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International News on June 30, 2011

Chidambaram and Russian Dy. PM discuss Afghan situation
Union Home Minister P Chidambaram, who is on a three-day official visit to Moscow, met Russian Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov and shared views on the present situation in Afghanistan. ANI

Bachmann's husband received over 137,000 dollars in Medicaid funds
A mental health clinic run by Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann's husband has been collecting annual Medicaid payments totaling over 137,000 dollars for the treatment of patients, it has been revealed. ANI

Western sanctions are ineffective on Iran's military advancements: Commander
The western sanctions have had no impact on Iran's military advancements, a senior commander of Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) has said. ANI

World's longest natural gas pipeline goes into operation in China
The trunk line of the world's longest natural gas pipeline, or main line of China's second west-to-east natural gas pipeline, went into operation today. ANI

'Yoga Riot' erupts in Vancouver to heal hockey rampage riot wounds
After witnessing the worst riots in the city's history two weeks ago,a 'Yoga Riot' erupted at the corner of Homer and West Georgia Streets in Vancouver to heal the wounds with peace. ANI

Over 7 in 10 Americans support Obama's Afghan withdrawal plan: Poll
Over seven in 10 American voters approve of US President Barack Obama's decision of withdrawing 33,000 troops from Afghanistan by September 2012, a new poll has found. ANI

At 46 percent, Obama job approval ratings at lowest level for year: Poll
A new poll had found that only 46 percent of American voters approve of US President Barack Obama's job performance. ANI

China raises exemption threshold in individual income tax law
Beijing, June 30 China's legislature National People's Congress legislature has adopted an amendment to the country's individual income tax law raising the monthly tax exemption threshold from 2,000 yuan (307.7 U.S. dollars) to 3,500 yuan (538.5 U.S. dollars). ANI

Brit 'snake lover' killed by pet cobra
A Brit snake lover, who ran a King Cobra sanctuary, has died after being bitten by one of his own venomous reptiles. ANI

World's longest cross-sea bridge opens in East China
The world's longest cross-sea bridge located in Qingdao city of Shandong Province in China opened on Thursday. ANI

Bachmann says 'devastating' miscarriage shaped her views on abortion
Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann has said that her opposition to abortion and much of her outlook on the world were shaped by a "devastating" miscarriage she suffered over two decades ago. ANI

Osama's 'intriguing handwritten notes' on climate change, Saudi Arabia flash floods
Scraps of handwritten notes reportedly recovered from Osama bin Laden's lair in Abbottabad during the May 2 US raid suggest that he may have been writing and re-writing his speeches to while away time in the confines of his compound. ANI

Obama may be losing the faith of Jewish Democrats
The American Jewish community appears to be losing faith in President Barack Obama and is worried about his standing with his fellow Jewish Democrats. ANI

World's top five models do not include Bundchen, Moss or Schiffer
Gisele Bundchen, Kate Moss, and Claudia Schiffer may be well known, but their names do not figure anywhere on the list of the world's top five most in-demand models by industry standards. ANI

Primary school blown up in northwestern Pakistan
Unknown miscreants have blown up a primary school building in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. ANI

Senator Vitter endorses Bobby Jindal's re-election as Louisiana Gov.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal may have refused to back his state's scandal-plagued Republican Senator David Vitter last year, but the latter isn't holding a grudge. ANI

'Tax evader' Rahat Fateh finally pays Rs3.5mn as income tax in Pakistan
It must have been the most painful note to belt out for renowned Pakistani vocalist Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, who finally sang to the tune of tax authorities and deposited 3.5 million rupees as income tax. ANI

China says 'normal' naval drills nothing to do with South China Sea tensions
China has said that the recent naval exercises of their country were routine and had nothing to do with the situation in the South China Sea. ANI

Obama would lose to generic Republican candidate in 2012 election: Poll
A generic Republican candidate would beat US President Barack Obama in a hypothetical 2012 election match-up, according to a new poll. ANI

Haqqani network leader linked to Afghan hotel bomb attack killed in NATO airstrike
NATO has said that it has killed a top Haqqani network leader suspected of aiding militants that attacked a popular hotel in Afghanistan late Tuesday. ANI

4 out of 10 kids wear designer clothes by the age of two!
A survey has revealed that four out of 10 children wear designer clothes by the age of two as their parents try to keep up with the Beckhams and the Cruises. ANI

'Sex-starved' turtles on runway bring JKF airport to a halt!
The JFK airport runway was shut down temporarily to let a pack of sex-starved turtles cross the tarmac and reach their seasonal breeding grounds. ANI

World's most expensive 'sapphire-blade' razor on sale for $100K!
The world's most expensive razor, which has its blades made of sapphire, has been put on sale for 100,000 dollars after being developed for three years. ANI

