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Egypt military rulers agree to amend election law

CAIRO — Egypt’s military rulers agreed on Saturday to amend a controversial electoral law following threats of a poll boycott by dozens of political parties and a rally in Cairo’s Tahrir Square for reforms. The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which took power when president Hosni Mubarak was ousted…

Cigarette vending machines banned in England

LONDON — Cigarette vending machines were banned in England on Saturday, a move the government hopes will cut the numbers of children smoking. Anyone caught selling cigarettes from the machines, usually found in pubs and clubs, could face a fine of £2,500 ($3,900, 2,900 euros). Pubs will still be able…

Senior Haqqani commander arrested in Afghanistan

Afghan and NATO forces have captured a senior leader of Afghanistan’s Haqqani network. The Pakistani-based group was founded by former CIA asset Jalaluddin Haqqani and has close ties with both the Taliban and al Qaeda. Watch video, courtesy of Al Jazeera English, below:…

Iran repeats opposition to two-state solution

Any plan to divide a Palestinian state would be unacceptable, Iran’s supreme leader said on Saturday, adding that such a state could exist temporarily as part of “liberated territory.” Israel’s prime minister responded by saying his country would respond to these “hateful” remarks by redoubling its focus on security and…

U.S. Congress freezes $200 million in aid to Palestinians

Key US lawmakers are blocking about $200 million in Palestinian aid in response to the territories’ UN statehood bid, congressional aides said Saturday. Members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee have frozen the funding “until the Palestinian statehood issue is sorted out,” one of…

Kenya coastguard in French hostage standoff

MOMBASA, Kenya (Reuters) – Kenyan coastguards were locked in a high-seas standoff on Saturday with gunmen holding a disabled French woman hostage and the abductors fired warning shots in the air, a government minister said. The victim’s Kenyan boyfriend, John Lepapa, said six masked gunmen brandishing assault rifles stormed their…

Germany ‘won’t give more to EU bail-out fund’

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble ruled out Germany contributing any more money to the beefed-up EU bail-out fund than the 211 billion euros approved by parliament, in an interview published Saturday. “The European Financial Stability Facility has a ceiling of 440 billion euros ($590 billion), 211 billion of which is…

Obama hails death of radical cleric as ‘major blow’

President Barack Obama said the killing of US-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaqi is a “major blow” to Al-Qaeda’s Yemeni outfit and vowed to be relentless in destroying global terror networks. In Sanaa, the defence ministry said Awlaqi, an Al-Qaeda leader wanted over attacks in the US, was killed on Friday morning, while a man…

Plane flies into ferris wheel in Australia

An ultralight plane crashed into a ferris wheel at a small town fair in Australia, narrowly missing two children, and dangled from the structure for hours before its occupants could be rescued. Locals were stunned on Saturday to see the Cheetah S200 fly into the ferris wheel at the Old…

World stocks post worst quarter in 3 years

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Global stocks closed their worst quarter in nearly three years on Friday on nagging concerns about the world economy and the lack of a credible solution to Europe’s debt crisis. The euro and most commodity prices also fell as investors’ search for safety drove up U.S.…

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