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Cocaine use in Swiss cities among highest in Europe: report

GENEVA, Switzerland — Cocaine use in several Swiss cities is among the highest in Europe, researchers said on Monday. “The amounts of cocaine … were in the same range as those European cities with the highest consumption,” said Christoph Ort, from the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology…

Secretary Clinton offers condolences to Indian government after Sikh temple shooting

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called her Indian counterpart Monday after a man attacked a Sikh temple in Wisconsin killing six people before being shot dead himself, a US official said. Clinton, who is on a visit to South Africa, spoke with Indian Foreign Minister S.M Krishna a day…

Hiroshima marks anniversary of atomic bombing

A bell tolled to mark a moment of silence while people joined hands in prayer as tens of thousands marked the anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on Monday. Ageing survivors, relatives, government officials and foreign delegates attended an annual ceremony at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park commemorating the US…

Syrian PM ‘defects’ in latest blow to Assad

Syrian Prime Minister Riad Hijab has defected to the opposition, a monitoring group said on Monday, as state media announced the premier’s abrupt dismissal just two months after his appointment. If confirmed, Hijab’s defection would be the highest-ranking of the 17-month uprising, and a new blow to President Bashar al-Assad,…

Chinese state media tells U.S. to ‘shut up’ in sea dispute

China’s state-controlled media lashed out at the United States on Monday, accusing Washington of “trouble-making” over criticism of Beijing’s claims to a wide swathe of the disputed South China Sea. China’s ire was provoked by a U.S. State Department statement Friday expressing concern over increased tensions in the area and…

Taiwan wants to settle U.S. beef on imports

Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou Monday called for the resumption of stalled trade talks with the United States after the island recently lifted a six-year-old ban on some U.S. beef imports. “We hope the Taiwan-U.S. economic and trade negotiations can be placed back on the right track as soon as possible,”…

Mafia cashes in as hard-up Italians flog their gold

Italy’s traditional goldsmiths are up in arms over a boom in the poorly regulated cash-for-gold sector that is making billions for the mafia as hard-up Italians rush to sell off their bling. Cash-for-gold shops have filled Italy’s streets in recent months, with blanket television adverts urging Italians to sell off…

Gunmen kill 16 Egyptian border guards, cross into Israel

CAIRO — Gunmen on Sunday killed 16 guards in Egypt near the border with Israel before stealing two armoured vehicles and crossing into the Jewish state where one vehicle was destroyed by a helicopter. An Egyptian medical official said gunmen in Bedouin attire drove up in two vehicles and opened…

Prominent Tunisian blogger arrested for drinking alcohol in public during Ramadan

Tunisian blogger Sofiane Shurabi, a scathing critic of deposed president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, was arrested on Sunday for drinking alcohol in public during Ramadan with two friends, police and a lawyer said. Lawyer Anis Ezzine told AFP that Shurabi and a journalist friend were arrested on the beach…

Rioting Zambian coal miners at Chinese-owned mine kill Chinese manager

Zambian coal miners killed a Chinese mine manager and injured his colleague in a riot over wages at a mine known for tensions with the Chinese investor in southern Zambia, state media reported. “Wu Shengzai, aged 50, has been killed by protesting workers after being hit by a trolley which…

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