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Top eight today

Top eight stories for today including the leader of the Islamic State group was killed during a U.S. special forces raid in northwestern Syria; Poland’s president is proposing to do away with a controversial court disciplinary chamber; California lawmakers want to boost struggling local newspapers with a new taxpayer-funded grant program, and more.

National

Leader of Islamic State group killed in US raid of house on Syria-Turkey border

Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi, who has led the Islamic State group for over two years, was killed early Thursday during a U.S. special forces raid in northwestern Syria, President Joe Biden announced this morning.

People inspect a destroyed house following an operation by the U.S. military in the Syrian village of Atmeh, in Idlib province, Syria, Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022. (AP Photo/Ghaith Alsayed)

Federal gas vapor rules apply to border gas station, appeals court says

A duty-free store located on the U.S.-Canada border must comply with federal vapor volatility requirements even though the gas it sells never enters domestic commerce, the Sixth Circuit ruled Thursday.

(Skitterphoto/Pixabay via Courthouse News)

Regional

Ex-Chicago cop convicted of murdering Black teen released from prison early

White former Chicago cop Jason Van Dyke was released from Illinois state prison Thursday morning after serving just over three years for the murder of Black teenager Laquan McDonald in 2014.

In this Jan. 18, 2019, file photo, former Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke, left, attends his sentencing hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building in Chicago, for the 2014 shooting of Laquan McDonald. (Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune via AP, Pool, File)

California lawmakers want $50 million to prop up local news

Looking to cure “news deserts” through a $50 million infusion, a group of California lawmakers want to boost struggling local newspapers with a new taxpayer-funded grant program.

(Image by Pexels from Pixabay via Courthouse News)

Arizona Republicans prime abortion bill ahead of historic Supreme Court decision

An Arizona Senate committee voted Thursday to advance an abortion bill that would shorten the elective period of abortion to 15 weeks amid Supreme Court deliberations in overturning Roe v. Wade.

(Photo by RODNAE Productions from Pexels via Courthouse News)

International

Poland hints at backing down in rule-of-law fight with Brussels

After months of an escalating fight between Poland and the European Union over the rule of law, Polish President Andrzej Duda on Thursday said he will file a bill to do away with a controversial disciplinary chamber his government set up in the Polish Supreme Court.

Police stand outside the Supreme Court in Warsaw, Poland, on May 6, 2021, while the court’s disciplinary chamber examines the case of a judge. (Czarek Sokolowski/AP)

Independent union wins historic vote at GM plant in Mexico

After 41 hours of voting and four more of counting, a Mexican independent autoworkers union claimed victory with more than 76% of the historic vote to secure a collective bargaining agreement.

Labor organizers Alejandra Morales and Israel Cervantes of the independent union SINTTIA celebrate their landslide victory on Feb. 3, 2022. Cervantes was fired in 2019 for organizing the union of which Morales now serves as secretary general. (Cody Copeland/Courthouse News)

Rights court OKs keeping Croatian presidential files secret

A former high-level Croatian politician who wants access to secret transcripts of Franjo Tudjman, the late Croatian president who violently carved out a Croatian mini-state during the Yugoslav Wars, lost his case before the European Court of Human Rights on Thursday.

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France. (hpgruesen/Pixabay via Courthouse News)

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