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Monday, 26 August 2013 00:00

World news in brief

Nordic papers lay into British cops

SCANDINAVIA: Editors at the largest Nordic newspapers warned today that Britain's use of anti-terror laws to "harass" the Guardian could threaten media worldwide.

The editors-in-chief of Dagens Nyheter, Aftenposten, Helsingin Sanomat and Politiken said in a joint letter that they were concerned "that a stout defender of democracy and free debate" like Britain uses anti-terror law to legalise what amounts to harassment.

Firefighters protect ancient tree groves

US: California fire crews are clearing brush and setting sprinklers to protect two groves of giant sequoia trees as a massive week-old wildfire rages in the Yosemite National Park.

The iconic trees can resist fire, but dry conditions and heavy brush are forcing officials to take extra precautions. Around 36 plants are affected.

The trees grow naturally only on the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada and are among the largest and oldest lifeforms on Earth.

Mubarak and Islamists in court

EGYPT: Courts opened trials against ex-president Hosni Mubarak and leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood in parallel sessions today.

The cases relate to killings during the 2011 and 2013 protests that led to their respective downfalls.

The court trying Brotherhood leader Mohammed Badie and five other members of the Islamist group postponed hearings until October 29.

Their charges relate to clashes at the Brotherhood's Cairo offices on June 30.

Greenpeace defies Russia Arctic ban

RUSSIA: Environmental group Greenpeace says that one of its ships defied the Kremlin and entered Arctic waters on Saturday morning to protest against drilling by state oil firm Rosneft and ExxonMobil.

Greenpeace said the Arctic Sunrise entered the Kara Sea morning despite being denied permission last week.

The group is protesting against oil exploration near Russia's Arctic National Park, which accommodates polar bears, walrus and other animals.

Trump sued for 'rip-off' classes

UNITED STATES: New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman filed a £26 million lawsuit against tycoon Donald Trump on Saturday.

Mr Schneiderman claims the "Trump University" promised to make students rich but instead steered them into expensive and useless seminars.

He said many of the 5,000 students paying up to £22,500 thought they would meet Mr Trump but instead had their photo taken with a life-size picture of him.

Mr Schneiderman said "Trump University engaged in deception at every stage."

Bomb attack targets airforce staff bus

YEMEN: A powerful blast ripped through a bus carrying air force personnel in the capital Sanaa today.

At least three people were killed and 23 wounded in the attack on a main road.

The roof of the bus was ripped apart and its sides were blown out, scattering debris, bodies and blood across the pavement.

Prison battle kills boy and 30 adults

BOLIVIA: The death toll from a battle between gangs at a prison on Friday has risen to 31 after an inmate died in hospital.

Most victims were inmates but an 18-month-old boy died with his father.

Another 60 people were injured in the clash at Palmasola maximum-security prison outside the regional capital Santa Cruz.

Authorities say inmates in one cell block attacked a neighboring block with knives, machetes and gas canisters.

Police arrest Hindus on way to holy site

INDIA: Police detained hundreds of Hindu chauvinists today for defying a ban on pilgrimages to a disputed holy site.

The city of Ayodhya has been under heavy security since last week when the state government announced the ban for fear of communal violence.

But members of the Vishva Hindu Parishad group insisted they would go ahead with the 19-day pilgrimage.

More than 500 people, including VHP leaders, were detained.

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