Friday, February 1, 2008


Bush hinting that Iraq troop cuts won't continue Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:06am

Four months after announcing troop reductions in Iraq, President George W. Bush is now sending signals that the cuts may not continue past this summer, a development likely to infuriate Democrats and renew concerns among military planners about strains on the force. Full Story

Turkish MPs Plan Headscarf Reform Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:08am

Two major parties in Turkey have submitted a joint plan to parliament to ease a ban on the Islamic headscarf in the country's universities. The Islamist-rooted governing AK Party and the nationalist MHP say it is an issue of human rights and freedoms.The two parties have enough votes in parliament to overturn the constitutional ban on headscarves. Full Story

Iran to limit execution in public Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:08am

The head of Iran's judiciary has issued an order that no executions be carried out in public without his permission. Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahrudi also banned the publication of photographs or films of executions. Human rights groups say Iran executed nearly 300 people in 2007 as it tries to improve security and reduce what it calls immoral behavior. Full Story

North Korea to conduct first census in 15 years Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:10am

North Korea will conduct its first population census in 15 years this October with help from the UN, South Korea's Yonhap news agency said. No complete census has taken place in North Korea since 1994 when the United Nation Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) helped the reclusive state conduct a national census. Pyongyang announced after the survey that its population was 21.21 million as of 1993. Full Story

Serbia Invited to Sign EU Accord Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:12am

European Union nations have agreed to ask Serbia to sign a political deal days after the presidential election.The political framework agreement offers Belgrade closer trade relations and relaxed visa requirements.EU ministers were keen to give Serbia a positive message before Sunday's election but could not agree to a full pre-membership accord with Serbia. Full Story

Desperate Haitians Survive On Mud Cookies Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:13am

It was lunchtime in one of Haiti's worst slums, and Charlene Dumas was eating mud. With food prices rising, Haiti's poorest can't afford even a daily plate of rice, and some take desperate measures to fill their bellies. Charlene, 16 with a 1-month-old son, has come to rely on a traditional Haitian remedy for hunger pangs: cookies made of dried yellow dirt from the country's central plateau. Full Story

Australia to Apologize to Aborigines Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:14am

Australia will issue its first formal apology to its indigenous people next month, the government announced Wednesday, a milestone that could ease tensions with a minority whose mixed-blood children were once taken away on the premise that their race was doomed. Full Story

OSCE Calls on Russia to Lift Restrictions on Election Observers Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:21am

An international vote monitoring organization said Tuesday that Russia has placed severe limits on the work it can carry out during its March presidential election. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe called on Russia to reconsider the restrictions. "The invitation that we received has serious restrictions both in terms of the number of observers and time they are allowed to observe," said Curtis Budden, spokesman for the OSCE's Warsaw-based office. Full Story

US diplomats set their sights on Turkmenistan's Berdymukhamedov Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:36am

US policymakers believe that they can convince the new president of Turkmenistan, Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, to open up his countrys vast reserves of natural gas to American companies. Washington is aiming to revive a strategy that led to the greatest US diplomatic triumph in the Caspian Basin to date -- the construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) pipeline in the late 1990s and early part of this decade.

Skeptics, however, say the US push may be too little, too late. Russia presently enjoys an overwhelming advantage in the Caspian Basin, underscored by the December deal -- signed by Russian, Turkmen and Kazakhstani leaders -- to greatly expand a pipeline network that runs along the Caspian Seas shoreline. At this late stage, especially given Washingtons preoccupation with the Iraq war, the United States may lack the resources and the influence to surmount numerous obstacles in the Caspian Basin. Full Story

3 killed, 27 wounded in General Santos City blast Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:41am

Three people were killed and 27 injured Wednesday in a bomb blast at the gate of a tuna canning factory in the southern Philippine city of General Santos, police said. "I can confirm three people were killed and 27 injured," city police chief Roberto Po told local reporters. Full Story

Tsunami alert as quake hits Indonesia Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 9:44am

A STRONG 6.6-magnitude earthquake rocked the eastern Indonesian province of Maluku today, prompting the issuing of a tsunami alert, Indonesia's Meteorological and Geophysics Board said. The earthquake, which struck at 6.32pm AEDT, was centred 300km northeast of the East Timorese capital Dili, some 23km under the floor of the Banda Sea, the office said. Full Story

EU leaders urge financial transparency Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 11:45am

Presenting a united front after meeting to discuss how to stabilize international financial markets, European leaders said Tuesday there is a pressing need for more transparency and a better early warning system for the global economy.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, flanked by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi and European Commission President Jose Barroso, told reporters the meeting was "triggered by the subprime crisis" in the U.S. mortgage market. Full Story

Air France strikes cause flight delays Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 11:48am

Air France said it is canceling some short- and medium-haul flights Thursday because of a strike by some ground staff over pay demands. The airline said its long-haul flights will operate normally, although the one-day strike, called by two labor unions, will cause delays. It pledged that all its passengers will get to their destinations. Full Story

