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CIA torture report out next week: US senator WASHINGTON: The US Senate Intelligence Committee will release a long-delayed, damning report next week on Bush-era "enhanced interrogation" practices by the CIA that President Barack Obama and others have described as torture.On Thursday the panel's chairwoman, Senator Dianne Feinstein, confirmed to AFP that a declassified version of the controversial study would be released "next week" after her committee and the White House ironed out differences.Feinstein and the administration sparred for months over disputes about proposed redactions in the 6,200-page report.In April the committee voted overwhelmingly to release the 500-page executive summary and 20 conclusions of the secret document, which severely criticized the Central Intelligence Agency's interrogation techniques at CIA-run prisons overseas, including the use of "waterboarding."At the time Feinstein called the results "shocking" and pledged to work with the White House on negotiating the redactions in order to release the summary to the public. Obama also vowed swift declassification.But the ...

Congressman seeks probe into China-US college ties WASHINGTON: A senior member of Congress called Thursday for an investigation into deals that US universities are striking with China, amid fears that such tie-ups are compromising academic freedom.Christopher Smith, who sits on the House of Representatives foreign affairs committee, voiced concern that Beijing-backed "Confucius Institutes" are muting criticism of China's Communist authorities."Is American higher education for sale?" said the Republican from New Jersey who also co-chairs the Congressional-Executive Committee on China."And if so, are ...
Obama finds second wind after election drubbing WASHINGTON: The hammering suffered by Barack Obama's Democratic party in last month's mid-term elections could have floored him out as he began his final two years as president.Instead, he has bounced back off the ropes and come out fighting.One month after losing control of the Senate and with it his last chance of setting the legislative agenda, Obama appears reinvigorated, determined to wield whatever power remains his.Allies that despaired of his apparent lack of ambition ...
Silicon Valley clears out homeless 'Jungle' camp SAN JOSE: Authorities began dismantling a notorious homeless camp Thursday known as "The Jungle" in the heart of California's affluent Silicon Valley, where skyrocketing rents have forced hundreds onto the streets.Municipal workers in white overalls and face masks moved into the camp along a creek in San Jose where some 300 people live in tents and other makeshift lodging."It is a disgrace," said housing advocate Sandy Perry, adding: "It's an example of the total failure ...
White policeman kills unarmed black man in Arizona LOS ANGELES: A white police officer shot dead a black man in Arizona when he mistook some pills for a gun, authorities said Thursday, amid protests in New York triggered by a string of similar incidents.The officer believed the 34-year-old suspect was reaching into his pocket for a gun in the flashpoint Wednesday in Phoenix, in which the man was shot twice in the chest after a struggle.It was subsequently found that Rumain Brisbon had ...
Rain still falling in California after major storm breaks records LOS ANGELES: A major Pacific storm that broke records across Southern California and delivered a small measure of relief to the drought-stricken state brought more rain on Wednesday but the danger of major mudslides in wildfire-scarred areas appeared to have passed, officials said.The sub-tropical storm, which originated in the Pacific Ocean south of Hawaii, was the strongest to hit Southern California since at least February and poured at least an inch (2.5 cm) of rain ...
Mexican troops defend Acapulco, violent 'Hot Land' ACAPULCO: Mexican federal police and troops took over public safety Wednesday in the resort of Acapulco and a violent region known as the Hot Land, following the presumed massacre of 43 students.Monte Alejandro Rubido, the national security commissioner, said the Acapulco operation was aimed at restoring security in the Pacific port during the winter holidays.Acapulco's tourism industry has been hit by recent protests over the disappearance, and apparent slaughter, of 43 aspiring teachers in the ...


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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-2.309 bln
Exports $1.957 bln
Imports $4.266 bln
WeeklyDecember 18, 2014
Reserves $14.04 bln