IRAQI TROOPS CLASH WITH ISIS OUTSIDE CITY OF TIKRIT IN THE SECOND DAY OF A LARGE-SCALE OFFENSIVE TO RETAKE THE CITY *

OP INVOLVES NEARLY 30,000 IRAQI TROOPS AND MILITIA MEMBERS *

SADDAM HUSSEIN'S HOMETOWN OF TIKRIT, ABOUT 80 MILES NORTH OF BAGHDAD, WAS CAPTURED BY ISIS LAST SUMMER *

RETAKING THE CITY IS CONSIDERED CRUCIAL TO OUSTING ISIS FROM CITY OF MOSUL, FARTHER NORTH *

CHILE'S VILLARICA VOLCANO ERUPTS, PROMPTING EVACUATION OF THOUSANDS OF NEARBY RESIDENTS *

THE 9,000-FT VOLCANO IN CHILE'S CENTRAL VALLEY SITS ABOVE THE CITY OF PUCON, ABOUT 400 MILES SOUTH OF THE CAPITAL SANTIAGO *

VILLARICA'S LAST MAJOR ERUPTION OCCURRED IN 1984...CHILE HAS MORE THAN 2,000 VOLCANOES IN THE ANDES, 90 OF WHICH REMAIN ACTIVE *

PRES OBAMA TO HOLD A VIDEO CONFERENCE WITH EUROPEAN LEADERS TO DISCUSS UKRAINE SITUATION AND OTHER GLOBAL SECURITY ISSUES *

LEADERS TAKING PART INCLUDE BRITISH PM DAVID CAMERON, FRENCH PRES FRANCOIS HOLLANDE AND GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL *

FIGHTING BETWEEN RUSSIAN-BACKED SEPARATISTS AND GOVT FORCES HAS DECREASED IN EASTERN UKRAINE SINCE IMPLEMENTATION OF LAST MONTH'S CEASE-FIRE, BUT SPORADIC CLASHES CONTINUE *

U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS OFFICE SAYS MORE THAN 6,000 PEOPLE HAVE BEEN KILLED SINCE FIGHTING BEGAN LAST APRIL *

CAMBODIA'S U.N.-BACKED KHMER ROUGE TRIBUNAL CHARGES TWO MORE SUSPECTS, RISKING A ROW WITH THE COUNTRY'S PM, WHO HAS WARNED AGAINST ADDING NEW DEFENDANTS *

FMR NAVY CHIEF MEAS MUTH AND FMR DISTRICT CMDR IM CHAEM WERE CHARGED IN ABSENTIA WITH HOMICIDE AND CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY, INCLUDING ENSLAVEMENT AND PERSECUTION ON POLITICAL AND ETHNIC GROUNDS *

AN ESTIMATED 1.7 MIL PEOPLE DIED DURING THE COMMUNIST REGIME'S 1975-79 RULE *

HUNDREDS REPORTEDLY KILLED AS TROOPS FROM CHAD SEIZE NIGERIAN TOWN OF DIKWA FROM BOKO HARAM TERRORISTS *

U.N. SAYS 16,000 ESCAPED THE FIGHTING BY FLEEING TO NEIGHBORING CAMEROON *

MEANWHILE, NIGERIAN SOLDIERS FOUGHT OFF A SEPARATE ASSAULT ON TOWN OF KONDUGA, WHICH HAS BEEN ATTACKED SEVERAL TIMES BECAUSE OF IT'S LOCATION JUST 25 MILES FROM MAIDUGURI, NE NIGERIA'S BIGGEST CITY AND THE BIRTHPLACE OF BOKO HARAM *

FMR MD GOV MARTIN O'MALLEY (D) SAYS HE WILL NOT RUN FOR SEAT OF RETIRING SEN BARBARA MIKULSKI (D-MD), LEAVING OPEN POSSIBILITY HE WILL SEEK 2016 DEM PRES NOMINATION *

MIKULSKI, THE LONGEST-SERVING FEMALE SENATOR IN U.S. HISTORY, ANNOUNCED PLANS TO RETIRE ON MON *

O'MALLEY HAS SAID HE WILL MAKE A FINAL DECISION ON A PRES RUN THIS SPRING, ALTHOUGH HE HAS EVENTS PLANNED IN EARLY-PRIMARY STATES OF NH AND IA *

THOUSANDS LINE UP TO PAY RESPECTS TO SLAIN RUSSIAN OPPOSITION LEADER BORIS NEMTSOV *

AFTER THE VIEWING AT MOSCOW'S SAKHAROV CENTER, NEMTSOV WAS BURIED IN A CEMETERY ON THE WESTERN EDGE OF THE CITY *

AN OUTSPOKEN CRITIC OF PRES VLADIMIR PUTIN, NEMTSOV WAS GUNNED DOWN NEAR THE KREMLIN ON FRI...NO SUSPECTS HAVE BEEN ARRESTED *

LIBERIAN PRES ELLEN JOHNSON SIRLEAF CALLS FOR AN EBOLA "MARSHALL PLAN" TO HELP REBUILD ECONOMIES OF COUNTRIES HIT HARDEST BY VIRUS *

AT AN INTL CONFERENCE IN BRUSSELS, SIRLEAF SAID RESTORING ECONOMIC GROWTH IN LIBERIA, GUINEA AND SIERRA LEONE WILL BE A LONG-TERM AND COSTLY TASK *

NUMBER OF EBOLA DEATHS IS APPROACHING 10,000, ALTHOUGH THE RATE OF NEW CASES HAS DROPPED TO ABOUT 100 PER WEEK, DOWN FROM 800-900 AT HEIGHT OF OUTBREAK IN AUG AND SEPT *

U.S. ARCHEOLOGISTS DISCOVER 3,000-YR-OLD TOMB IN EGYPT BELONGING TO A NOBLEMAN WHO GUARDED THE TEMPLE OF THE ANCIENT DEITY AMUN *

EGYPT'S MINISTRY OF ANTIQUITIES SAYS TOMB NEAR THE SOUTHERN CITY OF LUXOR DATES BACK TO THE NEW KINGDOM OF THE 18TH DYNASTY *

ANTIQUITIES MIN SAYS TOMB CONTAINS "STUNNING SCENES WITH BRIGHT COLORS" PAINTED ON THE WALLS *