domingo, 1 de agosto de 2010
The U.S. Defense Department is close to reaching an agreement with a country in southern Europe on the deployment of a missile early-warning radar to counter potential missile strikes from Iran, The Washington Post reported.
"The U.S. military is on the verge of activating a partial missile shield over southern Europe, part of an intensifying global effort to build defenses against Iranian missiles amid a deepening impasse over the country's nuclear ambitions," the newspaper said in an article published on Sunday.
Citing unidentified Pentagon sources, the paper said a powerful X-band missile-tracking radar would be probably deployed either in Turkey or Bulgaria as early as next year, and it would enable the first phase of the missile shield.
The new radar will feed early-warning data to U.S. warships equipped with Aegis missile system, which are deployed in the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf.
Chechen rebel leader Doku Umarov, who claimed the Moscow Metro bombings earlier this year which killed 40 people, is said to be resigning.
In a video released online a man appearing to be Mr Umarov, 46, says he is handing over to a younger comrade.
The speaker says a man seated next to him, named as Aslambek Vadalov, can lead "more energetically".
Doku Umarov is one of the few rebel leaders to survive from Chechnya's spell of independence from Russia.
He served as security minister in the separatist government from 1996-99.
The Russian state regards him as a notorious terrorist, head of the self-styled Caucasus Emirate - an armed Islamist movement seeking control of the mainly Muslim territories in the Russian North Caucasus.
He is also officially described as a terrorist by the US state department.
In the video, which appeared on a French video-sharing website before being removed on Sunday, the man believed to be Doku Umarov says he will continue personally to wage "jihad" against Russian rule in the Caucasus.
PHOENIX, Aug. 1 (UPI) -- Pop singer Lady Gaga protested Arizona's immigration law but refused to go along with contemporaries who asked her to boycott the state, observers say.
The pop star spoke out twice during Saturday's sold-out concert in Phoenix's U.S. Airways Center, saying SB 1070 created "a state of emergency" in Arizona, told her fans she would not boycott the state as other performers such as Kanye West, Rage Against the Machine and Sonic Youth have done, The Arizona Republic reported Sunday.
"I got a call from some big rappers and big rockers. They said, ''We'd like you to boycott Arizona because of SB 1070.' I told them, 'Do you really think that us ... pop stars are going to shut down the state?" Lady Gaga said.
"We have to be active. We have to actively protest. ... I will not cancel my show. I will hold you, and we will hold each other, and we will protest this state," she said.
The performer's second address to the crowd later in the concert concerned the song "You and I" which she dedicated to a boy she had met in Phoenix prior to her concert.
BRASILIA - The World Heritage Committee of the UNESCO decided on Saturday, at its 34th meeting in Brasilia, to add the historic monuments of Dengfeng in China's central Henan province to the World Heritage List.
The historic monuments of Dengfeng in "The Center of Heaven and Earth," which include the ancient architectural complex at Mount Songshan and the site of the Xia-dynasty capital, are situated in and around Mount Songshan in Henan.
The complex consists of 13 ancient structures and sites, such as Shaolin Temple, Songyang Academy, Taishi, Shaoshi and Qimu Towers and the pagoda of the Songyue Temple.
Suso Cecchi D'Amico, the Italian screenwriter of such celebrated movies as Bicycle Thieves and The Leopard, has died in Rome at the age of 96.
D'Amico worked with many Italian greats and was nominated for an Oscar in 1966 for her contribution to Casanova 70.
Michelangelo Antonioni, Mario Monicelli and Franco Zeffirelli were among those with whom she collaborated.
The latter film-maker remembered her as "an extraordinary screenwriter" who was "a mom and a sister to all of us".
According to Italian news agency ANSA, D'Amico died on Saturday and is survived by her three children.
In 1994 she received a lifetime achievement award at the Venice Film Festival.
Born Giovanna Cecchi in 1914 to a family of writers and intellectuals, D'Amico began working in cinema soon after the end of World War II.
Bicycle Thieves was one of her first films and became one of the key works of the neorealist movement that came to prominence in post-war Italy.
Later successes included the comedy Big Deal on Madonna Street and historical drama The Leopard, one of several films she made with Luschino Visconti.
President Giorgio Napolitano called her a "great protagonist of one of the best seasons of Italian cinema".
Two Gulf states have announced bans on some functions of the Blackberry mobile phone, claiming security concerns.
