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Members of the Southern African Development Community refused Thursday to recognize the self-declared new president of Madagascar. Speaking for his own government, Zambia's foreign minister called the takeover of power by former opposition leader Andry Rajoelina "a danger to the entrenchment of democracy" and said it "should not be allowed to take root."Skip to next paragraph
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A group of US, European, and Canadian tourists was preparing to wind up a vacation trip to Iraq, the first by foreign nationals since Saddam Hussein's regime fell in 2003, the government said Thursday. The trip was organized by a British package-tour operator and included stops at landmark historic sites, Shiite Muslim shrines, and the reopened National Museum.
In a first for both Japan and Ukraine, their governments have signed a contract to trade greenhouse gas emission rights, reports said Thursday. The deal, under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, calls for Japan to buy 30 million tons worth of Assigned Amount Units for an undisclosed sum that Ukraine will use for renewable energy projects. Other contracts with Eastern European countries are expected to follow, a Japanese government source said. Japan is projected to fall short of its commitment to cut emissions by 2012.
A court in St. Poelten, Austria, sentenced admitted rapist Josef Fritzl to a life term in a psychiatric hospital Thursday for imprisoning his own daughter and fathering her seven children. Fritzl told the court he accepted the verdict of the eight-person jury, meaning it cannot be appealed.
Scientists were en route Thursday to the site of a spectacular undersea volcanic eruption that was sending columns of gas, steam, and ash seven miles high off Tonga in the South Pacific. The eruption , in its fourth day, was not yet considered dangerous to residents. But geologists said its climatic effect would need to be reassessed if it continued to grow. It was causing flights to and from New Zealand to be diverted, and witnesses reported seeing dead sea birds.