Thousands of Army and police reinforcements staged a show of force Monday in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico's most violent city, with still more due to arrive in an effort to restore order. Military officers are expected to assume the duties of police chief and top lieutenants in the border community. But skeptics doubted the increased security would halt drug-related killings. The Washington Times newspaper reported that Mexico's two biggest drug cartels appear to be negotiating a merger that would enable them to better withstand the government crackdown. It quoted a senior Pentagon official as saying the consequences of such a pact would be "grave."Skip to next paragraph
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Toyota, the automaking giant, said it's seeking financial help from Japan's government to offset its first operating loss in 59 years. Spokesmen provided no details, but news outlets said the company has asked for $2 billion in loans for its financing unit. The unit does 70 percent of its business in the US, where credit is tight. Toyota's move came as the government announced it will dip into its $1 trillion in foreign exchange reserves to facilitate loans to key exporters.
A court in Zimbabwe ordered opposition cabinet nominee Roy Bennett to be released from jail. Bennett is the Movement for Democratic Change's choice to be deputy agriculture minister. His arrest three weeks ago has strained relations in the new unity government between the MDC, which he cofounded, and President Robert Mugabe. MDC Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai is slated to make his first speech Wednesday.
Calm returned to the capital of Guinea-Bissau Tuesday following the murders of its president and Army chief. But soldiers patrolled the city, border crossings were closed, and Parliament Speaker Raimundo Pereira called the situation "very delicate."Pereira, who is bound under the Constitution to become interim president, was to meet with visiting envoys from the African Union and Portuguese-speaking nations to try to prevent a possible military takeover.
Armed police led onetime Russian oil-industry tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky into a Moscow courtroom in handcuffs Tuesday for the start of his latest trial, an event that some analysts say proves Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's willingness to pursue his political enemies "until the end." Khodorkovsky , already serving a nine-year sentence for fraud and tax evasion, is charged with money-laundering and embezzlement. He fell afoul of Putin when the latter was president by funding opposition parties.
Worried UN monitors in Nepal warned of possible armed confrontations after the former communist rebel movement said it plans to recruit more than 12,000 new guerrillas. A People's Liberation Army spokesman blamed the move on the armed forces, which added 2,800 people to their ranks last year, claiming they were replacements for personnel who'd retired. Under a 2006 peace accord, neither side is supposed to recruit. The deal calls for the national Army to absorb ex-rebels into its ranks, but few have been, reports said.
Leftist militants claimed responsibility for targeting an Athens subway train late Monday night in the latest incident of extremist violence in the Greek capital. No injuries were reported in the attack at an above-ground station in an upscale neighborhood, but the blaze destroyed six cars . A second train also was set on fire, but the damage was less serious, reports said.
At least 13 people were killed and more than 30 others were believed trapped under a landslide that buried a gold mining town in southern Peru. About 50 houses were crushed under rocks and mud loosened by relentless rains, reports said, and badly flooded roads were preventing emergency crews from reaching the scene.