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Turkey on Sunday continued a major attack inside northwestern Syria on a Kurdish militia it has called a "terror army" that presents a danger to Turkish security.

One day earlier Turkey sent tanks and armored vehicles lumbering across the border with Syria to add to artillery and aerial invasions already underway against the YPG, which Ankara seeks to drive out of the Afrin region of Syria.

Turkey also announced Saturday that the aerial component of its "Operation Olive Branch" had struck 108 YPG targets, as NPR's Peter Kenyon tells our newscast unit.

Lawmakers in Washington are locked in a standoff that has led to a partial shutdown of the federal government, and weekend attempts to dig out of it haven't made much progress.

The standstill is starting to send ripples of anxiety through Washington and the rest of the country that a shutdown could continue into the week.

NPR would like to know how the shutdown is affecting you — whether it's your job or a government service you might need.

After five hours of uncharacteristic sniping and emotion, Germany's Social Democrats at a party congress in Bonn on Sunday voted 362-279 to enter into formal talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel to form a new German government.

It's a vital step to ending a nearly four-month long political crisis in Germany after last September's elections failed to give any party – including Merkel's conservatives – a majority. Previous attempts by the chancellor to join with other German political parties in a governing coalition failed.

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Chicago, IL – ILLINOIS GOVERNOR ROD BLAGOJEVICH IS CALLING A SPECIAL SESSION ON THE STATE'S HUGE BUDGET PROBLEM.

BLAGOJEVICH TODAY CALLED FOR LEGISLATORS TO RETURN TO SPRINGFIELD NEXT WEEK, JULY 9TH AND 10TH, TO WORK OUT A BUDGET FOR THE FISCAL YEAR THAT'S ALREADY STARTED.

THE GOVERNOR SAYS IF THAT DOESN'T HAPPEN...THERE COULD BE DIRE CONSEQUENCES.

LEGISLATORS HAVE APPROVED A BUDGET THAT WOULD SPEND FAR MORE THAN STATE GOVERNMENT WILL TAKE IN. BLAGOJEVICH ESTIMATES THE DEFICIT IS TWO BILLION DOLLARS.

Carbondale, IL – THE ILLINOIS CLEAN COAL REVIEW BOARD WILL FUND THREE NEW STUDIES THAT IT HOPES WILL HELP KEEP THE FUTUREGEN PROJECT ALIVE IN MATTOON.

BOARD MEMBERS MET TODAY (Wed) IN CARBONDALE AND APPROVED FUNDING THE STUDIES BY RESTRUCTURING A TWO MILLION DOLLAR GRANT INITIALLY INTENDED FOR FUTUREGEN.

BOARD CHAIR AND STATE REPRESENTATIVE DAN REITZ SAYS THE MOST IMPORTANT PROJECT IS GEARED TO STUDYING HOW FUTUREGEN CAN TURN ILLINOIS COAL INTO A SYNTHETIC GAS CAPABLE OF BEING USED IN PETROLEUM PRODUCTS.

Washington, D.C. – THE NATIONAL EDUCATION ASSOCIATION BEGINS ITS ANNUAL CONVENTION TOMORROW IN WASHINGTON... AND ILLINOIS LEADERS ARE EXCITED TO HELP TEACH THEIR FELLOW MEMBERS ABOUT THE PRAIRIE STATE'S JUNIOR SENATOR.

I-E-A PRESIDENT KEN SWANSON SAYS HE FULLY EXPECTS THE NATIONAL ORGANIZATION TO ENDORSE BARACK OBAMA FOR PRESIDENT... AND SAYS HE'S BEEN PLEASED WITH THE ILLINOIS DEMOCRAT'S WORK BOTH AS A STATE LAWMAKER AND U-S SENATOR.

Springfield, IL – LEGISLATION RESTORING SPECIAL EDUCATION FUNDING TO SEVERAL SOUTHERN ILLINOIS SCHOOLS WAS SIGNED INTO LAW ON MONDAY.

THE GOVERNOR SIGNED THE $21-MILLION APPROPRIATION BILL TO MAKE SURE FUNDING IS MADE AVAILABLE TO HELP SCHOOLS WHO HAD PREVIOUSLY LOST FUNDING.

Pinckneyville, IL – THE ILLINOIS HEALTH FACILITIES PLANNING BOARD HAS ACCEPTED PINCKNEYVILLE COMMUNITY HOSPITAL'S APPLICATION TO CLOSE ITS SKILLED CARE UNIT.

HOSPITAL ADMINISTRATOR TOM HUDGENS SAYS THE STATE BOARD VOTED YESTERDAY IN SPRINGFIELD. HE SAYS THE HOSPITAL'S BOARD OF DIRECTORS WILL TAKE FINAL ACTION MONDAY NIGHT.

HUDGENS SAYS THIS HAS BEEN A LONG, ANGUISHING PROCESS FOR THOSE ASSOCIATED WITH PINCKNEYVILLE HOSPITAL.

Bloomington, IL – IF ILLINOIS' JUNIOR U-S SENATOR WINS THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION THIS FALL, THE SENIOR SENATOR HOPES THE GOVERNOR CAREFULLY WEIGHS HIS CHOICES BEFORE SELECTING A SUCCESSOR.

ONE OPTION FOR ROD BLAGOJEVICH IS TO PICK HIMSELF TO SUCCEED BARACK OBAMA IN THE SENATE.

EARLIER THIS WEEK BLAGOJEVICH REFUSED TO DISCOUNT THAT OPTION. DEMOCRATIC SENATOR DICK DURBIN SAYS THE GOVERNOR SHOULD PICK SOMEONE ELSE.

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