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Obama leads memorial honoring Holbrooke

WASHINGTON -- Heads of state, diplomats, family members and dignitaries from around the world paid tribute Friday to Richard C. Holbrooke, eulogizing the diplomat who died last month as a giant of American foreign policy who brought peace to the war-

ravaged Balkans.

Speaking at the memorial event in Kennedy Center, President Obama hailed Holbrooke as a larger-than-life figure who "negotiated and cajoled and threatened all at once" until he was able to bring Bosnia's warring factions to an agreement.

Holbrooke died Dec. 13 at age 69. At the time, he was Obama's special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Those attending the memorial included Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, former President Bill Clinton, the presidents of Pakistan and Georgia, and a host of foreign envoys.

-- Washington Post



President to ease rules for travel to Cuba

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- President Obama plans to loosen Cuban travel policy to allow students and church groups to go to the communist country, the administration said Friday.

Students seeking academic credit and churches traveling for religious purposes will be able to go to Cuba. The plan also will let any American send as much as $500 every three months to Cuban citizens who are not part of the Castro administration and are not members of the Communist Party.

Also, more U.S. airports will be allowed to offer charter service. Right now, only three airports -- in Miami, Los Angeles and New York City -- can offer authorized charters to Cuba. That will be expanded to any international airport with customs and immigration facilities.



Gunman kills officer during 'routine stop'

LAKEWOOD, N.J. (AP) -- A man who was being questioned by a police officer on a residential street Friday afternoon pulled out a handgun and fired three bullets into the officer in what the county prosecutor called "a heinous, execution-style killing."

A manhunt was under way for the killer of Patrolman Christopher Matlosz, 27, who was engaged to be married.

Prosecutor Marlene Lynch Ford said Matlosz never saw it coming. She said the officer was chatting with the man during "a routine stop." "This was an encounter that was between the officer and the person, not hostile," she said. "The individual stepped back and suddenly pulled out a handgun and shot the officer."

While the man fled on foot, a neighbor called 911 at about

4 p.m. to report an officer down. Matlosz was rushed to Jersey Shore University Medical Center, where he died.

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