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10 things you need to know today: May 30, 2012
Mitt Romney locks up the GOP nomination, Kofi Annan leaves Syria without a plan, and more in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion
Kofi Annan left Syria on Wednesday, unable to convince President Bashar al-Assad to move forward with a peace plan the U.N. envoy has been trying to implement.
Kofi Annan left Syria on Wednesday, unable to convince President Bashar al-Assad to move forward with a peace plan the U.N. envoy has been trying to implement.
Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

1. ROMNEY GETS NOMINATION, TRUMP GETS THE SPOTLIGHT
Mitt Romney easily gained enough delegates in Tuesday's Texas primary to surpass the 1,144 needed to win the nomination, but Donald Trump took the spotlight. Romney and the real estate tycoon have been fundraising in Las Vegas. While Trump had the restraint not to bring up his birther views to potential donors, he reiterated his doubts about the authenticity of Obama's birth certificate to multiple media outlets Tuesday. Romney has said Trump is entitled to his own opinion on the matter, and has not condemned him. [Associated Press]
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2. ANNAN LEAVES SYRIA WITHOUT A PLAN
A U.N. spokesperson says special envoy Kofi Annan left Syria Wednesday morning without getting President Bashar al-Assad to take steps to implement his peace plan. Annan asked the Syrian regime to abide by last month's failed truce and remove heavy artillery from civilian areas, while Assad said the peace plan is dependent on stopping weapons smuggling to the armed terrorists the regime claims are the cause of the uprising. On Tuesday, nine Western nations, including the U.S., announced they would be expelling their Syrian diplomats; Japan followed suit Wednesday. China and Russia reiterated their opposition to military intervention in Syria. [Voice of America]
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3. BERYL REGAINS STRENGTH
After making landfall in Florida and being downgraded to a tropical depression, Beryl has regained its tropical storm status as it prepares to head back out to the Atlantic Wednesday, spreading heavy rain and wind along the Georgia and Carolina coasts. The body of one of Beryl's victims — an 18-year-old Florida man swept out to sea — washed ashore Tuesday. Some 170 swimmers in central Florida had to be rescued over the holiday weekend. [CNN]
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4. CHARLES TAYLOR GETS 50 YEARS IN PRISON
An international court in The Hague, Netherlands, sentenced the former Liberian president to 50 years in prison Wednesday for helping Sierra Leonean rebels wage a gruesome "campaign of terror" that included rape, murder, and sexual slavery. A former head of state has not been convicted of war crimes since World War II. [CNN]
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5. APPLE TEASES NEW PRODUCT RELEASES
Apple CEO Tim Cook told a reporter Tuesday that "we have some incredible things coming out," though he didn't give any details about the company possibly making a television or an iPhone of a different size. He also said Apple would work to be more transparent about its labor practices in China. [Wall Street Journal]
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6. FACEBOOK SHARES PLUMMET TO NEW DEPTHS
Facebook shares hit a new low of $28.65 on Tuesday, before inching upwards to close at $28.84. Facebook went public on May 18 with shares valued at $38. Since then, the social network has lost some $25 billion in value. [Reuters]
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7. OBAMA GAFFE OFFENDS POLAND
Poland is asking for a White House apology after President Obama mistakenly referred to a Nazi prison as a "Polish death camp" at the Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony on Wednesday. Calling it an "outrageous mistake" on Twitter, Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sidorski said, "It's a pity that ignorance and incompetence overshadowed such a momentous ceremony." Poland has long stressed the fact that concentration camps were built in the country only after it was conquered by Nazi Germany. [USA Today]
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8. RUTGERS STUDENT APOLOGIZES
In a written statement Tuesday, Dharun Ravi, the former Rutgers student convicted of bias intimidation for using a hidden camera to webcast his roommate's sexual encounter with another man, apologized for what he called his "thoughtless, insensitive, immature, stupid, and childish choices." Ravi's gay roommate, Tyler Clementi, committed suicide after learning of what Ravi had done. Ravi has been sentenced to 30 days in jail, and is set to surrender Thursday. [CNN]
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9. FOLK LEGEND DOC WATSON DIES
Doc Watson, a Grammy Award-winning folk musician, has passed away at the age of 89. His flat-picking style of guitar playing helped expand the role of the acoustic guitar in folk, bluegrass, and country music. [Bloomberg]
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10. BOURDAIN GETS CNN SHOW
Culinary rogue Anthony Bourdain is set to host a new weekend show on CNN that will focus on food and travel, as the news network looks to create weekend programming distinct from its weekday offerings. Bourdain has previously done shows for the Food Network and the Travel Channel and served as a judge on Bravo's Top Chef. [Associated Press]

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