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Obama Avoids Calling Armenian Massacre 'Genocide'

U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday described the World War I massacre of Armenians as "terrible carnage", but avoided the term genocide, as tempers flared ahead of the 100th anniversary of the bloodshed.

Friday marks a century since the start of the massacres waged by Ottoman forces, which Armenia says killed 1.5 million people between 1915 and 1917. 

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White House Hackers were 'Russian Speakers'

Hackers who penetrated the State Department and White House computer networks in recent months were "Russian speakers," security researchers said Wednesday.

The hackers have aimed at high-profile targets including U.S. government and commercial networks as well as in Germany, South Korea and Uzbekistan, according to researchers at Kaspersky Lab, a Russian-headquartered security firm.

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White House Fence Climber Arrested

U.S. Secret Service agents arrested an intruder who scaled the White House fence late Sunday, officials said.

The individual was immediately arrested while climbing the fence on the south side of the presidential mansion, Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary said in a statement.

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Reagan Still Republicans' Reference Point for White House Seekers

Barack Obama is weak and Ronald Reagan exuded power, Republicans say. But while conservative White House hopefuls revere the 1980s president as a foreign-policy icon, oversimplifying Reaganism may mask nuances of his diplomacy.

Appreciation for the ex-president, who died in 2004, is nothing new. Buttons and posters bearing his countenance are common at conservative gatherings.

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Obama to Host Gulf Leaders in May

U.S. President Barack Obama will welcome the six leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council kingdoms in mid-May for talks on Iran's nuclear program and the conflicts in Yemen, Iraq and Syria.

The White House said the May 13 meetings at the White House and May 14 gathering at Camp David "will be an opportunity for the leaders to discuss ways to enhance their partnership and deepen security cooperation."

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Pentagon: IS Lost 25 to 30 Percent of Iraq Territory

The Islamic State group has lost control of "25 to 30" percent of the territory it holds in Iraq after coalition air strikes and an Iraqi offensive, the Pentagon said Monday.

The radical group took control of large swathes of the north and western parts of the country months ago after an offensive and the collapse of Iraqi military units.

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U.S. Downplays Iran Warning on Nuclear Deal

The White House on Friday played down warnings by Iran's leaders that they may not sign a final deal of a framework accord on their nuclear program with international negotiators.

"The test of whether or not that framework can be memorialized in a deal is not going to be a comment made... by a particular Iranian leader," senior White House advisor Ben Rhodes said.

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Clinton to Launch White House Bid on Sunday

Former U.S. secretary of state Hillary Clinton looks set to officially launch her 2016 presidential bid at the weekend -- a long-anticipated second run at the White House.

The announcement -- expected to come Sunday, according to reports citing sources in her campaign team -- would make the 67-year-old the clear Democratic frontrunner in the race to succeed Barack Obama.

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Venezuela Wants U.S. to Revoke Decree Calling Caracas a Threat

Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez said Wednesday she pressed a visiting U.S. diplomat over Caracas' wish to have Washington revoke an order calling Venezuela a national security threat.

Rodriguez, who met with Thomas Shannon, top counselor in the State Department, urged Shannon to have Obama revoke the order. 

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White House Will Not Name Those behind 2014 Cyber Attack

The White House said Wednesday it would not name those behind a cyber attack on official Washington targets last October, after reports blamed Russia.

"Our investigators have concluded that it's not in our best interest to identify the entity that may be responsible for this specific activity of concern," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said.

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