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Karzai seeks aid from neighbors in Afghan fight against ‘terror’

Afghan President Hamid Karzai warned Wednesday that there would be no hope for peace in his war-ravaged nation without help from its neighbours to combat “terror groups”. “Terrorist networks are by far the major threat to Afghanistan’s security,” Karzai said at the opening of a global conference in Istanbul aimed…

China’s Ai Weiwei will fight tax charges ‘to the death’

BEIJING (Reuters) – Dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei vowed on Wednesday to fight tax evasion charges “to the death”, a day after the government ordered a company linked to him to pay 15 million yuan ($2.4 million) in back taxes and fines. The 54-year-old artist, who has been a thorn…

Poor nations a ray of hope for crisis-weary G20

LONDON (Reuters) – Simple reforms would eliminate much of the risk of investing in poor countries, unleashing billions of dollars of pent up cash and providing a welcome boost to the world economy, a report to be presented at this week’s G20 summit will say. Tidjane Thiam, charged with pulling…

BREAKING: UK court rules WikiLeaks’ Assange should be extradited

LONDON (Reuters) – WikiLeaks’ founder Julian Assange should be extradited from Britain to Sweden to face questioning over alleged sex crimes, London’s High Court ruled on Wednesday, rejecting his appeal against the move. Swedish authorities want to question the 40-year-old over accusations of rape and sexual assault made by two…

Cannes sheds its black tie image for G20 riot gear

CANNES, France (Reuters) – The glamorous and easy-going Riviera resort of Cannes turns into a fortified camp this week as French police prepare for the arrival of world leaders for a G20 summit set to be hijacked by fears that a euro zone crisis relief plan is unraveling. Thousands of…

Award-winning Cuban dissident ‘detained and beaten’

Guillermo Farinas, a leading Cuban dissident and winner of the European parliament’s top human rights prize, was arrested and for the first time beaten in detention, said his mother and activists. Farinas, who won the Sakharov rights prize in 2010 after going on a 135-day hunger strike to press for…

Japan restarts first nuclear plant since disaster

A nuclear reactor in southern Japan was to begin producing electricity again on Wednesday, its operator company said, in the first restart of a stalled atomic power plant since the Fukushima disaster. Operations at the reactor began late on Tuesday, Kyushu Electric Power said, less than a month after the…

Philippine workers banned from 41 countries

The Philippines said Wednesday it had banned Filipinos from travelling to work in 41 countries and territories that had allegedly failed to provide enough safeguards to protect them from abuse. The Department of Labour and Employment in a board resolution posted on its website said the blacklisted countries failed to…

Bidders scramble for royal underwear

A pair of ample bloomers once owned by Queen Victoria sold for more than £9,000 ($14,330, 10,500 euros) at an Edinburgh auction, more than three times the original estimate. An anonymous buyer paid £9,375 for the white silk undergarments during an auction of items from London’s Old Battersea House —…

Assange awaits London court ruling on extradition

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange finds out on Wednesday whether he will be forced to leave Britain in order to face questioning over rape allegations in Sweden. The High Court in London is set to announce at 0945 GMT whether the 40-year-old Australian, whose whistleblowing website has enraged governments around the…

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