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In brief: U.N. reducing Pakistan staff

Islamabad, Pakistan – The United Nations said Thursday it would relocate about a quarter of the U.N.’s international staff in Pakistan, a response to the increasingly volatile security situation in the country.

At least 11 U.N. workers have been killed in Pakistan this year, and fears of attacks have increased over the past two and a half months.

More than 500 people have died in bombings after the army’s offensive against militants in South Waziristan, the Pakistani Taliban’s main stronghold near the Afghan border.

Britain considering airport scanners

London – Britain is considering introducing new technology such as full body scanners to improve airport security after the attempted Christmas Day airline attack, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said today.

The failed attempt to bring down Northwest Airlines Flight 253 to Detroit last week was a “wake-up call” for Britain to move quickly to combat changing terrorist techniques by updating its security measures and improving the way it shares information about terror suspects, Brown said.

Brown said traditional pat-down searches and sniffer dogs are no longer enough to identify hidden explosives and weapons. Together with the U.S., Britain is examining the use of more sophisticated equipment – including full body scanners and advanced X-ray technology, he said.

Ugandan priests form new church

Kampala, Uganda – Twenty renegade Catholic priests who are either married or want to marry have broken from the mainstream Roman Catholic Church here and formed a new church where celibacy is not required, members said.

The Ugandan government said Thursday it was investigating the breakaway Catholic Apostolic National Church in Uganda and would ban it if found to be illegal. Vatican officials said the priests were now considered “outside” the Catholic Church and would likely be excommunicated.


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