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NightWatch 20091127


For the Night of 27 November 2009

South Korea - North Korea: South Korean President Lee said he is willing to meet North Korea's leader Kim Chong-il for an inter-Korean summit to improve relations, according to The Associated Press, 27 November.

According to South Korea's Yonhap news agency, Lee said he has no political reason to hold a summit with Kim, but can meet him at anytime if it will help convince North Korea to give up its nuclear programs and resolve humanitarian issues. Lee stated that because the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula is such an important issue, he would plan to meet Kim anytime and anywhere if the summit objective can be achieved.

Philippines: Update. Andal Ampatuan, the mayor of Ampatuan town in Maguindanao Province on Mindanao, surrendered to the police today, he said to clear his name of suspicion in the brutish deaths of 57 people in the province.

The death toll has risen along with details of the bestiality of the killings, which appear to be the handiwork of the Ampatuan clan. The Ampatuan clan is credited for arranging President Arroyo's electoral victory in the province in 2004 and for the victory of her party's senatorial candidates in 2007. They just play rough.

Iran-International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA): For the record. The IAEA governors overwhelmingly voted to censure Iran for building a uranium enrichment plant in secret, Reuters reported. The resolution was the first by the 35-nation board against Iran in almost four years. It passed with rare Russian and Chinese backing by a 25-3 margin with six abstentions.

Germany: Update. The head of the German armed forces became the latest casualty of the Afghanistan conflict when he resigned today, after taking "political responsibility" for the civilian deaths in Konduz Province last month.

Honduras: Presidential elections will take place on Sunday.

Costa Rican President Oscar Arias promised to restore ties with the Honduras after it elects a new president, AP reported. Arias' decision to acknowledge the next administration is a new setback for ousted President Zelaya who is urging the international community not to recognize the vote.

Arias, a Nobel Peace Prize winner, was a chief mediator in the unsuccessful negotiations to restore Zelaya to power. He now says the world should not punish the next Honduran government for the coup "like a second Hurricane Mitch," by not recognizing the next government, isolating it, denying it cooperation.

Zelaya's time has come to a close for now.

End of NightWatch for 27 November.

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