OBAMA - GHANA: U.S. President Barack Obama, fresh from this week's meeting in Italy
with the G-8 group of industrialized nations, said Saturday that
"Africa is not separate from world affairs."
Mr. Obama made his remarks in Ghana after a breakfast meeting with his counterpart, John Atta Mills.
The U.S. leader will also address Ghana's Parliament Saturday, where he will outline his administration's policy for Africa.
Mr. Obama's landmark visit to Ghana is his first trip to sub-Saharan
Africa since becoming the first African American president.
IRAN: Iran's foreign minister is downplaying a Group of Eight declaration
against his country's crackdown on post-election demonstrators and its
pursuit of a suspected nuclear weapons program.
Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki told reporters in Tehran Saturday
that Iran is preparing a package for the West that will serve as a good
basis for talks.
Mottaki said Iranian officials have not received any new message from the three-day G8 summit, which ended Friday.
The leaders of the world's richest nations met in L'Aquila, Italy where
they released a statement saying the G8 is losing its patience with
US SURVEILLANCE: A review by top U.S. government investigators says a secret
surveillance program approved by President George W. Bush after the
September 11 terror attacks got too little legal review when it
The program included wiretaps without court approval and some
unprecedented intelligence collection efforts. News accounts say it is
not clear how effective the highly controversial program was in
producing useful intelligence. The report was published Friday by five
inspectors general of agencies with intelligence responsibilities.
AFGHANISTAN - US: A U.S. newspaper reports the Bush administration repeatedly discouraged
efforts to investigate the 2001 mass killings of Taliban prisoners by
the militia of an American-backed warlord.
The New York Times reports the FBI, State Department and
Red Cross pushed for a probe, but the White House failed to act because
the warlord, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, was being paid by the CIA at
the time of the killings.
Dostum and his fighters are accused of killing hundreds, and perhaps
thousands of Taliban prisoners who surrendered after the 2001 invasion
OBAMA - ECONOMY: U.S. President Barack Obama - amid a trip that has taken him to Russia,
the G-8 summit, and his first presidential trip to Africa - chose a
domestic topic for his weekly radio and Internet address - the U.S.
Mr. Obama said the American economy is "back from the brink," but that
there is still a long way to go before the economic challenges end.
He rejected suggestions of a second stimulus package and criticism that
the plan had failed, saying the plan "was designed to work over two
SPACE SHUTTLE: The U.S. space agency says thunderstorms may delay Saturday's planned
launch of the shuttle Endeavour, which is headed to the International
Space Station on a construction mission.
NASA issued its assessment Friday as weather forecasters predicted the
storms could interfere with the evening liftoff from the Kennedy Space
Center in Florida.
NASA's shuttle weather officer (Kathy Winters) says
conditions are expected to clear up in the coming days, if the
seven-member astronaut crew needs to wait until Sunday or Tuesday.
FRANCE - BRAZIL - PLANE: The search for flight recorders belonging to the Air France plane that
crashed into the Atlantic Ocean last month is nearing an end.
The Brazil-based commander of American forces supporting the search effort said that one ship towing a U.S. Navy listening device had already
ended the search. He said a second ship was expected to depart the area
However, he said a french nuclear submarine will continue to look for
the so-called black boxes, containing cockpit voice and flight data
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