Mauritania intensifies crackdown on anti-slavery activists, says campaignerBy Nellie Peyton DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Mauritanian anti-slavery activists jailed last month have been tortured in detention and transferred to a remote desert location in an "intensification of repression" by the state, a leading campaigner said. The West African nation in August jailed 13 members of the Resurgence of the Abolitionist Movement (IRA) for up to 15 years for their role in June protests by residents of a slum in the capital Nouakchott, many of whom are former slaves. Slavery is a historical practice in Mauritania, which became the last country worldwide to legally abolish it in 1981.
US closes probe of Jeep automatic braking; no recall sought
U.S. safety regulators have closed a yearlong investigation into the Jeep Grand Cherokee's automatic braking system without seeking a recall. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began the ...
Syrian monitor: Russian airstrikes killed 9,300 in past year
BEIRUT (AP) ? A year of Russian airstrikes on areas outside government control in Syria have killed more than 9,000 people, displaced tens of thousands and caused wide destruction, an opposition monitoring group said Friday.
US consumer spending at weakest pace in 5 months
WASHINGTON (AP) ? U.S. consumers scaled back their spending in August to its weakest pace in five months, reflecting a drop in spending on autos. Income growth also decelerated as wages and salary gains slowed following four strong months.
India evacuates border villages after strikes on Pakistan
India evacuated thousands of people living near the border with Pakistan on Friday, a day after carrying out strikes along the de-facto frontier in disputed Kashmir that have dramatically escalated tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours. Authorities in parts of northern India said they were evacuating villages within 10 kilometres (six miles) of the border following Thursday's raids, which provoked furious charges of "naked aggression" from Pakistan. In Jammu and Kashmir state, police said more than 1,500 had moved away from areas where there was a risk of cross-border shelling, as fears of military escalation mounted.
Southern Conference to keep championships in North CarolinaCOLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) ? The Southern Conference will keep four league championships in North Carolina despite the NCAA and the Atlantic Coast Conference withdrawing championships because of the state law restricting rights of LGBT people.
On-form Kvitova beats Halep to reach Wuhan final
Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova dropped just three games to dismiss Simona Halep in two sets in the semi-finals at the Wuhan Open Friday. The Czech displayed the tennis that once saw her two match wins from ascending to world number one as she beat Halep 6-1, 6-2 to reach her second final at the $2.6 million hard court event in China. The Romanian fourth seed denied Kvitova her first match point with an unusual backhand volley, taking the second set to 5-2, but was unable to swing the momentum of the game in her favour.
Gerhard Richter painting owned by Clapton going up for sale
South African rangers kill 3 suspected poachersJOHANNESBURG (AP) ? South African authorities used a helicopter to recover the bodies of three suspected poachers who were fatally shot by rangers in a wildlife park where rhino poaching has increased in recent weeks.
Pakistan cinemas ban Indian films amid escalating Kashmir tensionBy Syed Raza Hassan KARACHI, Pakistan (Reuters) - Pakistani cinemas have stopped screening Indian films in "solidarity" with the country's armed forces, after an escalation of violence in disputed Kashmir between the nuclear-armed neighbors, theater owners said on Friday. Tension between India and Pakistan has been high since an Indian security forces crackdown on dissent in Indian-controlled Kashmir began in July. Relations worsened in September after militants killed 18 soldiers in a raid on an Indian army base, an attack New Delhi blames on Pakistan.