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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope Francis, center, delivers his "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and to the world) blessing from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Tens of thousands of Romans and tourists in St. Peter's Square listened as the pontiff delivered the Catholic ch…

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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope Francis delivers his "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and to the world) blessing from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Tens of thousands of Romans and tourists in St. Peter's Square listened as the pontiff delivered the Catholic church's tr…

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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope Francis waves to faithful from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Tens of thousands of Romans and tourists in St. Peter's Square listened as the pontiff delivered the Catholic church's traditional "Urbi et Orbi" (Latin for "to the city a…

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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope Francis delivers his "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city and to the world) blessing from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Tens of thousands of Romans and tourists in St. Peter's Square listened as the pontiff delivered the Catholic church's tr…

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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

A Vatican police officer stops a Ukrainian feminist group Femen activist after she snatched the statue of Baby Jesus from the Nativity scene set in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. (AP Photo)

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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

A gendarme from the Vatican's security forces stops a Ukrainian feminist group Femen activist after she snatched the statue of Baby Jesus from the Nativity scene set in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. (AP Photo)

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Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

Pope wishes Christmas hope and peace for Mideast

VATICAN CITY (AP) — A somber Pope Francis steeped his Christmas message to the world Thursday in sadness for those with little cause for joy — abused children, refugees, hostages and others suffering from violence in the Middle East, Africa, Ukraine and elsewhere.

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Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

FILE - This Nov. 30, 2014 image made from video released by Loujain al-Hathloul, shows her driving towards the United Arab Emirates - Saudi Arabia border before her arrest on Dec. 1, 2014, in Saudi Arabia. Two Saudi women, including al-Hathloul, detained for nearly a month after violating th…

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Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

FILE - This Nov. 30, 2014 file image made from video released by Loujain al-Hathloul, shows her driving towards the United Arab Emirates - Saudi Arabia border before her arrest on Dec. 1, 2014, in Saudi Arabia. Two Saudi women, including al-Hathloul, detained for nearly a month after violati…

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Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

FILE - This Nov. 30, 2014 file image made from video released by Loujain al-Hathloul, shows her driving towards the United Arab Emirates - Saudi Arabia border before her arrest on Dec. 1, 2014, in Saudi Arabia. Two Saudi women, including al-Hathloul, detained for nearly a month after violati…

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Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

Saudi women drivers referred to terrorism court

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Two Saudi women detained for nearly a month in defiance of a ban on females driving were referred on Thursday to a court established to try terrorism cases, several people close to the defendants said.

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NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

Santa tracker volunteers U.S. Navy Petty Officer Brandon Wright, center, and his wife, Petty Officer Emily Wright, left, take phone calls from children asking where Santa is and when he will deliver presents to their homes, inside a phone-in center during the annual NORAD Tracks Santa Operat…

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NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD and USNORTHCOM Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Charles D. Luckey joins other volunteers taking phone calls from children around the world asking where Santa is and when he will deliver presents to their homes, inside a phone-in center during the annual NORAD Tracks Santa Operation, at the Nor…

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NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

Canadian Brig. Gen. Guy Hamel, NORAD and USNORTHCOM Deputy Director of Policy, Strategy, and Plans, joins other volunteers taking phone calls from children around the world asking where Santa is and when he will deliver presents to their homes, inside a phone-in center during the annual NORA…

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NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD and USNORTHCOM Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Charles D. Luckey joins other volunteers taking phone calls from children around the world asking where Santa is and when he will deliver presents to their homes, inside a phone-in center during the annual NORAD Tracks Santa Operation, at the Nor…

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NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

Volunteers take phone calls from children asking where Santa is and when he will deliver presents to their homes, inside a phone-in center during the annual NORAD Tracks Santa Operation, at the North American Aerospace Defense Command, at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2…

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NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

NORAD 'tracks' Santa's journey across globe

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — Volunteers at the North American Aerospace Defense Command pretended to monitor Santa Claus as he made his storybook Christmas Eve flight, saying they used the heat signature from Rudolph's nose to "track" St. Nick over spots ranging from Australia to the Americas.

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Father of pilot captured by IS pleads for release

Father of pilot captured by IS pleads for release

Friends and relatives of Mu'ath Safi al-Kaseasbeh, a Jordanian pilot captured by the Islamic State group, gather in the town of Aey near Al Karak in southern Jordan, Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2014. Islamic State militants captured the Jordanian pilot after his warplane crashed in Syria while condu…

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Father of pilot captured by IS pleads for release

Father of pilot captured by IS pleads for release

Relatives and friends of the Jordanian pilot captured by the Islamic State group, 1st Lt. Mu'ath Safi al-Kaseasbeh, gather in the Kaseasbeh tribe chamber in the town of Aey near Al Karak, in southern Jordan, Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2014. Islamic State militants captured a Jordanian pilot after h…

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Father of pilot captured by IS pleads for release

Father of pilot captured by IS pleads for release

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — The father of a Jordanian pilot captured by the Islamic State group in Syria pleaded for his son's release on Thursday, reminding militants that his son shared the same faith as the ultraconservative group.

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Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Amelie and her father Mario leaves the Oranke Lake during the annual Christmas Swimming of the winter and ice swimming club 'Seehunde Berlin', (Berlin Seals), in Berlin, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Every Christmas the club arrange a swim at the lake. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

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Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Members of the winter and ice swimming club 'Seehunde Berlin' (Berlin Seals), wearing Christmas themed hats, attend the annual Christmas swim at the chilly Oranke Lake in Berlin, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Every Christmas the club arrange a swim at the lake. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

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Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Members of the winter and ice swimming club 'Seehunde Berlin' (Berlin Seals), wearing Christmas themed hats, enter the chilly Oranke Lake during the annual Christmas swim in Berlin, Thursday, Dec. 25, 2014. Every Christmas the club arrange a swim at the lake. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

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Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

Swimmers brave cold for Berlin Christmas swim

BERLIN (AP) — For a group of hardy Berliners, Christmas Day is a time to sing seasonal songs, don festive wear — and take a plunge in a cold lake.

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2004 tsunami: Children in mud, lone mosque in Aceh

2004 tsunami: Children in mud, lone mosque in Aceh

FILE - In this Sunday, Jan. 2, 2005 file photo, a mosque remains in a village wiped out by tsunamis in Keude Teunom, Aceh province in northwestern Indonesia. Some 230,000 people were killed in the Indian Ocean tsunami set off by a magnitude 9.1 earthquake on Dec. 26, 2004. A dozen countries …

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