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NUCLEAR SUMMIT: A two-day nuclear summit in Washington ends Tuesday with a focus on keeping terrorists from acquiring nuclear materials. The 47 countries at the summit hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama plan to issue a joint declaration pledging nations to secure nuclear materials over the next four years. Experts have said there is enough highly enriched nuclear material around the world to make at least 120,000 nuclear weapons, and have expressed concern some of that material could fall into the hands of terrorists.
Before the start of the summit Monday, Mr. Obama met with Chinese President Hu Jintao, and agreed to increase pressure on Iran to give up its nuclear activities. China had been reluctant to place more U.N. sanctions on Tehran.
Iran, North Korea and Syria, much criticized by the West for their suspected nuclear programs, were not invited to the summit.
KYRGYZSTAN: Kyrgyzstan's self-declared interim government has issued an
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ultimatum to ousted President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, calling on him to surrender in the capital, Bishkek, by afternoon or face arrest by special forces. The new government's security minister (Azimbek Beknazarov) said Tuesday the president's immunity has been stripped and a criminal case has been opened against him. Mr. Bakiyev fled the capital last week after clashes between police and protesters left about 80 people dead and hundreds wounded.
Mr. Bakiyev has since been rallying support in Kyrgyzstan's south. He told a crowd of several thousand supporters Tuesday at a square in Jalalabad that he does not recognize the actions of the interim government.
Mr. Bakiyev said his power came from the people and not himself. However, he said he is willing to negotiate with the new rulers.
THAILAND PROTESTS: Thailand's foreign minister has lashed out at ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, accusing him of instigating deadly street demonstrations in Bangkok and calling him a "bloody terrorist."
In comments Monday on the sidelines of a global nuclear summit in Washington, Kasit Piromya compared Mr. Thaksin to dictators Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin. Thai officials at the conference called on the international community to urge anti-government protesters to negotiate with the government to avoid military intervention. Also on Monday, Thailand's influential army chief called for parliament to be dissolved and early elections held as the best way to end anti-government protests. General Anupong Paojinda said he does not want to use force against the thousands of red-shirted protesters who are demanding Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva resign. The general said dissolving parliament appears to be the reasonable step to take.
US - CHINA: U.S. President Barack Obama told Chinese President Hu Jintao in Washington Monday to adopt a more "market-oriented" exchange rate for the Chinese currency. Before the official opening of the U.S. nuclear summit, Mr. Hu said China will "firmly stick" to its own path for reforming its currency, the yuan.
China's official Xinhua news agency reported that Mr. Hu told President Obama that increasing the yuan's value will not solve U.S. unemployment problems nor shrink the trade deficit between Washington and Beijing.
The United States has said Chinese currency controls keep the value of the yuan artificially low, making Chinese products cheaper on the global market. Mr. Obama has said international markets should determine how much the yuan is worth.
KOREAS - TENSIONS: Seoul officials say North Korea shut down a handful of South Korean-owned buildings at a mountain resort Tuesday, two years after Seoul stopped tours to the joint tourism site. The South's Unification Ministry said the North used stickers to seal a family reunion center, a fire station, a cultural center, a spa and a duty-free shop. Pyongyang also ordered four Chinese-South Koreans working at the resort to leave the country within 48 hours. Pyongyang announced last week that it would withdraw from the Mount Kumgang resort, which has been inactive since Seoul suspended tours in 2008. Seoul halted the tours after a North Korean soldier shot and killed a South Korean female tourist who had strayed into a restricted beach area.