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WORLD NEWS - February 4th, 2010

楼主:Frank Suen 日期: 回贴:0 浏览:

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It is 00:30 universal time and here is the news in Special English.

A bomb in northwest Pakistan has killed 8 people including 3 American soldiers. The bomb is exploded in the Lower Dir district, near Swat Valley. Pakistani officials say more than 60 people were wounded. The Americans were traveling to the reopening ceremony for a girls' school. Pakistani officials say at least 3 school girls and a local soldier also died. The American embassy in Islamabad said the three soldiers were part of a training program with private armed forces in northwest Pakistan. Pakistan's Taliban later claimed responsibility for the bombing.

A Pakistani scientist has been found guilty of trying to kill Americans while being held for questioning in Afghanistan. A jury in New York City found Aafia Siddiqui guilty of 7 charges, including an attempted murder. The 37 year-old woman was educated in the United States. She has denied all charges. She denounced that decision and said it came from Israel. Siddiqui was detained in Afghanistan in 2008. Government lawyers say she seized a gun and fired at American agents and troops while being held at an Afghan police station. No Americans were injured but Siddiqui was shot.

Nations are reacting to an offer by Iran's President to send uranium out of the country for enrichment. The United States says it is not clear whether comments by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad represent a real change in Iranian policy. The American State Department says the question is whether Iran will tell the United Nations' nuclear agency that it is accepting the plan. The UN-supported deal calls for Iran to send 70% of its low-grade uranium to France and Russia in return for nuclear fuel for a research center in Teheran.

And Obama administration spokesman says Iran's recent rocket launch was in his words a "provocative act". He said the administration is still studying reports about the missile which can carry a satellite. Iran's state-operated media said the rocket was carrying live animals for research purposes. Iranian television said the rocket contained a rat, two turtles and worms. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran is working for scientific progress, not military goals.

An Iraqi appeals court has decided to let hundreds of banned candidates compete in the country's parliamentary election. The independent high electoral commission says the appeals court rejected a ruling to ban nearly 500 candidates. Those candidates were suspected of having ties to the Baathist government of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. However, a commission member says the winning candidates will not be permitted to take office until they are cleared of any links to the Baathists. The ban angered Iraq's Sunni Arab minority. Many Sunnis saw it as an attempt by Shiites to limit their political power.

You are listening to the news in VOA Special English.

American and Afghan commanders say they are planning a major offensive against Taliban positions in southern Afghanistan. The commander said thousands of allied troops are to attack militants in the Marjah area, a Taliban controlled area in Helmand province. Officials said Afghan forces would lead the offensive. They did not say when the offensive would begin.

Separately, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization reported that a bomb killed 2 American soldiers in southern Afghanistan. An American intelligence official says the United Stats faces a continuing terrorist threat from al-Qaeda and others who share its anti-western ideas. The Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair made the comment in a statement written for members of Congress. He said important progress has been made against terrorism in the past few years. But he said the terrorist threat against the United States remains. Mr. Blair said al-Qaeda still has a desire to attack the country, and he said it was support a major operation designed to hurt many Americans or damage the American economy or both.

The United States Transportation Secretary is urging owners of many Toyota vehicles to take them to dealers for safety inspections. Ray LaHood made his comment to lawmakers Wednesday. Mr. LaHood later clarified his statement. He said Toyota owners should take their vehicles to dealers if they are unsure if repairs are necessary. Toyota is the world's biggest carmaker. It is recalling over 2 million vehicles in North America for possible repairs. The company says some models have problems that could cause the car to gain speed uncontrollably.

In Hong Kong all major parties that support mainland China have said they will boycott a special election in the territory. The election is called for because of the resignation of 5 pro-democracy lawmakers last month. The resignations are aimed at giving a cause to pro-democracy supporters who are calling for full democracy in Hong Kong by 2012. The Federation of Trade Unions announced Wednesday that it would boycott the elections. It joined two other major parties with ties to the Chinese government. The parties say political reform should follow plans in China to have full democracy by 2020.

People in Haiti are protesting what they say are slow relief efforts and corruption of Haitian officials. Hundreds of people gathered in an area near Port-au-Prince to express anger over the lack of food and other aid. The Associated Press reports that many claim that Haitian officials were asking for payment in return for donated food aid. The United Nations says international aid efforts have made progress, but it is still not meeting the needs of the earthquake victims.

And now here again is the major news of the hour. A bomb in northwest Pakistan has killed 8 people including 3 American soldiers. A jury in New York City has found a Pakistani scientist guilty of trying to kill Americans while being held for questioning in Afghanistan. And nations are reacting to an offer by Iran's President to send uranium out of the country for enrichment.

And that's the news in Special English.

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