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Hillary Clinton Urges Democrats to Unite Behind Barack Obama


US POLITICS: Hillary Clinton has urged the Democratic Party to unite behind Barack Obama to elect him president, saying the party does not have a "moment to lose or a vote to spare." She spoke late Tuesday to a cheering audience at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado, where Obama is to accept the party nomination Thursday. The two senators fought a bitter, months-long battle for the nomination. Clinton said Obama must become the next president, saying he would move the country forward while Republican John McCain would only offer more of what she called the same failed policies of the Bush administration.

GEORGIA: second U.S. military ship carrying humanitarian aid has arrived at the Georgian port of Batumi. The ship docked today after U.S. officials said military ships carrying aid will not dock at another Georgian port, Poti, where Russian forces are deployed. The first U.S. aid shipment drew criticism from Russian officials, who said battleships do not normally deliver aid. A Russian military official said today Russia is monitoring the buildup of NATO naval forces in the Black Sea. On Tuesday, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev ordered his foreign ministry to set up diplomatic relations with the Georgian breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, formally recognizing them as independent states.

THAILAND - PROTESTS: A Thai court has issued arrest warrants for nine protest leaders whose supporters have taken over the prime minister's compound and other buildings in Bangkok's government district. Court officials say the nine are facing charges of inciting unrest and trying to overthrow the government. Some of the arrest warrants are for leaders of the People's Alliance for Democracy, which has been the main organizing force behind the rally. Protesters began occupying the grounds of a government compound in Bangkok on Tuesday and have vowed to not leave until the government of Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej falls.

KOREAS SPY: South Korean prosecutors say a North Korean woman has been arrested on charges of spying for her communist homeland. Prosecutors say the suspect, Won Jeong-hwa, used sexual favors to gain information from military officers and posed as a North Korean defector. Won is suspected of collecting information, photographs and the exact locations of key military installations and weapons systems. She also allegedly plotted to assassinate South Korean intelligence agents with poisoned needles. In addition, she is accused of gathering information about North Korean defectors and military officers. Prosecutors say one officer gave Won classified information.

INDIA - FLOODS: India has called in the army to help with relief efforts as floodwaters rise in the eastern part of the country. Officials say more than 100 soldiers and three helicopters joined with government aid workers in eastern Bihar state today to provide relief and hand out supplies. Indian officials say the soldiers are using motor boats in an efforts to get to the more than one million people trapped when heavy monsoon rains caused the Kosi river to breach its banks and shift its course. Officials say the swollen river has already submerged small homes and entire villages in its path.

SUDAN - HIJACKING: Hijackers who forced a Sudanese plane to land in Libya have released all of the plane's estimated 100 passengers. Libyan aviation officials say the hijackers released the hostages after negotiations began today -- but the crew members of the plane are still on board with the hijackers. It is still unclear who the hijackers are, and why they hijacked the Boeing 737 bound from Sudan's troubled Darfur region to the capital, Khartoum. After taking control of the plane, the hijackers landed in Libya Tuesday and demanded the plane be refueled so that they could fly on to Paris.

ZIMBABWE: Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe says he will soon form a new government, without the opposition party Movement for Democratic Change. The state newspaper "The Herald" today quoted Mr. Mugabe as saying the MDC apparently does not want to join his cabinet. But parliamentary speaker Lovemore Moyo, a member of the MDC, told a South African radio station today that power-sharing talks between the ruling party and the opposition are continuing. The talks have been stalled over who will hold executive power in the new government -- Mr. Mugabe or main MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

AFGHANISTAN VIOLENCE: Afghan officials say police have found the body of a kidnapped Japanese aid worker. Officials said today that it appeared Kazuya Ito was shot to death. The 31-year-old Ito worked for a non-governmental group, Peshawar-kai, that runs medical clinics in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Gunmen kidnapped Ito Tuesday while he working on a project in eastern Nangarhar province. Meanwhile, Afghan officials say more than 30 Taliban militants have been killed in fighting since Monday. The officials say Afghan and coalition forces killed 18 Taliban militants in southern Helmand province. Elsewhere in Helmand province, officials say airstrikes killed another dozen Taliban militants.

INDIA - KASHMIR: Indian forces in Kashmir say they have killed a suspected Muslim militant but two others remain barricaded inside a home. Police say the militants had killed at least three people earlier today on the outskirts of Kashmir's Hindu-dominated winter capital of Jammu. They say the militants then fled to a nearby house, where they took six people, including women and children hostage. Indian officials say they believe the militants slipped across the border from Pakistan before donning police uniforms and opening fire, killing two civilians and a soldier.

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