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Chinese Former Official Sentenced to Life Term


Zhou Yongkang, China's former security chief, attends his sentencing at a court in Tianjin, China.

Zhou Yongkang, China's former security chief, attends his sentencing at a court in Tianjin, China.

Chinese state media say former security chief Zhou Yongkang has been sentenced to life in prison after a secret trial. The Xinhua news agency reported Thursday that a court in Tianjin found him guilty of corruption, abuse of power and disclosing government secrets.

Mr. Zhou has not been seen in public since October 2013. He was not charged with a crime until April of this year. Xinhua said the trial took place on May 22 and that the former official admitted guilt. It also said that he does not plan to appeal the ruling.

There was no public access to the trial and the ruling took many by surprise.

Power urges Ukrainians to push for reforms

The U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations has urged the Ukrainian people to move from demanding change to helping to create it.

Samantha Power spoke to a large crowd gathered at a cultural center in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, Thursday. She expressed U.S. support for the country’s government and reforms demanded by society.

She said the work is far from complete although some progress has been made. She said far too many reforms have been written but not carried out.

She urged Ukrainians to remain engaged.

More US bases for Iraq possible

The U.S. military chief said Thursday the United States is considering several locations to train and advise Iraqi troops. The U.S. already is preparing to open a new base in Anbar province with 450 American military advisers.

General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff, spoke to reporters in Naples, Italy where he is meeting with U.S. commanders.

The U.S. plans to deploy the new advisers within six to eight weeks to help train Iraqi ground troops.

ISS crew returns to Earth

A three-person crew has returned to Earth after more than six months on the International Space Station.

A Soyuz space capsule carrying the crew landed in Kazakhstan Thursday. The three crew members represent the Russian, U.S. and European Space agencies.

They arrived at the International Space Station on November 24, 2014 and started research work. NASA says they orbited almost 84 million miles during their 199 days on the station.

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Words in the News

disclose – v. to make (something) known to the public

engaged – adj. busy with some activity

orbit – v. the curved path that something (such as a moon or satellite) follows as it goes around something else (such as a planet)

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