Egyptian army ousts Morsi, suspends constitution in what he calls a 'coup'
CAIRO (AP) -- Egypt's first democratically elected president was overthrown by the military Wednesday, ousted after just one year in office by the same kind of Arab Spring uprising that brought the Islamist leader to power.
The armed forces announced they would install a temporary civilian government to replace Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, who denounced the action as a "full coup" by the generals. They also suspended the Islamist-drafted constitution and called for new elections.
Millions of anti-Morsi protesters around the country erupted in celebrations after the televised announcement by the army chief. Fireworks burst over crowds in Cairo's Tahrir Square, where men and women danced, shouting, "God is great" and "Long live Egypt."
Fearing a violent reaction by Morsi's Islamist supporters, troops and armored vehicles deployed in the streets of Cairo and elsewhere, surrounding Islamist rallies. Clashes erupted in several provincial cities when Islamists opened fire on police, with at least nine people killed, security officials said.
Gehad el-Haddad, a spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood party, said Morsi was under house arrest at a Presidential Guard facility where he had been residing, and 12 presidential aides also were under house arrest.
AP Analysis: In the fall of Morsi in Egypt, a wider blow to Islamists
CAIRO (AP) -- Egypt was the centerpiece of the Islamist movement's vault to power in the Arab world's sweeping wave of uprisings. Winning election after election here, the Islamists vowed to prove they could govern effectively and implement their vision of political Islam, all while embracing the rules of democracy.
Mohammed Morsi was their pillar: the veteran of the Muslim Brotherhood, the region's oldest and most prestigious political Islamist group, who became Egypt's first freely elected president.
That is what makes his ouster after barely a year in office, with a gigantic cross-section of Egypt's population demanding he go, such a devastating blow to Islamists on multiple levels, not only in Egypt but across a tumultuous region.
Morsi, his Brotherhood and their harder-line allies say they played by the rules of democracy, only to be forced out by opponents who could not play it as well as them at the ballot box and so turned to the military for help. The lesson that the Islamists' extreme fringe may draw: Democracy, which many of them viewed as "kufr" or heresy to begin with, is rigged and violence is the only way to bring their dream of an Islamic state.
But to the millions of Egyptians who marched in the street against Morsi, the Islamists failed at democracy: They overreached.
SKorea proposes working-level talk with NKorea on Saturday about joint industrial complex
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- South Korea says it has proposed a working-level talk with North Korea to discuss restarting a shuttered joint industrial complex in the North.
Seoul's Unification Ministry said Thursday its proposed talk will also address managing facilities and goods that South Korean businessmen left behind at the Kaesong industrial complex.
Seoul proposed they meet at the truce village on their border Saturday.
The proposal comes after North Korea allowed South Korean businessmen to visit Kaesong when they said they want to move their gear out of the park.
Kaesong was the last major symbol of inter-Korean rapprochement until Pyongyang withdrew its workers in April.
Firefighters make progress on Ariz. fire on same day they stopped to tribute fallen colleagues
YARNELL, Ariz. (AP) -- Hundreds of firefighters battling a blaze outside the mountain town of Yarnell came off the line Wednesday to salute a procession of fire vehicles that had been left by 19 elite Hotshot crew members killed in the line of duty.
The firefighters gathered along a highway to honor the Prescott-based unit on the same day that they reported significant progress in controlling the deadly blaze. The fire is now 45 percent contained, up from 8 percent earlier in the day, and authorities say the figure could change in the next day as they compile a more complete picture with sophisticated mapping techniques.
The vehicles were driven by fellow Prescott firefighters. One of the trucks held backpacks, water jugs and coolers. Another was emblazoned with the group's motto, in Latin: "To be, rather than to seem." As the vehicles drove through downtown Prescott, they were greeted by a large crowd that lined the street and waved flags and cheered the motorcade.
Fire crews across the U.S. also paused throughout the day to remember the Granite Mountain Hotshots and recognize the dangers firefighters face, said Jim Whittington, spokesman for the multiagency Southwest Incident Command Team. Gov. Jan Brewer said she would fly Arizona flags at half-staff for 19 days for each firefighter lost.
A memorial service for all 19 firefighters has been set for Tuesday in the city of Prescott Valley at an arena that is home to a minor league hockey team. The arena can hold 6,000 people, and an overflow area may be set up outside.
Expert testifies no Martin DNA on gun grip in Zimmerman trial
SANFORD, Fla. (AP) -- Trayvon Martin's DNA was not found on the grip of George Zimmerman's gun, and Zimmerman's DNA was not found under the unarmed teen's fingernails, a law enforcement expert said Wednesday in testimony that prosecutors hope will refute the neighborhood watch volunteer's self-defense claim.
Zimmerman has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and says he shot the 17-year-old in the chest to protect himself as Martin reached for his firearm during a fight.
Judge Debra Nelson dismissed jurors without the prosecution having rested its case as it had hoped to do by day's end. Nelson won't resume testimony until Friday morning, giving jurors the Fourth of July off. They will remain sequestered during the holiday break.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement DNA expert Anthony Gorgone also testified that Zimmerman's DNA was found among blood on a shirt Martin was wearing under his hooded sweatshirt.
