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Politics

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India launches nuclear submarine

IndiaIndia has launched its first indigenously built nuclear-powered submarine capable of firing ballistic missiles. The submarine, once in service, will give the country the capability to fire nuclear weapons from sea besides land and air. India plans to build a fleet of five nuclear-powered submarines. Defense experts have estimated that India has between 50 and 100 nuclear warheads. VOANews.com….

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Taliban’s influence rising in Afghanistan, Study says

TalibanAccording to the findings of a study released Tuesday, the influence of the Taliban in Afghanistan is growing among its traditional Pashtun population while the radical Islamist grouping increasingly appeals to non-Pashtuns too. Mounting anger over the conduct of foreign troops had contributed to the convergence of the groups that had previously supported the international engagement in the country, according to the study published by the independent Afghan Analysis Network.Full Story : Sindhtoday.com…..

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U.S. combat troops to withdraw from Iraq cities

iraq-flagU.S. combat troops prepared to leave the last of Iraq’s cities on Tuesday, a move hailed by Iraqi authorities as restoring sovereignty and applauded by Iraqis even though they fear it may leave them more vulnerable. By midnight on Tuesday, all U.S. combat units must have withdrawn from Iraq’s urban centres and redeployed to bases outside, according to a bilateral security pact that also requires all U.S. troops to leave Iraq by the end of 2011. The last U.S. combat troops left central Baghdad on Monday, withdrawing to two large bases near the capital’s airport, and withdrawals from other cities were underway. Some troops tasked with training and advising Iraqi forces will stay behind. Full Story : Reuters.com….

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Chavez allies back ousted Zelaya

hondurasLeft-wing Latin American leaders have declared their support for Honduran President Manuel Zelaya, who was ousted in an army coup on Sunday. In Honduras protesters defied an overnight curfew, holding a rally in the capital, Tegucigalpa. The curfew was imposed by interim President Roberto Micheletti just hours after he had been sworn in. The removal of Mr Zelaya came amid a power struggle over his plans for constitutional change. Full Story : BBC.co.uk….

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Iranian authorities arrest eight British embassy employees in Tehran

iran flagIranian authorities arrested eight local employees of the British embassy in Tehran, accusing them of “playing major parts” in the recent unrest over a presidential election, the semi-official Fars news agency reported today. The move comes amid deteriorating relations between Iran and the West in the wake of a crackdown against Iranians opposed to the reelection of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Full Story : LAtimes.com….

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Iran vote patterns suspect, study says

AhmadinejadA new analysis of voting figures in Iran’s disputed presidential election published Sunday found “irregularities” in the turnout and “highly implausible” swings to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Independent British think tank Chatham House found that in two conservative provinces, Mazandaran and Yazd, the turnout was more than 100 percent a trend that it said was “problematic,” although admittedly not unprecedented in Iran. Full Story : WashingtonTimes.com….

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Council won’t annul Iran election results

ahmadinijad-iranIran’s Guardian Council ruled out nullifying results of the disputed election, saying irregularities were reported before the balloting, not during or after. A spokesman for the council — which oversees Iran’s elections — said any irregularities reported before balloting were beyond the scope of the panel, CNN reported. The results and claims of other irregularities during the voting process sparked daily demonstrations in Tehran and other Iranian cities. Full Story : UPI.com….

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US House clears $106 bln war funding, Senate next

dollar-stack cashThe $106-billion war funding bill, approved 226 to 202, posed the toughest test yet of President Obama’s ability to rally his party’s left wing, which views his foreign and military policies as too hawkish. Most of the money, $80 billion, will go to the Pentagon for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill also includes $400 million for helping train Pakistani military personnel in counterinsurgency tactics. More than $2 billion was included in the bill for eight additional Boeing C-17 cargo planes, despite efforts by the Obama administration to end production. Full Story : LATimes.com….

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CIA chief believes Cheney almost wants US attacked

Dick CheneyCIA director Leon Panetta says it’s almost as if former vice president Dick Cheney would like to see another attack on the United States to prove he is right in criticizing President Barack Obama for abandoning the “harsh interrogation” of terrorism suspects. “I think he smells some blood in the water on the national security issue,” Panetta said in an interview published in The New Yorker magazine’s June 22 issue. “It’s almost, a little bit, gallows politics. When you read behind it, it’s almost as if he’s wishing that this country would be attacked again, in order to make his point.” Full Story : Reuters.com…

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N.Korea to build more nuclear bombs after UN vote

north korea flag A defiant North Korea on Saturday vowed to build more nuclear bombs and to start enriching uranium for a new weapons programme after the UN Security Council imposed sanctions over last month’s nuclear test. The North Korea, describing Friday’s sanctions resolution as a “vile product” of a US-inspired campaign, said it would never abandon nuclear weapons and would treat any attempt to blockade it as an act of war. Full Story : YahooNews.com….