Housing exclusively for ageing lesbians opens in Oz
Believed to be the first of its type in Australia, a new social housing project in Brunswick will provide affordable housing to older lesbians in response to reports of discrimination in aged-care facilities. ANI

Osama bin Laden practiced absolutely phenomenal operational security in Pak: US
US President Barack Obama's counter-terrorism advisor, John Brennan, has revealed new details about Osama bin Laden and how the Al-Qaeda leader had spent the last six years of his life in a residential compound in Pakistan before being killed in a US military operation last month. ANI

New US counter-terrorism strategy to focus on Al-Qaeda defeat, homeland security
The Obama administration has concluded in a newly released counter-terrorism strategy that defeating Al-Qaeda does not require a "global war", but rather a focus on specific regions, including Yemen, Somalia, Iraq and North Africa, in addition to Pakistan. ANI

Gilani-led Pak Govt sets new records of taking foreign loans
Although all past governments of Pakistan had taken foreign loans to meet their requirements, the incumbent Pakistan People's Party-led government has set new records of getting loans during its first three years. ANI

Afghan extremists restricted from entering Mohmand Agency: Pak Army
The Pakistan Army has said that it has restricted Afghan extremists from entering Mohmand Agency. ANI

Pak's opposition parties' 'snap polls' demand unlikely to be fulfilled
Pakistan's opposition parties' demand of holding snap polls in the country is likely to be unfulfilled as new computerized electoral rolls would not be ready before February 2012, and the Pakistan People Party-led government would like to hold the elections after completing its tenure. ANI

Woman rejects Pak spy agencies' 'Qaeda killed husband' claim, demands DNA proof
The wife of a 'missing person' in Pakistan has rejected the country's spy agencies' claim that he was killed by al Qaeda, and accusing the agencies of detaining her husband, she has demanded that his grave be exhumed for confirmation in this regard. ANI

Prince Harry's new girlfriend is his cousin
It has emerged that Prince Harry's new girlfriend is a distant cousin of his. ANI

Pakistan committed to act as 'catalyst' in Afghan reconciliation process: Gilani
Pakistan is committed to playing the role of a catalyst in the Afghan reconciliation process, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani has said. ANI

Oz man used clipseal bags as condoms to have sex with stepdaughter, 13
A man in Australia, who used clipseal sandwich bags in place of condoms to have sex with his 13-year-old stepdaughter, was caught when he asked her to get a morning-after pill from a hospital. ANI

Pippa Middleton hooks up with Alex Loudon at Wimbledon
Pippa Middleton turned up at a Wimbledon match hand-in-hand with her alleged lover City broker Alex Loudon. ANI

Celebs who blasted me in documentary film 'are full of hate': Sarah Palin
Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin has said that celebs like Matt Damon, Madonna and David Letterman, who slammed her in a newly-released documentary film about her rise in politics, are full of hate. ANI

Brit police gets 13-yr-old boy out of bed at midnight for throwing an apple
It has emerged that the police in UK woke up a schoolboy from his sleep at midnight just for throwing an apple at another boy.harlie Lindoe, 13, allegedly threw the fruit at a boy from a rival group in the village of Great Horkesley, Essex. ANI

Dame Elizabeth Taylor's possessions to be exhibited around the world
Late Dame Elizabeth Taylor's collection of jewellery, art and designer clothing are to be exhibited around the world. ANI

Michele Bachmann says she won't have "mud-wrestling fight" with Sarah Palin
Republican candidate for the 2012 US presidential election Michele Bachmann has said that she will not give the media the pleasure of watching a "mud-wrestling fight" between her and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. ANI

TTP split in 'critical' Kurram region "good message for both Pakistan, US": Analyst
The split in the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) over suicide attacks on mosques and innocent civilians is the first sign of fracture in the terrorist outfit, and could benefit both Pakistan and the United States, according to experts. ANI

Palin will run in 2012 elections: Campaign organizer
Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin will run for the White House in 2012 and conduct an "unorthodox, grassroots campaign the likes of which people have never seen", the man organizing her campaign in Iowa has said. ANI

Mental health leave 'recurs sooner than for physical health'
A new study has indicated that employees who take a mental health leave are more likely to experience a recurrence earlier than those who take a physical one. ANI

News Corporation sells MySpace for paltry 35 million dollars
Multi-billionaire tycoon Rupert Murdoch's media group, News Corporation, has sold its ailing social networking website, MySpace, to Specific Media for 35 million dollars. ANI

Burmese government warns Suu Kyi's party to cease its ' illegal activities and agitation'
The Burmese government has warned pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi and her National League for Democracy (NLD) to end "illegal activities", including its agitation and opposition to the recently elected parliament. ANI

