Friday, November 14, 2008


North Korea: No sample-taking at nuclear sitePosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 8:15am

SEOUL, South Korea  North Korea said Wednesday that it won't allow outside inspectors to take samples from its main nuclear complex to verify the communist regime's accounting of past nuclear activities. Pyongyang's Foreign Ministry said in a statement that it never agreed to such sampling, contradicting statements by U.S. officials last month following a breakthrough deal about how to verify North Korea's list of nuclear programs the regime submitted in June under a disarmament pact. Full Story

15-year-old girl dies of bird flu in IndonesiaPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 8:17am

JAKARTA, Indonesia  Indonesian health officials say a 15-year-old girl has died of bird flu. Agus Suryanto, who headed the team of doctors treating the patient, said the girl was from the city of Semarang, 250 miles east of Jakarta. She died late last week after 10 days of hospitalization. Full Story

India test-fires surface-to-surface missilePosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 8:19amNEW DELHI 

India successfully test-fired a medium-range, surface-to surface missile on Wednesday, the defense ministry said. The new Shourya (Valor) missile has a range of 375 miles (600 kilometers), the ministry said in a statement that hailed the technology as "state of the art." India and longtime rival Pakistan routinely test-fire missiles. They usually notify each other ahead of missile launches in keeping with an agreement between the two nations. Full Story

Suicide bomber hits Afghan gov't office, killing 6Posted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 9:06am
A suicide bomber driving an oil tanker detonated his explosives outside an Afghan government office during a provincial council meeting Wednesday, killing at least six people and wounding 42, officials said. Full Story

Chavez says consul in Houston stripped of postPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 9:47am
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez says his former consul in Houston has been stripped of his post for moving the consulate in that city without permission. The U.S. State Department says the Venezuelan consulate recently moved to new leased office space before receiving permission.Full_Story

Mexico probes mass kidnappings by gunmenPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 9:51am
Police are searching for 27 farm workers who were kidnapped in northwestern Mexico, authorities said. Gunmen in at least 20 vehicles descended on the farm workers' homes Monday morning, roused them from sleep and drove away with 27 men, witnesses said.Full_Story

Venezuela sends Colombians to US for drug chargesPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 10:23am

Venezuela has deported two Colombian cousins to the United States to face drug trafficking charges. Venezuelan anti-drug chief Nestor Reverol says the two men are wanted on 16 charges related to drug trafficking.Full-Story

G-20 Pledges Unspecified Action on EconomyPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 10:48am
Finance ministers from the world's leading industrialized nations and large developing economies say they have agreed urgent action is needed to restore stability in financial markets, but no specific plans were announced. Ministers from the so-called Group of 20 (G-20) say they agreed at a meeting in Brazil Sunday to take "all necessary steps" to restore confidence in global markets and minimize the risk of a future crisis.Full_Story

Mexican Government Fights Organized CrimePosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 10:51am
Despite recent setbacks and continuing violence, the government of Mexican President Felipe Calderon is continuing its war against organized crime, including drug cartels and kidnapping gangs. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, Texas, successes in the past few days have bolstered that effort. The news out of Mexico in recent days has been dominated by incidents of violence and brutality, but authorities have scored some significant gains.Full_Story

German parliament moves to increase police powersPosted on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 5:16am
After months of debate, Germany's lower house of parliament passed anti-terrorism legislation Wednesday granting federal police the capacity to spy on computers and tap conversations. Full Story

Somali Islamist militia seizes town near capitalPosted on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 5:24am
Residents say Islamic fighters have seized the town of Elasha, just 11 miles (18 kilometers) southwest of the Somali capital. Full Story

Suicide attack kills 10 Afghans, US soldier: officialsPosted on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 5:24am
A suicide attack targeting a coalition convoy in eastern Afghanistan Thursday killed an American soldier and at least 10 civilians, including a 13-year-old child, officials said. At least nine Afghans died at the scene of the blast, near a market in an area often crowded with people, the governor of Batikot district in Nangarhar province told AFP. Full Story

Iranian diplomat kidnapped, guard killed in Pakistan: policePosted on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 5:25am
Gunmen kidnapped an Iranian diplomat and killed his local guard in northwestern Pakistan Thursday, police said, in the latest of a series of attacks in the region. Full Story

Blast wounds 13 protesting Bangkok market vendorsPosted on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 5:26am
A blast wounded 13 people in Thailand's capital early Thursday when assailants hurled an explosive device at market vendors who had gathered to protest a rent hike by new managers of the government-owned facility, police said. Full Story

