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Pakistani cricketer turned politician leads U.S. drone protest in Pakistan

Pakistani cricketer turned politician Imran Khan led Western activists and thousands of supporters Saturday on a defiant march to the tribal belt to protest against US drone strikes. Crowds lined the road to greet Khan, and scrums of media and well-wishers thronged his 4X4 as the convoy of more than…

Turkey hits back after new mortar fire from Syria

Turkey hit back on Saturday against what it said was a fresh round of mortar fire from Syria, little more than 24 hours after UN condemnation of deadly cross-border bombardment. Syria, for its part, said four Turks were among a convoy of “terrorists” killed in fighting in the heart of…

Foxconn denies strike at China Apple iPhone plant

Electronics parts giant Foxconn denied reports Saturday that thousands of workers went on strike at one of its plants in central China and halted production of components for Apple’s iPhone 5. The Taiwan-based company acknowledged in a statement that two isolated labour disputes erupted at its plant in Zhengzhou on…

South Africa miners protest after 12,000 laid off

Hundreds of the 12,000 miners sacked by the world’s largest platinum producer in South Africa on Saturday gathered to protest their dismissal and mourn a colleague killed in clashes with police. The workers meeting at a stadium in the northern town of Rustenburg would also debate how to respond to…

Ikea founder ‘too busy to die’

The 86-year-old founder of Swedish furniture giant Ikea revealed he has no plans to retire and rejected any idea of the company going public in an interview published in Switzerland. “The company will never go to the market,” Ingvar Kamprad told the latest edition of Swiss business magazine Bilanz. “We…

Venezuela election result set to upset global oil politics

Hugo Chávez promises to increase production and reduce dependence on US market by doubling crude exports to Asia While giant rallies in Caracas may be drawing the world’s attention ahead of tomorrow’s Venezuelan presidential election, the global significance of the vote can be found hundreds of miles to the east…

Pope’s butler gets 18 months’ jail in ‘Vatileaks’ case

Pope Benedict XVI’s former butler Paolo Gabriele Saturday got 18 months in prison for stealing secret documents from the Vatican that reveal fraud and intrigue in the tiny state. But the possibilty he will be pardoned by the Pope “is very concrete and very likely”, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told…

North Korean shoots officers, defects: South Korea

A North Korean soldier defected to the South on Saturday through the heavily militarised border, saying he shot dead two superior officers in the process, the South Korean military said. It is only the fourth such defection reported in the last 10 years, with none of the previous incidents involving…

Cleric Abu Hamza to arrive in U.S. after extradition

Radical Islamist preacher Abu Hamza and four other terror suspects were on their way from Britain to the United States on Saturday after a court rejected their last-ditch court bid to block their extradition. A legal saga that has dragged on for more than a decade in the courts of…

French cops in Marseille locked up for corruption

Twelve police officers in France’s crime-ridden Marseille appeared in court Friday on suspicion of corruption, extortion and drug dealing, with a prosecutor claiming there was “overwhelming” proof of guilt. Seven were locked up and five granted provisional release while French Interior Minister Manuel Valls announced he was suspending them and…

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