1. Cuomo to Ban Fracking in New York State, Citing Health Risks
     Published by The New York Times on 2014-12-18 at 07:25:17

The governor’s administration concluded that the controversial method of extracting gas from deep underground could contaminate the state’s air and water and pose inestimable public-health risks.

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2. U.S. to Restore Full Relations With Cuba, Erasing a Last Trace of Cold War Hostility
     Published by The New York Times on 2014-12-18 at 07:32:47

The U.S. will open an embassy in Havana for the first time in more than a half century after the release of an American contractor held in prison for five years, officials said.

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4. Pakistan school siege survivors tell of terror: ‘I saw death so close’
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-17 at 00:21:49

Seven men wearing bomb vests climbed over an undefended wall and began a pitiless killing spree that left a scene of carnage Continue reading...

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5. Pope Francis celebrates 78th birthday with mass tango – in pictures
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 01:22:25

Thousands of people sang Happy Birthday and performed a mass tango in St Peter’s Square to celebrate the pope’s birthday. The Argentinian pontiff was born in the birthplace of the tango and previously admitted to being a fan of the erotic dance Contin...

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7. The US and Cuba are now on equal terms for the first time in history
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 02:38:00

Pope and envoys played acknowledged roles in healing breach, focusing on Guantanamo bay and humanitarian issues Continue reading...

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8. Obama and Raúl Castro thank pope for breakthrough in US-Cuba relations
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 01:27:34

Surprise breakthrough came after 45-minute phone call between President Obama and Raúl Castro finalised the release of US prisoner Alan GrossLive updates: Obama to announce sweeping changes to US-Cuba relationsRaúl Castro hails improved US-Cuba relation...

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9. Jews and Muslims stage New York protest for victims of police brutality
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 09:55:05

Religious groups march in solidarity against recent deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, and others at the hands of law enforcement 
 This year, when the first night of Hanukah came to Brooklyn, Jewish, Arab, and Muslim demonstrators comme...

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10. ‘There are two legal ways to kill prisoners’ – life in North Korea’s Yodok prison camp
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 09:55:05

In the late 1990s Jeong Kwang-il was accused of spying and sent to the brutal jail for political prisoners. Having fled the country in 2003, he describes his ordeal as part of a series of escapees’ memoirsI was suspected of being a spy and arrested by [...

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11. Senior cleric: Iran has knowledge to build a nuclear bomb
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 09:55:05

The Islamic republic has reached the expertise to enrich uranium not just to the 5% and 20% levels required for civilian uses but to higher levels required for a bomb, says Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami An official site belonging to the Islamic Revolutionary Gu...

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12. GP co-payment: doctors voice anger at rebate freeze and consultation times
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-18 at 09:55:05

Australian Medical Association consulted members on changes and received ‘some of the angriest emails the AMA has received over any issue in a long time’Patients will pay more to see a GP and find it harder to obtain an appointment as a result of gove...

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17. Swedish far-right leader: Jews must abandon religious identity to be Swedes
     Published by The Guardian on 2014-12-17 at 22:49:33

Jewish community leader condemns remarks by Sweden Democrats politician as ‘good old rightwing antisemitism’ Continue reading...

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18. Sony Pictures Cancels Holiday Release of ‘The Interview’ After Threats
     Published by The New York Times on 2014-12-18 at 07:18:15

Multiplex chains that control more than 19,200 screens in North America decided not to release the film, ending any prospect of a serious theatrical release.

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19. For Obama, More Audacity and Fulfillment of Languishing Promises
     Published by The New York Times on 2014-12-18 at 01:03:58

Resuming relations with Cuba fit a recent pattern of aggressiveness by the president, whose cautiousness had led some allies to accuse him of abandoning his principles.

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We track the Worlds’s leading news sites and try to find out which stories made a splash today, as based on social media shares. We are currently tracking Twitter, Reddit, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and StumbleUpon shares.

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