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iStock/Thinkstock(ISTANBUL) — Two explosions outside a soccer stadium in Istanbul, Turkey, have left at least 29 dead and about 166 wounded, Turkey’s health ministry said.

The blasts happened about two hours after a match between top Turkish soccer teams Besiktas and Bursapor, according to BBC.

Police buses near the Vodafone Arena were reportedly targeted in the attack.

No terror group has yet claimed responsibility for the explosions.

The U.S. embassy in Ankara, Turkey, condemned the attack on Twitter.

“Our hearts and prayers are with the people of #Istanbul tonight,” said one tweet Saturday.

“We condemn tonight’s cowardly attack, and salute the courage of the Turkish people as we stand with them against terror,” the embassy said in another tweet.

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iStock/Thinkstock(ISTANBUL) — Two explosions outside a soccer stadium in Istanbul, Turkey, have left at least 15 dead and 69 wounded, Turkey’s health ministry said.

The blasts happened about two hours after a match between top Turkish soccer teams Besiktas and Bursapor, according to BBC.

Police buses near the Vodafone Arena were reportedly targeted in the attack.

No terror group has yet claimed responsibility for the explosions.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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iStock/Thinkstock(ISTANBUL) — Two explosions outside a soccer stadium in Istanbul, Turkey, have left at least 20 wounded, Turkey’s interior minister said.

The blasts happened about two hours after a match between top Turkish soccer teams Besiktas and Bursapor, according to BBC.

Police buses near the Vodafone Arena were reportedly targeted in the attack.

No terror group has yet claimed responsibility for the explosions.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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iStock/Thinkstock(HERMINIE, Pa.) — A kindhearted stranger has paid off more than $900 in overdue lunch balances for students at an elementary school in Herminie, Pennsylvania.

“We’re calling him our ‘Secret Santa,'” said Amy Larcinese, principal of HW Good Elementary School.

Larcinese told ABC News Friday that a “gentleman who did not want to be identified” made the “generous offer” over the phone this past Monday. On Wednesday, Dec. 7, he came in with a check, she said.

“We were stunned and so thankful,” she said. “We have a lot of families in really hard times right now, and he is making such a difference in their lives.”

Larcinese said that her school has about 300 students from kindergarten through fourth grade and that the “Secret Santa” helped 44 of those children.

The principal added that the mystery man has also offered to help one family that is struggling significantly more than others by paying for that child’s meals for the rest of the month.

Larcinese said that the parents of the 44 students the “Secret Santa” helped were notified that their balances were cleared on Thursday.

“A few families contacted us, saying how they were so appreciative of the help especially given the holidays,” she said. “Sometimes, all we see are the sad things going on in the world, so it’s really, really nice to know there are great people out there would give up their things to help others.”

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ABCNews.com(TOKYO) — A Japanese park is celebrating Christmas in a unique way — with Santa-costumed penguins.

Matsue Vogel Park, an aviary park in Japan’s Shimane Prefecture on the Sea of Japan, holds a daily penguin walk where the colony (that’s what you call a group of penguins!) shows off its waddles.

During this time of year, the park dresses up the penguins in little Santa Claus costumes.

The display is now bringing holiday cheer to people around the world since the park uploaded a video of the penguins’ daily walk to Facebook.

The video of the “Santa penguins,” as they’re being called, has been viewed more than 23 million times on Facebook.

Guests to the park can not only view and take pictures of the penguins but also feed them.

The “Santa penguins” are a gift that keeps on giving!

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The Department of Transportation recently announced a proposal to require airlines to disclose whether their flights allow passengers to make voice calls via Wi-Fi.

“Consumers deserve to have clear and accurate information about whether an airline permits voice calls before they purchase a ticket and board the aircraft,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx in a news release Thursday. “Today’s proposal will ensure that air travelers are not unwillingly exposed to voice calls, as many of them are troubled over the idea of passengers talking on cellphones in flight.”

But Gogo, an in-flight internet service, said it wasn’t optimistic, however.

“We have the ability to enable voice calls for some time now. The technology has existed for a very long time but the truth of the matter is passengers don’t want it,” said Steve Nolan, vice president of communication for Gogo. “Frankly our commercial airline partners don’t want it, so we just haven’t enabled it to date. It doesn’t mean it can’t be done.”

Flight attendants agreed, saying, “Anything short of banning voice calls is reckless.”

“The American public does not want voice communication in flight,” said Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA. “It threatens aviation security and increases the likelihood of conflict in the skies. It threatens safety for crews and passengers. AFA will continue to press for a complete ban of in-flight voice calls. No calls on planes. Period.”

In a statement, the trade group Airlines for America told ABC News: “We are not aware of any carriers that plan to allow voice calls.”

“We have long held that this was not a matter for DOT [the Department of Transportation] to regulate, and we believe airlines should be able to determine what services can be safely offered in flight and make those decisions based on what is in the best interests of their passengers and crewmembers,” the trade group said.

The Department of Transportation said it was also seeking comment on whether disclosure is sufficient or whether it should simply ban voice calls on flights within, to, or from the United States.

Members of the public have 60 days to comment on this proposed rule.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Two hundred additional American special operations troops are headed to Syria to help Syrian Kurdish and Arabic forces fighting ISIS, Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced Saturday at a security conference in Bahrain.

