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October 20, 2010 | By Laura King, Los Angeles Times
Afghan electoral officials, releasing preliminary results of last month's parliamentary election, said Wednesday that they had tossed out more than a million ballots because of proven or likely fraud. The decision by Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission laid bare the enormous extent of malfeasance in the Sept. 18 vote, which initially was billed as a showpiece of the country's nascent democracy. But it also demonstrated the ability of formerly pliant electoral officials to disqualify ballots because of ballot box stuffing, wholesale vote buying or threats to voters from gunmen, among other offenses.
December 18, 2012 | By Reem Abdellatif, Los Angeles Times
CAIRO - Egypt's public prosecutor, appointed by President Mohamed Morsi last month, resigned from his post Monday amid ongoing tension between the nation's judiciary and the president. Talaat Ibrahim submitted his resignation to the Supreme Judiciary Council, according to the state-run news agency. The council said it would deliberate Sunday on whether to accept the resignation. Members of the Judges Club and the nation's judiciary have been furious with Morsi since he decreed Nov. 22 that an Islamist-led assembly writing the nation's draft constitution was immune from judicial oversight.
April 7, 2010 | By Jennifer Rose Bennett and John M. Glionna
Over the years, retired Australian fishing captain Mike Prior has seen their numbers grow, the large trawlers and freighters cruising recklessly through federally protected waters without proper guidance. On Tuesday, authorities were investigating the shipwreck of one such apparent vessel -- a Chinese-flagged bulk coal carrier that slammed into the Great Barrier Reef, skippered by a captain who, the Queensland maritime authority says, may have ignored the fact that he was outside the shipping lanes without a trained marine pilot because he was trying to save transit time.
January 20, 2011 | By James Oliphant, Washington Bureau
When he was leader of an enervated Republican minority in the House, John Boehner was fond of saying the members of his caucus weren't "legislators. " They were "communicators. " Boehner meant that, without power, the GOP could do nothing but stand and shout. Now things have flipped. The Republicans are the ones with the sheer numbers to legislate ? and now they will attempt to show a skeptical American public they can. Thursday, they began their effort, as the House approved a resolution, 253-175, directing four committees to work on alternatives to the healthcare reform law Democrats passed last year.
April 9, 2010 | By Maeve Reston
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has backed away from his call to shut down some city departments two days a week, using positive news about the city's budget crisis to downplay a threat that had become increasingly difficult to sustain. "To all of our surprise, we've gotten an increase in revenues of $30 million more from property tax than we expected," Villaraigosa said Thursday, two days after announcing the move might be necessary as soon as Monday to prevent the city from running out of money.
April 11, 2011 | By Ned Parker and Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times
South African President Jacob Zuma said Sunday that Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi had accepted a "road map" for ending the conflict that pits his forces against rebels determined to end his four-decade rule. Zuma, who according to news reports led a delegation of African Union leaders in a meeting with Kadafi at his compound in Tripoli, did not disclose details of the cease-fire proposal. He also didn't specify whether Kadafi himself or his adjutants had accepted the African Union plan.
January 24, 2010 | By Andrew Malcolm
Onetime Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, whose jump over to the Democratic Party last year turned his name into a political verb for switching sides whenever it's convenient, may have stepped in something messy last week. The 80-year-old new Democrat, who's seeking a sixth term but facing a defiant primary challenge from combative Rep. Joe Sestak, was on a Philadelphia radio station debating Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann. Normally the, uh, outspoken Bachmann, a "tea party" fave, would be a perfect foil for a Democrat like Specter.
November 29, 2009 | Times Wire Services
Countries backing Afghanistan's government are going to demand that it meet specific security benchmarks, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Saturday, outlining a plan to let foreign troops gradually hand control to local forces. Afghan President Hamid Karzai and foreign ministers from a number of countries are expected to attend a Jan. 28 conference in London to set a timetable for Afghanistan to train and deploy thousands more soldiers and police, Brown said at a news conference in Trinidad and Tobago, where he is attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting.
December 10, 2009 | By John M. Glionna and Ju-min Park
Three days of meetings with top North Korean officials served as "exploratory talks" on how to restart stalled six-party negotiations on nuclear weapons, the first Obama administration envoy to visit Pyongyang said Thursday. Special envoy Stephen Bosworth told reporters here that he had not seen North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, nor had he requested a meeting. U.S. officials had hoped to gain a promise from the communist regime to resume the nuclear disarmament talks, which it abandoned in 2006 when it conducted a nuclear test.
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