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Gadhafi Forces Retreat after Western Airstrikes

Libyan government forces pulled back 100 kilometers from rebel-held Benghazi but showed they still had plenty of fight on Monday as they easily beat off a rebel advance.

The forces loyal to Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi had retreated overnight to the key town of Ajdabiya, south of the city of Benghazi, after Western-led air strikes destroyed much of their armor, leaving dozens of wrecked tanks along the road.

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Putin Slams West for Libya 'Medieval Crusade', Medvedev Says Remarks Unacceptable

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Monday slammed Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's comments on military action against Libya as "unacceptable", in the most public clash yet between Russia's ruling tandem.

Putin earlier Monday denounced the U.N. resolution allowing military action on Libya as resembling a "medieval call to crusade", in one of his most virulent diatribes against the West in years.

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France Fines Google 100,000 Euros Over Street View

France's data privacy regulator said Monday it had imposed a record fine of 100,000 euros ($142,000) on Google for having collected private information while compiling its panoramic Street View service.

"It is a record fine since we obtained the power in 2004 to impose financial sanctions in 2004," the head of the CNIL regulator, Yann Padova, was quoted as saying in the daily Le Parisien.

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Taiwan Finds Radiation on Fava Beans From Japan

Authorities in Taiwan checking food imports for radiation on Sunday found a shipment of fava beans from southern Japan had been very slightly contaminated, an official said.

The radiation, which was within Taiwan's legal safety limits, was found on 14 kilograms (30.8 pounds) of fava beans from Kagoshima, said Tsai Shu-chen, an official with the Food and Drug Administration.

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Italy Beats World Record With 600-Meter Sausage

Italy Sunday snatched from Romania the record for the production of the world's longest sausage when a team of pork butchers crafted a delicacy more than half a kilometer long, the ANSA news agency reported.

Alberto Della Pelle from Penne, a small town in central Italy, helped by nine colleagues, created a sausage 597.8 meters (1,961 feet) long in the main street.

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Thousands March in Syrian Protest Town

Thousands of Syrians marched Monday in the southern town of Daraa after the funeral of a protester killed in the previous day's demonstration inspired by revolts in Tunisia and Egypt, a resident said.

The resident said "a mass of demonstrators started to march from the cemetery towards Al-Omari mosque after the burial" of Raed Akrad, who was killed by security forces on Sunday when they used live ammunition to break up a protest.

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Ritual of a Bath Denied to Japan Survivors

Of all the day-to-day hardships suffered by survivors of Japan's tsunami, the simple everyday ritual of a bath -- so important in the nation's culture -- is the thing many say they miss the most.

In a country where bathing is an elaborate and highly prized daily pleasure, the people of the washed-away city of Rikuzentakata now can only rinse their faces in cold water.

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'Ordinary Guy' Putin Meets Snow Leopard

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin stood meters away from a snow leopard in his latest stunt involving a threatened animal but insisted Monday he was just an "ordinary guy" in touch with Russia's problems.

Putin knelt meters away from the snow leopard, kept in a wire-mesh enclosure, as the mythical animal warily eyed the man who has dominated Russia for the last decade in Siberia, state television pictures showed.

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Cirque Du Soleil Cashes in On Magic

For the first time ever, the Cirque du Soleil is forecasting that this year its special brand of circus melding death-defying feats with plot-driven theater and haunting music will bring in over $1 billion in revenues.

Founded by Guy Laliberte, the company has grown from a ragtag troupe of street performers in 1984 to a 5,000-employee entertainment giant presenting some 20 circus shows simultaneously around the world.

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Wozniacki Wins Indian Wells Tennis Title

World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki claimed her 14th career title, outlasting France's Marion Bartoli 6-1, 2-6, 6-3 in the WTA Indian Wells final on Sunday.

Denmark's Wozniacki captured her second title of 2011 and becomes the eighth different women's champion in eight years at the $4.5 million WTA hardcourt tournament.

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