France to restore public holiday Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 11:50am

France is to abandon an experiment which encouraged people to work on one of the public holidays in May. The government scrapped the Pentecost public holiday four years ago and asked workers to give up the day's pay to help fund healthcare. Full Story

Bangladeshi government arrests U.S. rights worker Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 1:28pm

A labor rights investigator was arrested by the Bangladeshi government, prompting U.S. companies to lobby for his release. Mehedi Hasan, an employee of the Washington-based Workers Rights Consortium (WRC), was arrested Thursday, according to the organization. The WRC said yesterday that he was arrested in retaliation for his efforts to protect the rights of workers in factories that sell U.S. brands. Full Story

Italy moves towards interim rule Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 2:04pm

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano has asked centre-left Senate Speaker Franco Marini to try to form an interim government to reform voting rules.The move follows the collapse of Prime Minister Romano Prodi's government last week following a Senate defeat. Full Story

Slovak MPs drop EU treaty threat Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 2:06pm

Slovakia's centre-right opposition has withdrawn its threat to block ratification of the EU reform treaty. The announcement came after the centre-left government shelved a controversial bill which critics said could curb media freedom. Full Story

Man charged over terror offences Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 2:25pm

A man has been charged under the Terrorism Act with two offences, police have confirmed. Nathan Worrell, 34, was arrested on 24 January at his home in Grimsby, where police found suspicious material. Full Story

Terror Leader Killed in Missile Strike? Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 5:02pm

Pakistani intelligence sources say they believe a "high-value" al Qaeda target was killed in a missile strike yesterday in the country's tribal region bordering Afghanistan. U.S. officials said there was no indication that the target was Osama bin Laden or his deputy Ayman al Zawahri, but one senior official told the strike was aimed at one particular figure. Full Story

5 wounded in Kabul attack Posted on Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 11:01pm

A car bomb exploded next to an Afghan army bus in Kabul on Thursday, wounding four civilians and a solider, a police officer said. Full Story

Mubarak meets Iranian parliament speaker Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 3:21am

An Iranian official who met Wednesday with Egypt's president said the two countries could soon restore diplomatic relations severed nearly three decades ago. Full Story

India, Mideast Suffer Internet, Telephone Disruption Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 4:01am

India and countries across the Middle East experienced slow Internet connections and problems making international calls to the U.S. and Europe after two submarine cable systems in the Mediterranean Sea were cut. Full Story

Israel report finds Lebanon war a 'serious failure' Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 4:05am

Israel's 2006 Lebanon war was a missed opportunity and a grave failure for the Jewish state, a key report said while sparing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert from a major roasting. Full Story

Suicide bomber kills Afghan official Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 4:20am

A suicide bomber blew himself up inside a mosque in southern Afghanistan on Thursday, killing Helmand province's deputy governor and five other people, officials said. Full Story

Bomb explodes near Pakistan Air Force bus in Islamabad Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 4:28am

A roadside bomb exploded near a Pakistan Air Force (PAF) bus in the volatile North West Frontier Province on Thursday though no one was hurt in the blast. Suspected militants detonated the device by remote control near Nowshehra, a major city about 120 km northwest of the federal capital that has a large cantonment and several important military facilities, police said. Full Story

IFJ alarmed for safety of journalists in Sri Lanka Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:16am

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) warned that the safety of journalists in Sri Lanka is in serious jeopardy as several serious attacks and anti-media statements by government officials demonstrate a lack of respect for the value of media freedom in the country. Full Story

Brazil unable to curb Amazon destruction - enviros Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:35am

Brazil's government is unwilling and unable to halt destruction in the Amazon rainforest despite emergency measures it announced last week to curb rising deforestation, environmental experts say. High commodity prices and increased land use elsewhere in Brazil are driving ranchers and farmers deeper into the Amazon in search of cheap land, environmentalists say. Full Story

Bangladesh says Indian troops kill three villagers Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:36am

Indian troops shot dead three Bangladeshi villagers along the border between the two countries on Thursday, an official of the Bangladesh border force said. An official at the Indian embassy in Dhaka said he did not have any information about the incident. Full Story

Indonesia: Epicenter of bird flu Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:37am

The rooster started to crow at the unusually early hour of 3 a.m. and Partoparmin, a farmer in this small hillside village, went into his yard to look. All around him, chickens were lying on the ground, twitching and shaking. "A few minutes later they were dead," said Partoparmin, 60. "Right away I thought, this might be bird flu." Full Story

Tighter ID rules for U.S. border begin Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:38am

New rules for the types of identification U.S. or Canadian citizens must present to cross into the country shouldn't cause significant delays and won't be strictly enforced at first, a senior federal official said. Under the rules going into effect Thursday, people will no longer be allowed to simply declare to immigration officers at border crossings that they are citizens, Jayson Ahern, deputy commissioner with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said Tuesday. Full Story

Chad rebels 'seize central town' Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:38am

