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Texas trooper killed during traffic stop; suspect in custody

FAIRFIELD, Texas— A Texas state trooper was shot and killed during a traffic stop in East Texas on Thanksgiving. The Texas Department of Public Safety released a statement on its Twitter account Thursday night identifying the trooper as Damon Allen, 41. DPS said Allen joined the department in 2002 and was married with three children. …

Stores hope deals, excitement draw shoppers for Black Friday

NEW YORK— Stores are hoping deals and excitement bring shoppers to stores and to their sites for Black Friday, one of the biggest shopping days of the year. But Black Friday has morphed from a single day when people got up early to score doorbusters into a whole season of deals, so shoppers may feel …

Italy puts 23 people under investigation in hotel avalanche

ROME — Italian prosecutors have put 23 people under formal investigation over an avalanche that killed 29 hotel guests and staff earlier this year. Investigators want to learn if there were violations in authorizing the Apennine mountain Hotel Rigopiano’s construction in an avalanche-prone area. Also being probed is whether the hotel should have been evacuated …

Kosovo sets Albania’s Nov. 28 independence day as a holiday

PRISTINA, Kosovo — Kosovo’s government has decided to declare Nov. 28, the independence day of neighbouring Albania, a national holiday, a move that may spark an angry reaction from Serbia. A government statement Thursday said that Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj declared Nov. 28 as the “day of Albanians … to respect historic and cultural values …

Greece’s vows greater effort to protect refugees over winter

ATHENS, Greece — Greece has promised to step up efforts to protect migrants and refugees over the winter on the Greek islands, but defended a 2016 deal between Turkey and the European Union to stop the westward flow of migrants into Europe. On a visit to France, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told the country’s Figaro …

‘Macron effect’ fuels Paris bid for post Brexit business

PARIS — Banking giant Citigroup, fast food master KFC and elevator-maker Otis are planning to expand activities in France thanks in part to what they call the “Macron effect” – a surge in investor optimism driven by the French president’s pro-business promises. But will they move their European headquarters to Paris after Britain pulls out …

Zimbabwe asks if new leader, a Mugabe ally, can bring change

JOHANNESBURG — Zimbabwe’s incoming leader Emmerson Mnangagwa, widely known as the Crocodile, is seen as a smart, ruthless politician, and many question if he will be able to bring the change the country craves. “We are witnessing the beginning of a new, unfolding democracy,” the 75-year-old announced Wednesday upon his return to the country, two …

Nepal hopes first state elections will give people a voice

KATHMANDU, Nepal — Eleven years after Nepal began its journey toward democracy by stripping its authoritarian king of his powers, the nation’s 30 million people will finally get a say in running their local regions, giving voice to those who feel overlooked in a country with diverse ethnic groups and cultures. But while many hope …

Honduras president seeks 2nd term despite constitutional ban

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras — Less than a decade ago, even talk of re-election was enough to get a Honduran president overthrown. Now Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez appears likely to win a second term on Sunday as well as bolstering the strength of his conservative National Party across the board. “Hernandez is not just trying to win presidential …

Retailers look to woo shoppers from rivals as Amazon grows

NEW YORK—Toys and TVs at J.C. Penney, Barbies at Best Buy, kitchen appliances like wine refrigerators at B.J.’s. As the holiday shopping season officially kicks off Thursday, shoppers may find some surprises at their favourite stores. Even as retailers are counting on a lift from a better economy, they’re looking beyond economic data and mapping …