The troop increase will bring the total number of U.S. troops in Syria to 500.

A defense official said the additional troops will help train, advise and assist the growing number of Syrian rebel forces preparing to retake and hold Raqqa, ISIS’ de facto capital city in Syria.

Carter, who made the announcement at the International Institute for Strategic Studies’ Manama Dialogue, said the additional forces will help “to continue organizing, training, equipping, and otherwise enabling capable, motivated, local forces to take the fight to ISIL, and also bringing down to bear the full weight of U.S. forces around the theater of operations like the funnel of a giant tornado.”

He added, “This latest commitment of additional forces within Syria is another important step in enabling our partners to deal ISIL a lasting defeat.”

The additional 200 troops being deployed to Syria will include special operations forces, trainers, advisers, and explosive ordnance disposal teams.

The 300 American special operations forces already in Syria mainly advise and assist the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a group of 45,000 Syrian Kurdish and Arab rebel forces that have been fighting ISIS. A small number of the American forces have also been advising and assisting Turkish forces fighting ISIS in northwestern Syria.

With support from American airstrikes, as well as advisers on the ground, SDF forces have pushed ISIS out of strongholds in northern and eastern Syria and are now pushing towards Raqqa.

Carter said Saturday that SDF forces have fought their way to 15 miles north of that city.

Plans call for the SDF to envelope Raqqa with Kurdish fighters remaining outside of the city so Arab fighters can retake it from ISIS.

A U.S. defense official said the troop increase “is tied to the growing number of local forces now willing to participate in this fight, and our efforts to enable them.”

The SDF has been a mostly Kurdish force with a smaller component of Arab fighters. But as the SDF has grown to 45,000 in number, the number of Arab fighters has also grown to 13,000.

The recruitment of local Arab fighters from the area around Raqqa has helped boost those numbers.

The push towards Raqqa began in early November, coming on the heels of the Iraqi offensive on Mosul in Iraq. Two months into that offensive Iraqi forces have met stiff resistance as they have pushed into the city’s eastern limits.

5,262 American troops are authorized to be in Iraq to train, advise and assist Iraqi and Kurdish forces fighting ISIS.

Carter restated during his remarks in Bahrain that after ISIS is defeated in Iraq and Syria, American troops will remain in that country to help with its training and advising mission to help Iraqi forces consolidate security over the rest of the country.

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FG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images(LOS ANGELES) — Southwest Airlines has canceled 10 scheduled daily flights to and from Mexico because of paperwork issues with Mexican authorities.

The flights, originally scheduled to travel between Los Angeles International Airport and Cancun, Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta, are canceled through Tuesday, but Southwest says they are unsure of how long it will take to get through the red tape.

The airline operated the flights successfully for a few days this week before the paperwork snafu required them to stop.

The new flights were announced in August after a bilateral treaty between the United States and Mexico allowed more flights to cross the border. Southwest published its flight schedule and sold seats for the new routes, which are now grounded while waiting for the paperwork issues to be resolved. Previously established Southwest routes are not impacted.

Southwest told ABC News it is fully compliant with the terms of the accord between the two countries, and submitted all the paperwork required to operate the flights more than three months ago.

The airline said that it is “now faced with unplanned challenges and forced to make proactive flight cancellations,” and the U.S. Department of Transportation is working to resolve the situation.

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iStock/Thinkstock(BANJUL, Gambia) — Africa’s smallest country, Gambia, held a presidential election on December 1. The country’s president, Yahya Jammeh, received 36.7 percent of the vote, while property developer Adama Burrow won more than 45 percent of the vote.

The day after the election, President Jammeh, who has ruled the tiny nation of two million people since 1994, went on state television to wish Barrow well, calling him “the elected president of the Gambia.”

On Friday, however, Jammeh took to the airwaves to take back his earlier concession, according to BBC News.

“I lament serious and unacceptable abnormalities which have reportedly transpired during the electoral process,” Jammeh said on state TV. “I recommend fresh and transparent elections which will be officiated by a God-fearing and independent electoral commission.”

In a statement, U.S. State Department spokesperson Mark Toner called the reversal “a reprehensible and unacceptable breach of faith with the people of the Gambia and an egregious attempt to undermine a credible election process and remain in power illegitimately.”

The statement called upon all institutions in the country to reject violence and peacefully uphold the will of the people.

If the election results stand, Barrow is meant to take office in late January.

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iStock/Thinkstock(ACCRA, Ghana) — Celebrations broke out in Ghana’s capital Accra after Nana Akufo-Addo, from Ghana’s opposition New Patriotic Party, was declared the winner of the country’s presidential election, BBC News reports.

The election, held Wednesday, was Akufo-Addo’s third run for the presidency. The 72-year-old human rights lawyer had previously served as both justice and foreign minister, and ran a campaign largely focused on economic issues, including a promise to build more factories throughout the country.

“I will make this solemn pledge to you tonight: I will not let you down,” Akufo-Addo told a crowd in front of his home Friday.

“I will do all in my power to live up to your hopes and expectations,” he added.

Ghana’s Electoral Commission said Akufo-Addo had received 53.85 percent of the vote, compared to current President John Mahama’s 44.40 percent.

Mahama called Akufo-Addo to concede the election, a spokesman said.

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