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New wave of rockets fired by Palestinians

JERUSALEM (AP) -- Palestinian militants in Gaza fired a new wave of rockets that landed deep inside Israel on Thursday, defying Israeli retaliatory attacks and threats. As the violence threatened to escalate the day after a deadly Jerusalem bombing, Israel got a boost from the visiting U.S. defense chief, who said that no country could tolerate the "repugnant" attacks on its soil.

Police said Gaza militants fired 10 rockets and mortar rounds toward Israel on Thursday, including two rockets that landed north of the city of Ashdod -- a first since Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers reached an unofficial truce following a three-week war that ended in January 2009.

Wednesday's bombing killed a British tourist, and five members of a Jewish family were slain while they slept in a West Bank settlement earlier this month. Israel has blamed Palestinians for both attacks.

Visiting Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said, "Israel, like all nations, has the right to self-defense and to bring to justice the perpetrators of these repugnant attacks."


'Baby Doc' hospitalized after he has chest pains

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) -- Former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier has been hospitalized after having chest pains, his longtime companion and associates said Thursday without giving details about his condition.

Duvalier, who made a surprise return to this impoverished Caribbean nation in January, was admitted Wednesday night, companion Veronique Roy said as she took a break from visiting him at the Canape Vert hospital in the hills above downtown Port-au-Prince.

The former dictator, 59, made an abrupt return to Haiti in January after 25 years in exile and has appeared at times to move with difficulty, sparking speculation that he has been ill.

He has been living in a villa in the hills above Port-au-Prince under police guard as a judge investigates whether he can be charged with a long list of crimes, including corruption and torture, committed while he was serving as Haiti's "president for life."


Embattled PM unlikely to attend royal nuptials

TORONTO (AP) -- Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is unlikely to attend the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in London next month because of a looming election in Canada.

A senior government official said Thursday that Harper's participation is unlikely. Just two weeks ago, Harper and his wife, Laureen, formally accepted the invitation to attend the Westminster Abbey ceremony on April 29, but opposition parties are set to topple Harper's Conservative government today.

The election is expected to be held May 2.

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