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   The strong line of thunderstorms that sped through the St. Louis area Thursday afternoon spawned a tornado in central Illinois, about 50 west of Springfield.  

   Emergency Services officials in Cass and Morgan Counties had reported the twister just before 3 p.m.

   Morgan County Sheriff Randy Duvendack says the storm caused no damage.    

Friday, 21 February 2014 02:54
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   KIEV, Ukraine (AP) - Ukraine's presidency says negotiations with opposition leaders, the European Union and Russia have produced an "agreement to settle the crisis," but released no details.
   A statement on the presidency's website says a document will be signed at noon local time (1000 GMT, 5 A.M. EST) Friday.
   However, Germany's Foreign Ministry says on Twitter that negotiators had taken a break "to continue talks later on."
   Street battles between protesters and police in Kiev have left more than 100 people dead this week, including some shot by snipers Thursday. The Health Ministry says nearly 600 people have been wounded and 369 hospitalized.
   A shaky peace reigned in the protest camps in downtown Kiev Friday morning. No visible police forces remained on the square, and volunteers walked freely to the protest camps to donate food and other packages.
 
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   Ameren crews are still working to repair downed wires and snapped utility poles that cut the power for tens of thousands of customers on both sides of the river.  

   Ameren opened its Emergency Operation Center at 5 p.m. Thursday in order to coordinate the utility's response to wind-related power outages. At the peak, the untility reported more than 17,000 metro-east customers were without power and more than 43,000 Missouri customers were in the dark.  

   Thousands in north St. Louis county could be waiting another day or more before their power is restored after strong winds brought down trees and snapped power poles.  

   At 1:40 a.m. Friday, Ameren was reporting just over 13,000 St. Louis area customers in Missouri were still without power.  The vast majority of them were in St. Louis County.  Just over 1,400 remained in the dark in Illinois.

Friday, 21 February 2014 01:37
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri senators have passed legislation that would send federal agents to jail for enforcing some federal gun laws.
 
The Senate voted 23-10 on Thursday to send the measure to the House. It would declare any federal law considered by the state to infringe on gun rights to be null and void in Missouri. Federal agents enforcing those laws could face up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine.
 
Courts have consistently ruled that states cannot nullify federal laws. But supporters argue the measure is necessary to protect law-abiding gun owners from intrusive federal regulations. Opponents say it wouldn't survive a court challenge.
 
Earlier this week, the Senate stripped a provision from the legislation requiring gun thefts to be reported within 72 hours.
Thursday, 20 February 2014 16:25
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