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Greeks Launch Two Days of Protest against New Austerity Cuts

Greeks opposing a new round of austerity cuts on Wednesday began a two-day round of strikes and protests timed to pressurize EU leaders ahead of a summit later this week.

Lawyers, notaries, pharmacists and doctors were told by their respective associations to walk off the job ahead of a full-blown general strike on Thursday called by the country's main unions.

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U.S. Scurries to Soothe Japan Rape Claim Anger

The U.S. envoy to Japan vowed "complete and unequivocal cooperation" Wednesday over the alleged rape of a local woman by two servicemen on an island fed up with the large American military presence.

Ambassador John Roos sought swiftly to reassure people on the southern Japanese island of Okinawa that he shared their anger over an incident that has the potential to act as a lightning rod for growing anti-U.S. feeling.

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Georgia's Saakashvili Makes Poll-Winning Rival PM

Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili on Wednesday nominated his rival Bidzina Ivanishvili as prime minister after the tycoon's coalition defeated the president's ruling party in polls this month.

"The leader of the coalition which won the October 1 parliamentary elections, Bidzina Ivanishvili, has been selected for the post of prime minister," Saakashvili's spokeswoman Manana Manjgaladze told a news conference.

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Sudan MPs Approve Landmark Oil, Security Deals with S. Sudan

Sudan's parliament on Wednesday approved almost unanimously deals with South Sudan on oil and security that the two countries' presidents have hailed as ending their conflict.

"After discussion by the MPs, the general feeling of the assembly is to agree to those deals," parliament speaker Ahmed Ibrahim al-Tahir told deputies just before the vote.

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6 Dead in Clashes between Turkish Troops and Kurd Rebels

Three Turkish soldiers and three Kurdish rebels were killed overnight after the militants ambushed a military post and a base in southeastern Turkey, the Anatolia news agency reported Wednesday.

The simultaneous attacks launched by Kurdish rebels near Cukurca in Hakkari province which borders Iran and Iraq triggered fighting that lasted until the early hours, Anatolia said, quoting a statement from the local governor's office.

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U.S. Embassy in Stockholm Evacuated over 'Possible' Incident

The U.S. embassy in Stockholm was evacuated on Wednesday over a possible security incident, a spokesman for the mission told AFP, while police said a suspect envelope had sparked the scare.

"We've evacuated the embassy while we are investigating a possible security incident," embassy spokesman Jeff Anderson said.

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Policeman, Two Attackers Killed in Kenya Grenade Blast

A Kenyan police officer was killed and nine others wounded Wednesday when suspected Islamists hurled a grenade at them during a house raid in a clash that left two assailants dead, police said.

The violence was the latest in a string of clashes and police raids on Kenya's coast, a popular tourist region where Islamists and a separatist movement have increasingly battled with security forces.

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Pakistan Floods Kill 455, Affect Five Million

Monsoon floods in Pakistan have killed 455 people over the past five weeks and affected more than five million, according to the latest figures from the government's disaster relief agency.

Pakistan suffered devastating floods in the past two years, including the worst in its history in 2010 when catastrophic inundations across the country killed almost 1,800 people and affected 21 million.

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Suicide Truck Bomb Hits NATO Base in Afghanistan

A huge blast from a Taliban suicide truck bomb attack on a joint NATO-Afghan army base in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday injured several international and Afghan troops, officials said.

NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) confirmed that some of its troops were wounded along with Afghan soldiers, but would not disclose how many.

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Gunman Shoots Canadian Border Officer

A gunman shot and wounded a Canadian border agent Tuesday before taking his own life, police said.

The shooting happened as the gunman arrived from the U.S. side to the Douglas Border Crossing in the west of Canada, one of the most frequently used between the two countries, according to a police statement.

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