UK Navy shoots pirate suspects deadPosted on Thursday, November 13, 2008 at 5:33am
The Royal Navy has repelled a pirate attack on a Danish cargo-ship off the coast of Yemen, shooting dead two men believed to be Somali pirates. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed the incident took place on Tuesday, when HMS Cumberland crew members tried to board a traditional wooden dhow. Full Story

China shares fall as stimulus plan optimism wanesPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 6:57am
Chinese shares fell Tuesday as optimism about the government's multibillion dollar stimulus package gave way to renewed caution about the economy and profit-taking, with losses led by financial stocks and other heavyweights. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index closed down 1.7 percent, or 31.19 points, to 1843.61 in thin trading. The Shenzhen Composite Index for China's smaller second exchange dropped 0.6 percent to 494.54. "The package encouraged pessimistic investors yesterday, but it usually at least takes three months for policies to be implemented. And anything could happen during the period," said Xu Zhiyuan, analyst for Capital Edge Investment & Management. "Investors preferred to pull out and watch the situation more after getting in." Full Story

Hijackers take convoy bound for US-led forcesPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 6:59am
Dozens of masked insurgents blocked a mountain pass and hijacked at gunpoint a convoy of trucks carrying military vehicles and other supplies bound for U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan, an official said Tuesday. Attacks are common against supply trucks that use the Khyber Pass in Pakistan's northwest to ferry supplies to U.S. and NATO troops across the border, but Monday's raid was particularly brazen. Some 60 masked gunmen blocked the route at several points and assaulted the convoy, said Fazal Mahmood, an administration official for the Khyber tribal region. Full Story

Power shift in North Korea suspectedPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 7:00am

The brother-in-law of North Korea's Kim Jong-Il has become even more powerful since Kim fell sick, officials and analysts say, with some believing he is effectively standing in for the supreme leader. The influence of Jang Song-Taek has become greater than ever since Kim was reportedly hit by a stroke, Cheong Seong-Chang, of South Korea's private Sejong Institute think-tank, said Tuesday. "Jang is apparently in charge of receiving orders from Kim and channelling them (to state agencies)," he told AFP. Full Story

Sri Lankan troops take rebel townPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 7:01am
Government forces in Sri Lanka have wrestled control of a small town from Tamil Tiger rebels in an ongoing military offensive, the defence ministry said on Tuesday. Troops fighting to secure a strategic road along the coast to the northern peninsula of Jaffna have faced stiff resistance from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The ministry said that the soldiers had taken Palavi, a small town on the road. It described the town as an LTTE "strongpoint." Full Story

Two ex-Bangladesh ministers freedPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 7:02am
Two former Bangladeshi government ministers being held on corruption charges were freed on bail Tuesday, just five weeks before planned elections, a prison official said. The former ministers of home affairs and health in Bangladesh's last elected government had spent more than a year behind bars as part of a crackdown on graft by the country's army-backed rulers. "They have been released this afternoon on bail after more than a year in the jail," deputy prisons chief Shamsul Haider Siddiqui told AFP. Full Story

Mexico hedges almost all of its oil exports for the coming yearPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 9:06am
Mexico is taking steps to protect itself from the oil price remaining below $70 a barrel in the clearest sign yet of the concerns of producer countries at the impact of the global economic slowdown on their revenues. The world's sixth biggest oil producer hedged almost all of next's year oil exports at prices ranging from $70 to $100 at a cost of about $1.5bn (#961m) through derivatives contracts, according to bankers familiar with the deal. Full Story

French 'rail anarchists' arrestedPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 9:41am
French police have arrested at least 10 people in connection with a series of attacks on France's rail network. Police say those arrested were probably involved in sabotaging overhead power cables that disrupted national rail and Eurostar services over the weekend. Full Story

Venezuela markets itself as a hub for leftistsPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 9:42am
The Nepalese Maoist smiled as he glanced around the lobby of the Hotel Alba Caracas. To his left, West African delegates to the World Meeting of Intellectuals and Artists in Defense of Humanity chatted in French. To his right, the Egyptian author of a book on President Hugo Chavez puffed on a cigarette. "This has been a most enjoyable forum, allowing us to learn from the glorious heritage of socialist revolution in Latin America," said the Maoist, Chandra Prasad Gajurel, 60, a Politburo member of the Communist Party of Nepal, which put an end to that country's monarchy in elections this year.Full_Story

