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North Korean leader SEOUL: In a rare and remarkable interview posted on YouTube, the teenage grandson of late North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il has provided a glimpse into the secretive world of his country's ruling dynasty.   During the interview conducted at the school in Bosnia where he studies, Kim Han-Sol, nephew of current leader Kim Jong-Un, refers to his uncle as "a dictator" and speaks of his wish to "make things better" for the Korean people.   Sporting wide, black-frame glasses, two studs in his left ear and a fashionable haircut, Kim also talks of his close friendships with South Korean and US students and his hopes for the Korean peninsula's reunification.   Born in Pyongyang in 1995, Kim described a lonely early childhood, spent mostly in the home of his mother's family -- isolated from the grandfather he never actually met and who died in December last year.   "I always wanted to meet him, because I just wanted ...

Ahmadinejad calls for ceasefire, dialogue in Syria KUWAIT CITY: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has urged a ceasefire in Syria and called for internal dialogue to resolve the crisis, but rejects a Turkish proposal to replace President Bashar al-Assad, Kuwait's press reported on Thursday.   "The continuity of the fighting and the killing of innocent and unarmed Syrian citizens ... is unacceptable. A ceasefire must be achieved and then a dialogue started," said Ahmadinejad, cited by the daily Al-Anbaa newspaper.   "The solution must be Syrian made ...
South Korean president visits island near North Korea border SEOUL: South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak made a surprise visit Thursday to an island near the tense border with North Korea that was shelled by Pyongyang two years ago, a spokeswoman said.   "President Lee visited Yeonpyeong island in order to check the security status there ahead of the second anniversary of the shelling on the island," presidential spokeswoman Lee Mi-Yon told AFP.   Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2012 ...
South Korea angered by Japan war shrine visit  SEOUL: South Korea reacted angrily Thursday to a visit by Japanese opposition leader Shinzo Abe to a Tokyo war shrine, saying Japan should "have the courage" to face up to its brutal wartime aggression.   Abe, who has a good chance of becoming Japan's next prime minister, paid his respects Wednesday evening at the Yasukuni Shrine that honours 2.5 million war dead, including 14 leading war criminals from World War II.   A South Korean foreign ministry spokesman expressed ...
Body of Cambodian ex-king arrives in Phnom Penh PHNOM PENH: The body of Cambodia's revered former king Norodom Sihanouk arrived back in his homeland on Wednesday as tens of thousands of mourners filled the streets of the capital to pay their last respects.   An Air China flight from Beijing transporting his body landed at Phnom Penh airport, an AFP reporter said. A convoy was set to take the coffin straight to the royal palace, where the ex-monarch will lie in state for three months.   Copyright ...
Australia PM misogyny speech sparks dictionary rethink  SYDNEY: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard's fiery speech calling the opposition leader a misogynist on Wednesday prompted a leading dictionary to broaden its definition of the word.   Gillard, the nation's first woman leader, lashed out last week at Tony Abbott in parliament, saying she would not be "lectured about sexism and misogyny by this man".   Her comments went viral and won praise around the world but also sparked debate about whether Abbott really had a pathological hated ...
Investigators raid home of South Korean president SEOUL: South Korean investigators on Wednesday raided the home and office of President Lee Myung-Bak's eldest brother as part of a probe into alleged irregularities in a project to build Lee's retirement home.   The raid came a day after a special prosecutor requested that Lee's only son, Lee Si-Hyung, and 10 other people linked to the now-defunct project be barred from leaving the country.   Yonhap news agency said Wednesday's raid was on the home of Lee Sang-Eun ...

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