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International News Archive - May 12, 2006

TOKYO (Reuters) - Police searched a North Korean freighter at a port in western Japan on Friday in connection with the arrest of at least two men on suspicion of smuggling amphetamines, Kyodo news agency said.

MANILA (Reuters) - Typhoon "Chanchu" triggered evacuations in the central Philippines on Friday as flooding and strong winds shuttered ports and caused a landslide near a village devastated by a huge mudslide in February.

By Tomi Soetjipto JAKARTA (Reuters) - Iran's nuclear standoff with Western powers is just "psychological propaganda," President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Friday and dismissed the chances of military action against his country as unlikely.

BISHKEK/DUSHANBE (Reuters) - A gang of armed men from Kyrgyzstan killed five people on the Central Asian state's border with Tajikistan early on Friday, ransacked two border posts, hijacked a car and seized weapons, officials said. The motive for the attacks was not clear.

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's police and coast guard on Friday searched a North Korean freighter that they suspected was used to smuggle hundreds of kilograms of amphetamines from North Korea in 2002, a coast guard official said.

QUETTA, Pakistan (Reuters) - Pakistani police detained close to 30 suspects in overnight raids following a series of land mine blasts that killed six fellow officers in the country's troubled southwest, officials said on Friday.

By William Schomberg VIENNA (Reuters) - Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and new Bolivian leader Evo Morales on Friday took their brand of South American socialism to a summit of EU and Latin American leaders many of whom are angry at their confrontational politics.

By Mohamed Ali Bile MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Islamic fighters and warlord militias battled for control of the Somali capital for the sixth day on Friday with the death toll approaching at least 130 in the worst violence in a decade.

By Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA (Reuters) - A 2-year-old girl in Djibouti, the first confirmed human bird flu case in sub-Saharan Africa, was in stable condition on Friday while three siblings had tests for possible infection, the World Health Organization said.

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - Two explosions hit Addis Ababa early on Friday, witnesses said, severely damaging the offices of the national airline and another building and injuring seven people. The first blast occurred at 5 am (0200 GMT) at the Ethiopian Airlines office.

Word of the Day
humgruffin
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'