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Afghans welcome, and worry about, drawdown plan

JALALABAD, Afghanistan – US Ambassador Karl Eikenberry spent yesterday visiting a province in eastern Afghanistan, hoping to reassure local officials, tribal elders, and shopkeepers that President Obama’s announced troop withdrawal “does not mean the United States is abandoning Afghanistan.” “For nine years, the international community has been in front. Beginning now and over the next three years, the Afghan people ...

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More than 1,500 refugees flee Syria in one day

More than 1,500 Syrian refugees streamed across the border to safe havens in Turkey in one day as Syria’s three-month-old pro-democracy movement braced for another day of mass protests today. The refugees crossed into Turkey yesterday as Syrian troops backed by tanks pushed to the border in their sweep against the anti-government protests, which have posed the gravest challenge to ...

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With Afghan withdrawal, US focus turns to Pakistan

ISLAMABAD-As the U.S. looks ahead to its phased withdrawal from Afghanistan, even more attention is being directed toward Pakistan, where Obama administration officials say al-Qaida and its allies are still plotting attacks against the West. They argue that threat has been effectively neutralized in Afghanistan, a key justification for President Barack Obama’s announcement Wednesday that the U.S. will withdraw 33,000 ...

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Rwanda genocide: Verdict due for former female minister

Judges at the UN-backed court for Rwanda is to hand down a verdict for the only woman to be charged with genocide before an international court. Pauline Nyiramasuhuko, 65, was a government minister in 1994 in Rwanda when 800,000 people – mostly from the Tutsi ethnic group – were killed. Along with four former local officials and her own son,…

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European leaders agree new rescue for Greece

BRUSSELS (AFP) – European leaders dug out a fresh rescue for debt-ridden Greece to avoid global financial chaos, but on condition Athens rallies parliamentary support for new austerity measures. As negotiators for the EU and the IMF struck agreement with the Greek government on spending cuts and tax rises worth 28 billion euros and plans to bring in tens of ...

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Some Greeks fear government selling nation to help save it

ATHENS: They are the crown jewels of Greece’s socialist state, and they are now likely to go to the highest bidder: the ports of Piraeus and Thessaloniki; prime Mediterranean real estate; the national lottery; Greek Telecom; the postal bank and the national railway system. And then comes the mandated deeper round of austerity measures, which will slash the wages of ...

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Gadhafi, Libya rebels hold indirect negotiations

BEIRUT — Indirect talks on the future of Libya have been taking place between representatives of Moammar Gadhafi’s government and rebels based in the eastern city of Benghazi, an opposition spokesman said Wednesday. Mahmoud Shammam of the Transitional National Council said the private mediation efforts, which have yet to bear fruit, have been held in South Africa and France through ...

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UN: Sharp drops in opium, coca production in 2010

VIENNA – World opium production decreased sharply last year due to a blight in Afghanistan but is expected to rebound, and coca growing and cocaine production also fell, the United Nations reported Thursday. Still, the United States remained the biggest market for cocaine in the world, and European cocaine demand was rapidly catching up, the Vienna-based U.N. Office on Drugs ...

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World War One to Afghanistan: Spinning Battles and Withdraws

Article by WorldNews.com Correspondent Dallas Darling. Julius Cavendish, from Kabul, has just reported in “The Independent” how the battle of Nuristan was anything but an area that U.S.-NATO forces withdrew from, and in doing this, Afghani insurgents easily overrun the province and raised their flag of the Islamist movement. Recall several months when Nuristan fell to U.S.-NATO troops, it was ...

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