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U.S. border state still in hands of Mexican conservatives

Mexico’s conservative opposition retained the governor’s seat in Baja California after the ruling party candidate conceded defeat Saturday following a recount in the politically crucial state. The state bordering the United States was the biggest prize in the July 7 regional elections in 14 Mexican states, with analysts saying its…

Former Israeli general reveals existence of new ‘Prisoner X’

A former Israeli intelligence chief said on Saturday that authorities held a person in secret during the 1970s but implied that the prisoner was no longer in custody. “Thirty-five years ago, in my post as head of military intelligence, I approved the detention in prison of Prisoner X, in total…

Police fire rubber bullets, tear gas on Istanbul protesters

Turkish riot police on Saturday fired rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannon to disperse hundreds of protesters trying to enter an Istanbul square that was the cradle of deadly unrest that engulfed the country in June. The police moved in when demonstrators protesting in the city’s Beyoglu neighbourhood against…

Afghanistan court releases men convicted of torturing 15-year-old bride

A court in Kabul ordered the early release of three people convicted over the torture of a child bride, an official confirmed Saturday, in a move denounced by activists as a blow for women’s rights. Sahar Gul, who was 15 at the time her ordeal, was burned, beaten and had…

Greek religious relic becomes massive hit in Russia

Around 65,000 people have queued for hours in Saint Petersburg to see a religious relic brought from Greece, officials said Saturday, in the latest sign of the Russian Orthodox Church’s influence in post-Soviet Russia. The cross of Saint Andrew — said to be a relic of the X-shaped cross on…

Bolivian president accuses U.S. of hacking into officials’ emails

Bolivia’s leftist president Evo Morales on Saturday accused US intelligence of hacking into the email accounts of top Bolivian officials, saying he had shut his own account down. Latin American leaders have lashed out at Washington over recent revelations of vast surveillance programs, some of which allegedly targeted regional allies…

Former Czech PM admits to affair with aide facing bribery charges

Former Czech prime minister Petr Necas on Saturday admitted a love affair with his top aide whose indictment of bribery and abuse of power led to the fall of his centre-right administration. Necas stepped down in mid-June after his chief-of-staff Jana Nagyova had been charged along with seven other senior…

Justice Department backs off on secret seizure of reporters’ records

Under heavy criticism from media organizations and others, the Obama administration has pulled back on one important aspect of its crackdown on government leaks: the ability of prosecutors to secretly seize reporters’ records while investigating leaks…  …

Is it illegal for the U.S. to block Edward Snowden’s asylum claim?

Is the United States illegally trying to block Edward Snowden’s right to seek asylum in other nations? That’s what the National Security Agency leaker asserts. In a meeting Friday at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport, he told representatives of human…  …

Obama makes economic case for immigration reform

US President Barack Obama on Saturday urged Congress to pass a wide-ranging immigration reform bill, saying it would trim the US deficit and boost economic growth. His message was aimed at the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, which has balked at approving a bipartisan Senate bill that would beef up border…

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