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Life sentence for Argentine ‘Blond Angel of Death’

BUENOS AIRES: Alfredo Astiz, Argentina’s infamous “Blond Angel of Death,” and 11 other death squad members from the 1970s were jailed for life on Wednesday in one of the country’s biggest human rights cases. Astiz, nicknamed for his cherubic looks, stood trial with other former officials accused of horrific crimes at the ESMA Naval Mechanics School, where about 5,000 dissidents ...

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Israel and Hamas: In the Wake of the Prisoners Exchange

The prisoner swap in which Hamas released Israeli captive Gilad Shalit in exchange for 1,027 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons suggests that Israel and Hamas recognize each other’s unmitigated reality and prerogatives. The deal was unquestionably motivated by mutually beneficial political calculations made on both sides, including a desire to overshadow President Abbas’ efforts to seek UN recognition of a ...

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Tunisia Liberals See a Vote for Change, Not Religion

TUNIS — The liberal political parties emerging as surprise runners-up in elections here argued Tuesday that their success had tempered the commanding victory of the Islamists while offering lessons for their secular allies around the region. Multimedia Slide Show Tunisians Go to the Polls Related Moderate Islamist Party Heads Toward Victory in Tunisia (October 25, 2011) Tunisians Vote in a ...

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Indonesia cuts jail sentence for militant cleric

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesian Islamist cleric Abu Bakar Bashir, convicted of aiding a paramilitary group out to assassinate the president, has had his jail sentence cut from 15 years to nine, a court said on Wednesday, a decision which dismayed some security analysts. The sentence was cut last Thursday. “Very disappointing,” Jakarta-based analyst Noor Huda Ismail told Reuters. “How can ...

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Art installation evokes nostalgia for Tibetan home

DHARMSALA, India — An art installation made of 20 tons of soil from Tibet has touched a deep emotional chord among Tibetan exiles, hundreds of whom lined up to walk across the mounds of soil Wednesday. Tibetan monks walk on a stage containing Tibetan soil during a public installation art project at the Tibetan Children’s Village School in Dharmsala, India, ...

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Thai PM sounds Bangkok inundation warning

Fears of flooding across the Thai capital have grown after the Thai prime minister  warned that parts of Bangkok could face inundation for up to a month and experts pinned the city’s fate on dykes along the Chao Phraya River. Yingluck Shinawatra says that central Bangkok could be swamped by up to 1.5 metres of water in some places if barriers ...

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Panetta warns Iran not to meddle in Iraq

US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Wednesday warned Iran that it should not meddle in Iraq when American forces leave the country at the end of this year. The Pentagon chief said that even after the last of the 39,000 combat troops are out of Iraq, the US will maintain a significant presence in the Middle East. “As the president ...

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