July 25, 2005

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Headlines (5:57)
Egyptian police are now searching for six Pakistanis in connection with Saturday’s bombing of the Sharm Al Sheikh resort in the Sinai peninsula. The explosion killed 88 people, including 17 foreigners. Paul Schemm reports from Cairo.

The leaders of two of the AFL-CIO’s largest unions, the Teamsters and the Service Employees, have officially announced that they are leaving the labor federation. Other unions that have joined the dissident “Change to Win” Coalition may follow suit later this week during the AFL’s 50th anniversary convention in Chicago. Chris Geovanis reports.

Tea workers in India are close to reaching a compromise in a massive tea strike. They have agreed on their most pertinent issue – a pay raise. Binu Alex has more from Ahmedebad.

Police in Indian Administered Kashmir detained at least 20 protesters on Monday as hundreds of angry demonstrations took place for the second day against the killing of three innocent teenagers on Saturday night by the Indian troops. Shahnawaz Khan has more from Srinagar Kashmir.

Kofi Annan announced that he will visit the destroyed villages in Zimbabwe. He says Zimbabwe president, Robert Mugabe invited him to visit. The invitation comes after a U.N. report found that the demolition project violated international law, a report Mugabe dismisses. More than 700,000 people have lost their homes in the destruction of slums, know as Operation Murambatsvina, or Operation Drive Out Rubbish.

Supreme Court nominee John Roberts is listed in the leadership directory of the conservative legal association, the Federalist Society. In 1997 to 1998, he is listed as a member of the steering committee. He has declined to comment and the White House denies his affiliation. Alfred Roth, President of the Institute for Democracy Studies in New York says that the Senate should investigate his role during his nomination process.

(Audio Clip of Roth)

The Federalist Society was created in 1983 in opposition to the left leaning teachings in law schools. They have opposed issues such as affirmative action and the basic principles of habeas corpus.

Calls for Philippine President to Step Down (2:52)
About 20,000 demonstrators took to the streets in Manila today, demanding the immediate removal of Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo- the latest in a wave of demonstrations against her for the past few weeks. In a nearly one-hour long speech, Arroyo called for an overhaul of the country’s political system to ease a crisis sparked by vote-rigging allegations against her. Meanwhile, in Congress, formal impeachment proceedings against Arroyo may take longer than expected, as the opposition fell short of the votes needed in the House to impeach her. In Manila, Girlie Linao reports.

Ethnic Communities Fear Targeting by London Authorities (2:52)
London police are defending their “shoot to kill” policy following Friday’s fatal shooting of an innocent Brazilian man on London’s transit network. The killing has raised concerns about police procedures in the hunt for suspected suicide bombers, and increased fears that ethnic communities may become the target of police intimidation or harassment. FSRN’s Helen Kelly reports.

Congress Paves Way for Energy Bill (3:45)
On Capitol Hill, Senate and House negotiators agreed to strip the controversial MTBE liability protection out of the Energy Bill, thus clearing the way for a full Congressional vote on a bill to transform the nation’s energy policy, that has been continually blocked for the past 5 years. In previous years, the energy bill was blocked, in part, to the MTBE provision that would shield manufacturers of the gasoline additive from lawsuits, as MTBE has contaminated fresh water reserves throughout the country. The Energy Bill would still spur the construction of new nuclear power plants and further deregulate the energy industry while offering the industry billions of dollars in subsidies. Today, Native American activists went to Capitol Hill to urge Senate Democrats to block the bill once again, saying that their reservations are being targeted to dump the radioactive waste from the nuclear power plants.

Sunnis Return to Negotiate on Iraqi Draft Constitution (3:47)
15 Sunni members of Iraq’s constitution committee said today that they will return to the bargaining table to finish their work on the draft constitution. Sunnis pulled out of negotiations last week due to security concerns, after one of their members was assassinated. David Enders interviews Humam Hamoudi, the head of Iraq’s constitution committee.

Launch of Latin America’s TeleSUR (4:01)
This weekend saw the launch of a historic television collaboration in the Americas. The new network, TeleSUR, has been in the works for six years and is a collaboration of several Caribbean, Central and South American nations; Venezuela, Argentina, Cuba and Uruguay, put up the money to fund what is touted to be the al-Jazeera of the south. The US government, meanwhile, has sought permission from Congress to jam TeleSUR’s signals with propaganda-style programming. However, in TeleSUR’s main hub, Caracas, US threats were brushed off as celebrations of this new network took place yesterday. Pacifica´s Deepa Fernandes and Christopher Sprinkle were there and bring us this montage of TeleSUR.

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