'Neo-Taliban' greatest non-state threat to Pakistan's nuclear assets: Report
The greatest threat to Pakistan's nuclear infrastructure comes from jihadists both inside Pakistan and South and Central Asia, according to a new report. ANI

Kabul attack: Taliban says it proves inaccuracy of US success, Americans say it was insignificant
The Taliban said their late-night siege of a hotel in the Afghan capital, which left at least 21 people dead, exposed the inaccuracy of US reports of progress in securing the country. ANI

UK homeowners 'can stab burglars' without fear of prosecution: Clarke
UK Justice Secretary Ken Clarke has said British householders will now be able to stab burglars without fear of prosecution under a new legislation guaranteeing their right to defend themselves. ANI

'Neo-Taliban' world's most significant terrorist threat: Report
Violent Islamist groups in Pakistan, numbering between 15,000 and 30,000 fighters, have coalesced under the Taliban umbrella to become the world's most significant terrorist threat, and are the most capable of obtaining nuclear weapons, according to a new report. ANI

UK court rejects Shrien Dewani's bid to relax his bail conditions
A bid to ease restrictions on the movements of Shrien Dewani, the Brit-Indian millionaire who has been charged with masterminding his wife's murder during their honeymoon in South Africa last year, has been rejected amid fears that he could flee abroad. ANI

Mum-in-law in hell's email that called future bride 'uncouth' goes viral
A British bride-to-be has received a scathing attack from her to-be 'mother-in-law from hell' in the form of an email for her 'staggering uncouthness and lack of grace', only for it to become an Internet sensation. ANI

Benazir assassination case: FIA awaits details of Musharraf's assets
Despite court orders to confiscate the property of former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) is waiting for revenue officials to submit details of his movable and immovable assets. ANI

Islamabad police arrest two suspected Pak Taliban terrorists
Islamabad Police have arrested two suspected terrorists and recovered a suicide jacket, a hand grenade and a pistol from them. ANI

Security agencies involved in Balochistan killings: Pak Human Rights Commission
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has said credible evidence exists about the involvement of state agencies, especially the Frontier Corps (FC), in the killing and enforced disappearance of Pakistani citizens in Balochistan. ANI

Pak Govt's pressure nixes Transparency International's 2011 corruption survey
Arm-twisting by the corruption-plagued Pakistan Government has prevented Transparency International Pakistan (TIP) from producing its annual National Corruption Perception Survey (NCPS) this year. ANI

Britain accuses Iran of secretly testing nuclear-capable missiles
Britain has accused Iran of carrying out covert tests of a missile that could carry a nuclear warhead. ANI

Lost masterpiece of Leonardo da Vinci to be displayed for first time
A lost masterpiece by Leonardo da Vinci, which was discovered in a private American collection, is set be unveiled publicly for the first time. ANI

At 46, women feel they become invisible to men
Life may begin at 40 for men but for women this may not be the case. ANI

Encounter between 'odd couple' binary stars emits intense gamma-ray flares
Every 3.4 years, a unique combination of stars pass each other at a distance closer than Venus orbits the Sun, and the event is marked by a sharp increase in gamma rays, the most extreme form of light. ANI

'US-Pak defence ties critical for persuading Pak to do more against terrorists'
The most effective way for the United States to persuade Pakistan to do more against terrorists is to maintain close ties between the defence establishments of both nations, the Marine general chosen by US President Barack Obama to lead the Afghanistan war has said. ANI

Public confidence in Afghan security shaken after Kabul hotel attack
The Taliban suicide attack on the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul, which claimed 21 lives, has shaken public confidence in the ability of Afghan forces, especially the police, to assume responsibility for security. ANI

'US attacks in militant-infested Pak-Afghan border region to continue'
The United States will not relent in its efforts against al-Qaeda in the border regions between Pakistan and Afghanistan, John Brennan, Assistant to US President Barack Obama on counter-terrorism, has said. ANI

Pyongyang presidency of UN Disarmament Conference likened to 'asking fox to guard chickens'
Appointing a North Korean to chair the United Nations' only multilateral disarmament forum is like "asking the fox to guard the chickens", Hillel Neuer, of the UN watchdog organization UN Watch, has said. ANI

Saudi Arabia threatens to build nuke weapons if Iran gets them: Report
A Saudi Arabian official has warned that his country would not tolerate losing a nuclear arms race to Iran, and raised the spectre of nuclear conflict if Iran comes close to developing a nuclear weapon. ANI

Hackers shut down Al-Qaeda's net communication
Computer hackers have reportedly disrupted Al-Qaeda's ability to communicate via the Internet, an anti terror expert has said. ANI

