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March 5, 2013 at 12:04 PM
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Dow surges and tests record

NEW YORK, March 5 (UPI) -- The Dow Jones industrial average quickly pulsed above its all-time closing high Tuesday morning in New York, grabbing 144 plus points when only 38 was needed.

The blue-chip index, a select listing of 30 of the country's trend-setting corporations, closed at an all-time peak of 14,164.53 on Oct. 9, 2007.

On Monday, the Dow ended the day with its second highest close on record at 14,127.82 points.

The Dow was pushed Tuesday by solid gains in Asia and Europe and a report on U.S. services oriented businesses that showed growth in January, albeit at a slower pace than December.

Shortly past noon, the Dow had added 149.30 points or 1.06 percent to 14,277.12. The Standard and Poor's 500 index added 16.68 points or 1.09 percent to 1,541.88. The Nasdaq composite gained 16.68 points or 1.09 percent to 1,541.88.

Two missing as truck slips on snowy road

MENOMINIE, Wis., March 5 (UPI) -- Two people are missing after a semi-trailer slid off an snow-covered Wisconsin highway Tuesday and landed in a river, officials say.

State troopers said the truck was eastbound on Interstate 93 about 4 a.m. Tuesday when it jackknifed and slid into the Red Cedar River near Menominie, KSTP-TV in St. Paul, Minn., reported.

A dive team has been called to search for the driver and passenger.

The incident is among the first reported from a winter storm that is already threatening transportation and power supplies in 19 states as it moves across the eastern United States, ABC News reported.

Parts of North Carolina, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey are expected to get heavy snow beginning later Tuesday through Thursday after blasting portions of the Plains and Midwest, Accuweather.com reported.

The greatest potential for traffic-stopping snowfall is in eastern West Virginia and the western regions of Virginia and Maryland. The weight of the snow could be enough to break tree limbs and snap power lines.

U.S. Rep: Consulate attack probe very slow

WASHINGTON, March 5 (UPI) -- U.S. officials still lack a full understanding about who orchestrated and carried out the deadly attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya, officials said.

While investigators of the joint CIA-FBI effort have identified several people present during the terrorist attacks on the consulate in Benghazi in which Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other diplomatic employees were killed, none has been tied to the deaths with certainty, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday.

"It is going painfully slowly," said Rep. Adam B. Schiff, D-Calif., a member of the House Intelligence Committee who was briefed on the investigation. "We don't have access to all the people we'd like to have access to."

Republican congressional members have charged the White House didn't adequately anticipate or respond to the violence on Sept. 11, which delayed the confirmation of Obama's pick for CIA director, John Brennan, for several weeks. The Senate Intelligence Committee scheduled a closed-door vote Tuesday on Brennan's nomination, and the Senate is expected to confirm his appointment this week.

N. Korea threatens to nullify war truce

PYONGYANG, North Korea, March 5 (UPI) -- North Korea, citing what it said was U.S.-led moves to punish it for its recent nuclear testing, threatened Tuesday to nullify the Korean war truce.

The North also denounced joint South Korean-U.S. military exercises scheduled to begin Monday, saying if the drills are conducted, it will sever military phone links across the border with South Korea, Yonhap News Agency reported.

The "Key Resolve" program of two weeks of military exercises is expected to involve 10,000 South Korean troops and 3,500 U.S. troops.

The Korean People's Army, said it would carry out more and stronger countermeasures in response to the "hostile" policies of the United States and South Korea, an army spokesman said on North Korean state television.

North Korean leaders decided Monday to halt the work of its delegation at Panmunjom, where North and South Korean delegates typically meet for communication and negotiations, Xinhua reported.

Nobel Peace Prize nominations set record

OSLO, Norway, March 5 (UPI) -- The Norwegian Nobel Committee said it received 259 nominations for this year's Nobel Peace Prize, eclipsing last year's 241 nominations.

Among the nominees for this year's price was the youngest on record, 15-year-old Malala Yousufzai of Pakistan, who was nominated for defying the Taliban and getting shot for it, Views and News from Norway reported Tuesday.

Anyone can nominate a person or organization for the peace price, the newspaper said.

Other candidates reportedly included on the list are Myanmar's reform-minded president, Thein Sein; jailed human rights activist Ales Bjaljatski of Belarus, and Ludmila Alexejeva, leader of the Helsinki Committee in Russia, Views and News said. Bjaljatski and Alexejeva both have been nominated previously.

NRK reported U.S. Army Pfc Bradley Manning, jailed on charges of giving classified documents to whistle-blower Wikileaks, and Kurdish activist Leyla Zana also were among those nominated for the prize.

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