Rebels in Chad say they have seized a strategically important town in the central region of Batha, about 400km (248 miles) from the capital, Ndjamena. A spokesman for several rebel groups who have joined forces said Oum Hadjer had been captured on Wednesday. Full Story

Areva says it is ready to build 12 reactors in South Africa Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 11:35am

French nuclear giant Areva said on Thursday it was ready to build up to 12 next-generation power plants in South Africa, where massive electricity shortages shut down the key mining industry this month. Full Story

Senate chief asked to form interim government Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 11:36am

Italy's president Giorgio Napolitano has asked the president of the Italian Senate, Franco Marini, to try and form an interim government to reform the voting system after prime minister Romano Prodi's centre-left government collapsed last week. Full Story

Thousands of lawyers hold protest rallies Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 11:38am

Thousands of lawyers were holding rallies across Pakistan on Thursday to protest against the removal of former chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry and other judges late last year. Full Story

US behind Chinese bank boycott, says minister Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 11:38am

American pressure is responsible for the Chinese boycott that is having a severe impact on Iranian banks and businesses, according to the vice-foreign minister, Mehdi Mir Abutalebi. Full Story

Demand, Price Doubts Limit Opec's Options Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 11:45am

Opec ministers meet to discuss output policy this week against a backdrop of deepening uncertainty. Financial markets are jittery and the health of the global economy under threat, with fears of recession sweeping the US. Oil demand growth is still holding up, but oil prices, which topped $100 per barrel at the start of January, are now under pressure. Full Story

Microsoft Grows in Latin America Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 11:52am

Hernan Rincon has reason to smile these days. As president of Microsoft Latin America he oversees one of the fastest-growing regions of the world for the software giant. "Last year was our best year in at least 10 years," he says. "That makes us very happy." Full Story

Shell sets new UK profits record Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 3:42pm

The Anglo-Dutch oil firm Royal Dutch Shell has reported annual profits of $27.56bn (#13.9bn), a record for a UK-listed company. Much of the rise in profits has been attributed to rising oil prices, which currently stand at about $91 a barrel compared with $57 this time last year. Full Story

EU suspends Brazil beef imports Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 3:43pm

The European Union will suspend all imports of Brazilian beef from Thursday saying the country's foot-and-mouth disease checks are "unacceptable". Last month, the EU warned that only beef from an authorised list of Brazilian farms would be allowed into Europe from 31 January. Full Story

Italy given month to clean Naples Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 3:44pm

Italy has been ordered by the European Union to end Naples' rubbish crisis within a month or face legal action. Thousands of tonnes of waste has piled up on the streets as refuse collections have come to a standstill. Full Story

Storms battering parts of Britain Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 3:46pm

High winds have been battering large parts of Britain, claiming at least one life, as forecasters warn of blizzards and snow showers to come. A 45-year-old lorry driver died on the M6 near Tebay, Cumbria, as his lorry overturned in gusts of up to 70mph. Full Story

Maze escaper is arrested in Texas Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 3:48pm

A Maze escaper has been arrested at a border patrol in the United States, American officials have said. He was arrested by officers at a border checkpoint in southern Texas on Monday night. The US Border Patrol have refused to identify him, but said he was awaiting deportation. Full Story

Fugitive Jemaah Islamiyah member escapes Philippine raid Posted on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 8:46pm

Fugitive Jemaah Islamiyah member Dulmatin, who has been linked to the 2002 Bali bombings that killed more than 200 people, escaped a military raid in the southern Philippines, an official said Friday. Full Story

Gunmen attack Israeli embassy in Mauritania Posted on Friday, February 1, 2008 at 12:21am

Unidentified gunmen attacked the Israeli embassy in the Mauritanian capital Nouakchott early on Friday, wounding some people, police and emergency services said. Full Story

Musharraf rejects nuke concerns as Pakistan tests missile: army Posted on Friday, February 1, 2008 at 2:54am

President Pervez Musharraf accused Pakistan's enemies of spreading fears about the country's atomic weapons, as the military test-fired a nuclear-capable missile, the army said. Full Story

Bomb at Baghdad pet market kills 35: police Posted on Friday, February 1, 2008 at 3:30am

At least 35 people were killed when a bomb hidden inside a box of birds exploded at a popular pet market in central Baghdad on Friday, police said, the latest strike at one of the capital's most popular gathering places. Full Story

Egypt seals gaps in border, Hamas chief in Cairo Posted on Friday, February 1, 2008 at 4:10am

Egypt called in police reinforcements and sealed gaps at the breached border with the Gaza Strip on Thursday. Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal met Egyptian officials in Cairo for talks centered on the "facilitation of movement" and the entry of Palestinians on the border. Full Story

Fatal Qaida missile strike a US victory Posted on Friday, February 1, 2008 at 5:22am

A U.S. missile strike that killed a top al-Qaida commander in Pakistan marked a significant victory for the U.S. in its battle against the terror network after a series of pessimistic assessments of the American-led campaign against the Taliban in neighboring Afghanistan. Full Story

Courtesy Terrorism Research Center, Inc

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