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Anti-Gaddafi fighters regroup after heavy losses

NTC fighters regrouped on Friday for a new assault on Moamer Gaddafi’s hometown Sirte, remaining upbeat despite suffering heavy losses the previous day at the hands of the toppled tyrant’s forces. The fighting comes as Gaddafi’s spokesman warned that “thousands” of loyalists were ready to battle the National Transitional Council…

U.S. tax-evasion probe leads to Israeli banks

(Reuters) – The U.S. pursuit of offshore tax evaders is widening to include Israel, where U.S. authorities are scrutinizing three of Israel’s largest banks over suspicions their Swiss outposts helped American clients evade taxes, people briefed on the matter said. The banks under scrutiny by the U.S. Justice Department’s criminal…

Japanese resort to launch search for new geisha

A small hot spring resort in eastern Japan plans to recruit three women to become geisha in an effort to preserve a tradition and to boost tourism, a local official said on Friday. Shimoda city, 130 kilometres (80 miles) southwest of Tokyo, has set aside 5.23 million yen ($68,000) for…

Space station crew makes safe return to Earth

Three astronauts returned safely to Earth from the International Space Station aboard a Soviet-era capsule whose mission follows an unprecedented spate of Russian space accidents. Space officials said the Soyuz TMA-21 capsule landed on its side in the wind-swept steppes of the ex-Soviet republic of Kazakhstan at 0400 GMT on…

Geithner urges unity in euro zone crisis

WROCLAW, Poland (Reuters) – The world will not see the kind of coordinated response policymakers organized during the global financial crisis in 2009 but the United States and the European Union must work closely together to overcome the current economic challenges, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said on Friday. Geithner also…

Greenpeace celebrates 40th anniversary in Vancouver

VANCOUVER — Greenpeace celebrated its 40th anniversary in Vancouver on Thursday, with the environmental group praising the Canadian city’s role in spawning a global movement at the forefront of green activism. It was from Vancouver that a boat named “Greenpeace” set off on September 15, 1971 for Amchitka Island, Alaska,…

Second Fukushima plant unlikely to reopen

TOKYO — Japan’s new industry minister has acknowledged it will be difficult to restart the companion nuclear plant to the one at the heart of the country’s atomic crisis, media reports said. The Fukushima Daini (number two) nuclear complex is about 12 kilometres (seven miles) from the stricken Fukushima Daiichi…

Clinton says Iran will free U.S. hikers

SAN FRANCISCO — US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Thursday that she was confident Iran would free two US hikers convicted of spying and rejected concerns about the delay in their release. “At this point we are not at all concerned because we have received word through a number…

26 die in Indian floods, 200,000 evacuated

BHUBANESWAR, India — At least 26 people have died and nearly 200,000 have been evacuated as a result of massive flooding in the eastern Indian state of Orissa, a minister said on Thursday. The floods were triggered by torrential monsoon rains across Orissa, causing water levels to breach river banks,…

Cameron in Tripoli, says U.K. will aid in hunt for Gaddafi

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron on Thursday pledged that Britain would help to hunt down fugitive former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. “This is not over,” Cameron told a news conference in Libyan capital Tripoli. “We will help you to find Gaddafi and bring him to justice.” Cameron…

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