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Italian PM Berlusconi laughs off sex crime trial

MILAN — Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi on Monday accused Italy’s judges of being out to get him and laughed off his ongoing sex crime trial as he returned to court on fraud charges in a separate trial. “The prosecutors are working against the country,” Berlusconi told reporters in the courtroom,…

Gbago detained in his residence by French army

PARIS (Reuters) – French special forces have detained Ivory Coast’s Laurent Gbagbo and handed him to leaders of the rebel opposition, after French tanks forced their way into his residence, a Gbagbo adviser in France said. “Gbagbo has been arrested by French special forces in his residence and has been handed over to the rebel…

Palestinians to West: We’re ready for statehood

RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) – The Palestinians are ready for statehood, according to a report to be presented to major aid donor countries in Brussels this week by Prime Minister Salam Fayyad. He will present facts and figures to show how hisPalestinian Authority has used hundreds of millions of dollars in foreign assistance over the past…

U.S. military spending up 81 percent since 2001: report

STOCKHOLM — Growth in global military spending slowed to its lowest level since 2001 last year as the world economic crisis hit defence budgets, Swedish think-tank SIPRI said Monday. World military spending rose only 1.3 percent in 2010 to $1.63 trillion (1.14 trillion euros), after average annual growth of 5.1…

Last pre-wedding engagement for William and Kate

DARWEN, England (Reuters) – A large crowd of well-wishers braved a downpour innorthern England on Monday to cheer Prince William and Kate Middleton as they took part in their final official engagement before their wedding. The trip was expected to be one of the last occasions that William, second in line to the British throne,…

Australian who threw daughter from bridge gets life sentence

An Australian man who tossed his daughter from a central city bridge in front of her two young brothers and horrified peak-hour motorists was on Monday jailed for life. Arthur Freeman, 37, was convicted of murdering four-year-old Darcey by throwing her from Melbourne’s West Gate bridge on January 29, 2009 amid a…

Two-drug obesity therapy finds success in initial study

PARIS (AFP) – A new treatment for obesity that combines two existing drugs resulted in twice as much weight loss as the only approved long-term anti-obesity medication, according to a study released Monday. A mix of Phentermine and topiramate, sold under the brand name of Topamax, was shown in clinical…

Ex-leaders to visit N. Korea with Carter: report

SEOUL — Three former world leaders will accompany ex-US president Jimmy Carter to North Korea this month to discuss tensions on the peninsula and food shortages in the communist state, a report said Monday. JoongAng Daily, quoting diplomatic sources in South Korea, said Carter would be accompanied by former Finnish…

Gaddafi forces shell town after he accepts peace plan

BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi shelled the besieged town of Misrata on Monday after the African Union said he had accepted a plan to end Libya’s civil war. Al Jazeera television quoted a rebel spokesman as saying five people died and 20 were wounded in Misrata, a…

Egypt blogger gets 3 years for criticising military

CAIRO — An Egyptian military court on Monday jailed a blogger for three years for criticising the armed forces, the country’s rulers since president Hosni Mubarak’s ouster in February, his lawyer told AFP. “Regrettably, the Nasr City military court sentenced Maikel Nabil to three years in prison,” Gamal Eid said.…

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