World

A summit on Northern Ireland Friday will bring together Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern and his British counterpart, Tony Blair, at Blair's official country retreat in Halton, England. The two leaders plan to craft a strategy for reviving their governments' shared goal of power-sharing by a Nov. 24 deadline. Power-sharing was a central objective of a 1998 peace pact for Northern Ireland, but it was put on hold in recent years amid arguments between Protestant leaders and those of the province's Catholic minority.

Investigators in Montreal Thursday tried to piece together the events that led an unidentified young man in a black trench coat and mohawk haircut to go on a shooting rampage at Dawson College a day earlier. The lunch-hour shooting spree, which killed one woman and wounded 19 other people, some critically, ended when the gunman was killed in a shootout with police. The police are gathering information from the attacker's apartment in the Montreal area.

Japanese prosecutors charged five employees of Mitutoyo Corp., a precision instrument company, with exporting cylinders that can be used in making nuclear weapons without proper government authorization. The workers allegedly shipped the equipment to a company subsidiary in Malaysia in 2001.

In the highest-profile Russian assassination since President Vladimir Putin took office six years ago, gunmen shot and killed a Central Bank official Thursday in what police called a contract "hit." Andrei Kozlov, who'd led a campaign to close banks suspected of money laundering, was ambushed as he left a soccer match between bank employees. Many of Russia's smaller banks have a history of malpractice.

Senegal reversed course and decided not to take back citizens detained in Spain's Canary Islands during their attempt to migrate to a better life in Europe, regional officials said Thursday. Spanish and Senegalese representatives had worked on a repatriation plan, which has now been suspended. More than 24,000 Africans have been caught this year trying to reach the Canary Islands after sailing from west Africa.

Spain's Defense Ministry said that four ships will begin transporting hundreds of national troops and equipment Friday to southern Lebanon to join a UN peacekeeping mission. Spain's 1,100 troops will be the third largest national contingent in the peacekeeping operation, behind France and Italy. While UN officials expressed optimism Thursday on the one-month anniversary to the halt of regional hostilities, they also lodged a complaint that Israeli jets had flown over Lebanese airspace in violation of the cease-fire.

Pakistani government officials said Thursday that disagreements over a bill designed to reform Islamic laws about rape and adultery have delayed efforts to present the legislation to parliament. Although some accuse the government of caving in to hard-line Islamists, officials said the government needs more time to consult political parties on the proposed changes to the Hudood Ordinances. One controversial clause of the laws indicate that a rape victim is liable to prosecution for adultery if she can't produce four male witnesses to the crime.

The return of old-style populism and the unilateral rewriting of contracts by Latin American governments could scare off investment from the region, the International Monetary Fund's chief economist warned Thursday. The assessment was shared during the IMF's semiannual World Economic Outlook, presented in Singapore Thursday.

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