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Local News

  • State Dept. orders evacuation of embassy in Yemen

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department on Tuesday ordered the U.S. Embassy in Yemen evacuated as a result of the threat by al-Qaida that has triggered temporary shutdowns of 19 American diplomatic posts across the Middle East and Africa.

    The department said in a travel warning that it had ordered the departure of non-emergency U.S. government personnel from Yemen "due to the continued potential for terrorist attacks" and said U.S. citizens in Yemen should leave immediately because of an "extremely high" security threat level.

    "U.S. citizens currently in Yemen should depart. As staff levels at the Embassy are restricted, our ability to assist U.S. citizens in an emergency and provide routine consular services remains limited and may be further constrained by the fluid security situation," the travel warning said.

    The U.S. Embassy is located in Sanaa, the capital of Yemen.

  • Today in History for August 6th
  • Raw: Huge Python Found Hiding in Florida Shed
  • Anti-nuclear protesters speak out

    Ongoing construction at Ashley Pond Park and thunderstorms weren’t enough to keep anti-nuclear protesters away from Los Alamos Sunday and Monday.

    About 40 of the activists descended on Ashley Pond to protest at the place where nuclear warfare was born. Most were members of Pax Christi Santa Fe, but others came as far away as Palestine to take part.

    The protest marked the 68th anniversary Aug. 6 and 9 of atomic bombs being dropped at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan.

    Their featured speaker was Father John Dear, a well-known peace activist and author. As they all huddled under the roof of the pavilion to hear him speak, some passersby occasionally honked their horns at the protesters, who were dressed in sackcloth in an outward symbol of repentance for the “sin” of nuclear warfare.

    Some drivers also shouted obscenities at the protesters to express their disapproval. Whatever the drivers did, the protesters waved, smiled, shook their banners and shot up two-fingered peace signs in response.

    Dear talked about the “banality of evil.”

  • State Dept: Posts in 19 cities to remain closed

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Amid online "chatter" about terror threats, U.S. diplomatic posts in 19 cities in the Muslim world will be closed at least through the end of this week, the State Department said.

    Spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the decision to keep the embassies and consulates shuttered is a sign of an "abundance of caution" and is "not an indication of a new threat."

    Lawmakers, though, said the intercepted chatter suggested that a major terrorist attack was in the planning stages. One lawmaker said the chatter was specific as to certain dates and the scope of the operation.

    Psaki said the continued closures are "merely an indication of our commitment to exercise caution and take appropriate steps to protect our employees, including local employees, and visitors to our facilities."

    Diplomatic facilities will remain closed in Egypt, Jordan, Libya, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, among other countries, through Saturday, Aug. 10. The State Department announcement Sunday added closures of four African sites, in Madagascar, Burundi, Rwanda and Mauritius.

    The U.S. has also decided to reopen some posts on Monday, including those in Kabul, Afghanistan, and Baghdad.

  • Today in History for August 5th
  • WIPP gets state approval for opening new wing

    CALRSBAD, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Environment Department has approved the start of operations in a new segment of the federal government's nuclear waste repository near Carlsbad.

    The area known as Panel 7 was put through an extensive review and certification process before the state signed off on the opening of the new wing.

    Officials tell the Carlsbad Current-Argus that the area underwent mining and outfitting, which included the installation of electricity, monitoring equipment and air regulating bulkheads.

    Panel 7 will begin to receive defense-related waste, including such things as clothing, tools and other debris, once Panel 6 has been filled. Operations could start as soon as this month.

    WIPP is authorized to mine one more panel. A request for any additional panels must be made to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

  • Today in History for August 4th
  • Martinez lauds fire crews

    Gov. Susana Martinez has announced that New Mexico’s new military veteran’s fire crews will become a permanent program beyond this fire season, following its success during the 2013 fire season.  The governor made the announcement at Rio Grande Nature Center State Park in the bosque at the same location she announced the pilot program last April.

    The Veterans Fire Crews Pilot Program trained and employed nearly 40 military veterans as wildland fire hand crews over the summer. Martinez announced that an executive budget request will be made to provide for 60 slots to train veterans to help fight fires.

  • Abney pleads guilty to child abuse charge

    Tyrell Abney, 20, pleaded guilty to third-degree child abuse Wednesday in Los Alamos District Court before Judge Shari Raphaelson.

    Assistant District Attorney Kent Wahlquist said Abney received three years probation. He also was sentenced to three years and three years suspended.

    “If he violates the terms of his probation, he could serve time,” Wahlquist said. “If he violates it tomorrow, he will have to serve three years. If he violates it a year from now, he will have to serve two years.”

    Wahlquist said Abney has relinquished his parental rights to the child and Wahlquist thinks Abney has no contact with the mother.