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In our news wrap Wednesday, Turkey announced plans to release nearly 40,000 prison inmates to clear space for a similar number detained over last month’s coup attempt. Depending on their remaining sentences, prisoners may qualify for early release, although the most violent criminals will not be eligible. Also, the White House pledged $17 million to help combat opioid and heroin abuse.
In the day's other news: Turkey announced plans to release some 38,000 prison inmates to make room for people rounded up after last month's failed coup attempt. Prisoners with two years or less left on their sentence will qualify for early release, but the most violent criminals will not be eligible.
Turkish authorities have detained roughly 40,000 people linked to the coup plot. About half of them face formal charges.
Back in this country, the White House pledged $17 million to help fight opioid and heroin abuse. It will help law enforcement agencies halt drug trafficking and prevent overdoses. But the Obama administration urged Congress to do more. The president signed a bill aimed at addressing the opioid crisis last month. But it fell far short of the more than $1 billion that his administration requested to fight the epidemic.
The nation's commuter and freight trains have shown little progress in installing safety technologies mandated by Congress. That's according to a new report out today from the Federal Railroad Administration.
The safety system uses GPS and radio frequencies to automatically stop or slow trains, preventing collisions and derailments. It was supposed to be installed by 2015. But Congress had to extend that deadline until at least 2018 after projects were delayed by a lack of funding and technical obstacles.
Technology firm Cisco announced that it will lay off up to 5,500 employees, roughly 7 percent of its work force. The world's largest manufacturer of computer networking equipment has seen a slowing demand for its products. But it's tried to shift its focus into software and cloud-based networking in the face of growing competition.
On Wall Street, stocks managed modest gains after minutes from the Federal Reserve's last policy meeting signaled it could raise interest rates soon. The Dow Jones industrial average gained nearly 22 points to close above 18573. The Nasdaq rose a point, and the S&P 500 added four points.
And controversy continues to brew behind the scenes at the Olympic Games. Brazilian police arrested Europe's top Olympic official, Patrick Hickey of Ireland, at his Rio hotel room, and charged him with ticket scalping.
Meanwhile, a Brazilian judge ordered American swimmers Ryan Lochte and Jimmy Feigen to stay in Rio, claiming they gave conflicting accounts of being robbed at gunpoint last week. Lochte has already returned to the U.S., but Feigen is still in Brazil.
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