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Putin vows to boost Russian population

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on Monday vowed to reverse Russia’s demographic decline and boost its population to 154 million, as he ramped up his re-election campaign in the face of protests. In a new campaign article addressing his core constituency including employees of state companies and blue-collar workers, Putin also…

Same-sex marriage push in Australia

Two bills calling for the legalisation of gay marriage were introduced to Australia’s parliament on Monday in a move campaigners said would add momentum to the push for equality. The private member’s bills, introduced by left-leaning Greens lawmaker Adam Bandt and Stephen Jones from the ruling Labor party, take to…

Flight from Japan sparks New Zealand flu scare

New Zealand health authorities on Monday admitted they overreacted to an influenza scare on a flight from Japan by quarantining the plane on the tarmac at Auckland airport for several hours. The Air New Zealand flight from Tokyo was isolated after it landed Monday morning when the airline informed health…

Carbon tax controversy may spark trade war: Airbus boss

A widening split in the global aviation industry over an unpopular European carbon tax may trigger a trade war, the head of plane manufacturer Airbus said Monday. “I have to say I’m really worried also as a manufacturer about the consequences,” Airbus Chief Executive Thomas Enders told a conference on…

China’s vice president warns against U.S. military focus on Asia

China’s likely next leader Xi Jinping warned the United States against plans to boost its military strength in Asia as he prepared for a closely watched visit to Washington starting Monday. China’s vice president, who is tipped to rule the rising Asian power until 2023, called on the United States…

Greek riots escalate as parliament passes austerity plan

The Greek parliament in the early hours of Monday voted its approval of a harsh new austerity plan in exchange for new loans from foreign lenders. The vote was not even close, with 199 members of parliament voting in favor, 74 against, and 27 abstaining. The two major parties in…

London police launch anti-terrorism hotline, solicit informants

LONDON — With just over five months to go until the Olympic Games, police in London launched a new anti-terrorism hotline Monday to persuade residents and visitors to shop potential attackers. “Terrorists live amongst us. We want you to tell us about anyone or anything you see which is out…

Fukushima reactor may be overheating again

Temperature readings at one of the crippled Fukushima nuclear reactors have risen above Japan’s stringent new safety standard but there was no immediate danger, its operator said Sunday. Tokyo Electric Power said one of three thermometers on the number-two reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant indicated gradual heating this…

Iran warns Hamas not to compromise with Israel

Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei on Sunday warned the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas against any “compromise” in its fight against Tehran’s nemesis Israel, his official website reported. “Always be wary of infiltration by the compromisers in a resistance organization, which will gradually weaken it,” Khamenei told the visiting Hamas Gaza…

Central Athens burns as Greek parliament debates austerity

Fires raged in central Athens on Sunday as protesters against the latest Greek austerity deal battled police. According to Reuters, “The air over Syntagma Square outside parliament was thick with tear gas as riot police fought running battles with youths who smashed marble balustrades and hurled stones and petrol bombs.”…

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