USA

The State Department slapped sanctions on 13 individuals and three private companies Monday with links to A.Q. Khan, the Pakistani nuclear scientist who's been under house arrest since 2004 for sharing weapons blueprints with other countries. The sanctions are aimed at preventing future proliferation activities.

Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson, who is openly gay, has been selected to offer an inaugural-event prayer at the Lincoln Memorial, the Concord (N.H.) Monitor reported Monday. The invitation is something of an olive branch to gay rights groups concerned that the Rev. Rick Warren, who supports a ban on same-sex marriage, will provide the invocation at the inauguration.

After six months of declining gasoline prices, the average cost of a gallon of regular rose nearly 12 cents to $1.78, based on national data released Sunday by the Lundberg survey. A crude-oil market rally contributed to the rise.

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Sen. George Voinivich (R) of Ohio announced Monday that he will retire after completing his second term in 2010.

The defending NFL champion New York Giants were eliminated from the playoffs, 23-11, by the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday. The Eagles meet the Arizona Cardinals in one of next Sunday's conference championship games. The Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens square off in the other.

Twenty-five of 42 states with daily lottery and scratch-off games have reported rising revenues over the past six months, a possible indication that the current economic hardships may be encouraging some people to risk more of their money.

Reading among American adults is on the rise, with more than half reporting that they'd read a novel, short story, play, or other literary work during 2008, according to a new study issued Monday by the National Endowment for the Arts.

British actress Kate Winslet was a double winner at Sunday's Golden Globe Awards in Hollywood, taking honors for dramatic actress in "Revolutionary Road," in which she was directed by husband Sam Mendes, and supporting actress for "The Reader." Hit movie "Slumdog Millionaire" won in four categories, including best dramatic picture.

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