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Brazil's Rousseff Expresses Confidence in Obama in Wake of NSA Scandal

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff said Tuesday she had confidence in her U.S. counterpart Barack Obama, laying to rest a scandal over U.S. intelligence monitoring of her telephone calls and those of millions of other Brazilians.

"Since then, some things have changed and the change is particularly due to the fact that President Obama and the U.S. government have stated on several occasions that they would no longer engage in intrusive acts of spying on friendly countries," Rousseff told a joint press conference. 

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Obama, Rousseff Visit Martin Luther King Memorial

President Barack Obama and Brazil's Dilma Rousseff paid a surprise joint visit Monday to Washington's Martin Luther King Memorial, part of efforts to mend fences after a spying row.

Obama hosted the Brazilian president at the memorial to the civil rights icon -- one of his personal heroes --  after a "turbulent patch" between the two countries caused by revelations that U.S. spies had listened in on Rousseff's phone calls.

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Brazil's Rousseff Begins U.S. Visit

Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff was to meet Sunday with investors in New York on the first day of a long-delayed U.S. visit aimed at overcoming strains caused by the NSA spying scandal.

Revelations two years ago that the US National Security Agency electronically eavesdropped on Rousseff's email and other communications prompted her to angrily call off an official visit to Washington that had been set for October 2013.

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Support for Brazil's Rousseff Slips to New Low

Public support for Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has slipped to a record low, with her disapproval ratings rising to 65 percent, according to pollsters Datafolha on Saturday.

Support for Rousseff, embattled by a tanking economy and embroiled in a major graft scandal involving state-owned oil firm Petrobras, slumped to 10 percent, according to the polling firm.

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Turkey Slams Belgian PM over 'Armenian Genocide' Remarks

Turkey on Saturday lashed out at Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel for recognizing the massacres of Armenians by Ottoman Turkish forces during World War I as genocide.

Michel, the youngest prime minister in Belgium's history, said during a parliamentary session on Wednesday that the 1915 mass killings "must be viewed as a genocide."

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Brazil Ramps Up Punishment for Cop Killers

The Brazilian parliament on Thursday passed a law toughening penalties for murderers of policemen, a measure widely demanded by the security forces of a country where hundreds of officers are killed every year.

The new law stipulates that killers of police officers, prison officers or members of the armed forces will be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison, against a maximum 20 before.

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Turkey Pulls Envoy from Brazil over Armenian Genocide Recognition

Turkey said it has recalled its ambassador to Brazil for consultations after the country's senate passed legislation recognizing the massacres of Armenians by Ottoman forces during World War I as genocide.

The Brazilian Senate adopted the resolution on June 2, joining more than 20 other states in officially recognizing the mass killings of Armenians from 1915 as genocide.

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Brazil Unveils Cuts as IMF Urges Fiscal Discipline

The IMF urged Brazil to get its fiscal house in order to emerge from five years of low growth as South America's largest economy Friday unveiled a package of budget cuts in a move to kickstart a recovery.

Brazil has lost ground since a period of high growth largely fueled by Chinese-led demand for commodities came to an end and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts GDP will contract by around 1.0 percent this year.

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Lebanese Drug Smuggler Busted at Beirut Airport

A Lebanese man was arrested on Wednesday at Beirut's Rafik Hariri International Airport for trying to smuggle drugs to Lebanon, the state-run National News Agency reported.

NNA said 22-year-old M.A. was apprehended for carrying with him 3.2 kilograms of cocaine.

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China, Brazil, Unveil Multibillion Trade, Investment Deals

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang lifted the wraps Tuesday on a multibillion-dollar series of trade and investment deals with Brazil, as Beijing looks to invest $53 billion in South America's largest economy.

The news unveiled at the start of Li's first official visit to Latin America is a huge boon for Brazil as it endures a fifth straight year of low growth after a period of rapid expansion fueled by Asian demand for commodities that has since slowed.

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