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Bush FBI sent 18 armored agents to search my house, wiretap whistleblower says

The Bush Administration‚Äôs FBI sent 18 agents in body armor to the home of a man who revealed details of the National Security Agency‚Äôs warrantless wiretapping program, according to a little-noticed account of the whistleblower published Thursday. Thomas Tamm, a former Justice Department lawyer in the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review, revealed details of the wiretapping program to the New York Times in 2004. In 2007, FBI agents raided his Potomac, Maryland home. Full Stor : Rawstory.com….

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Sri Lanka doctors ‘to be tried’

tamil-civilianA group of doctors who worked in Sri Lanka’s rebel-held war zone are being held on suspicion of collaborating with Tamil rebels, the government says. The doctors could be in detention for a year or more before being tried. With journalists banned from the conflict zone, they became an important source of news about the fighting during the final bloody months of war. There has been no word from the doctors, whose work was praised by the US and UN, since they were detained. Full Story : BBC.com….

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Obama to urge new U.S.-Muslim engagement

ObamaPresident Barack Obama hopes to begin a new phase of engagement between the United States and the Muslim world when he speaks in Cairo, his speechwriter said. Obama sees his speech Thursday as a chance to advance a dialogue his inauguration “to really start a new chapter of engagement,” speechwriter Ben Rhodes said during a briefing Wednesday in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the first stop of the president’s Middle East trip. Full Story : UPI.com….

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Twitter blocked in China

China surpass US in internet usage.The Great Firewall of China has grown again. Forty-eight hours ahead of the most sensitive date on the Chinese calendar, a host of popular websites, including photo-sharing site Flickr.com, search engines Livesearch.com and Bing.com (Microsoft‚Äôs answer to Google), as well as Hotmail, are all suddenly inaccessible, in addition to Twitter.com. Video-sharing site YouTube and blogger portals Wordpress and Blogspot have already been blocked for weeks. Full Story : TheglobeandMail.com…..

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New poll: Obama is up, Congress way down

obamaPresident Obama has more than double the approval ratings of Democratic congressional leaders, and triple the positives of the Republican Party, according to a new National Research 2000 poll. The poll was taken during a week when Obama made his most important appointment to date, the nomination of U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court. It found 67 percent of Americans with a favorable opinion of Obama with just 29 percent in the unfavorable category, a figure that has remained largely unchanged for weeks. Full Story : Seattlepi.com……

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North Korea may launch long-range missile in weeks

dong-feng-missileNorth Korea may this month test a missile designed to fly as far as U.S. territory and may also be gearing up for skirmishes with the South around their disputed sea border, South Korean news reports said on Monday. Last week, North Korea conducted a nuclear test that put it closer to having a working atomic bomb, test-fired a barrage of short-range missiles and threatened to attack the South, raising tension to one of its highest levels since the 1950-53 Korean War. Full Story : YahooNews…..

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Cuba criticizes Microsoft blocking Messenger

cubaCuba criticized Microsoft on Friday for blocking its Messenger instant messaging service on the island and in other countries under U.S. sanctions, calling it yet another example of Washington’s “harsh” treatment of Havana. Microsoft recently announced it was disabling the program’s availability in Cuba, Syria, Iran, Sudan and North Korea to come into compliance with a U.S. ban on transfer of licensed software to embargoed countries. Full Story: MSNBC.com……

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Iran’s Ahmadinejad invites Obama to debate at UN

ahmadinijad-iranMonday, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad invited U.S. President Barack Obama for a debate at the United Nations. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, said “Earlier, I had invited U.S. ex-president George W. Bush to participate in a live debate with him in the United Nations. If I am elected by the great Iranian nation (as president in the upcoming presidential elections), I will repeat my invitation to Mr. Obama to have a debate in the UN to study the origin of the global issues and the management of the world for international peace.”What he will not debate, however, is Iran’s nuclear program. Ahmadinejad said discussion on that issue is over.Full Story : Xinhua.net…..

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Netanyahu: Israel will still build on Jewish settlements

israelIsraeli prime minister ignores Obama’s calls and says ‘natural growth’ on West Bank and in Jerusalem will continue. The Israeli prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, said today that his country would continue to build in Jewish settlements in Jerusalem and the West Bank, despite calls from the US administration for a halt. Netanyahu’s comments came less than a week after he met President Barack Obama in Washington, where he was told that the US wanted to see a stop to settlement expansion. Full Story : Guardian.co.uk….

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Venezuela, Bolivia Supplying Iran With Uranium For Its Nuclear Program

iran-nuclear-plantVenezuela and Bolivia are supplying Iran with uranium for its nuclear program, according to a secret Israeli government report obtained Monday by The Associated Press. The two South American countries are known to have close ties with Iran, but this is the first allegation that they are involved in the development of Iran’s nuclear program, considered a strategic threat by Israel. Venezuela and Bolivia are close allies, and both regimes have a history of opposing U.S. foreign policy and Israeli actions. Full Story : HuffingtonPost.com…..

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