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Updated: 27 min 39 sec ago

Top Gabon civil servants probed over hardwood traffic

1 hour 2 min ago

Security agents in Gabon are investigating several top civil servants, including an advisor to the president, for illegal trafficking in a precious hardwood, a source close to the government said Friday. Some of the officials have been taken into custody by the General Directorate for Research (DGR) agency in the past week, while others were questioned and later released, the source told AFP. DGR agents this week raided the ministry of water and forests in Gabon's capital Libreville, taking about 10 officials into custody, the source said, asking not to be named.

Categories: News

Alleged spy Gross felt abandoned by US in Cuba

2 hours 13 min ago

US contractor Alan Gross says he was mistreated by his captors and felt abandoned by his own government after Cuba arrested him and accused him of spying. In his first major interview since his release last year, Gross said exercise, family memories and humor kept him going though his five-year ordeal. Gross was contracted by the US Agency for International Development to deliver electronics to Jewish groups when he was arrested in Havana in December 2009.

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Britain sends mixed messages on climate ahead of Paris talks

2 hours 27 min ago
By Susanna Twidale LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's cuts to renewable energy subsidies and abandonment of its carbon capture and storage scheme are likely to diminish the country's influence at the global climate talks starting in Paris this weekend, investors and green groups said. Britain's commitment to foreign aid, including around 5.8 billion in climate finance from 2016-2021, has enabled the country to be an influential deal broker at climate talks in the past, gaining the ears of developed and developing countries. "The situation on domestic policy is very confused and the international implications of the CCS decision are very damaging," said Chris Littlecott at climate thinktank E3G.
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Asian soccer body urges support for FIFA candidate Salman

5 hours 40 min ago
GENEVA (AP) — FIFA presidential candidate Sheikh Salman received an endorsement Friday from his executive committee colleagues at the Asian soccer confederation.
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The Latest: Dutch government gains deal for housing refugees

5 hours 41 min ago
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — The latest on the mass movement of asylum-seekers and others seeking refuge in Europe. All times local:
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Global shares mostly down, China slides on brokerage probe

7 hours 23 min ago

TOKYO (AP) — Global stocks were mostly lower in muted trading Friday, after Wall Street was closed for Thanksgiving, but China's market fell sharply as investigations into the securities industry widened to include two top brokerages.

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India's Modi to meet Sonia Gandhi to discuss new indirect tax

9 hours 22 min ago

By Rupam Jain Nair NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited opposition Congress party leader Sonia Gandhi for talks on Friday to break a deadlock over the introduction of a new indirect tax in a bid to put his economic recovery agenda back on track. The face-to-face meeting between the two rivals would be the first since Modi rose to power 18 months ago, and could herald a long-awaited compromise on the proposed goods and services tax (GST), billed as the biggest tax reform since independence. Modi, 65, has raised India's global profile with a series of trips abroad but suffered his biggest setback as prime minister when his nationalist party crashed to defeat in a big state election this month.

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Asia stocks lower amid Thanksgiving trading lull

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 23:40
TOKYO (AP) — Asian stocks markets were lower in muted trading Friday after Wall Street was closed for the Thanksgiving holiday, and investors continued to watch for developments in tense relations between Russia and Turkey.
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Japan ready to submit proposal for Australia submarine deal

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 22:08

TOKYO (AP) — Japan was set to bid on the joint development and production of an Australian submarine, Tokyo's first major military transfer since the World War II.

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Hopes for Singapore resurgence as Malaysian partnership ends

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 21:07

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Fifty years ago Malaysian and Singapore parted ways to form two separate countries, a decision that helped to kick start the economic miracle that subsequently took place in the Lion City.

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Weak Japan data offer latest bad news for Abenomics

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 20:40

Japan on Friday published a string of mostly weak data, the first major figures since news that world's number three economy had slipped back into recession. A key inflation gauge showed prices fell in October from a year ago, while spending by households also dropped in a double blow for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's high-profile growth blitz, dubbed Abenomics. The weak figures came despite signs that Japan's labour market remained tight, with the headline unemployment rate at a two-decade low of 3.1 percent, down from 3.4 percent in September.

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President starts talks on new PM in deadlocked Croatia

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 16:46

Croatia's president opened talks with parliamentary parties Thursday to try and name a prime minister-designate and end a political stalemate after an election 18 days ago failed to produce an outright winner. The lack of a decisive outcome has caused concerns among analysts, coming as a huge influx of migrants passes through the European Union's newest member, which is slowly emerging from six years of recession and in need of economic reforms. The centre-left alliance, led by the Social Democrats and Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic, won 56 seats but has since secured the support of 10 deputies from smaller parties and minority groups, increasing its chances of staying in power.

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North, South Korea agree to high-level talks next month

Thu, 11/26/2015 - 13:27

A Unification Ministry official in Seoul said the two sides would meet at the deputy minister level on December 11 in the Kaesong joint industrial zone, just inside North Korea. Unification Ministry Spokesman Jeong Joon-Hee told reporters that the North Koreans had initially demanded a set agenda for the Kaesong meeting, but later agreed to Seoul's proposal for a "comprehensive discussion of pending issues related to improving ties". A similar effort back in June 2013 saw both sides agree to hold what would have been the first high-level dialogue for six years -- only for Pyongyang to cancel a day before the talks were scheduled to begin.

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