The United Arab Emirates is to block sending emails, accessing the internet, and delivering instant messages to other Blackberry handsets.
Saudi Arabia is to prevent the use of the Blackberry to Blackberry instant messaging service.
Both nations are unhappy that they are unable to monitor such communications via the handsets.
This is because the Blackberry handsets automatically send the encrypted data to computer servers outside of the two countries.
The UAE ban is to start in October, while the Saudi move will begin later this month.
Abdulrahman Mazi, a board member of state-controlled Saudi Telecom, has admitted that the decision is intended to put pressure on Blackberry's Canadian owner, Research in Motion (RIM), to release data from users' communications "when needed".
The UAE's telecoms regulator, TRA, said the lack of compliance with local laws raised "judicial, social and national security concerns".
RIM has yet to comment on either case.
There are an estimated 500,000 Blackberry users in the UAE, and 400,000 in Saudi Arabia.
The Netherlands has ended its military mission in Afghanistan, after four years in which its 1,950 troops have won praise for their effectiveness.
Dutch military chief Gen Peter van Uhm said security had improved in Uruzgan province during the Dutch deployment.
But he acknowledged that "a lot still has to happen" after the withdrawal.
Nato has played down its significance, but analysts say this is a sensitive time for the alliance, with growing casualties and doubts about strategy.
Dutch command was formally handed over to the US and Australia in a small ceremony on Sunday at the main military base in Uruzgan - where most Dutch soldiers have been deployed.
The Dutch ministry of defence told the BBC that while its military mission in Afghanistan had ended, a redeployment task force would stay on to oversee the return of vehicles, military hardware and equipment to the Netherlands.
Four F16 jets, three Chinooks and five Apaches from the Dutch air force were expected to remain in Afghanistan until the end of the year.
"Dutch forces have served with distinction in Uruzgan, and we honour their sacrifice and that of their Afghan counterparts during the Netherlands' tenure in the province," said a statement from the Nato-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).
Nato had wanted the Netherlands to extend its mission, but the request triggered a political row which brought down the country's coalition government in February.
This sent shock waves through other European countries, particularly Germany, where public opposition to the war is growing.
Police have played down fears that allowing parents to check if someone with access to their children is a sex offender may cause vigilante attacks.
The scheme known as "Sarah's Law" was proposed after the murder of eight-year-old Sarah Payne 10 years ago.
The Home Office pilot scheme is now being extended to eight more forces.
Chief Constable Paul West of the Association of Chief Police Officers said it was "realistic" to think people would keep information to themselves.
The scheme was piloted in four areas in England from September 2008 and will be expanded to the whole of England and Wales by spring.
Sarah was kidnapped and murdered by a convicted sex offender, Roy Whiting, in West Sussex in 2000.
SANFORD, Fla., Aug. 1 (UPI) -- Dondi, the Asian elephant who entertained shoppers at a Florida flea market for nearly 20 years, has died at a Massachusetts zoo, its trainer confirmed.
Dondi was around 36 years old when it died at Southwick's Zoo in Mendon, Mass., and will be remembered Sunday at a memorial service, Josh Shacht told the Orlando (Fla.) Sentinel.
Dondi was a well-known figure in Florida for his regular winter gig at Flea World, a massive flea market in Sanford.
"Dondi brought people together," said Schacht, whose parents owned the popular pachyderm.
The elephant spent the sultry summer months at Southwick's Zoo.
The cause of death was not immediately known.
NEW YORK, Aug. 1 (UPI) -- Hollywood screen siren Kim Novak says she knew it was time to leave show business in the 1960s when she started getting scripts for "Gidget-type beach movies".
Despite a string of hit movies in the 1950s, Novak told the New York Post she was "not a favorite of the critics".
The Chicago native who lives in Oregon with her husband of 34 years began winding down her career in the 1960s and retired from acting 20 years ago. She recently emerged from retirement to tape interviews that will be packaged with "The Kim Novak Collection," five films she did with Colombia Pictures, which will be released on DVD Tuesday, the Post said.
In a phone interview with the Post from her Oregon home, Novak -- known in Hollywood as "the lavender blonde" -- said she has "been getting an awful lot of fan mail lately".
"I really appreciate being appreciated," she said.
Among her top were "Picnic" (1955), "The Man With the Golden Arm" (1955), "Pal Joey" (1957), "Bell Book and Candle" (1957), "Vertigo" (1958) and "Middle of the Night" (1959).