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International News Archive - February 17, 2006

By Peter Apps JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (Reuters) - Normality is returning to northern Sri Lanka after the region went to the brink of war in January, residents say, but coming talks between government and Tamil Tiger rebels in Geneva will decide if the peace will last.

By John O'Callaghan MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippine government and armed forces said they were containing a plot to overthrow and perhaps even kill President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo by fugitive mutineers backed by retired officers and opposition figures.

SEOUL (Reuters) - Some North Korean cheerleaders who took part in athletic events in the South have been jailed at a prison camp after returning home, a survivor of another camp said on Friday, quoting recent defectors from the communist state.

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Lawyers for a Macau bank accused of helping North Korea launder money have told the U.S. Treasury action against the lender could affect U.S.-China ties at a sensitive time for talks on the North's nuclear programs. A proposal to ban U.S.

SYDNEY (Reuters) - A man who helped arrange the murder of an Australian accountant who had hydrochloric acid poured down his throat was sentenced on Friday to up to 18 years in jail.

Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi denounced as groundless the latest opposition allegations of shady links between his ruling party and disgraced Internet entrepreneur Takafumi Horie, even as speculation simmered that the affair could widen into a broad political scandal.

HARARE (Reuters) - President Robert Mugabe has urged Britain's new envoy in Harare to report "true facts" on Zimbabwe to help mend bridges with the southern African nation's former colonial ruler, state media reported on Friday.

By Jack Kimball and Wangui Kanina NAIROBI (Reuters) - Kenyan police braced for protests by civil society and political opposition groups in the capital on Friday to demand the resignation of senior government officials implicated in corruption scandals.

HONG KONG (Reuters) - About 2,000 members of Hong Kong's Muslim community shouted slogans and waved posters on Friday in protest against cartoons of Prophet Mohammad.

BEIJING (Reuters) - A lucky bidder may come away from an auction in China with their very own Russian aircraft carrier -- albeit one converted into a floating theme park with a movie theater and restaurants.

Word of the Day
barghest
  • A goblin in English folklore, often appearing in the shape of a large dog and believed to portend imminent death or misfortune.
  • A ghost, wraith, hobgoblin, elf, or spirit.
The origin of 'barghest' is not known, but it may be from perhaps burh-ghest, town-ghost, or German Berg-geist (mountain spirit) or Bär-geist (bear-spirit).
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