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Friday
Jan212011

US Revokes Visas for Haitian Officials over Alleged Election Fraud

File Photo: Angry election protesters fill the streets of Haiti after the handpicked protoge of President Rene Preval had claimed a place in the disputed presidential polls. Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. State Department confirmed rumors Friday that it had revoked visas for some Haitian officials and supporters of President Preval, but declined to elaborate because visa records are confidential by law.
 
A senior U.S. official, however, told ABC News that visas were revoked for nine -- mostly low-level -- members of Preval’s party citing their alleged role in voter fraud in last November’s election.  

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

Cuba Halts Mail Deliveries to the US

Photo Courtesy of Getty Images(NEW YORK)-- Cuba terminated all mail deliveries to the Untied States Friday. According to Cuban officials, the halt was the result of what they called, imposing new security procedures.

The United States revised its postal procedures in November when it began applying stricter anti-terrorism measures to mail from a number of countries. Cuba is among the countries for which the new procedure has been applied.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio



Friday
Jan212011

Pentagon: Iraq Withdrawl Timeline Is Still 'On Track'

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Despite violent attacks to thwart its efforts, the U.S. military is on track to completely withdrawal troops from Iraq by the end of this year, says a Pentagon spokesman.

"These spectacular attacks are perpetrated to try to derail the process but thus far the Iraqi security forces have handled those, they haven't asked us for assistance," spokesman David Lapan said.

The 50,000 U.S. troops still in Iraq ended their combat mission in late August 2010 and now focus primarily on training local forces. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

Muslim British Cabinet Member Warns Against to Anti-Muslim Attitudes

Photo Courtesy - Getty Image(LONDON) -- The first Muslim woman to sit in the British cabinet is calling attention the social acceptability of discrimination against Muslims in Britain, reports say.

Sayeeda Warsi, who is Pakistani in origin, recently told BBC News, "It has seeped into our society in a way where it is acceptable around dinner to have these conversations where anti-Muslim hatred and bigotry is quite openly discussed."

Friday in a speech at the University of Leicester, Warsi was expected to speak out against anti-Muslim sentiments, blaming the media for "fueling misunderstanding with labels such as 'moderate' or 'extremist,'" reports the Gulf Daily News.

The British cabinet member is also calling for the Muslim community to speak out against Islamic extremism.  This issue has been a major concern for government officials since a homegrown suicide bombing killed 52 people in London in 2005.

In a recent display of responsiveness to Muslim discrimination, Britain refused to allow U.S. pastor Terry Jones into the country.  Jones incited controversy last year with threats to burn the Quran.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

Bahrain to Ban Parents from Choosing 'Improper' Names for Newborns

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(DUBAI) -- Members of the Shura Council in Bahrain have voted to amend its child protection law to state that parents could be banned from giving their newborns names found to be "unacceptable" by the government, according to Gulf Daily.  Officials say the law is meant to protect the rights of children who would be ridiculed for having an "improper" name and claim that children would also suffer psychological strain from such names.

Under the new law, Bahraini parents would be required to register their newborn's name with the government.  When the government finds that the child's name is not contradictory to religions or will not cause psychological problems for the child, it will issue a birth certificate stating that the name has been accepted.

The council has not yet discussed whether parents would be sanctioned for choosing names deemed unacceptable or if Bahraini children can make claims against their parents if they are unhappy with their given name, Gulf Daily said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

Mining Owners at Fault for Chilean Mine Collapse, Report Says

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(LONDON) -- A commission appointed by the lower house of Chile's Congress found that Alejandro Bohn and Marcelo Kemeny, who own the mining company San Esteban Primera, are at fault for the October 2010 mine collapse that left 33 Chilean miners trapped underground for 72 days, according to The Telegraph.  The commission report stated that the mine owners failed to put "adequate safety measures in place, required by the authors." 

"There has clearly been negligence on the part of the company," said Deputy Felipe Harboe, a member of the commission.

