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International

Sea lion cubs found dead in Galapagos Islands

By IANS

Quito (Ecuador) : Rangers of the Galapagos national park have discovered seven dead cubs of the highly threatened sea lion on the San Cristobal Island, Spanish news agency EFE reported Thursday.

The carcasses bore cut marks and windpipes had been ruptured, according to a report, which blamed the deaths on roaming dogs.

Park management, police environmental crime unit and other agencies have launched an operation to capture the three dogs suspected of the killings.

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Spanish king urges unity of European security forum

By IANS

Vienna : Spain's King Juan Carlos has said the foreign ministers at next week's meeting of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in Madrid should aim for a common position, Spanish news agency EFE reported Thursday.

At the inaugural ceremony of the new OSCE headquarters in the Austrian capital, the Spanish monarch Wednesday said he would like to see the 56 member states "speak with only one voice that identifies the points of common interest".

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Mexico holding 500 political prisoners, says rights body

By IANS

Mexico City : More than 500 political prisoners are in jails across Mexico without access to their legal rights, according to an NGO, Spanish news agency EFE reported Thursday.

The independent group called the Decade Against Impunity Solidarity Network (RSD) released a report Wednesday, mentioning in details false charges, use of torture to force confession and denial of civil and legal rights to political detainees.

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Ghost of failed election haunts Nepal

By Sudeshna Sarkar, IANS

Kathmandu : On the day that Nepal would have taken a major step towards lasting peace and progress by holding a historic election to write a people's constitution -- Nov 22 -- the peace process has become a mockery with the poll reduced to a mirage and the Maoists waging a fresh war on the government.

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EU, Asean clash on Myanmar sanctions, but both want reforms

By DPA

Singapore : The EU clashed Thursday with the Association of South-East Asian Nations (Asean) on sanctions against Myanmar, but both organisations jointly called for democratic reforms in the military-ruled country.

Asean and the EU are holding a half-day commemorative summit in Singapore, marking 30 years of relations that have long been tense on disagreements over how to deal with Asean member Myanmar.

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US university helped save lives in Cyclone Sidr

By IANS

New York : A university in the US provided such detailed information on Cyclone Sidr that Bangladeshi officials were able to move people away and probably saved countless lives.

Almost 24 hours before the storm hit Bangaldesh's coast, emergency officials received detailed storm surge maps from the Louisiana State University (LSU) that showed the areas that would bear the maximum impact of Sidr.

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UN chief to attend Middle East peace meeting in U.S.

By Xinhua

United Nations : U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will attend the U.S.-sponsored Middle East peace conference to be held in Annapolis next week, a U.N. spokesperson said Wednesday.

The U.N. chief made the announcement as he briefed the members of the U.N. General Assembly in an informal session Wednesday, spokesperson Michele Montas said.

The secretary-general expressed his hope that the meeting, at which he will be present as an observer, will provide the impetus for final status negotiations, Montas said.

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Global warming could trigger wars, economic meltdown

By DPA

Hong Kong : Global warming could trigger wars, economic upheaval and population shifts, scientists in Hong Kong have said following a study of the effects of extreme temperatures.

Researchers from the University of Hong Kong have found that extreme cold weather in the past centuries has coincided with wars, population collapse and economic crises. The ratio of wars in a cold climate was almost double the ratio of wars in a warm climate and periods of social turmoil over the centuries coincided with extreme weather, they found.

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British zoo's work in Assam wins major wildlife award

By Prasun Sonwalkar, IANS

London : An innovative Chester Zoo project that uses smoke bombs comprising chilli powder to ward off marauding elephants from human habitation and crops in Assam was awarded the field conservation award at this year's annual BIAZA awards on Wednesday evening.

Charles Walker, MP, presented the prestigious conservation and wild life awards at the Marwell Zoological Park in Hampshire on behalf of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA).

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Wen's visit deepens mutual trust, co-op among East Asian countries

By Xinhua

Beijing : Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao paid an official visit to Singapore last Sunday and later attended a series of important regional meetings there, including the ASEAN plus Three summit, the East Asia summit and the trilateral meeting of the leaders of China, Japan and South Korea.

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