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Pacific islands belonging to US eager to lease land to China

SAIPAN, Northern Mariana Islands — The cash-strapped Northern Mariana Islands, a US territory in the Western Pacific, has offered to lease land to China as long as it is not used for military purposes. Northern Marianas Governor Benigno Fitial made the offer during a US-China Governors Forum in Beijing this…

Canada to spend $1 bln to upgrade armored vehicles

Canada’s public works minister announced Friday a $1 billion upgrade of 550 light armored vehicles used to transport Canadian troops on battlefields in Afghanistan and elsewhere. General Dynamics Land Systems has been contracted to improve the protection of the Light Armoured Vehicle (LAV) IIIs against mines and improvised explosive devices, Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose said in a statement.…

‘It’s your turn next,’ Yemen protesters tell Saleh

SANAA — Tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of the Yemeni capital on Friday to demand the resignation of veteran President Ali Abdullah Saleh, galvanised by the death of Libya’s Moamer Kadhafi. “Ali, it’s your turn next, yours and Bashar’s,” the protesters chanted referring to Syrian President…

Surprise: Obama pulling all U.S. troops from Iraq by year’s end

In a surprise announcement on Friday, President Barack Obama declared a full stop to the U.S. presence in Iraq, telling reporters, “I can say our troops in Iraq will definitely be home for the holidays.” The announcement was a surprise because many observers expected the White House to leave up…

‘Occupy Melbourne’ violently torn apart by police

A large gathering of protesters in Melbourne, Australia was violently disrupted by police last night, with activists forcibly evicted from a public park. The struggle ensued after roughly 100 protesters defied an order to leave City Square, and police said about 20 were ultimately arrested. The number of activists grew…

Gaddafi, in meat locker, still divides Libya

MISRATA, Libya (Reuters) – Muammar Gaddafi’s body lay in an old meat store on Friday as arguments over a burial, and his killing after being captured, dogged efforts by Libya’s new leaders to make a formal start on a new era of democracy. With a bullet wound visible through the…

Soyuz rocket blasts off from French Guiana

KOUROU, French Guiana (Reuters) – A Russian Soyuz rocket blasted off from French Guiana on Friday bearing the first two satellites in Europe’s Galileo global positioning system, a much-heralded mission that will redraw commercial competition in space. The launch from Europe’s space base in South America was the first time…

U.S. demands swift Pakistan action on militants

The United States called on Pakistan on Friday to take action within “days and weeks” on dismantling Afghan militant havens and encouraging the Taliban into peace talks in order to end 10 years of war. Crucially Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appeared to extract recognition from Pakistan that it could…

Chinese hit-and-run toddler dies

A Chinese toddler who was ignored by at least 18 passers-by as she lay bleeding and unconscious in the street, has died, the hospital treating her said Friday, in an incident that has shocked the nation. The plight of the two-year-old girl, nicknamed Yue Yue, captured the public imagination after…

Questions linger about Gaddafi’s death

SIRTE, Libya (Reuters) – Disturbing images of a blood-stained and shaken Muammar Gaddafi being dragged around by angry fighters quickly circulated around the world after the Libyan dictator’s dramatic death near his home town of Sirte. The exact circumstances of his demise are still unclear with conflicting accounts of his…

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