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In our news wrap Monday, six Minnesota men will face trial for allegedly trying to join the Islamic State. The U.S. Attorney for Minnesota said the six had Somali backgrounds and had been conspiring for 10 months. Also, the U.S. Navy stepped up efforts to block Iran from sending weapons to Shiite rebels in Yemen. Tehran has denied aiding the rebels.
The European Union came under intense pressure today to address the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean. Estimates of the dead ranged from 700 to more than 900 in a single sinking over the weekend. E.U. leaders now plan an emergency summit on Thursday. We will have a full report after the news summary.
Six Minnesota men will face trial for allegedly trying to join the Islamic State group. They were arrested yesterday on terror charges in Minneapolis and San Diego.
In Saint Paul today, the U.S. attorney for Minnesota, Andrew Luger, said the six were of Somali backgrounds and had been conspiring for 10 months. ANDREW LUGER, U.S. Attorney, District of Minnesota: Nothing stopped these defendants from pursuing their goal. They never stopped plotting another way to get to Syria to join ISIL. They were not confused young men. They were not easily influenced. These are focused men who are intent on joining a terrorist organization by any means possible.
Federal prosecutors say the Islamic State group began recruiting in the Somali community in Minnesota in 2013. JUDY WOODRUFF: The U.S. Navy stepped up efforts today to block Iran from sending weapons to Shiite rebels in Yemen. The aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt moved to join other American warships off the Yemeni coast. The U.S. effort could involve boarding Iranian vessels. Tehran has denied aiding the rebels, but White House spokesman Josh Earnest argued otherwise.
JOSH EARNEST, White House Press Secretary:
We have seen evidence that the Iranians are supplying weapons and other forms of support to the Houthis in Yemen. That's the kind of support that will only contribute to greater violence in that country, a country that's already been racked by too much violence.
The U.S. Naval move came as the biggest airstrikes yet by Saudi Arabia and its allies shook Sanaa, Yemen's capital city. Local reports said at least 25 people were killed and nearly 400 wounded. The attacks touched off huge explosions at a missile base held by the Shiite rebels. Shockwaves from the blast flattened homes and shattered windows.
Meanwhile, across the Gulf of Aden, a bomb destroyed a United Nations van in Somalia, killing seven people, including four workers with the U.N. Children's Agency. Al-Shabaab militants claimed responsibility. Police said they planted the bomb under one of the van's seats and triggered it by remote control.
Iran has charged the Washington post's Tehran bureau chief with espionage and three other crimes. Jason Rezaian holds dual Iranian-American citizenship. He's been held nine months. His lawyer confirmed the charges against him today. They also include collaboration with hostile governments and anti-Iranian propaganda.
The U.S. and the Philippines launched their largest joint military exercises in 15 years today. The annual war games came amid concern over China's aggressive moves to build bases in the disputed South China Sea. More than 11,500 American and Filipino military personnel are taking part.
Back in this country, Baltimore officials faced a storm of questions over the death of a black suspect whose spine was nearly severed in police custody; 25-year-old Freddie Gray was arrested April 12 for carrying a switchblade. He died yesterday. It's still not clear how Gray was hurt, but the mayor promised a thorough investigation.
STEPHANIE RAWLINGS-BLAKE (D), Mayor of Baltimore, Maryland: I understand the community's frustration. I understand it because I'm frustrated. I'm angry that we are here again, that we have had to tell another mother that their child is dead. I'm frustrated that — not only that we're here, but that we don't have all of the answers.
Also today, a white former police officer in suburban Detroit was charged with assault in a January incident. Last month, a video surfaced that showed him repeatedly punching a black man during a traffic stop.
The 119th Boston Marathon was run today amid heavy security two years after a fatal bombing at the finish line. The winner that year, Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia, won again today. The winner on the women's side was Caroline Rotich of Kenya.
The 2015 Pulitzer Prizes are out, and The Post and Courier newspaper of Charleston, South Carolina, has won the Public Service Award for a series on domestic violence. Other winners include The New York Times for coverage of the Ebola crisis, The Saint Louis Post-Dispatch for photographs of the riots in Ferguson, Missouri, and The Washington Post for revelations about security lapses by the Secret Service.
In the arts, Anthony Doerr's World War II novel "All the Light We Cannot See" won the prize for fiction.
And Wall Street had a big Monday, thanks to strong corporate earnings. The Dow Jones industrial average gained more than 200 points to close back above 18000. The Nasdaq rose 63 points, and the S&P added 19.
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