Brazil pushes emerging nations rolePosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 9:55am
Finance ministers and central bank presidents from the G20 group of developed and developing nations are meeting in Sco Paulo this weekend to try to agree proposals for the summit in Washington next Saturday. Brazil is expected to underscore its demand for greater influence over bodies such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, which will also be also represented at the meeting.Full_Story

Mexico's president names new interior ministerPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 10:02am
Mexican President Felipe Calderon reached deep into his conservative political party Monday to name a new interior minister, replacing the senior official killed last week in a still-unexplained plane crash.Fernando Gomez Mont, a prominent criminal lawyer and son of one of the founders of the National Action Party, or PAN, will assume the second-most important government post at an especially critical time in Mexican history. A raging drug war has claimed thousands of lives, and political forces are badly divided over economic reform and a host of pressing issues.Full_Story

Former L.A. County probation clerk captured in MexicoPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 10:04am
A former Los Angeles County probation department clerk who fled the country earlier this year after she was charged with bigamy and insurance fraud was captured in Mexico over the weekend, authorities said Monday. Damaris Ninet Amesquita, 30, was found Saturday by a bail bonds agent in Mexicali, said Los Angeles County district attorney's spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons. Amesquita's two daughters, 9 and 11, and a 2-year-old boy she had falsely claimed was her biological son were found unharmed, Gibbons said.Full_Stroy

Colombia FTA Next Year?Posted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 10:11am
The US-Colombia FTA may be approved late next year despite president-elect Barack Obama's campaign rhetoric against it. While the U.S. Congress may vote on a free trade agreement with Colombia before Barack Obama becomes U.S. president in January, it is unlikely to do so, experts say.Full_Story

EU Ready to Revive Talks on Russia DealPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 1:18pm
EU foreign ministers approved the re-launch of talks on a strategic treaty with Russia on Monday as the two most influential critics of any deal, Britain and Sweden, called for a return to negotiations. The European Commission said Monday it was prepared to resume negotiations with Russia on a new strategic partnership deal although no date had yet been set to do so. Full Story

Mexico Struggles with Drug Gang ViolencePosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 1:30pm
Mexican President Felipe Calderon is struggling to keep his war against organized crime on track after losing some of his top crime-fighting officials in a plane crash last week. The cause of that plane crash is still under investigation, but more than 4,000 people have died so far this year in violence connected to criminal gangs. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the United States could be drawn into the conflict south of the border. A U.S. official inspects debris from a plane crash in Mexico City which killed 3 high-level Mexican officials involved in the drug war, 05 Nov 2008The roster of violent crime in Mexico in recent weeks is alarming: headless bodies found hanging from bridges, policemen ambushed by assailants with automatic weapons, grenades dropped into a crowd of people in a public square, killing and injuring several.Full_Story

US Calls Bolivian Drug Charges AbsurdPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 1:33pm
The State Department Friday rejected as patently absurd a charge by Bolivian President Evo Morales that U.S. drug enforcement agents encouraged drug trafficking in Bolivia. Mr. Morales has given the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the DEA, three months to cease operations in the country. VOA's David Gollust reports from the State Department. In another sign of frayed U.S.-Bolivian relations, the Bush administration has sharply rejected a charge by the country's leftist president of U.S. involvement in the local drug trade.Full_Story

Violence rocks NicaraguaPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 2:39pm
Following a day of political violence that swept across the capital and other parts of the country after both of the main candidates for mayor of Managua declared victory in Sunday's hotly contested municipal elections, Nicaragua's private sector leaders are calling for a nationwide recount with the help of international observers. Cisar Zamora, president of the Nicaraguan-American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM), told The Nica Times yesterday afternoon that his business chamber is finalizing a formal request to call for an internationally audited recount, following the government's refusal to accredit international or national observers to monitor Sunday's elections.Full_Story

Guatemalan Economic Model FailedPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 2:43pm
The economic model implemented in Guatemala since 1989 has failed to reduce poverty and foster growth, according to a report from the United Nations Development Fund (UNDP) that will be presented here on Tuesday. During that period, the role of the State in regulating the market was restricted and the public administrative apparatus was reduced, two principles that are the pillar of neoliberal policies.Full_Story

Chavez Boosts Election DrivePosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 2:46pm
President Hugo Chavez urged Tuesday the members of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) to boost campaigning and registration for the next elections for mayors and governors. During a live show today on "Venezolana de Television" channel, the head of State continued what he called an electoral patrol operation of the PSUV, for the November 23 polls.Full_Story

