November 14, 2012

Nation, World Dispatches

From news service reports

NEW YORK

Man who accused Elmo puppeteer recants story

A man who accused Elmo puppeteer Kevin Clash of having sex with him when he was a teenage boy has recanted his story.

In a quick turnabout, the man on Tuesday described his sexual relationship with Clash as adult and consensual.

Clash responded with a statement of his own, saying he is "relieved that this painful allegation has been put to rest." He had no further comment.

The man, who has not identified himself, released his statement through the Harrisburg, Pa., law firm Andreozzi & Associates.

Sesame Workshop, which produces "Sesame Street" in New York, soon followed by saying, "We are happy that Kevin can move on from this unfortunate episode."

SEATTLE

Two stranded snowboarders snowshoe their way back

Two snowboarders who spent two nights stranded on Mount Rainier were well enough to snowshoe out Tuesday after rescuers had to "swim" through snow that was chest-deep in spots to reach them, national park officials said.

Derek Tyndall and Thomas Dale didn't appear to have frostbite or other injuries when rescuers reached them around 11 a.m., park spokeswoman Lee Snook said.

The two had been stuck on the 14,410-foot mountain since Sunday after getting lost in whiteout conditions and digging a snow cave for protection. Rescuers first spotted the men Monday but couldn't immediately hike to them because of darkness and avalanche danger.

After reaching the pair Tuesday, rescuers gave Tyndall, 21, and Dale, 20, warm liquids and assessed them to determine if they could walk back down the mountain on their own.The two snowboarders and the rescue team made it off the mountain at about 3:30 p.m. and were reunited with their families, spokesman Kevin Bacher said.

LONDON

Seven-egg story about Prince Charles called a myth

Prince Charles doesn't order seven boiled eggs for breakfast in order to choose the one he likes best, his office said in a statement designed to dispel myths about the heir to the British throne.

The claim was made by BBC Television presenter Jeremy Paxman in a 2006 book. The website of the Prince of Wales, as Charles is officially known, was updated Tuesday to dismiss that assertion and other commonly held views about the prince and his family. "Does the Prince of Wales have seven boiled eggs cooked for his breakfast but only eat one, as claimed in Jeremy Paxman's book 'On Monarchy?' " reads one entry on the website. "No, he doesn't and never has done, at breakfast or any other time."

As Britain's monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, 86, celebrated 60 years on the throne this year, courtiers are gradually managing the process of succession. The prince will celebrate his 64th birthday Wednesday.

Charles has a reputation for eccentricity. In 1994 he was mocked in the press for revealing he talks to plants. He's been a vocal critic of some modern architecture, including calling an extension of the National Gallery in London a "monstrous carbuncle."

Tuesday's statement on the prince's website also explains why, despite his environmental interests, the prince is driven in a Bentley and owns a classic Aston Martin that his son Prince William used on his wedding day last year.

"The prince does not own or choose to drive around in a Bentley," it says. "The car is required for some engagements for security reasons" and is owned by London's Metropolitan Police. It points out that the prince's cars have been converted to run on biodiesel or bioethanol to reduce emissions.

The website also denies that Charles advocates dangerous and untested medical therapies, saying that he favors a "wider, preventative approach to health care by addressing the underlying social, lifestyle and environmental causes."

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