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U.N. Leader Calls on Sudan to Pull Troops from Disputed Abyei

U.N. leader Ban Ki-moon has called on Sudan to move its troops out of the disputed territory of Abyei after rival South Sudan withdrew its security forces.

Ban called on both governments to fall in line with a U.N. Security Council deadline to start talks on all their disputes, said U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky in a statement released late Saturday.

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China, Japan, S. Korea Warn N. Korea over Nuclear Test

China, Japan and South Korea said a fresh nuclear test by North Korea would be unacceptable, according to South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak on Sunday.

"Our three countries agreed that we will not accept further nuclear tests or further provocations from North Korea," Lee told reporters after a meeting in Beijing.

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Ahmadinejad Says No Need for War to 'Destroy' Israel

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Saturday that war was not essential to achieve the destruction of Israel, Iran's state news agency IRNA reported.

"The destruction of the Zionist regime does not necessitate making war," he said in a speech during a tour of northeast Iran.

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Salehi Hopes Hollande Win Will Boost Iran-France Ties

Iran's foreign minister hailed Francois Hollande's election as French president, voicing hope it can boost bilateral ties, as he met visiting former French socialist premier Michel Rocard.

Ali Akbar Salehi "welcomed the victory of Francois Hollande and hopes to see a new approach taken between Tehran and Paris in all areas based on mutual respect" during their meeting in Tehran late Friday, the official IRNA news agency reported.

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Russian Writers to Lead Thousands on 'Protest Walk'

Several thousand Russians signed up Saturday to take part in a "walking" protest against President Vladimir Putin headed by a group of the country's best known writers, including novelist Boris Akunin.

More than 2,000 people had signed up on Facebook by Saturday afternoon to take part in a "Test Walk with Poets and Writers" on Sunday in which the writers will stroll down Moscow boulevards to a camp set up by protesters.

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Men in Afghan Uniforms Kill 2 NATO Troops

Two NATO troops were killed by two men in Afghan police uniforms in southern Afghanistan Saturday, the military said, with Afghan sources identifying the victims as British soldiers based in Helmand province.

A spokesman for NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said the attackers were believed to be insurgents dressed as police, but a senior Afghan security official said they had been in the police force for a year.

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Putin, France's Hollande Discuss Meeting

Russia's recently inaugurated President Vladimir Putin and French president-elect Francois Hollande have discussed plans to meet in the near future, the Kremlin said Saturday.

"Vladimir Putin and Francois Hollande continued an exchange of opinions on issues of cooperation in a constructive spirit and discussed plans of personal contacts in the near future," the Kremlin said. No concrete dates were released.

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Report: Russian to Stand Trial on Spying Charges

Russia is putting on trial an engineer accused of passing information on its newest submarine-launched ballistic missiles to foreign intelligence, a news report said Saturday.

A Russian law enforcement source was quoted telling the Interfax news agency that an employee at a defense facility in the Urals had been charged with espionage for disclosing data about Bulava, Russia's latest submarine-launched ballistic missile.

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Putin, Ahmadinejad Discuss Future Contacts

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has congratulated Russian President Vladimir Putin on his election victory and the two leaders have discussed future contacts, the Kremlin said on Saturday.

"Vladimir Putin and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have expressed mutual readiness to continue the onward development of the Russian-Iranian cooperation," the Kremlin said.

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Top NATO Commander in Talks with Pakistan Army Chief

The top commander of NATO-led forces in Afghanistan held talks with Pakistan's army chief in Islamabad Saturday on how to improve security in volatile areas bordering the two countries.

U.S. General John Allen met General Ashfaq Kayani in the Pakistani capital ahead of a high-level meeting of NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), officials said.

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