In a seismic shift on one of the most profound — and profoundly contentious — Roman Catholic teachings, the Vatican said Tuesday that condoms are the lesser of two evils when used to curb the spread of AIDS, even if their use prevents a pregnancy. The position was an acknowledgment that the church's long-held anti-birth control stance against condoms doesn't justify putting lives at risk.
INCHEON, South Korea (AP) — North and South Korea exchanged artillery fire Tuesday along their disputed frontier, raising tensions between the rivals to their highest level in more than a decade. The communist nation warned of more military strikes if the South encroaches on the maritime border by "even 0.001 millimeter." The skirmish began when North Korea warned the South to halt military drills near their sea border, according to South Korean officials. When Seoul refused and began firing artillery into disputed waters — but away from the North Korean shore — the North retaliated by shelling the small island of Yeonpyeong, which houses South Korean military installations and a small civilian population.
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — They've been called molesters, threatened with physical violence and ordered not to touch "my junk." One woman headbutted a TSA officer who was searching her laptop. Other screeners report being punched, kicked and shoved during patdowns. However, security officers performing increasingly invasive searches say they want Thanksgiving travelers to know they're just doing their jobs, and trying to save lives. "Even though the agents face some considerable stress from passengers, they are determined to keep the traveling public safe," said Sari Koshetz, a TSA spokeswoman in Tampa on Tuesday.
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A jawbone found on an Aruba beach does not belong to missing Alabama teenager Natalee Holloway, prosecutors in the Dutch Caribbean island said Tuesday. The jawbone is human, though it is unclear who it belongs to. Dutch investigators compared the lone tooth on the bone with dental records supplied by Holloway's family and "it can be ruled out that the bone fragment came from Natalee Holloway," the prosecutors said.
LONDON (AP) — Britain will impose a tough annual limit on the number of non-Europeans allowed to work in the U.K. and slash visas for overseas students as it seeks to dramatically reduce immigration, the government said Tuesday. Home Secretary Theresa May told the House of Commons that the number of non-EU nationals permitted to work in the U.K. from April 2011 will be capped at about 22,000 — a reduction of about one-fifth from 2009.
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — In a murder-for-hire case worthy of a Dan Brown novel, a Roman Catholic priest has been arrested on charges that he solicited a hit man to kill a teenager who had accused him of sexual abuse. Authorities said John Fiala first offered the job to a neighbor, who blew the whistle and helped police arrange a sting. They said Fiala got as far as negotiating a $5,000 price for the slaying before investigators moved in.
NEW YORK (AP) — A New York University arts professor might not have eyes on the back of his head, but he's coming pretty close. Wafaa Bilal, a visual artist widely recognized for his interactive and performance pieces, had a small digital camera implanted in the back of his head — all in the name of art. Bilal said Tuesday that he underwent the procedure for an art project that was commissioned by a new museum in Doha, Qatar, in the Arab Gulf.
In the nearly 30 years the AIDS epidemic has raged, there has never been a more hopeful day than this. Three striking developments took place Tuesday: U.N. officials said new HIV cases are dropping dramatically worldwide. A study showed that a daily pill already on pharmacy shelves could help prevent new infections in gay men. And the pope opened the way for the use of condoms to prevent AIDS. "I don't know of a day where so many pieces are beginning to align for HIV prevention and treatment, and frankly with a view to ending the epidemic," said Mitchell Warren, head of the AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition, a nonprofit group that works on HIV prevention research. "This is an incredibly opportune moment and we have to be sure we seize it."
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Is a voting bloc of Sarah Palin supporters enough to give daughter Bristol the mirrorball trophy on "Dancing With the Stars"? Will Jennifer Grey's perfect score and superior dance skills land her the win? And how will voting issues at ABC Monday night affect the outcome? "Dancing" producers said Tuesday that "a record amount of activity" overloaded its online and telephone voting systems after Monday's episode.
NEW YORK (AP) — Terry Collins stood at the podium, explaining in rapid-fire patter how the New York Mets can win it all next year. It was as if he were a carnival barker trying to convince a skeptical crowd that what it was about to see was indeed real. His energy and enthusiasm were clear. "I forgot to mention optimist is another quality," new general manager Sandy Alderson said.