10 things you need to know today: February 9, 2015

Sam Smith wins best new artist award.
(Image credit: (Photo by John Shearer/Invision/AP))

1. Kerry rules out extending Iran nuclear talks

Secretary of State John F. Kerry ruled out extending nuclear negotiations with Iran if a deal is not reached by a March. Kerry said it would be "impossible" to push back the deadline for a third time if there is no agreement on fundamental principles on curbing Iran's nuclear program. The U.S., Israel, and other nations fear Tehran is rushing toward building nuclear weapons, although Tehran insists the program is peaceful and wants the international community to lift sanctions.

The Washington Post

2. Beyonce, Sam Smith, and Beck win big at the Grammys

Beyonce made history Sunday by winning three Grammys, including best R&B song and performance for Drunk in Love. The wins brought her lifetime total to 20, vaulting her past Aretha Franklin to become the female performer with the second highest Grammy total ever, after Allison Krauss' 27. Another big winner was British pop singer Sam Smith, who won for best new artist and best pop vocal album — In the Lonely Hour. Beck took two top awards — album of the year and best rock album for Morning Phase.

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USA Today

3. Third snowstorm hits Northeast

Heavy snow hit parts of the Northeast overnight, raising the possibility of up to 24 inches more snow in parts of Massachusetts already covered by record accumulation from back-to-back blizzards in the last two weeks. Schools will be closed in Boston and many other parts of the region on Monday and Tuesday. Upstate New York could get up to 18 inches. Winter storm warnings were in effect in upstate New York, the Boston area, and northern parts of Connecticut and Rhode Island.


4. Greek prime minister details plan to dismantle austerity program

Greece's new hard-left prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, on Sunday ruled out extending his country's bailout and unveiled his plan to unwind the "cruel" austerity program that Greece's European partners demanded. "The bailout failed," Tsipras, 40, said in his first big speech to parliament since taking power in January. He named a list of reforms he plans to reverse, including a property tax and mass layoffs. He also said he would hike the minimum wage to pre-crisis levels.


5. Rioting kills 25 at soccer game in Egypt

Egypt's Cabinet late Sunday indefinitely suspended the national soccer league after at least 25 people were killed in a riot at a soccer stadium outside Cairo. Hard-core fans known as Ultras have clashed with police since participating in the Arab Spring revolt four years ago. Fans were banned from soccer matches — forcing teams to play in nearly empty stadiums — after a brawl killed 70 people at a 2012 game in Port Said. Sunday's violence broke out in suburban Cairo after authorities began easing the ban by selling just 5,000 tickets to the public.

The Associated Press The New York Times

6. Man accused of crashing pickup through Coast Guard station gate

A 34-year-old man allegedly drove a pickup truck through the gate of a Coast Guard station in western Michigan on Sunday. The man also was accused of assaulting Coast Guard personnel before they managed to subdue him. Before the incident, someone telephoned a threat saying a man with a bomb in his truck was going to attack the station. Police did not release the man's name, and said they were not sure whether he was acting alone.

The Associated Press

7. Alabama Supreme Court chief justice orders ban on same-sex marriage licenses

Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, who once defied a federal order to remove a Ten Commandments monument, ordered the state's probate judges not to issue same-sex couples marriage licenses on Monday, the day gay marriage becomes legal in Alabama. Moore wrote on Sunday that the state's 68 probate judges could not "issue or recognize a marriage license that is inconsistent" with the Alabama Constitution or state law, openly defying a district court ruled the state's gay marriage ban unconstitutional.

The New York Times

8. Al Jazeera journalists to get new trial in Egypt

Two Al Jazeera journalists imprisoned for allegedly aiding the banned Muslim Brotherhood will get a new trial, a lawyer for one of the men said Sunday. The proceedings are scheduled to begin Feb. 12. Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed were arrested in December 2013 and sentenced to seven and 10 years in jail, respectively. A third reporter, Peter Greste was sentenced along with them, but Egypt unexpectedly released him last weekend and deported him to his native Australia.


9. Golfer Billy Casper dies at 83

Golf great Billy Casper has died of a heart attack. He was 83. Casper was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1978, 22 years after he joined the PGA tour full-time. He won 51 PGA Tour titles, ranking him seventh on the all time PGA victory list. His wins included three major championships, and in a remarkable stretch from 1958 through 1968 he was twice the No. 1 money winner, and only finished outside the top four once.

Napa Valley Register

10. Obama, in Grammys video, calls for ending violence against women

President Obama appeared via video in Sunday's 57th Annual Grammy Awards telecast and called for an end to violence against women. "It's not OK, and it has to stop," Obama said. He noted that nearly 1 in 5 women in America has been a victim of rape or attempted rape, and more than 1 in 4 women has endured some form of domestic violence. Obama called on musical artists to use their "unique power" to "change minds and attitudes, to get us thinking and talking about what matters."

The Times-Picayune

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