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10 things you need to know today: August 17, 2013
Violence rages in Egypt, a ferry carrying nearly 700 people sinks in the Philippines, and more
 
A military helicopter flies over clouds of smoke rising above Cairo Square on Aug. 16.
A military helicopter flies over clouds of smoke rising above Cairo Square on Aug. 16. REUTERS/Louafi Larbi

1. VIOLENCE CLAIMS MORE LIVES IN EGYPT
At least 60 people were killed on Friday as supporters of former President Mohamed Morsi took to the streets for a "day of rage" to protest the military-led government's crackdown on pro-Morsi forces. Some 700 people have been killed so far this week as security forces broke up protests with tear gas, bulldozers, and live ammunition. [USA Today]
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2. POLITICIANS DECRY REPORTS OF NSA VIOLATIONS
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.), and other lawmakers strongly condemned reports that the NSA overstepped its legal authority thousands of times each year since 2008 by snooping on American and foreign targets inside of the United States. [The Washington Post]
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3. FERRY CARRYING NEARLY 700 PEOPLE SINKS IN PHILIPPINES
A cargo vessel collided with a ferry carrying nearly 700 people near the Philippine port of Cebu on Friday, killing at least 31 people. It took rescuers several hours to rescue hundreds of people who jumped into the water as the ferry sank. Authorities are still searching hospitals for unaccounted survivors. [Associated Press]
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4. SOMALIA EXPERIENCES POLIO OUTBREAK
The U.N. reported that at least 105 cases of polio have been recorded in Somalia this year, which is nearly half the total number of cases reported worldwide in 2012. Treating cases of polio, which can cause paralysis, has been tough because of the country's violent political situation, including attacks from the al Qaeda-linked group al Shabab. [BBC]
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5. NEW HOME CONSTRUCTION UP 5.9 PERCENT
Construction of new homes jumped 5.9 percent in July, mostly due to a 26 percent increase in apartment and condominium construction. The number of new single-family homes built dropped 2.2 percent, indicating that higher mortgage rates are preventing Americans from buying houses. [The Wall Street Journal]
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6. ROMANIAN PRINCESS ARRESTED IN OREGON FOR RUNNING COCKFIGHTING RING
Irina Walker, the third daughter of Romania's last monarch, King Michael I, was arrested for running a cockfighting ring with her husband, John Wesley Walker, out of their ranch in northeast Oregon. Both were charged with running an illegal gambling business and unlawful animal fighting venture, which each carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. [The Oregonian]
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7. GENERAL MOTORS RECALLS 293,000 CARS DUE TO BRAKE PROBLEMS
Nearly 293,000 Chevrolet Cruze cars were recalled by General Motors on Friday due to a defect that can cause the power-assisted brakes to fail. The company claimed that the problem has caused 27 low-speed crashes but no deaths or injuries. Owners of 2011 and 2012 models of the car were advised to contact their dealers. [Los Angeles Times]
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8. REPUBLICANS VOTE TO BOYCOTT NBC AND CNN
The Republican National Committee formally voted to boycott NBC and CNN from carrying its 2016 presidential primary debates over the networks' decision to air programs about potential Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. The non-binding resolution, made at the RNC's summer meeting in Boston, called the shows "little more than extended commercials promoting former Secretary Clinton." [The Guardian]
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9. A-ROD'S INNER CIRCLE IMPLICATED OTHER PLAYERS IN DOPING SCANDAL
People closely associated with New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, currently facing a 211-game suspension, reportedly implicated Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun and Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli in the Biogenesis scandal, in which several professional baseball players have been accused of using performance enhancing drugs. [ESPN]
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10. ACTOR INJURED IN BROADWAY VERSION OF SPIDER-MAN
A 23-year-old actor got his right ankle caught in a hydraulic stage lift in the middle of a production of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. The show was canceled as the actor, Daniel Curry, was taken to a nearby hospital. The $75 million Broadway show has been plagued by injuries since it opened in 2010, including an incident where an actor fractured his skull after his harness snapped. [New York Daily News]

 
Keith Wagstaff is a staff writer at TheWeek.com covering politics and current events. He has previously written for such publications as TIME, Details, VICE, and the Village Voice.

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