UN Investigates Iraq Mercenaries…

The Week with IPS

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Here are some of the most-read stories of the past week — and stories you shouldn’t go without reading:

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CHILE: UN on the Offensive Against Iraq Mercenaries

Daniela Estrada and Gustavo González

SANTIAGO – Mercenary recruitment agencies that send former soldiers to Iraq have been accused in Chile of human right abuses, illegal association, possession of explosives and unauthorised use of army weaponry, and are the target of a special United Nations mission.

http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38537

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IRAN: “Blood Was Everywhere, the Smell of Death”

Omid Memarian

BERKELEY – Criticism of Iran’s judiciary is mounting following the brutal execution of a man who was convicted of adultery more than a decade ago and stoned to death on Jul. 5. Although the head of the judiciary branch, Ayatollah Mahmoud Shahroudi, issued a written order stopping the execution almost a month ago, the judge in the case insisted on stoning Jafar Kiani to death.

http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38530

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IRAQ: Al-Qaeda Escapes U.S. Assault

Ahmed Ali*

BAQUBA – Air strikes have destroyed civilian homes rather than al-Qaeda targets under the U.S. military operation in Baquba, residents say.

http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38540

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ZIMBABWE: “It Is Unlawful to Speak the Truth”

Tonderai Kwidini

HARARE – “If I am going to change anything in my script it will be punctuation marks. I am not changing anything else,” said Cont Mhlanga, a prominent Zimbabwean playwright and founder of Bulawayo-based Amakhosi Theatre Production House. He was responding to the banning of his play entitled ‘The Good President’.

http://www.ipsnews.net/africa/nota.asp?idnews=38550

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Thai Junta Going the Burma Way?

Marwaan Macan-Markar

BANGKOK – Thailand’s junta leader, Gen. Sonthi Boonyaratglin, is in danger of inviting comparisons with military strongmen in neighbouring Burma, where successive generals have refused to transfer power to a civilian administration for decades.

http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38495

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AFRICA: EU Official ‘Creating Rift’

David Cronin

BRUSSELS – A top European Union official has been seeking to create divisions between South Africa and its neighbours in talks aimed at establishing a free trade deal, African diplomats have alleged.

http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38525

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IRAQ-AFGHANISTAN: Overlooking the Air War

Analysis by Khody Akhavi

WASHINGTON – On Jun. 18, seven children were killed during a U.S.-led air strike against a suspected al Qaeda sanctuary in eastern Afghanistan. Three days later, at least 25 civilians died during a similar “incident” in Helmand province in the south of the country.

http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38485

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Steel and Eucalyptus Heat Up Eastern Amazon

Mario Osava

CARAJÁS – Brazil’s Environment Ministry entered a minefield when it proposed a sustainable forest district to contain deforestation in the steel-making centre of Carajás, one of the most devastated and violent areas in the Amazon.

http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38470

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AFRICA: Child Bride Symbolises Reasons Why MDGs Will be Missed

Stephanie Nieuwoudt

CAPE TOWN – The woes of the child bride in many ways illustrate the conditions underlying the failure of African countries to achieve many of the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38527

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SOUTH-EAST ASIA: Big Bucks Behind Forest Blaze, Haze

Baradan Kuppusamy

KUALA LUMPUR – The annual phenomenon that is oddly called the ‘haze’ is back and beginning to blanket parts of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei in thick, acrid smoke from the forest fires in Indonesia, mainly from the Kalimantan and Sumatra islands.

http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=38524

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And much more global news at: http://www.ipsnews.net/

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Inter Press Service News Agency (IPS), the world’s leading provider of information on global issues, is backed by a network of journalists in more than 100 countries. Its clients include more than 3,000 media organisations and tens of thousands of civil society groups, academics, and other users.

IPS focuses its news coverage on the events and global processes affecting the economic, social and political development of peoples and nations.

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Visit Inter Press Service at http://www.ipsnews.net

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