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By Ali al-Rubaie HILLA, Iraq (Reuters) - A suicide bomber driving a minibus packed with explosives killed at least 45 people and wounded 157 on Sunday in the southern Iraqi city of Hilla, police and medical sources said. The attacker approached a main checkpoint at a northern entrance to the largely Shi'ite Muslim city and detonated the minibus, a police officer said on condition of anonymity. Sunni Islamist insurgents linked to al Qaeda have been regaining ground in Iraq over the past year, particularly in the western province of Anbar bordering Syria. No one claimed responsibility for Sunday's attack, but the deputy chairman of Hilla provincial council, Aqeel al-Rubaie, accused al Qaeda of being behind the bombing.
By Sharon Bernstein LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California Democrats meeting in Los Angeles on Sunday were set to adopt a platform likely to call for an inflation-adjusted minimum wage, dramatic cuts in military spending, and tighter campaign finance and disclosure laws. Confident going into the 2014 election season with wide majorities in both legislative houses and control of all statewide elected offices, Democratic leaders at the party's annual convention aimed to push their statewide success eastward in an effort to retake a majority in Congress. Some 3,000 delegates and guests thronging the downtown Westin Bonaventure hotel were also scheduled to hear from legislative leaders, including top Democrats in the state senate and assembly. The convention had on Saturday showcased Democratic stars in the most populous U.S. state, including California Governor Jerry Brown and the state's Attorney General Kamala Harris as well as former U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, whom party leaders are hoping may be able to return to her old job.
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — As separatists in Crimea kept up pressure for unification with Moscow, Ukraine on Sunday solemnly commemorated the 200th anniversary of the birth of its greatest poet, with the prime minister vowing not to give up "a single centimeter" of Ukrainian territory.