While cross-examining Gorgone, defense attorney Don West focused on the packaging of the DNA samples, suggesting it could have led to the samples being degraded. Gorgone told him that Martin's two sweatshirts had been packaged in plastic while wet, instead of a paper bag where they can dry out, and when he opened the samples they smelled of ammonia and mold.
Bolivia plane incident infuriates Latin America but little indication region will host Snowden
The European rerouting of the Bolivian presidential plane over suspicions that National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden was aboard ignited outrage Wednesday among Latin American leaders who called it a stunning violation of national sovereignty and disrespect for the region.
But as President Evo Morales headed home after an unplanned 14-hour layover in Vienna, there was no immediate sign that Latin America anger would translate into a rush to bring Snowden to the region that had been seen as likeliest to defy the U.S. and give him asylum.
Snowden was still believed to be in the transit area of Moscow's international airport. As his case grinds on, it appears to illustrate the strength of U.S. influence, despite the initial sense that the Obama administration lost control of the situation when China allowed Snowden to flee Hong Kong.
Morales originally planned to fly home from a Moscow summit via Western Europe, stopping in Lisbon, Portugal and Guyana to refuel. His plane was diverted to Vienna Tuesday night after his government said France, Spain and Portugal all refused to let it through their airspace because they suspected Snowden was on board. Spain's ambassador to Austria even tried to make his way onto the plane on the pretext of having a coffee to check that Snowden wasn't there, Morales said.
Morales had sparked speculation that he might try to help Snowden get out during a visit to Russia after he said that his country would be willing to consider granting him asylum. Austrian officials said Morales' plane was searched early Wednesday by Austrian border police after Morales gave permission. Bolivian and Austrian officials both said Snowden was not on board.
Boston ramps up security for July Fourth concert, revelers are resolute despite bombings
BOSTON (AP) -- For many New Englanders, the Fourth of July means the Boston Pops performing the "1812 Overture" on the Charles River Esplanade and fireworks booming overhead.
This year, it's also the city's first large public gathering since the Boston Marathon bombings -- an attack that authorities have said the suspects first considered staging on Independence Day.
But as law enforcement officials put a ramped-up security plan in place Wednesday, many people in Boston said they wouldn't give in to fear of terrorism by changing their plans or staying away from public celebrations.
Catherine Lawrie, a 54-year-old Massachusetts Senate employee, walked down near the Esplanade to hear some of the performers rehearse Wednesday.
She was disappointed a footbridge to the river was blocked because of increased security, but said Boston looked ready to host a big party without any worries about safety.
Technology visionary Doug Engelbart, inventor of computer mouse, dies at age of 88
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Doug Engelbart, a visionary who invented the computer mouse and developed other technology that has transformed the way people work, play and communicate, died late Tuesday. He was 88.
His death of acute kidney failure occurred at his home in Atherton, Calif., after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease, according to one of his daughters, Diana Engelbart Mangan.
Back in the 1950s and '60s, when mainframes took up entire rooms and were fed data on punch cards, Engelbart already was envisioning a day when computers would empower people to share ideas and solve problems in ways that seemed unfathomable at the time.
Engelbart considered his work to be all about "augmenting human intellect" -- a mission that boiled down to making computers more intuitive to use. One of the biggest advances was the mouse, which he developed in the 1960s and patented in 1970. At the time, it was a wooden shell covering two metal wheels: an "X-Y position indicator for a display system."
Engelbart "brought tremendous value to society," said Curtis R. Carlson, the CEO of SRI International, where Engelbart worked when it was still known as the Stanford Research Institute. "We will miss his genius, warmth and charm. Doug's legacy is immense. Anyone in the world who uses a mouse or enjoys the productive benefits of a personal computer is indebted to him."
'Sopranos' star James Gandolfini leaves bulk of $70 million estate to teen son, baby daughter
NEW YORK (AP) -- James Gandolfini left the bulk of his estimated $70 million estate to his 13-year-old son and infant daughter.
The late star of HBO's "The Sopranos" left millions of dollars to his wife and relatives.
The New York Post (http://bit.ly/19SMBxFhttp://bit.ly/19SMBxF ) reports a will dated Dec. 19 was filed Tuesday in Manhattan Surrogate's Court.
Gandolfini's son, Michael, is to get the largest chunk through a trust set aside for him until he turns 21. He'll split his father's Italian property with 8-month-old half-sister Liliana when she turns 25.
The newspaper says the remainder of Gandolfini's estate will be split among his wife, sisters and daughter.
Buoyed by boisterous crowd, Murray comes back from 2-set hole to reach Wimbledon semifinals
LONDON (AP) -- They sighed when Andy Murray faulted.
They stood and roared when he hit winners.
And when Murray dropped the first two sets of his Wimbledon quarterfinal Wednesday, the 15,000 Centre Court spectators were suddenly so silent that birds could be heard chirping.
By the time his five-set comeback was nearly complete, more than two hours later, the fans were greeting each point that went Murray's way with celebrations of the sort normally reserved for a championship. It's been 77 years since a British man won the country's Grand Slam tennis tournament, and thanks to the second-seeded Murray's 4-6, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4, 7-5 victory over 54th-ranked Fernando Verdasco, the locals still can hold out hope the wait will end Sunday.
First things first, of course. Murray, who is from Scotland, will play in the semifinals at the All England Club for the fifth consecutive year Friday, facing No. 24 Jerzy Janowicz of Poland. The other semifinal is No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia against No. 8 Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina.