Saudi Arabia

King Salman shakes up line of succession

Saudi Arabia's new monarch, King Salman, announced a major overhaul within the nation's royal family, replacing his anointed heir with his nephew and naming his own son as the second in line to the throne. Salman, 79, who took power in January, promoted his nephew Mohammed bin Nayef, 55, from deputy crown prince to crown prince. Salman named his son, Mohammed bin Salman, believed to be about 30, deputy crown prince.

Vatican City

Pope: Pay disparity is 'pure scandal'

Pope Francis said that he supports equal pay for men and women who perform the same jobs. The fact that a disparity exists, the pontiff said, is a "pure scandal." Francis' comments highlighted the church's long-standing social teachings on workers' rights, in a speech on the importance of marriage in society. In his general audience remarks, Francis asked Catholics to consider "the Christian seed of radical equality between men and women" when discussing the reasons behind declining marriage rates around the world.


Brown orders steep cuts in emissions

Gov. Jerry Brown issued an executive order dramatically ramping up California's already ambitious program aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions. Under Brown's order, by 2030, emission levels would have to be reduced by 40 percent compared with 1990. Under existing state law, emissions are supposed to be cut 80 percent over what they were in 1990 by 2050, and Brown said this interim target was essential to helping the state make investment and regulatory decisions that would assure that goal was reached.

Washington, D.C.

On radar, gyrocopter 'indistinguishable'

A small gyrocopter that flew through miles of the nation's most restricted airspace before landing at the U.S. Capitol was "indistinguishable" on radar from non-aircraft such as a flock of birds, a kite or a balloon, the head of the Federal Aviation Administration said. FAA Administrator Michael Huerta told a House committee that the slow-moving gyrocopter appeared as an "irregular symbol" on radar monitored by air traffic controllers. Huerta and other officials said the small, unidentified object did not pose an apparent threat before landing on the Capitol's West Lawn April 15.

News services