Noontime News is a snapshot of the news from the past 24 hours.  (More)

Senate Passes Expanded Violence Against Women Act

The Senate voted overwhelmingly Tuesday afternoon to pass legislation reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act with expanded protections for gays, undocumented immigrants and Native American women who suffer from domestic abuse.

Analysis: Obama to Republicans – Can we just move on?

(Reuters) – President Barack Obama used his State of the Union address on Tuesday night to try to push past the fiscal battles that plagued his first term – and still threaten his second – as he laid out an agenda he hopes will shape his legacy.

High stakes if Apple e-books antitrust case goes to trial

(Reuters) – As the only remaining defendant in the U.S. government’s e-books antitrust case, Apple Incappears headed for a high-stakes trial that could significantly increase the personal computer company’s liability in related litigation.

Charred human remains found in cabin after Christopher Dorner’s last stand

Charred human remains have been found in the burnt-out mountain cabin outside Los Angeles where fugitive former police officer Christopher Dorner made his bloody final stand.

Pope Benedict says he’s stepping down ‘for the good of the church’

Pope Benedict XVI has said he is standing down for “the good of the church”, as he made his first public appearance since his shock announcement that he is to tender the first papal resignation since the Middle Ages.

North Korea defiant over nuclear tests as Obama promises swift action

Barack Obama has vowed to take “swift and credible action” over North Korea‘s “highly provocative” nuclear test which appeared to bring Pyongyang closer to producing a viable weapon.

Philippines moves to close historic peace deal with Islamist rebels

Since 9/11, it has sometimes seemed as if the world has become consumed by battles with Islamist terrorists. From Iraq to Afghanistan, via Mali and Algeria, commentators have long argued that we are witness to a clash of civilisations.

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