Russians Now Face Fines for Smoking in Some Public Places

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-11_4d01d47d4c.jpgiStock/Thinkstock (MOSCOW) -- New fines went into effect in Russia Friday for smoking in certain public places. Lighting up near a train station, in an airport, or near a playground or school could now cost you between $15 and $90.  Next year, the prohibition will be expanded to cafes and restaurants. It's all part of a new get-healthy campaign by the Russian government, recognizing Russia's life expectancy is dangerously low and its population is shrinking.

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US Preparing for Major Support Haul to Philippines

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-11_57ddb218ea.jpgU.S. Navy photo-Ricardo R. Guzman/Released (TACLOBAN, Philippines) -- With time of the essence, U.S. Navy ships are now assessing the damage done by last week's monster typhoon in the Philippines while preparing to bring in boatloads of emergency support, including medical care and water supplies. Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery, the commander of the George Washington Strike Group, said his ship and four others were positioned off the east coast of Samar island in the Leyte Gulf.

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Hold Off on More Iran Sanctions, Obama Tells Congress

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-11_b39717f63c.jpgMatt Trommer/Thinkstock (WASHINGTON) -- President Obama made his first public statement on Thursday about recent talks to get Iran to scale back its nuclear ambitions. With the U.S. and it allies possibly getting closer to an agreement with Tehran, the president wants Congress to hold off on imposing any more economic sanctions that might undermine the delicate negotiations.

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Egypt Cozying Up to Russia

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-11_8fafda83a6.jpgMarcio Silva/Thinkstock (CAIRO) -- The interim government in Egypt seems to be preparing for life after its strong alliance with the U.S. With the White House cutting back on some financial assistance to Egypt in the wake of President Mohamed Morsi's removal from power last July, Cairo invited a top Russian government official for talks Thursday on improving its military ties with Moscow as well as dealing with the ongoing Syrian conflict.

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Toronto Mayor Apologizes for Crude Oral Sex Comment

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2013-11_bd6794dd74.jpgCity of Toronto (TORONTO) -- Toronto's beleaguered mayor, who has surprised his city with almost daily revelations about crack use, drug purchases and drunken stupors shocked a live news conference Thursday with a crude comment about oral sex. Mayor Rob Ford apologized for the comment a short time later, and blamed the "pressure" of his ongoing scandal. Ford's latest stunner occurred as he denied allegations in police documents that he told a former staffer he wanted to engage in oral sex with her.

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