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Egypt

Morsi offers nothing to defuse fatal crisis

An angry Mohammed Morsi refused yesterday to call off a referendum on a disputed constitution that has sparked Egypt’s worst political crisis in two years, drawing chants of “topple the regime!” from protesters who waved their shoes in contempt.

The Egyptian president’s uncompromising stand came a night after thousands of his supporters and opponents fought pitched battles outside his Cairo palace, leaving at least six dead and 700 injured.

Speaking in a nationally televised address, Morsi accused some in the opposition of serving remnants of Hosni Mubarak’s authoritarian regime and vowed he would never tolerate anyone working for the overthrow of his “legitimate” government.

Pennsylvania

Penn State president admonishes sorority

Penn State president Rodney Erickson admonished students who wore costumes and held offensive signs in photographs circulated on the internet, but said in a campus-wide letter yesterday that the school won’t pursue disciplinary action.

The letter didn’t specifically reference the photos or name the Chi Omega sorority, which has apologized. But Erickson said it became clear in recent days that some students “celebrated Halloween in costumes that offended others” and acted contrary to university values.

One sign in the photo of sorority sisters says “will mow lawn for weed + beer.” Two women holding signs are wearing fake mustaches. Others in the photo wore sombreros.

Iowa

Official: Bodies in woods are 2 cousins

Northeast Iowa residents who have been holding out hope that two young cousins missing for five months might be home for Christmas were grappling yesterday with the news that hunters likely found the girls’ bodies.

Autopsies by the state medical examiner’s office were still under way, but the remains are believed to be those of Lyric Cook and Elizabeth Collins, who were 10 and 8 when they did not come back from riding their bikes July 13.

A vigil for the girls was planned for last night. The community recently set up a Christmas tree to honor the girls, hoping they would be home for Christmas, said Tammy Marvets, whose husband, Randy, came up with the idea. She said her 7-year-old son went to school with Elizabeth and rode the same bus.

The Associated Press

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