February 23, 2009 in Nation/World

World in brief: Seoul: N. Korea deployed missile

 

North Korea recently deployed a new type of medium-range ballistic missile capable of reaching northern Australia and the U.S. territory of Guam, South Korea’s Defense Ministry said today.

The report comes amid speculation that the isolated regime also is preparing to test-fire another, longer-range missile capable of hitting Alaska.

The new intermediate-range ballistic missile can travel at least 1,800 miles, which would put the Pacific island of Guam, the northern tip of Australia and much of Russia and India within striking distance, the ministry said in a report.

Baghdad

Lawmaker called bombing suspect

Iraqi security forces Sunday identified a Sunni Arab lawmaker as a suspect in the bombing of the Shiite-dominated parliament in 2007 and a slew of other crimes, including burying victims alive and robbing gold stores.

The April 2007 blast, which killed a fellow parliament member, came at the height of Iraq’s sectarian bloodshed and coincided with the start of the major U.S.-Iraqi security push that included the deployment of 30,000 additional American forces to Iraq. The latest announcement, coming on the heels of a victory in provincial elections by Shiite Muslims loyal to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, was likely to aggravate those divisions.

Sunni parliamentarian Mohammed al-Dayni remains free because of immunity enjoyed by parliament members. Security forces cannot arrest al-Dayni unless a court grants its request to lift the lawmaker’s immunity.

London

Detainee being released today

A Guantanamo Bay inmate who claims he was tortured while in U.S. custody will be released today and returned to Britain, his lawyer said Sunday.

Binyam Mohamed, an Ethiopian citizen and former British resident, has been kept at the military prison camp in Cuba even though terrorism charges against him were dropped in October.

His release had been widely anticipated after President Barack Obama took office pledging to close Guantanamo and return as many detainees as possible to their home countries. Britain’s Foreign Secretary David Miliband, has been lobbying for Mohamed’s return to Britain since 2007.

Human rights lawyer Clive Stafford Smith said he was “confident it will happen on Monday.”

From wire reports


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