Italy

Europe aid will help offset migrant costs

The European Commission announced an increase in funds to help Italy deal with an influx of migrants fleeing Africa and the Middle East by boat amid a deteriorating political situation in Libya. It pledged $15.6 million to assist with unaccompanied minors and more funding to extend Europe's border control operation in the Mediterranean.

North Korea

Leader signals more purges are possible

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has signaled that he may further purge top officials, ordering senior Workers' Party members to carry out a "campaign against abuse of power, bureaucratism, irregularities and corruption." The party adopted the resolution at a meeting to review his three years in power. The statement called on members to implement the behests of his late father Kim Jong-il, "unconditionally carrying out them to the last without an inch of deflection and a single step of concession." The "Supreme Leader" last month executed a general who disagreed with him and in 2013 ordered the killing of his uncle and one-time deputy.

Venezuela

President announces the arrest of a rival

President Nicolas Maduro said that Caracas Mayor Antonio Ledezma, a Maduro opponent, had been arrested for "conspiring against the peace and stability of the nation." Maduro, in a televised address, said Ledezma had been arrested on order of the attorney general. Ledzema had been stripped of most of his budget and power.

Washington, D.C.

Postponement of speech requested

Twenty-three House Democrats signed a letter calling on Speaker John Boehner to postpone Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's March 3 address to a joint session of Congress. The lawmakers argue that the timing of the planned visit — two weeks before the Middle East nation's elections — betrays a GOP political agenda.

Massachusetts

Court asked to move bombing trial

A lawyer for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev pressed a federal appeals court to move his trial out of Massachusetts, citing "saturation publicity" about the case. In arguments before the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, federal public defender Judith Mizner said the local jury pool cannot be counted on to be impartial.

Nevada

Arrest made in road rage incident

A 19-year-old man suspected of fatally shooting a Las Vegas woman after an apparent road rage incident last week was arrested. Erich Nowsch was arrested after a standoff with Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, said spokesman Capt. Chris Tomaino. Police said they were searching for a second suspect. The standoff began southwest of downtown Las Vegas hours after an arrest warrant was issued for Nowsch. Robert Meyers, husband of victim Tammy Meyers, was at the scene.

California

San Francisco will get a new area code

Eight million phone numbers aren't enough, so the 415 area code, which once stretched from the middle of California to the Oregon border, will be overlaid beginning on Saturday. The 415 area code, which still covers San Francisco and parts of Marin and San Mateo counties, is being joined by the 628. The new number will be overlaid into the existing 415 area, which means next-door neighbors will soon have different area codes.

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