interior Ministry officials told CNN.

A roadside bomb Monday afternoon near a coffee shop in southeastern Baghdad claimed one life and wounded six people, the officials said, while another person was killed and three were wounded in a blast in northern Baghdad Monday evening.

Officials said the bomb in the evening blast was attached to a civilian vehicle in a predominately Sunni neighborhood and that all the casualties were in the car at the time of the explosion.

A third blast Monday morning targeted civilians in western Baghdad's Al-Harthiya neighborhood, the officials said. Two civilians were wounded in that attack.

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Filed under: Iraq • World
May 3rd, 2010
08:28 PM ET

Greeks strike over austerity measures

Greek workers went on strike Monday, marching to parliament to protest cuts in government spending demanded by international funders.

Garbage collectors, cleaners, municipal office workers and other local government staff gathered Monday morning, waving banners with slogans like "Get your hands off our rights."

A €110 billion ($146 billion) aid package for Greece was announced Sunday, but Athens is introducing tough austerity measures to meet European Union and International Monetary Fund conditions on the deal.

Read the full story

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Filed under: Greece • World
May 3rd, 2010
08:16 PM ET

6.4-magnitude quake strikes Chile

A 6.4-magnitude earthquake struck Chile Monday, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

The quake was located off Chile’s coast and about 360 miles away from Santiago, the nation’s capital. It occurred at a depth of 12.8 miles, the USGS said.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

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Filed under: Uncategorized
May 3rd, 2010
08:05 PM ET

Outspoken sheriff won't run for governor in Arizona

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a fixture in Arizona politics, announced Monday that he will not seek the Republican nomination for governor in his home state.

"I just don't want to leave my 4,000 dedicated employees," Arpaio said. "I am going to contribute my service and fight as the Sheriff of Maricopa County."


Filed under: Arizona • Politics
May 3rd, 2010
07:25 PM ET

Obama extends sanctions against Syria

President Barack Obama has decided to extend sanctions on Syria, sending a letter to Congress Monday saying the yrians' continued support for terrorist organizations posed "a continuing unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy and economy of the United States."

The president said Syria had "made some progress in suppressing foreign fighter networks infiltrating suicide bombers into Iraq," but its "actions and policies" regarding terror networks made it necessary to keep the sanctions in place.


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Filed under: Uncategorized
May 3rd, 2010
06:59 PM ET

iReport: Stories from the floods in the South

iReporter Caroline Parker went to a pedestrian bridge in Nashville, Tennessee, to observe the flooding in the city.

A system of rain and thunderstorms that spawned tornadoes continued to pound the Southeast on Monday, leaving at least 19 dead in its wake and displacing or stranding thousands of people. Below are some iReports from some of the affected areas.

Burnsville, Mississippi:

- Audie Osborn interviewed sons Sam and Jeremy about witnessing a family of four being rescued from a flooded road.

Antioch, Tennessee:

- Brionna Watson took this video of a putting golf facility under a few feet of water. She says families have been asked to limit their water usage.

iReport: Are you there? Send photos, videos


May 3rd, 2010
04:38 PM ET

Clinton blasts Iran at U.N. nuclear summit

[Updated at 4:37 p.m.] Read the full story.

[Updated at 4:26 p.m.]  Clinton also said that the United States will release numbers on the number of nuclear weapons it has in its arsenal and the number of such weapons dismantled in the past two decades.

Clinton told the United Nations that the release of the information will send a "clear, unmistakable signal" that the United States is doing its part to comply with the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.

[Posted at 4:24 p.m] Iran "will do whatever it can to divert attention from its own record and to attempt to evade accountability," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Monday at the opening of a conference on nuclear non-proliferation.


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Filed under: Justice • World
May 3rd, 2010
03:53 PM ET

Security Brief: 'Slain' Taliban leader garners attention

Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud speaks to reporters in Mamouzi, Pakistan, in 2008.

For three months, Hakimullah Mehsud was supposedly dead, killed in a U.S. drone attack in the mountains of Pakistan, according to Pakistani officials.

Then word came last week from intelligence sources in Pakistan that he had not after all been killed, that he had been injured but not seriously.

And within days of that news, not one but two messages followed from Mehsud himself, both purportedly recorded in April. They warned of imminent attacks by the Pakistani Taliban, known as Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan or TTP, on unspecified targets in the United States.


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Filed under: Security Brief
May 3rd, 2010
02:28 PM ET

Univ. of Virginia student arrested in coed's death

A male University of Virginia athlete was charged with first degree murder Monday after a female student-athlete was found dead in her apartment, Charlottesville, Virginia, police said.


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Filed under: Justice
May 3rd, 2010
01:46 PM ET

Obama, Netanyahu talk peace process

President Barack Obama spoke by phone Monday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss the Middle East peace process, including how to get to direct peace talks "as soon as possible," the White House announced.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said the 20-minute phone call discussed "how best to work together to achieve comprehensive peace in the Middle East, in particular by making full use of substantive proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinians and transitioning to direct negotiations as soon as possible."

"They also discussed regional challenges, and the president reaffirmed his unshakable commitment to Israel's security," Gibbs said.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Israel • Middle East • World
May 3rd, 2010
01:26 PM ET

Girl, 16, nears around-the-world sailing record

Jessica Watson is nearing the end of her 23,000-nautical mile voyage.

Australian teenager Jessica Watson is closing in on her goal of being the youngest person ever to sail solo around the world.

Watson, 16, wrote in her blog Monday that she had cleared the southeast cape of Australia’s southern island of Tasmania and was heading north to Sydney and the 1,000-mile conclusion of her 23,000-nautical mile voyage.

“We passed well clear of land, in the dark and with not the nicest conditions. But I still got a big kick out of it,” Watson wrote of her leg around Tasmania. On Saturday, she posted a picture on her blog of a 33-foot high wave near her yacht.


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Filed under: Australia • World
May 3rd, 2010
01:15 PM ET

Sanford avoids criminal charges

South Carolina's Attorney General has decided that Gov. Mark Sanford will not face criminal charges following an investigation into his travel and campaign expenses.


May 3rd, 2010
01:13 PM ET

Iran's leader deplores nuclear arms

Low-level delegates from the United States, United Kingdom and France walked out Monday as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad blasted the U.S. and Israel at a global gathering on disarmament.

Ahmadinejad said he deplored the possession and use of nuclear arms and called the weapons "a fire against humanity" rather than weapons "for defense."


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Filed under: Iran
May 3rd, 2010
12:59 PM ET

Justices deny appeal of woman on Texas death row

A British woman on death row in Texas, convicted of murdering a young mother, had her latest appeal turned aside by the Supreme Court.


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