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Biden meets with Elizabeth Warren while mulling White House run

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U.S. Vice President Joe Biden met on Saturday with Senator Elizabeth Warren, a popular progressive leader with a big support base among Democrats, as he mulls whether to run for president, according to a source familiar with the matter.

Biden has been meeting with senior advisers to evaluate options for taking on former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Democratic front-runner who has struggled to overcome fallout from her use of a private email server while working as the nation’s top diplomat.

His meeting with Warren is further evidence of how seriously the vice president is considering a run for the party’s nomination. Warren has a lot of support from liberal-leaning groups that would be critical to winning in early voting states.

The vice president’s office declined to comment other than to say Biden had left his home in Delaware to come to Washington for a meeting.

“The vice president traveled last minute to Washington, DC, for a private meeting and will be returning to Delaware,” a White House official said.

Biden’s entry into the race would up-end the primary process. He has a long history of supporting policies to boost the middle class, an issue that is important to Warren and that Clinton has made one of the signature issues of her campaign.

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Saudi Arabia blames Iran for tanker attacks but does not want war

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Saudi Arabia’s crown prince blamed Iran for attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman and called on the international community to take a “decisive stand”, but said that the kingdom does not want a war in the region.

Attacks on two oil tankers on Thursday, which the United States also blamed on Iran, have raised fears of broader confrontation in the region. Iran has denied any role in the strikes south of the Strait of Hormuz, a vital shipping route and major transit route for oil.

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Two AFP journalists beaten, detained in Central African Republic

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Security forces in Central African Republic beat and detained two journalists working for French news wire Agence France-Presse (AFP) covering a banned opposition protest in the capital Bangui, the reporters said Sunday.

Charles Bouessel, 28, and Florent Vergnes, 30, said they were held for more than six hours and questioned three times on Saturday after having been manhandled by members of the Central Office for the Suppression of Banditry (OCRB).

The pair also had their equipment confiscated and a camera smashed up.

AFP condemned the incident as "unjustifiable police violence".

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Hong Kong leader apologizes as rally chokes city

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About two million protesters choked Hong Kong's streets in a powerful rebuke of a reviled extradition law, organisers said Sunday, piling pressure on the city's embattled pro-Beijing leader who apologised for causing "conflict" but refused to step down.

The show of force saw vast crowds marching for hours in tropical heat, calling for the resignation of chief executive Carrie Lam, who was forced to suspend the bill as public anger mounted.

Throngs of largely black-clad protesters snaked their way for miles through the streets to the city's parliament -- with the organisers' estimate for the crowd size doubling an already record-breaking demonstration the previous Sunday in the city of 7.3 million.

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