Around the World: April 15, 2015

Here's what's happening across the United States and around the world today.

Boston to mark 2nd anniversary of marathon bombings

BOSTON (AP) — The second anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing will be marked today with a moment of silence, the tolling of church bells and a call for kindness.

The moment of silence comes at 2:49 p.m. Eastern Time, when the first of two bombs exploded near the finish line of the race on April 15.

Three people were killed and another 260 were wounded. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv), was convicted last week of carrying out the bombing with his older brother, who was killed during the manhunt.

Obama to highlight his family-friendly tax proposals

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is using Tax Day to draw new attention to family-friendly tax proposals that haven't exactly been embraced by the Republican leaders of Congress.

Obama also will answer questions about working family issues at a town hall today in Charlotte, North Carolina, with the women's websites BlogHer and SheKnows.

The president has called on Congress to expand existing tax credits and create new credits to help working families. Lawmakers have taken no action.

Meanwhile, the House is expected this week to pass a bill repealing the estate tax.

The White House says eliminating the tax would help a few thousand wealthy households at a cost of about $270 billion to the Treasury.

It says far more people, 44 million families, would benefit under the president's proposals.

Finally, Congress OKs bill reshaping Medicare doctors' fees

WASHINGTON (AP) — Huge majorities of both parties in Congress have finally banded together and approved legislation permanently reshaping how Medicare reimburses doctors for treating over 50 million elderly people.

Final approval came late Tuesday when the Senate voted 92-8 to send the bill to the White House. President Barack Obama says he is ready to sign the measure because it will protect health coverage for vast numbers of Americans.

Conservatives were unhappy that the legislation is expected to swell federal deficits over the coming decade. Liberals complained that it shortchanged health programs for children and women.

But the measure had too much to offer for both parties and passed easily.

UN nuclear inspectors in Iran to try to probe suspect site

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — U.N. nuclear inspectors are in Iran on a long stalled visit meant to investigate suspicions that Tehran worked on nuclear weapons, a charge the Islamic Republic denies.

The official IRNA news agency is quoting Iranian nuclear spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi as saying that inspectors from the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency arrived in Tehran on Wednesday to discuss "unresolved issues" surrounding a military site in Marivan, in western Iran.

A 2011 IAEA report indicated that large-scale high-explosive experiments were conducted in Marivan, near the Iraqi border.

Talks with the IAEA are parallel to Iran's nuclear negotiations with world powers seeking a permanent agreement on curbing the country's nuclear activities by June 30 in return for the lifting of economic sanctions.

Iran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

White House standoff with Congress over Iran bill not over

WASHINGTON (AP) — Legislation empowering Congress to reject an emerging Iran nuclear pact is expected to sail through both houses of Congress, leaving President Barack Obama with the tough task of selling the deal to skeptical lawmakers.

Obama bowed to pressure from Republicans and Democrats and agreed to sign compromise legislation unanimously approved Tuesday by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

It would give lawmakers a say on what could be a historic deal aimed at preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons. In exchange, Iran would get relief from economic sanctions stifling its economy.

While Congress takes 30 days to review any final deal, Obama would be blocked from easing any sanctions that Congress has imposed on Iran.

NEW: Kerry: still confident US can conclude Iran nuclear deal

LUEBECK, Germany (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry says he is still confident that the U.S. administration can conclude a nuclear deal with Iran after President Barack Obama agreed to sign legislation giving Congress the right to reject an agreement.

Kerry joined his counterparts from the Group of Seven industrial powers at a meeting in northern Germany today - the gathering's second day.

The G-7 meeting's host, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, says ministers will discuss the situation in the U.S., which has "a certain influence" on whether a deal with Iran can be achieved by a June 30 deadline.

Kerry says, "We are confident about our ability for the president to negotiate an agreement, and to do so with the ability to make the world safer."

Guam attorney general wants to allow gay marriage

HAGATNA, Guam (AP) — Guam's attorney general is directing officials on the U.S. territory to start accepting same-sex marriage applications.

Attorney General Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson says the Department of Public Health and Social Services should treat "all same gender marriage applicants with dignity and equality under the Constitution."

But the acting director of the department tells a local newspaper (Pacific Daily News) that he won't be accepting applications from same-sex couples "until further notice."

