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Welsh call center profits off lowly paid prisoners in call center

A business in Wales is bussing in inmates from an open prison 21 miles away and paying them just £3 a day to man its call centre, the Guardian can reveal. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) confirmed that dozens of prisoners from Prescoed prison in Monmouthshire, south Wales, had done…

Hitman in Swedish honeymoon murder gets 25 years

One of the South African men accused of killing Swedish honeymooner Anni Dewani pleaded guilty Wednesday and was sentenced to 25 years in prison in a plea deal, the prosecution said. Mziwamadoda Qwabe pleaded guilty to murder, kidnapping, robbery, and illegal possession of a firearm, prosecutor Eric Ntbazalila told AFP.…

Egypt helicopter gunships kill 20 militants

Egyptian helicopter gunships killed 20 militants in Sinai on Wednesday, state media and the army said, days after 16 soldiers were killed in an attack attributed to Islamist extremists. The military’s strikes on Tumah village – its first in the peninsula for decades – were carried out as security forces…

China braces for shocking political murder trial

The son of disgraced Chinese politician Bo Xilai has told CNN the “facts will speak for themselves” in the case of his mother, who goes on trial Thursday over the murder of a British businessman. Bo’s wife Gu Kailai, herself a celebrated lawyer, stands accused of murdering British business associate…

Iran says ‘retired’ Guards among Syria hostages

“Retired” members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and army are among 48 Iranians taken hostage in Syria by rebels on the weekend, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said on Wednesday, the ISNA news agency reported. But he denied the rebels’ allegation that the Iranians had been on a military mission,…

Mexico destroys 8 million chickens amid bird flu outbreak

Eight million chickens have so far been slaughtered in Mexico and 66 million more were vaccinated in a bid to contain a bird flu outbreak in the west of the country, authorities said. The agriculture ministry said in a statement that during the vaccination process in the Los Altos region…

Philippine capital battles deadly floods

More than 800,000 people in and around the Philippine capital battled deadly floods Wednesday as more rain fell, with neck-deep waters trapping slum dwellers and the wealthy elite on rooftops. Monsoon rains that have pounded Manila for more than a week eased slightly overnight, but the government said between 60…

Seven Cameroonian athletes defect during Olympics

Seven athletes from Cameroon have “defected” in London where some were participating in the 2012 Olympics, Cameroon media reported Tuesday, citing an official. The disappearance of the seven athletes was reported on the website of the state daily Cameroon Tribune. According to the head of Cameroon’s Olympics delegation, David Ojong,…

Venezuela candidate slams Chavez over Nazi accusations

CARACAS — Venezuela’s leading opposition candidate — whose grandmother is a Holocaust survivor — on Tuesday slammed President Hugo Chavez’s accusations that he is tied to Nazi groups. It was the latest in a series of intensely personal exchanges in the brutally negative campaign, in which the youthful Henrique Capriles…

Hungarian Nazi suspect cleared of 1941 deportation

BUDAPEST — Hungarian prosecutors cleared Tuesday a 97-year-old of organising the 1941 deportation of 300 Jews but were still probing more serious allegations about his later World War II activities. Accusations that Laszlo Csatary sent the 300 to their deaths at the Kamyanets-Podilsky camp in Ukraine were “groundless” since he…

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