USA

Only a small fraction of the 13.9 million credit card accounts at MasterCard exposed to possible fraud were considered at high risk, the company said Saturday. The breach, announced Friday by MasterCard, appears to be the largest yet involving financial data in a series of security lapses affecting valuable consumer data at major financial institutions and data brokers. The error was traced to Atlanta-based CardSystems Solutions Inc., which processes credit card and other payments for banks and merchants. It was not immediately clear how many other of the 26 million accounts exposed to fraud were considered at high risk. The FBI would not confirm the intrusion was the result of Internet hacking.

Oscar Killen, a brother of the man accused in the 1964 deaths of three civil rights workers, took the stand Saturday in Philadelphia, Miss., in his brother's defense, saying the defendant was at a Father's Day gathering the day of the murders and never indicated he was in the Ku Klux Klan. Edgar Ray Killen, a part-time preacher and sawmill operator, is being tried on the first-ever state murder charges in the killings of the voter-registration volunteers, one black and two white. Prosecutors wrapped up their arguments earlier in the day amid reports that they'd ask the judge to allow the jury to consider a lesser charge of manslaughter. The defendant is not scheduled to testify.

The House voted late last week to withhold one half of assessed US dues to the United Nations - now about $440 million annually - if the UN doesn't accomplish nearly four dozen steps to improve its accountability and root out corruption. The Senate has no immediate plans to take up the bill and its chances of becoming law are uncertain.

Hundreds of Vietnamese émigrés took to the streets over the weekend in Westminster, Calif., to protest the first US visit by a Vietnamese prime minister since the war's end 30 years ago, saying the communist government needs to improve its human rights record. Prime Minister Phan Van Khai is due to meet Tuesday with President Bush at the White House. The protest occurred in Orange County's Little Saigon area, home of the nation's largest Vietnamese community. More protests were planned in Seattle Monday, when the prime minister plans to meet with Microsoft Corp. chairman Bill Gates.

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