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Venezuela’s Chavez says no more cancer cells found

CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said on Saturday doctors have found no more malignant cells in his body after cancer surgery but he delegated some powers just hours before a planned trip back to Cuba for chemotherapy. Chavez resisted calls from the opposition to temporarily hand over the…

White House welcomes Dalai Lama, China irked

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) – China accused the United States on Saturday of “grossly” interfering in its internal affairs and damaging relations after President Barack Obama met exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama at the White House. Obama met the Nobel Prize laureate for some 45 minutes, praising him for embracing…

Swazi king endorses mass circumcision to fight HIV

MANKAYANE, Swaziland — Swaziland’s King Mswati III called Friday for his male subjects to get circumcised as he endorsed a campaign aimed at tackling the world’s highest HIV infection rate. Flanked by a large royal contingent including his mother, who rules alongside him, four of his 13 wives and several…

Tunisian police break up anti-government rally with tear gas

TUNIS — Tunisian police fired tear gas Friday to break up an anti-government protest in the capital, with demonstrators accusing the authorities of using violence to end their peaceful action. After Friday prayers, hundreds of protestors joined a sit-in near the seat of government in Tunis’ Kasbah neighbourhood to demand…

Deadly Mexico prison break near U.S. border

NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico — At least seven prisoners were killed and 59 others escaped after guards lost control of a prison in the town of Nuevo Laredo, on the border with the United States, state officials said. Soldiers surrounded the Sanctions Enforcement Center prison following a breakout that came after…

Soldiers to destroy Mexico’s largest marijuana farm

TIJUANA, Mexico — Mexican soldiers will begin destroying the country’s largest ever marijuana plantation under the watchful eyes of state prosecutors, officials said Friday, as hundreds of troops descended on the site. “We estimate that it will take at least eight days” for soldiers to destroy the 120 hectare (nearly…

Japan nuclear reactor halted over pressure drop

TOKYO — A Japanese power firm said it would halt operations at a nuclear reactor because of a technical failure, placing further strain on the country’s power supply. Kansai Electric Power Co. said it would manually shut down reactor No. 1 at its Ooi plant in central Japan because of…

Monks try to teach ‘maleness’ to Thai ladyboys

CHIANG KHONG, Thailand — The 15-year-old aspiring “ladyboy” delicately applied a puff of talcum powder to his nose — an act of rebellion at the Thai Buddhist temple where he is learning to “be a man”. “They have rules here that novice monks cannot use powder, make-up, or perfume, cannot…

Israel aircraft raid Gaza for fourth day in row

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories — Israeli aircraft struck Gaza overnight for the fourth time in as many days, wounding a militant who was about to fire a rocket, Palestinian security sources said on Saturday. The Palestinian was admitted to hospital but his injuries were not life-threatening, the sources said. An…

Mumbai blasts death toll rises to 19

MUMBAI — Indian detectives trawled for leads on Saturday to the triple blasts which rocked the country’s financial hub, Mumbai, as the death toll from the coordinated explosions rose to 19. Two men who sustained serious injuries in Wednesday’s rush-hour bombings died in hospital, a home ministry statement said. Twenty…

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