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Italian High Court Confirms Berlusconi's Conviction

Italy's top court has upheld a conviction and prison term for Italy's most prominent politician, former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, on charges of tax fraud. This the first time he has been definitively convicted, after 20 years in which he was accused of multiple transgressions. However, the supreme court will now reconsider the law that would bar him from holding high office because of the conviction. This could allow the shaky coalition that governs Italy to remain in place.
NPR

'Abenomics' Serving Up The Same Old Medicine In Japan?

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hopes to bring the Japanese economy out of years of stagnation by pumping money into the economy and encouraging domestic consumption. But not everyone is seeing the benefits, and some say it's just a repackaging of strategies that have failed Japan before.
NPR

NSA Leaker Snowden Granted One-Year Asylum In Russia

Edward Snowden has been granted asylum for up to one year by Russia and has left the transit zone at Moscow's airport where he was holed up for more than a month. The Russian government says a condition for his amnesty is that he not reveal any more information that will damage the United States.
NPR

Italy's High Court Affirms Berlusconi's Tax Fraud Conviction

The Court of Cassation upheld a lower court's conviction of the ex-premier in a move that could threaten the ruling coalition.
NPR

U.S. Will Close Some Embassies Sunday Over Security Concerns

The State Department said it made the decision "'out of an abundance of caution." It has not yet released a list of which embassies will be closed.
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Kerry Says U.S. Plans To Stop Drone Strikes In Pakistan

Secretary of State John Kerry said the White House hopes to end the program "very, very soon" because the U.S. has "eliminated most of the threat."
NPR

Queen's Speech For WWIII: British Must 'Prepare To Survive'

The chilling, never delivered speech for Queen Elizabeth II was drafted by civil servants in 1983 as part of a war games scenario. It echoes Winston Churchill's defiant radio broadcasts in the face of Adolf Hitler's bombing campaign.
NPR

Huge Explosion In Homs Leaves Scores Wounded

The attack showed that while the government has made significant gains, rebels still have firepower. The explosion hit the neighborhood of Zahra, which is majority Alawite, the same sect as President Bashar Assad.
NPR

Zimbabwe's Prime Minister Calls Election 'A Huge Farce'

Morgan Tsvangirai, the leader of Zimbabwe's opposition and the main challenger to President Robert Mugabe, says Wednesday's voting was rigged in favor of the ruling party.
NPR

Where In The World Are There No McDonald's?

McDonald's may seem to be everywhere, but there are still 105 countries without the fast food giant, from Ghana to Jamaica to Yemen to Tajikistan. In six countries, McDonald's once had a presence, but due to economics, and sometimes politics, the franchises closed.

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