Indian-origin 'manslaughter' surgeon in Australia brutally attacked in prison
An Indian-origin neurosurgeon in Australia who pleaded guilty to manslaughter was brutally assaulted by four inmates in Sydney's jail, a court has heard. ANI

Afghan hotel suicide bomb attack 'work of Pak-based Haqqani network': Officials
This week's suicide bomb attack on a popular hotel in Afghanistan was the work of the Pakistan-based Haqqani network, international officials have confirmed. ANI

Hindus urged to focus on Lord Krishna's advice on Ratha Jatra festival
Esteemed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, sending Ratha Jatra festival greetings to one billion Hindus of the world, has urged them to focus on the 'welfare of others' and 'act selflessly' as pointed out by Lord Krishna in Bhagavad-Gita. ANI

No stability in region until resolution of Kashmir dispute: Top Pak official
Pakistan's Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (JCSC) Chairman General Khalid Shameem Wynne has called for a 'solution of the Kashmir issue', saying that stability in the region is unlikely until the longstanding dispute gets resolved. ANI

Pak Army rejects US officials' doubts over its 'willingness' to act against terrorists
The Pakistan Army has asked US commanders to be mindful of its 'concerns and constraints' before publicly lashing out at its counter-militancy efforts. ANI

One in five Asian men behind sexual grooming of underage Brit girls: Report
One in five men accused of grooming underage British girls for sex is Asian, it has emerged. ANI

KCI’s V.A.C.Via™ Therapy System to be Listed on U.K. Drug Tariff
Kinetic Concepts, Inc. (NYSE: KCI) today announced that its groundbreaking V.A.C.Via™ Negative Pressure Wound Therapy System has been granted reimbursement status and will be listed on the U.K. Drug Tariff beginning August 1, 2011. The V.A.C Business Wire India

Skype brings Video Calling to Android Phones
Skype today announced an updated version of its Skype for Android app – Skype for Android 2.0, bringing Skype Video Calling to the currently fastest growing mobile OS1. Business Wire India

Turners & Growers: NZ's Anti-Competitive Kiwifruit Monopoly Must Go in India Free Trade Deal
Turners & Growers, New Zealand’s leading horticulture company is welcoming progress in Free Trade talks with the Indian Government but says as part of deal, the Indian Government will rightly be investigating barriers to trade and investment like New Zealand’s anti-competitive export monopoly on Kiwifruit. Business Wire India

Pfizer Nutrition Data Demonstrate that Appropriate Early Child Nutrition May Be Linked to Long-Term Health Outcomes in At-Risk Populations and Picky Eaters
Results from studies presented by Pfizer Nutrition at the 5th Europaediatrics Congress in Vienna provide further evidence that appropriate feeding practices are critical to support the healthy growth and development of at-risk infants and picky eaters facing nutritional challenges Business Wire India

Helios to Work with ESPN on Global Expansion of X Games Franchise
ESPN, the creator of the X Games franchise, has appointed global sports marketing firm Helios Partners to help expand the X Games commercial program and manage their host city bid process. Business Wire India

Quintiles Helps Biopharma Companies Turn Compliance into a Business Advantage
Elevating compliance to achieve a strategic advantage – going beyond just meeting regulatory requirements for an innovative drug, biologic or medical device – allows biopharmaceutical companies to respond more rapidly to ever-changing conditions in the New Health, according to a new report from Consulting at Quintiles. Business Wire India

Hilton HHonors Unveils Double Your HHonors Promotion
Hilton HHonors, the loyalty program for Hilton Worldwide’s 10 distinct hotel brands, has launched its latest global promotion, Double Your HHonors. The promotion offers members either double HHonors points or double airline miles for hotel stays completed at participating hotels between July 1 and September 30, 2011. Business Wire India

KBR Announces the Election of Director
KBR (NYSE: KBR) has announced the election of Linda Z. Cook as a member of the KBR Board. Business Wire India

Rapaport Melee Auction Sells 43,800 carats for $6.4 million 100% of lots sold. Average Prices up 45% year to year. Rapaport Introduces Price Index for Small Melee Diamonds
The Rapaport Group’s latest June melee auction brought record melee prices for commercial quality small diamonds. Average prices were up 45%, year on year while medium to low quality imperfect goods increased by 70%. The new Rapaport Melee Index (RMI) tracks average auction transaction prices for commercial quality melee. The June 2011 RMI stands at 145 up 8 Business Wire India

Prisma Capital Partners Wins Institutional Investor Magazine's Large Fund of Hedge Funds Firm of the Year Award
Prisma Capital Partners has been named winner of Institutional Investor magazine’s Large Fund of Hedge Funds Firm of the Year at the 9th Annual Hedge Fund Industry Awards. Business Wire India

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