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[VOA] 【整理】VOA 2008-02-10

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I am Bill Thompson, From the VOA news center in Washington.

At least 20 people have been killed and more than 25 others injured in a suicide bomb explosion at an election rally in northwestern Pakistan. The bomb went off in a town of northwest Frontier province close to the stage where people had gathered to hear the Awami National Party leader speak. He was unhurt. Also today, at least 2000 police officers were dispatched to a small southeastern town as former Prime Minister Benezir Bhutto's party holds its first rally since her assassination in December.

Pakistan meanwhile is scoffing at a senior US official assertion that Osama bin Laden and other Al-Qaida and Taliban leaders are operating on remote tribal areas in Pakistan. A foreign ministry spokesman says that Islamabad will take action if Washington can provide intelligence to back up its claim.

Residents of 4 US states are voting or going party caucuses today to choose nominees for president. Senator Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are in a tight race for the democratic party nomination while senator John McCain is now the heavy favorite to win the republican nomination after his chief rival, former Massachusetts governor Mit Romney suspended his campaign on Thursday. As VOA national correspondent Jim Malone reports, senator McCain has some serious work to do to unify the republican party behind his candidacy.

Conservative have long clashed with Mccain over his initial opposition to president Bush's taxcut program and his support for measures that would establish a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants. Conservative radio talk show host Laury I raised doubts about McCain in her speech to the conservative action conference. "I think the question is what you have been doing for Conservatives lately." Later, Mccain was greeted by the same group with a mixture of jeers and cheers. "All I ask of any American conservatives, modern, independent or likely democrat is to judge my record as a whole, accepting I am not in the habit of making promises to my country that I do not intend to keep." Many conservatives also dislike McCain because he has a reputation as a maverick republican who has been willing to work with liberal democrats on issues such as climate change and campaign finance reform. Jim Malone, VOA news, Washington.

Turkish lawmakers have approved controversial constitutional amendments that will end a decades-old ban on Islamic headscarves of the country's universities. The change will allow female students to wear headscarves as long as the scarves are tied under the chin, leaving the face more exposed. Burqas, however, which cover the entire body will remain prohibited.

Group of 7 Finance Ministers are worried US economy is going to slide even further and that will hurt global economic growth. In a draft statement today of the G7 meeting, finance leaders pledged to work together to promote stability. US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson acknowledges that the global economy faces downside risk that are, in his words, serious and persisting.

US officials say that as many as 6 detainees now being held in the US naval base at Guatonama Bay, Cuba may face charges in the next few days related to September 11th 2001 terrorist attacks. Military prosecutors are said to be considering seeking the death penalty against at least one of those expected to be charged. Among those facing charges was Colleague Sheck M, a former senior aide to Bin Laden and a principal planner of attacks that killed 3000 people.

Two separate attacks In Iraq have left 5 American troops dead, 4 killed yesterday when a vehicle struck a roadside bomb in Baghdad, the other killed in an explosion during an operation in northern Iraqi. Meanwhile, Iraqi largest Sunni Arab political party bloc says it is negotiating with the government on a possible return to the Iraqi cabinet.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan says his country will continue to target Kurdish rebels operating in northern Iraq. Mr. Erdogan says the offensive will continue in his words "until we win".

Lebanon's presidential election has been postponed again. It's the latest in a series of delays during the country's political crisis. Parliament speaker N B says the parliamentary voting session will be moved now to February 26th.

I am Bill Thompson, VOA news. More news on the internet at voanews.com.

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