Car bombings in Iraqi capital kill 4, wound 22Posted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:16am
A bomb exploded in a parked car in a bustling section of downtown Baghdad early Wednesday, killing four people and wounding 15 others, police said, the third consecutive day of morning rush hour blasts in the Iraqi capital. Full Story

Iran test-fires new surface-to-surface missilePosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:17am
Iranian Defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar says his country has successfully test-fired a new generation of surface-to-surface solid-fuel missile. Full Story

Insurgents vow to resist security pactPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:18am
Ten Iraqi insurgent groups have agreed to escalate attacks against U.S. and Iraqi forces to derail the proposed U.S.-Iraqi security agreement, an Internet monitoring service said Tuesday. Full Story

UK doctor on trial says he backed Iraq insurgentsPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:19am
An Iraqi doctor on trial for allegedly attempting a suicide bombing in Britain testified Tuesday that he supported Sunni insurgents in his homeland but felt no grudge against the British people. Full Story

UN urges Congo truce, might add more peacekeepersPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:20am
The U.N. Security Council moved closer Tuesday to approving 3,000 reinforcements for its overstretched peacekeeping force in Congo, as the U.N. chief called for a cease-fire to protect "at least 100,000 refugees" cut off by fighting in rebel-held areas. Full Story

North Korea to halt border crossings with SouthPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:22am
North Korea ratcheted up its threats to sever ties with South Korea by announcing Wednesday that it will halt cross-border traffic next month over what it calls Seoul's confrontational stance against Pyongyang. Full Story

Three dead as car bomb rocks Afghanistan's KandaharPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:23am

A car bomb exploded near government offices in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar Wednesday, killing at least three people and wounding nearly 40, officials said. Full Story

US aid worker killed in PakistanPosted on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 5:23am
Gunmen in Pakistan have shot dead an American aid worker and his driver in the north-western city of Peshawar. The men were killed just outside their office in the University Town area. It is not clear who the attackers were. Full Story

Spanish police repel migrants at border crossingPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 9:03am
Spanish authorities say police have fired tear gas to repel around 150 African migrants who tried to force their way into the enclave of Melilla from Morocco. Full Story

5 Die in Shootout at Mexican JailPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 10:47am
Five prisoners died in a shootout in a jail in the Pacific Coast city of Mazatlan on Friday, the authorities said. A sixth man was found hanged in his cell, but it was unclear if he had been killed or committed suicide. Full Story

New Cuba policy could hurt Caribbean tourismPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 10:48am
Fears are growing that the tourism industry in many Caribbean states could suffer if Barack Obama, US president-elect, decides to weaken or lift a long-standing US embargo on Cuba. US passport holders are now banned from going to Cuba. But if American tourists, the Caribbeans biggest group of visitors, were granted unrestricted access to what is potentially the regions largest tourism destination, a seismic shift could hit the region, said Rafael Romeu, an International Monetary Fund economist who has studied the issue. Full Story

Brazil oilfield may house 100bn barrelsPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 10:49am
Brazils newly discovered pre-salt oilfields may contain more than 100bn barrels, Haroldo Lima, head of the industry regulatory, said on Friday. Mr Lima said just the pre-salt oilfields already under concession may contain between 50bn and 80bn barrels and that the total area could surpass 100bn barrels. Full Story

Pakistan president sees success in militant warPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 11:03am

Pakistan is succeeding in its fight against Islamic extremists close to the border with Afghanistan, even though the campaign is being hampered by U.S. missile strikes in the region, the country's president said Monday. Full Story
Reports: Russian accident sub intended for IndiaPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 11:04amIndia's navy was supposed to lease the brand-new Russian nuclear submarine that suffered an accident over the weekend which killed 20 people, news reports said Monday. Full Story

