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Suspected US Missile Kills Four in Northwest Pakistan


PAKISTAN-VIOLENCE: Pakistani officials say a suspected missile strike from a U.S. drone (unmanned aircraft) has killed at least four militants in the North Waziristan tribal region bordering Afghanistan. The officials say the missile was fired early Monday at a Taliban vehicle in a village near the region's main town of Miran Shah.
Pakistani officials say U.S. unmanned aircraft are believed to have fired more than 40 missiles at suspected al-Qaida and Taliban strongholds in northwest Pakistan in recent months. American officials rarely discuss the missile strikes, which Pakistan has publicly criticized as counterproductive and a violation of its sovereignty.

AFGHANISTAN-BIN LADEN: A new audio message attributed to al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden claims U.S. President Barack Obama will be "powerless" to stop the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan. The 11-minute recording appeared Sunday on an Islamist Web site. The voice attributed to bin Laden says Mr. Obama is weakened because the White House is "occupied by pressure groups." It also claims the war in Afghanistan cannot change course because it is driven by pro-Israel lobbyists and corporate interests in the United States

IRAN-ELECTION-TRIAL: Iranian state media say authorities have put six dissidents on trial for joining mass protests against the disputed June re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The official IRNA news agency says the six opposition activists who went on trial Monday include a prominent student leader, Abdollah Momeni.
Iran's government already has put more than 100 post-election protesters on trial on charges of plotting to overthrow the country's Islamic system. The defendants include leading reformist politicians. Iran's opposition says the June election was rigged to secure Mr. Ahmadinejad's re-election. The Iranian government denies the allegation.

TAIWAN POL: The office of former Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian said Monday that he has appealed his conviction and life sentence on corruption charges. Chen was found guilty Friday of embezzling and receiving bribes worth millions of dollars and laundering part of the money through Swiss bank accounts. Chen's wheelchair-bound wife, Wu Shu-chen, was also sentenced to life in prison. The 58-year-old former leader was convicted of a total of six charges and he and his wife were also fined more than $15 million.Officials said the court gave Chen the maximum sentence because he had severely damaged Taiwan.State-run media in Burma said Monday that authorities seized nearly three million methamphetamine tablets in two separate drug busts near the border with Thailand this month.

BURMA-DRUGS: The official New Light of Myanmar newspaper said an anti-drug squad on Friday found 220,000 methamphetamine tablets hidden in a car's spare tire during a search at a checkpoint in the northeastern town of Tachileik. The driver was arrested. In another raid Friday in the same town, the paper said police and soldiers raided a house and seized more than 2.63 million methamphetamine tablets and several rounds of ammunition. Three suspects were arrested.



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