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Ivory Coast's Gbagbo Faces ICC Judges over Poll Bloodshed

Ivorian ex-president Laurent Gbagbo on Tuesday appeared before International Criminal Court judges who will decide whether there is enough evidence to try him for masterminding a bloody election standoff two years ago.

Presiding judge Silvia Fernandez de Gurmendi opened the confirmation of charges hearing while Gbagbo, the first former head of state before the court, greeted journalists and supporters in the gallery with a wave.

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Germany Approves Troops for Mali Mission

The German government said Tuesday it had approved sending up to 330 soldiers to help train the Malian army and support the French deployment in its battle against Islamists.

Up to 180 German soldiers have been earmarked for the European Union Training Mission (EUTM), formally approved by EU foreign ministers in Brussels on Monday.

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'Many Casualties' in Tribal Clash near Sudan Border

A tribal clash has claimed many casualties near the tense undemarcated border between Sudan and South Sudan, a source familiar with the incident said on Tuesday.

The violence occurred between nomadic Arab Misseriya cattle herders and members of the South Sudanese-based Nuer tribe west of the disputed Abyei region, said the source, an Abyei resident.

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11 Injured in Bulgaria Anti-Goverment Protests

Eleven people including five policemen have been injured in the Bulgarian capital Sofia as anti-government protesters fought running battles with riot police and vandalized buildings and vehicles late Monday, officials said.

In the latest wave of anger against the government of Prime Minister Boyko Borisov sparked by sharply higher electricity prices, demonstrations were also held in around a dozen other cities across the European Union's poorest member.

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French President on Symbolic Support Visit to Greece

French President Francois Hollande begins on Tuesday a one-day visit to Greece to express support for the recession-hit country's recovery efforts.

"The purpose of my visit is to bring France's support for Greece to succeed, and for Europe to advance with (Greece)," Hollande told leading Greek daily Ta Nea on Monday.

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U.N.: Killings of Government Workers Soared by 700% in Afghanistan

Insurgent attacks on Afghan government employees soared by 700 percent last year even as the overall 2012 civilian death toll from the war fell for the first time in six years, the U.N. said Tuesday.

Targeted killings of women in government service by Taliban-led insurgents were "particularly disturbing," the U.N. mission in Afghanistan said in its annual report on civilian casualties.

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Nationwide Crackdown on Radical Group after U.S. Mission Attack in Ankara

Turkish police launched a massive nationwide crackdown Tuesday against a radical Marxist group which claimed a suicide bomb attack against the U.S. embassy this month, the state-run Anatolia news agency reported.

Police issued arrest warrants for 167 people in 28 cities as part of the operation against the Revolutionary People's Liberation Front (DHKP-C), which is classified as a terrorist organisation by the United States, Anatolia said.

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Senator: Greater U.S. Military Role in Mali Likely after Polls

The United States is likely to play a more active military role in Mali, where French-led forces are battling Islamist rebels, after the country holds elections, the chair of a key Senate sub-committee said Monday.

Washington has been providing intelligence, transport and mid-air refuelling to France, which launched its intervention last month, but cannot work directly with the Malian army until a democratically elected government replaces current leaders who came to power after a coup, said Christopher Coons, chair of the Senate foreign relations committee's Africa sub-committee.

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S. Korea Flexes Muscles with Naval Exercise

South Korea staged a naval exercise involving U.S. surveillance aircraft on Tuesday, flexing its military muscles at a time of high tensions on the Korean Peninsula following the North's third nuclear test.

Day one of a six-day drill in the East Sea (Sea of Japan) involved South Korean warships and submarines, as well as surveillance planes from the United States, the defense ministry in Seoul said.

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British PM Offers to Cooperate with India on Graft Probe

British Prime Minister David Cameron promised full cooperation on Tuesday with an Indian investigation into alleged corruption in a helicopter deal, an issue which has clouded his trip to New Delhi.

Cameron arrived in India on Monday with what he called the biggest-ever British overseas business delegation, pushing for better access to the booming market of 1.2 billion people and greater trade.

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