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Voice Of America reports,

Liberia celebrates its 167th independence anniversary Saturday amid Ebola fear and economic downturn.

The World Health Organization reports 196 Ebola cases in Liberia with 116 deaths. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf this week announced an additional $500,000 from the government to fund the Ebola campaign.

The country’s economic state of affairs has been characterized by increasing poverty, high cost of living, and an upsurge in the exchange rate.

Jeremiah Sulunteh, Liberia’s Ambassador to the United States says even though the nation is hurting economically and health wise, 167 years of freedom is enough reason to celebrate.

But Ambassador Sulunteh said the nation is observing this Independence Day with heavy hearts for those who are sick and who have lost their lives to Ebola.

“We are very grateful to the Almighty for sparing the lives of Liberians and friends of Liberia to be able to see 167 years of existence as a country. But while we celebrate, we have some issues of concern in our country. Currently, the government and our people are battling the deadly Ebola virus that has permeated the society and is really affecting our people,” he said.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf this week announced an additional $500,000 from the government to fund the Ebola campaign. She called on all Liberians and residents to join the fight against the Ebola outbreak.

“This is not the time for denial; this Ebola issue is true and we all have to fight it together,” President Sirleaf said.

HISTORY:

Liberia is the only country in Africa founded by United States colonization while occupied by native Africans. Beginning in 1820, the region was colonized by African Americans, most of whom were freed slaves. The colonizers (who later become known as Americo-Liberians) established a new country with the help of the American Colonization Society, a private organization whose leaders thought former slaves would have greater opportunity in Africa. African captives freed from slave ships by the British and Americans were sent there instead of being repatriated to their countries of origin. In 1847, this new country became the Republic of Liberia, establishing a government modeled on that of the United States and naming its capital city Monrovia after James Monroe, the fifth president of the United States and a prominent supporter of the colonization. The colonists and their descendants, known as Americo-Liberians, led the political, social, cultural and economic sectors of the country and ruled the nation for over 130 years as a dominant minority.

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KTLA News 5 reports,

An Edmond teenager faces a possible life in prison sentence after authorities say they learned about shocking crimes he allegedly committed on an African mission trip.

The suspect was volunteering at a Kenyan children’s home when he allegedly raped and molested a number of young children.

According to court records, 19-year-old Matthew Durham confessed to raping several young girls, forcing some boys to perform oral sex on him and even making other kids watch.

“This is a young man in our community that made choices to exploit children in an orphanage,” said United States Attorney Sanford Coats. “It’s a true tragedy all the way around.”

The 19-year-old suspect traveled overseas with a group called Upendo.

Upendo is an organization that assists neglected Kenyan kids by providing food, housing, clothes and religion.

While Durham volunteered to travel overseas several times over the last two years, on his last visit, the criminal complaint alleges, “Durham requested to stay at the children’s home in an ‘overflow bunk’ rather than at an offsite facility.”

During that visit, several alleged victims claimed Durham “often touched them in a sexual manner or told them to touch themselves while he watched.”

Once confronted, Durham allegedly came clean.

“A caretaker at the orphanage noticed something wasn’t right and confronted Mr. Durham. He admitted to some of the acts,” said Coats.

The affidavit continues, “The victims are believed to be both boys and girls between the ages of four and nine, at least one of whom is HIV positive.”

Prosecutors say while the alleged sex crimes were committed overseas, Durham can be held accountable for the crimes in Oklahoma.

Durham is being held without bond.

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My FOX Houston reports,

Police arrested a couple accused of having sex in front of dozens Sunday afternoon on Bradenton beach, and it was all caught on tape.

Jose “Benny” Caballero and Elissa Alvarez were charged with lewd and lascivious behavior.

“This went on for about 25 minutes,” one witness said.

Several families were in the vicinity of Caballero and Alvarez while they were having sex.

A grandmother started recording it when the couple would not stop. She said she planned to turn it over to police once they arrived.

“I’ve lived here since 1978 and I go to the beaches and I’ve never seen anything like this,” she said.

Witnesses said after the first 25 minutes, the couple took a quick dip in the water, then returned to their beach towel.

“They laid on the beach and passed out for hours,” The grandmother said. “We thought they were dead, but when they woke up, they cuddled for a while, then started into the same thing they did before.”

One parent had enough, called police, then confronted the two.

Witnesses say Caballero became “mouthy” with police officers as they hauled him off in his bathing suit.

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Rich Homie Quan was performing when someone in the crowd grabbed his arm, TMZ reports.

A rep for Quan says the guy wasn’t trying to steal the limelight … he was trying to steal Quan’s watch … right off his wrist. And that’s why the rapper knocked him upside the head.

Quan himself tells us: “The person that tried to rob me was not one of my fans. My fans are loyal to me. I did what anyone else would do if they were being robbed.”

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“Fifty Shades of Grey” comes to theaters on Feb. 13, 2015.

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We all have had a bad experience with our cable services but this has to be in the top 5…hahaha What would you have done if you were on the receiving end of this call?

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Robin Thicke is throwing in the town and has declared to many people close to him that his marriage to Paula Patton has over.

Thicke listed his L.A. home for sale and Paula has not lived in the house since their separation in February, after that grab-ass pic became public.

Sources say an attorney is already working on a financial settlement separating assets but as far as we can tell no one has filed or divorce yet.

Thicke is saying he will NOT be the one who files for divorce … she’ll have to do it.  But he says he’s done begging and is moving on.

TMZ