Briefly . . .
NATION/WORLD

Posted: February 18, 2013

QUITO, ECUADOR - President Rafael Correa, a dynamic but polemical leftist who has spent heavily on the poor, confidently celebrated his second re-election Sunday even before the first official results were announced.

An exit poll gave the incumbent, who first took office in 2007, 58.8 percent against 23.1 percent for his closest challenger, former banker Guillermo Lasso.

"This victory is yours. It belongs to our families, to our wife, to our friends, our neighbors, the entire nation," Correa told voters Sunday.

Raffling off rifles

CONCORD, N.H. - Police chiefs in New Hampshire wanted more money for their youth-training program.

They saw giving away guns as the answer.

The New Hampshire Association of Chiefs of Police is raffling off a gun every day in May, including a Ruger AR-15-style rifle with 30-round magazine similar to the one used in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December. The players in West Fargo's Youth Hockey Association will raffle off 200 guns and an all-terrain vehicle next month. Up for grabs are shotguns, handguns hunting rifles and semiautomatic rifles.

Both were planned long before the shooting in Newtown, Conn., invigorated calls for increased gun control.

Gunmen kidnap 7 at Nigerian building site

BAUCHI, NIGERIA - Gunmen attacked a camp for a construction company in rural northern Nigeria, killing a guard and kidnapping seven foreign workers from Britain, Greece, Italy, Lebanon and the Philippines, authorities said Sunday, in the biggest kidnapping yet in a region under attack by Islamic extremists.

The attack Saturday night happened in Jama'are, a town in Bauchi state. The gunmen targeted a workers' camp for Lebanese construction company Setraco, which is building a road in the area, Bauchi state police spokesman Hassan Muhammed said.

Purple Heart transplant

LOS ANGELES - Hyla Merin grew up without a father, and for a long time never knew why.

But on Sunday, Merin received her father's Purple Heart, along with a Silver Star she never knew he'd won and a six other medals, decades after he won them during World War II.

About four months ago, the manager of a West Hollywood apartment building where Merin's mother lived in the 1960s found the Purple Heart while cleaning out some lockers in the laundry room.

"He gave up his life for our country and our freedom, Merin said. I'll put it up in my house as a memorial to him and to those who served."

-Daily News wire services

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