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Italy’s main trade union calls general strike

ROME — Italy’s biggest trade union, the CGIL, on Sunday called for a general strike against the government’s new austerity plans. Union chief Susanna Camusso, speaking in the daily La Repubblica newspaper, said the CGIL (Italian General Confederation of Labour) would hold a meeting on August 23 to fix a…

Ahmadinejad: Nuclear weapons a waste of money

MOSCOW — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called nuclear weapons a waste of money Sunday as he prepared to receive a top Russian security official for crisis mediation talks. Ahmadinejad said he was looking to build a closer relationship with Moscow and expecting to see the Russian-built Bushehr nuclear power plant…

First ‘gay’ wedding celebrated in Cuba

HAVANA — Braving drizzling rain and people’s prejudices, a Cuban man and transgender woman tied the knot here in what has been described as the first “gay marriage” on the Communist-ruled island. Ignacio Estrada and Wendy Iriepa were married in a civil ceremony in Havana’s Palace of Weddings on the…

Libya rebels enter strategic town near Tripoli

ZAWIYAH, Libya (Reuters) – Libyan rebels hoisted their flag in the center of this town near the capital on Sunday after the most dramatic advance in months cut offMuammar Gaddafi’s capital from its main link to the outside world. The swift rebel advance on the town of Zawiyah, about 50…

Israeli cost of living protests spreading from city to city

BEERSHEBA, Israel (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of people gathered across Israel Saturday to call for lower living costs in an effort to show the government their protest movement has countrywide support. The gatherings followed a rally last weekend in Tel Aviv, Israel’s commercial capital, in which over 250,000 demonstrators…

Somalia wants troops to guard food aid convoys

MOGADISHU (Reuters) – Somalia called Saturday for the creation of a humanitarian force to protect food aid convoys and camps in the famine-hit Horn of Africa country. Islamist rebels mostly retreated from the capital Mogadishu last weekend but the threat of guerrilla-style attacks such as suicide bombings remains despite their…

Gaddafi forces, rebels fight over Zawiyah

NEAR ZAWIYAH/TRIPOLI, Libya (Reuters) – Libyan government forces and rebels clashed around the western town of Zawiyah on Saturday as the insurgents tried to push closer to the capital Tripoli. Reporters heard gunfire and skirmishing in the coastal town, about 30 miles west of Tripoli. The highway from the capital…

Brazil arrest thanks to false teeth

Brazilian authorities seeking to take a bite out of crime caught a lucky break when a purse-snatcher unwittingly left behind key evidence that led to the thief’s arrest: his own dentures. The robber grabbed a woman’s handbag in the small town of Severina, about 430 kilometers (265 miles) from Sao…

UK says it must tackle social problems

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain needs to tackle deep-seated social problems following riots and looting in English cities this week, the center-right government said on Saturday, and a U.S. street crime expert it has brought in said arrests alone would not solve the problem. “There are communities that have just been…

Hamas announces ‘deal’ with US on aid to Gaza

The Palestinian movement Hamas and the US Agency for International Development have reached a compromise to maintain the flow of aid, a senior Hamas official said Saturday. “We’ve reached a compromise with USAID through the United Nations” to allow the continuation of aid, which was suspended by Washington on Friday,…

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