September 10, 2012 in Nation/World

In brief: Bombs kill 2, wound 16 in Afghanistan

From Wire Reports

KABUL, Afghanistan – Afghan authorities say two bomb blasts near the governor’s compound in a western province have killed a 12-year-old boy and wounded 16 other civilians.

Farah provincial spokesman Abdur Rahman Zhuwandai said the bombs were attached to motorcycles parked in two different squares near the governor’s office.

He said most of those injured in Sunday’s explosions were young people between the ages of 8 and 21.

Separately, the NATO military coalition said one of its service members was killed Sunday by a roadside bomb in southern Afghanistan. The statement did not provide further details.

Western Cuba hit by huge power failure

HAVANA – Power failed across a large swath of western Cuba on Sunday night, plunging millions of people into darkness including in the capital of Havana and at the popular beach resort of Varadero.

The outage knocked out air-conditioning units and electric fans on a sweltering late-summer Caribbean night. Other cities in central and eastern Cuba also had outages, but for only brief spans.

There was no immediate word on what caused the blackout, which struck a little after 8 p.m. in the middle of the nightly news on state television and was still mostly out in the capital more than three hours later.

Big blackouts were common in Havana in the 1990s when Cuba was dealing with an energy crisis, and again in the middle of the last decade. But while isolated outages still hit the city on occasion, blackouts of this scope have become rare.

Leslie moves slowly past Bermuda

HAMILTON, Bermuda – Tropical Storm Leslie’s outer bands buffeted Bermuda with gusty winds and rain Sunday as it slowly edged past the wary British enclave on a path that was expected to take it to Canada’s Newfoundland later in the week.

The government reopened the L.F. Wade International Airport in the early evening after keeping it closed for most of the day due to heavy winds. Major airlines already had canceled flights to the British Atlantic territory of about 65,000 inhabitants.

As Leslie gradually spun away from Bermuda into the northern Atlantic, the Bermuda Police Service said there were no reports of any major damage or injuries. Bus services resumed.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said the storm had weakened slightly early Sunday, with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph. Tropical storm winds extended up to 195 miles from its center. By late afternoon, it was about 175 miles east-northeast of Bermuda and moving north at 14 mph.

U.S. forecasters said Leslie could regain hurricane strength Tuesday over open ocean as it was expected to approach Newfoundland.

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