Chile's mining regulator, Sernageomin, has also been declared at fault due to insufficient inspections in the mine.

The commission, however, found no fault with Chilean President Sebstian Pinera and other government officials, stating their relationship with the mining regulator and the mining ministry was "indirect."  In fact, Mr. Pinera's approval ratings improved significantly after the incident with eight out of 10 Chileans approving his management of the situation.

The families of 27 of the men have filed compensation claims against San Esteban Primera as well as Sernageomin.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

White House Set to Resume Trials at Guantanamo Bay

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(GUANTANAMO BAY, Cuba) -- President Obama is set to allow trials at the U.S. detention center in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to resume, according to administration officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

The move would be a tacit acknowledgment that any further attempts to try suspects in U.S. civilian courts are futile, given the amount of opposition that still exists to the idea.

In one of his first acts after taking office in 2009, Obama announced he was ordering the closure of the detention center at, which holds terrorist suspects arrested overseas.  The president argued that it had become a lightning rod for criticism from foreign governments and human rights groups.  His goal was to have the facility shut down by January 2010.  The president also suspended any military tribunals from taking place there.

Two years later, the prison still holds 173 detainees, while the White House has been frustrated by a lack of cooperation from Capitol Hill lawmakers who don't want trials held in the U.S. or to have any of the suspects moved to American jails.

It's estimated that more than 30 detainees will go up before the military commissions while the White House considers what should be done with the rest of the detainees at the Gitmo facility.  One of the ideas being considered is a parole-type system.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

Five Americans Bound for the Philippines Missing

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(MANILA, Philippines) -- The Philippine Coast Guard is searching for a missing sailboat carrying five Americans.

The 38-foot twin-hulled catamaran, The Pineapple, left the Pacific island of Guam 15 days ago and was scheduled to arrive in the central Filipino island of Cebu Sunday.

Concerned relatives contacted the U.S. Coast Guard, which conducted a search-and-rescue operation with their Filipino counterparts, Lt. Commander Armando Balilo said Friday.

"The weather has been rough out there with strong winds and high waves, so we're concerned," Balilo said.

Cebu is located about 1,400 miles west of Guam, a U.S. territory.  Heavy rains and rough seas have been reported in the area in recent weeks.

Balilo said four men and one woman are aboard the sailboat.  Their identities and hometowns have yet to be released.

The Philippines has dispatched two aircraft to help in the search.  Balilo said the Philippine Coast Guard has alerted all coast guard stations and asked all vessels in the Eastern Visayas region to help in the search.

The U.S. Coast Guard is also conducting a search. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jan212011

NATO Soldier Killed, Another Wounded by Member of Afghan Army

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(BADGHIS, Afghnistan) -- NATO has confirmed that a member of the Afghan army shot and killed a NATO soldier this week in the Bdghis province of Afghanistan, according to BBC News.

NATO said that the Afghan soldier escaped after he opened fire on two International Security Assistance service members when asked to unload his weapon for cleaning.

This is the latest of several attacks by defecting Afghan soldiers. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jan202011

Street Execution Highlights Need for Kenyan Police Reform

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NAIROBI, Kenya) -- Kenyan officials confirmed Thursday that three officers have been suspended and placed under investigation after photos surfaced showing them murdering three men who had surrendered in the middle of a busy Nairobi roadway.

The Daily Nation, a leading news outlet in Kenya, first published the photos -- which show an undercover officer pointing a gun at the victims lying on the ground -- Thursday.  A driver at the scene had captured the incident on camera Wednesday morning, according to The New York Times.

The Kenyan police have been called out before regarding "extrajudicial killings." In 2009, the United Nations expressed cause for removal of the country's police commissioner and attorney general at the time.  The Daily Nation has called for an impartial third party to investigate, saying, "This is an instance where the police cannot be entrusted with the task of investigating themselves."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio