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Groups hope to block part of Arizona immigration law

PHOENIX -- Civil rights groups have asked a U.S. federal appeals court to prevent the most contentious part of Arizona's immigration law from taking effect.

The coalition is appealing a ruling that sunk its earlier bid to bar Arizona's police from enforcing the provision.

The opponents asked the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday for an order preventing police from enforcing a requirement that officers, while enforcing other laws, question the immigration status of those they suspect are in the country illegally.

Police have been barred from enforcing the requirement since July 2010.

But a U.S. Supreme Court decision in June upheld the provision and cleared the way for officers to enforce it.

A lower-court judge last week rejected a bid by the opponents to block the provision.

Haiti killings tied to gangs

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- A United Nations official visiting Haiti says the bulk of recent homicides in the capital are tied to gang warfare.

Ivan Simonovic of the UN's High Commissioner for Human Rights said Friday he learned about the gang connection during meetings with Haitian officials.

A recent UN report said July was the most violent month in Haiti since the January 2010 earthquake.

The UN peacekeeping force in Haiti and police recorded 134 murders that month, compared to an average of 99 murders per month from March to July.

Simonovic is spending four days in Haiti meeting with government officials and human rights advocates.

Armstrong buried at sea

WASHINGTON -- The first man to walk on the moon has been buried at sea.

NASA says Neil Armstrong's cremated remains were buried in the Atlantic Ocean on Friday during a ceremony aboard the USS Philippine Sea.

Armstrong was a navy fighter pilot before joining the space program. He died last month in Ohio at age 82. His burial follows a memorial service in Washington on Thursday.

NASA photographs show Armstrong's widow, Carol Armstrong, accepting a folded American flag during the ceremony, which NASA said included a bugler and a rifle salute.

The space agency didn't give the location of the ceremony.

Married, then jailed

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Talk about the old ball and chain.

A judge sentenced an Oklahoma man to four years in federal prison on a firearm charge -- then minutes later performed a marriage ceremony to wed the new inmate and his longtime girlfriend.

Thursday was a busy day for Larry Austin and Dustie Trojack. First they obtained their marriage licence, then Austin pleaded guilty to the firearm charge and was sentenced by Oklahoma County Judge Jerry Bass. Shortly afterward, Bass married the happy couple, who kissed before federal authorities whisked Austin away.

Austin's attorney, Scott M. Anderson, told The Oklahoman Austin had helped to raise Trojack's two sons and he didn't want to lose contact with them while he was serving time.

-- from the news services

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 15, 2012 A29

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