Georgia urges EU not to resume 'business as usual' with RussiaPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 11:05amGeorgia called on the European Union Monday not to return to business as usual with Russia, saying Moscow was not respecting an EU-brokered ceasefire agreement. Full Story
Explosion kills 2 Georgian police near S. OssetiaPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 11:06amAn explosion killed two Georgian police officers early Monday near the disputed region of South Ossetia, an official said. EU monitors called the attack an unacceptable breach of the cease-fire that ended the Georgia-Russia war. The explosion in the village of Dvani was followed by a second blast when a group of police arrived to help, wounding three more officers, he said  one seriously, Interior Ministry spokesman Shota Utiashvili said. He blamed Ossetian paramilitaries for the blast. Full Story
Militants attack U.S. supplies in northwest PakistanPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 11:07amMilitants in northwest Pakistan hijacked 13 trucks carrying supplies for Western forces in Afghanistan on Monday as they passed through the Khyber Pass, a government official said. Most supplies, including fuel, for U.S. and other Western forces battling a Taliban insurgency in landlocked Afghanistan are trucked through neighboring Pakistan, which is also facing growing militant violence. Full Story
Hamas and the Art of Time-WastingPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:14pmAn official Egyptian statement released the day before yesterday expressed regret over Hamas's decision to boycott the reconciliation talks with Fatah in Cairo and in the process wasting an opportunity for national unity, despite the strenuous efforts exerted by the Egyptians the statement said. Full Story
Saudi Aramco to cut oil supplies to Asia in DecemberPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:17pmSaudi Aramco, the world's biggest state oil company, will cut crude supplies to Asia in December for the first time in at least a year as demand slumps for naphtha and diesel fuel. The Dhahran, Saudi Arabia-based producer will reduce shipments to Japan, South Korea and Taiwan by 5% to 6% below levels agreed under annual contracts, said five refinery officials, who received notices from the company. They asked not to be identified because of confidentiality agreements. Full Story
Etisalat investiges mobile network disruption in DubaiPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:31pmEtisalat is investigating the interruption in mobile networks in Dubai that started early on Monday. The interruption is believed to be in Etisalats GSM networks in Dubai, which affected landline to mobile phone calls. Full Story
Lebanon arrests militants behind Syria attacksPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:32pmLebanese authorities arrested five militants suspected of involvement in attacks in Syria and Lebanon and of belonging to an Al Qaida-inspired Islamist group, security sources said on Monday. Full Story
Fatah's security forces flex their muscles at Ain al-HilwehPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:34pmThe Western-backed Fatah party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas staged a show of force on Sunday in the largest of Lebanon's 12 refugee camps, the scene of recent clashes with Islamists. Full Story
Jerusalem's Mayoral Race Reflects the City's Troubled TimesPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:36pmWhen Jerusalemites go to the polls Tuesday to elect a new mayor, they will choose among a man on trial in France for arms trafficking and money laundering, a self-made millionaire who wants to build thousands of Jewish homes in the heart of an Arab neighborhood, and an ultra-Orthodox rabbi who won't put his picture on his campaign posters. Full Story
Spate of Attacks Leaves 12 Dead Across IraqPosted on Monday, November 10, 2008 at 1:38pmAt least 12 Iraqis were killed Sunday in a spate of attacks, many of them in provinces where much-lauded Iraqi-led security operations had taken place recently. Full Story
Philippines ship, 23 crew seized near SomaliaPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:32amPirates hijacked a Philippines chemical tanker with 23 crew near Somalia, bringing the total number of attacks in waters off the impoverished African nation this year to 83, a maritime official said Tuesday. Full Story
Taiwan ex-president detained in laundering probePosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:34amFormer Taiwan president Chen Shui-bian, an anti-China firebrand known for advocating Taiwan's independence from Beijing, was in custody on Tuesday after being questioned for most of the day about a money-laundering case. Full Story
Chavez says consul in Houston stripped of postPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:35amVenezuelan President Hugo Chavez says his former consul in Houston has been stripped of his post for moving the consulate in that city without permission. Full Story
American tourist slain on sailboat in VenezuelaPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:36amAn American tourist was shot and killed, and a friend wounded, in an apparent robbery attempt aboard a sailboat on Venezuela's Caribbean coast, police said Monday. Full Story
Algeria vote to end term limits angers oppositionPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:36amAlgerian lawmakers are expected to vote on Wednesday to lift presidential term limits, a move seen by the OPEC member's opposition as a ruse to let President Abdelaziz Bouteflika stay in office for life. Full Story
Australia extremists accused of planning 'violent jihad'Posted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:37amFive Muslim extremists planned terrorist acts in Australia in pursuit of "violent jihad" because they believed Islam was under attack worldwide, a court heard as their trial began Tuesday. Full Story
Iranian papers praise president's letter to ObamaPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:40amIran's president is attracting some support at home for his message of congratulations to U.S. President-elect Barack Obama, which several newspaper commentaries said Tuesday presented an important opportunity. Full Story
2 roadside bombs kill 3, wound 14 in BaghdadPosted on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 at 5:41amA pair of roadside bombs exploded in quick succession during the morning rush hour in east Baghdad on Tuesday, killing three people and wounding 14 others, police and hospital officials said. Full Story

Coutesy Terrorism Research Center, Inc.

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