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Hollande Sworn in as French President, Names Jean-Marc Ayrault as PM

Francois Hollande was sworn in as France's first Socialist president since 1995 on Tuesday at a solemn ceremony overshadowed by the debt crisis threatening to unravel the eurozone.

Hours later Hollande named Jean-Marc Ayrault, the head of the Socialist bloc in parliament and mayor of Nantes, as his prime minister.

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China Slams British PM's Dalai Lama Meeting

China said Tuesday British Prime Minister David Cameron's meeting with the Dalai Lama was an "affront to the Chinese people", and launched "solemn representations" with London.

The statement from the Chinese foreign ministry came after Tibet's exiled spiritual leader held a private meeting with Cameron during a visit to London to receive one of the world's most lucrative prizes.

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Foreign Force Strikes Somali Pirate Land Base for First Time

An international naval force struck Somali pirate assets on land for the first time on Tuesday, marking a major escalation in the fight against the scourge of piracy plaguing vital shipping lanes.

A European naval helicopter fired a volley against pirate skiffs stowed away on a beach in Somalia's central Galmudug region in a carefully planned operation, a spokesman for the EU's naval mission told AFP.

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Pakistan Poised to Resume NATO Supply Lines

Pakistan on Tuesday looked poised to end a nearly six-month blockade of NATO ground supply routes into Afghanistan, succumbing to a key demand of the West ahead of a summit in Chicago next week.

Islamabad shut its Afghan border crossings to NATO supplies after U.S. air strikes killed 24 soldiers last November, provoking a new crisis in ties on top of the outcry from the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden in May that year.

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France's Hollande Will Name Ayrault as PM

A close friend of Francois Hollande said Tuesday that the French president-elect will name Jean-Marc Ayrault, the head of the Socialists' parliamentary bloc, as his prime minister.

"I think he will be named later, yes," Jean-Pierre Jouyet, the head of France's financial markets watchdog AMF and a classmate of Hollande's at the elite Ecole Nationale d'Administration, said on French radio.

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Iran Executes 'Israeli Spy and Nuclear Scientist' Killer

Iran on Tuesday hanged a man convicted of playing a key role in the 2010 murder of a top nuclear scientist and of spying for Israel, the official IRNA news agency reported quoting Tehran prosecution office.

"Majid Jamali Fashi, the Mossad spy and the person who assassinated Masoud Ali Mohammadi, our nation's nuclear scientist was hanged Tuesday morning," IRNA said.

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Paul, Final Republican Rival to Romney, Stops Campaigning

Ron Paul, the U.S. congressman who led a stubbornly persistent presidential bid against presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney and other rivals, said Monday he is suspending active campaigning.

Paul said in a statement he will "no longer spend resources campaigning in primaries," opting instead to work on amassing delegates to the party's national convention, even though his chances of winning the nomination are virtually nil.

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NATO Protesters Arrested in Chicago before Summit

Eight NATO protesters were arrested Monday ahead of a weekend summit when they refused to leave the Chicago office tower which houses President Barack Obama's campaign headquarters, police said.

"They're starting early," Officer Robert Perez of the Chicago police department told Agence France Presse.

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Merkel Says 'Painful' State Defeat Won't Affect Europe Policy

Chancellor Angela Merkel acknowledged Monday that her party's heavy losses in a key regional German vote was a "bitter, painful defeat", but stressed it had no bearing on her belt-tightening policy in Europe.

"The work in Europe is not affected" by the historic defeat suffered by her Christian Democrats (CDU) in Sunday's snap poll in Germany's most populous state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), Merkel told a news conference.

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Mexican Police Find 49 Headless Bodies

Mexican police on Monday searched for perpetrators of a drug-war massacre in which 49 people were killed, decapitated, dismembered and left in plastic bags on the side of a highway.

The mutilated corpses, whose hands had been cut off to prevent fingerprint identification, were discovered close to the northern city of Monterrey, 180 kilometers from the U.S. border.

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