UPDATE: NYC protesters march against police brutality

NEW YORK (AP) — Police in New York say they're not sure how many people were arrested during a protest last night against police brutality.

Hundreds of demonstrators marched from Manhattan's Union Square and across the Brooklyn Bridge where they partially blocked traffic. The group National Actions to Stop Murder By Police says it was one of 28 protests being held across the country.

Police say an off-duty police officer driving home on the Brooklyn Bridge was assaulted by two protesters when he got out of his vehicle to investigate. Police say the suspects ran off after he identified himself as a police officer. He was hospitalized with injuries to his face and arm.

Also, several people attending the demonstration were seen getting arrested.

In Springfield, Massachusetts, police arrested and charged 15 people with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest after they blocked traffic at a major intersection.

Deputy accused of physically abusing handcuffed inmate

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — A Florida deputy accused of bashing a handcuffed inmate's head against a wall and kneeing him in the face has been indicted by a federal grand jury.

An indictment returned Tuesday charges 46-year-old Palm Beach County deputy William D. Wheeler with deprivation of rights and falsification of records. He was arrested in February and placed on paid leave.

Prosecutors say the assault took place in October 2013 when Wheeler was assigned to a county jail in Belle Glade.

They say he put his hands around the handcuffed man's neck, struck his head against the wall, pulled him to the floor and kneed him in the face. Prosecutors say he then lied about it in a report.

Wheeler's attorney did not respond to a call and email requesting comment.

Woman must pay for gifts from Donald Sterling

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The woman former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling bought expensive gifts will have to fork over some $2.6 million to Sterling's wife.

Shelly Sterling had sued for $3 million, arguing that the gifts her husband gave V. Stiviano were paid for with marital property.

During the course of their 2 1/2 years together, Donald Sterling gave Stiviano a Ferrari, a Bentley and a Range Rover, and paid the lion's share of a $1.8 million duplex.

Day 2 in Iowa for Hillary Clinton

MONTICELLO, Iowa (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton continues her two-day swing through Iowa.

Today, Clinton tours a family-owned produce company and speaks with small-business leaders outside Des Moines, part of an effort by her presidential campaign to focus on smaller, more personal interactions.

NEW: Man set to be executed for killing San Antonio officer

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) — A San Antonio man convicted of killing a police officer with the officer's own gun in a struggle 14 years ago is headed for execution this evening.

No last-day appeals are in the courts as the lethal injection of Manuel Garza Jr. approaches.

The U.S. Supreme Court refused to review his case in November.

The 35-year-old Garza was 20 in February 2001 when he fled from San Antonio Police Officer John "Rocky" Riojas, who was part of a team targeting property crimes at apartments. The officer caught up with Garza, and witnesses said they saw Garza grab Riojas' gun and shoot him in the head.

Defense attorneys contend the shooting was accidental and Garza's already long criminal record was the result of an abusive and neglected childhood.

Trial to begin for man accused in killing of 6-year-old boy

PHOENIX (AP) — Lawyers are scheduled to make opening statements today at the trial of an Arizona man accused of killing his half brother and 6-year-old nephew.

Christopher Rey Licon (LEE'-kohn) is charged with fatally shooting his half brother Angel Jaquez (HAH'-kwehz) at their south Phoenix townhome in December 2010.

He also is charged with killing his nephew, Xavier Jaquez.

Authorities say the child was likely killed because he either saw or heard his uncle fatally shoot his father in a drug dispute. The child's body was found in a west Phoenix alley.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty against Licon. His lawyers say he was mentally ill at the time.

NEW: Fight for $15 protests planned over McJobs, low-wage work

NEW YORK (AP) — The fight to redefine a McJob is heating up.

Labor organizers are planning their biggest day of protests yet for pay of $15 an hour and a union for fast-food and other low-wage workers.

Today's push comes just two weeks after McDonald's announced a pay bump for workers at its company-owned stores, suggesting the chain is also moving to take control of its image as an employer.

The Fight for $15 campaign is being spearheaded by the Service Employees International Union and began in late 2012 with fast-food workers. Since then, organizers have used the spotlight to rally a variety of low-wage workers, including airport workers, home care workers and adjunct professors. The say today's demonstrations will be in more than 230 U.S. cities and college campuses.

That's what's happening. Read more stories to jump start your day in our special Breakfast Buzz section.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
Contact Us