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New AIDS Guidelines Target Global Discrimination of Gays

The World Health Organization published Tuesday new global guidelines for expanding AIDS treatment, focusing for the first time on homosexuals, who face discrimination in many countries.

"If we do not pay major attention to the epidemic in key populations, we will not be able to eliminate HIV" -- the virus that can lead to AIDS, said Gottfried Hirnschall, WHO director of the HIV/AIDS department.

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British Military Warns Riled Cameron over Afghan Drawdown

Senior British army figures on Wednesday warned David Cameron not to "fall into the trap" of a hasty Afghan troop drawdown, a day after the premier scolded the military for claiming it was overstretched.

Head of the British army General Peter Wall cast doubt on Prime Minister Cameron's 2015 deadline for the withdrawal of combat troops during an interview for a BBC documentary due to be aired Wednesday.

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Ban Ki-moon Elected for 2nd Term as U.N. Chief

The 192-nation U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday elected Ban Ki-moon for a second term as the global body's secretary general.

The assembly unanimously backed the former South Korean foreign minister by acclamation. His second five-year term will start on January 1 and run through 2016.

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U.N. Chief Urges Syria's Assad to Make Reforms

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon urged Syrian President Bashar Assad on Tuesday to make credible reforms "without delay," after the Syrian leader offered a national dialogue to end months of anti-regime protests.

"He urges the president to carry on these reforms without delay and in a way that is both genuine and credible," Ban's spokesman Martin Nesirky said.

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Williams Hails Berri’s ‘Positive Role’ in Formation of Cabinet

U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Michael Williams welcomed on Tuesday the “positive role” played by Speaker Nabih Berri in the formation of the government.

“I welcomed the formation of the Lebanese government last week and also the particular role that Speaker Nabih Berri played, the positive role, in the formation of the government,” Williams said after holding talks with head of the Amal movement.

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Syria to Allow Red Cross Access to Unrest Areas

The International Committee of the Red Cross said Tuesday after talks with Syrian authorities that it has been granted access to areas and people affected by the unrest in the Middle Eastern country.

"The Syrian officials were receptive, and agreed to give the ICRC and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent wider access to areas of unrest," said ICRC president Jakob Kellenberger.

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Turkey, Israel in New Bid to Overcome Crisis

Israel and Turkey have been holding secret talks at several levels to end their diplomatic crisis, Haaretz newspaper reported on Tuesday, quoting a senior Israeli official.

The report, for which there was no confirmation, said an official representing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Feridun Sinirlioglu, undersecretary at the Turkish foreign ministry, were involved in the discussions.

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Miqati to Diplomats: Commitment to STL Should be Coupled with Preservation of Civil Peace

Prime Minister Najib Miqati has stressed to foreign diplomats that Lebanon would remain committed to international resolutions including the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

During separate meetings he held with Arab and Asian ambassadors, and U.S. Ambassador Maura Connelly on Monday, Miqati said that Lebanon is committed to the tribunal that will try ex-Premier Rafik Hariri’s suspected assassins.

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U.N. General Assembly to Give Ban New Term as Leader

The U.N. General Assembly will on Tuesday elect South Korean Ban Ki-moon to a second term as U.N. leader after he was backed by all major powers.

Outspoken in faulting the leaders of Arab countries facing protests, but criticized himself by some human rights groups, the former South Korean foreign minister has been certain to win reelection for several months.

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U.N. Urges Governments to Keep Borders Open to Refugees

Governments around the world should keep their borders open to refugees, the head of the U.N. refugee agency said on Monday, as new data showed the number of refugees rising to its highest level in 50 years.

"My appeal to all states of the world is to keep the borders open to all those who seek protection," Antonio Guterres told reporters in Rome after touring the Italian island of Lampedusa along with U.S. actress Angelina Jolie.

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