ລິ້ງ ສຳຫລັບເຂົ້າຫາ

NATO Summit Turns to Symbolism


NATO SUMMIT: NATO leaders are gathered along the French-German border for a summit Saturday marking the alliance's 60th anniversary. In a ceremony at the start of the meeting, U.S. President Barack Obama joined German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other heads of state and government on the German side of the Rhine River for a symbolic walk across a bridge leading into France. The leaders were joined halfway by French President Nicolas Sarkozy coming from the French side. The day's talks are being held in the French city of Strasbourg.

NOKOR MISSILE: South Korean media are reporting that North Korea has apparently missed its first opportunity for the controversial launch of what it says is a communications satellite. Reports from Seoul quote officials and meteorologists who say strong winds and bad weather conditions Saturday are believed to have kept North Korea from going ahead with the launch. However, Pyongyang has four more days to fulfill its promise of sending the rocket into space.

PAKISTAN UNREST: Security officials in Pakistan say a suspected U.S. missile strike in the country's northwest has killed at least 13 people, including foreign militants. Authorities said Saturday's attack was launched from a suspected U.S. unmanned aircraft (drone) in the North Waziristan tribal region, near the border with Afghanistan. The strike targeted a home in the region, which is a known hotbed for Taliban and al-Qaida militants. Officials say the region was also hit by a suicide bombing Saturday at a security checkpoint in the town of Miran Shah.

AFGHAN - VIOLENCE: The U.S. military says Afghan and U.S.-led coalition troops have killed 20 insurgents in ground fighting and air strikes in the volatile southern province of Helmand. A military statement says the clashes erupted Friday when the joint patrol was ambushed in the Kajaki district. It says the insurgents were killed after troops returned fire and called for air support. The statement says insurgents in the Kajaki district are known to be heavily involved in bomb-making, weapons smuggling, drug activity and attacks on troops.

SLOVAKIA - ELECTION: Slovaks are voting in Saturday's presidential run-off election between the popular incumbent and a strong opposition challenger. President Ivan Gasparovic won nearly 47 percent of vote in the first round of elections last month. He now faces the top opposition candidate, sociologist and former social affairs minister Iveta Radicova, who received 38 percent. Mr. Gasparovic has an important advantage -- the support of the popular Prime Minister Robert Fico. The far-right Slovak National Party has also backed the incumbent.

US - CUBA: Seven members of the U.S. House of Representatives arrived in Havana Friday to meet with Cuban officials. Representative Barbara Lee, who heads the delegation, said the group's agenda was not fully set but that they came to "learn and talk" about issues including trade, commerce, tourism and agriculture. The Democratic congresswoman has co-sponsored a bill that would lift long-standing restrictions on U.S. citizens' travel to Cuba. Earlier this week, U.S. lawmakers introduced identical legislation in the U.S. Senate.

US - SHOOTING: U.S. authorities say a gunman killed 13 people before killing himself in an attack Friday at an immigration center in Binghamton, New York. The local police chief (Joseph Zikuski) said 14 bodies were found in the building after the shooting. He said 37 people escaped unharmed and another four were hospitalized in critical condition. The gunman was identified as Jiverly Voong, a 42-year-old Vietnamese immigrant from the nearby community of Johnson City. Police said he was recently fired from his job.

THAILAND - CAMBODIA: Thailand says two of its soldiers have died in heavy fighting with Cambodian troops along a disputed border area. The troops exchanged gun, rocket and artillery fire Friday near the Preah Vihear temple, the center of a months-long standoff that has led to high-level diplomatic talks. Both sides blamed the other for firing first Friday. Cambodian military sources claimed at least four Thai soldiers were killed, but the Thai Embassy in Phnom Penh only confirmed two fatalities.

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