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Digest

Palestinian leader quits in frustration

By TIMES WIRES
Published May 15, 2007


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GAZA CITY, GAZA STRIP - The Palestinian interior minister, Hani al-Qawasmeh, resigned Monday as four more Palestinians were killed in fierce factional gunbattles. Qawasmeh, who has been unable to control either the Fatah or the Hamas forces, said he had not been given authority to direct the security forces that were supposed to be under his control. The resignation and the bloodshed put enormous strain on the unity government. Qawasmeh was a compromise candidate approved by both Fatah and Hamas, but neither accepted his authority.

 

U.S. soldier killed in border town

TERI MANGAL, PAKISTAN - Militants killed a U.S. soldier and a Pakistani on Monday after a meeting held in a Pakistani frontier town seeking to calm the worst clashes in years between Afghan and Pakistani troops policing a border crossed daily by Taliban and al-Qaida insurgents. The attack produced a rare American casualty inside Pakistan, which is a U.S. ally in the fight against terrorist groups but has uneasy relations with Afghanistan on how to deal with insurgents.

 

Skirmish in rebel zone kills eight

COLOMBO, SRI LANKA - Rebels attacked a group of Sri Lankan soldiers who had crossed into insurgent territory in the north, sparking a battle that left seven guerrillas and a soldier dead, the military said Monday. The rebels denied any casualties. The fighting took place Sunday and was the latest in a series of clashes that have killed dozens in Mannar, a northwestern district that has in recent weeks become a flash point in Sri Lanka's deepening conflict.

 

Here they call him O'Bama

MONEYGALL, IRELAND - Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, Democratic candidate for president, is the talk of this village because recently unearthed records indicate that he is a son of Moneygall. Stephen Neill, a local Anglican rector, said church documents he has found, along with census, immigration and other records tracked down by U.S. genealogists, appear to show that Obama's great-great-great-grandfather, Fulmuth Kearney, was reared in Moneygall, then left for America in 1850, at 19.

 

Militarists drive to expand forces

TOKYO - Japan's Parliament laid the groundwork Monday for amending the country's pacifist constitution, boosting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's drive to give the armed forces a larger global role, but adding to critics' concerns about a resurgent Japanese militarism. The country's 1947 constitution was drafted by U.S. occupation officials after World War II, and it has never been amended. Many Japanese credit the charter's pacifist clause, Article 9, with keeping the country out of war since 1945.

 

Kangaroos may be in gun sights

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - Authorities said Monday they want to shoot more than 3, 000 kangaroos on the fringes of Australia's capital, noting the animals were growing in population and eating through the grassy habitats of endangered species. The Defense Department wants to hire professional shooters to cull kangaroos at two properties on the outskirts of Canberra, where some areas have as many as 1, 100 kangaroos per square mile - the densest kangaroo population ever measured in the region.

 

[Last modified May 15, 2007, 00:22:41]


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