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OND is a community feature  on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary.  Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00AM Eastern Time.

The OND concept was borne under the keen keyboard of Magnifico - proper respect is due.

Current Contributers are ScottyUrb, Bentliberal, wader,Oke, rfall, JML9999 and Neon Vincent.

BBC:Libyan leader 'arming volunteers'

Libyan leader 'arming volunteers'

Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi is said to be arming volunteers to fight the uprising against his rule, a senior US military official has said.

Vice Admiral William Gortney said Col Gaddafi had "virtually no air defence" and a "diminishing ability to command and sustain his forces on the ground".

Coalition forces launched strikes against Libyan tanks around the eastern town of Ajdabiya, he said.

Rebels and pro-Gaddafi forces are in a stand-off near the town, witnesses say.

BBC:Syria: Protests in Deraa, Damascus, Hama and Homs

Syria: Protests in Deraa, Damascus, Hama and Homs

Protests have been staged in towns and cities across Syria, including the capital Damascus, a day after the government announced limited changes.

Unconfirmed reports said a number of people had been killed in at least three separate protests.

Fresh gunfire was also heard in the city of Deraa, which has become the centre of a serious challenge to the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

Amnesty International fears 55 people have died there in the past week.

BBC:Ivory Coast: One million refugees feared, UNHCR says

Ivory Coast: One million refugees feared, UNHCR says

Up to one million people may have fled their homes because of violence following Ivory Coast's disputed elections, the UN refugee agency says.

The UNHCR says most had run away from recent violence in Abidjan.

Aid agencies are said to be unable to reach parts of the west where forces loyal to disputed President Laurent Gbagbo have been losing ground.

France has circulated a draft resolution at the UN calling for sanctions against Mr Gbagbo.

BBC:Zimbabwe MDC minister Theresa Makoni 'fears arrest'

Zimbabwe MDC minister Theresa Makoni 'fears arrest'

One of the ministers in charge of Zimbabwe's police has told the BBC she is in hiding for fear she would be arrested as part of a state plot.

Theresa Makone is from the MDC, which joined President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu-PF party in a unity government in 2009 after years in opposition.

She said that Zanu-PF wants to stop her and other MDC MPs voting in next week's election for a speaker of parliament.

Tension is again rising in Zimbabwe ahead of possible elections this year.

BBC:Canadian government falls after no-confidence vote

Canadian government falls after no-confidence vote

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservative government has fallen after a no-confidence vote passed in the country's parliament.

The vote, engineered by the opposition Liberal Party and backed by two other opposition parties, triggers an election expected in early May.

The move stemmed from a ruling on Monday that the minority government was in contempt of parliament.

But the Conservatives are thought likely to keep power in a May election.

BBC:Spanish airport workers call off major strike

Spanish airport workers call off major strike

Airport workers in Spain have called off 22 days of strikes which threatened to cause major disruption over the Easter holidays and into the summer.

Union members voted to cancel the strike after receiving guarantees over job security and conditions.

The strikes were called over concerns about the part-privatisation of national airport operator Aena.

The government plans to sell up to 49% of Aena, in a drive to reduce Spain's budget deficit.

Reuters:Fed unlikely to extend QE2, officials say

Fed unlikely to extend QE2, officials say

(Reuters) - The Federal Reserve is unlikely to extend its bond-buying program with the U.S. economy now on firmer footing, several Fed officials said on Friday, with one inflation hawk saying the Fed will have to raise rates and sell assets in the "not-too-distant future."

Philadelphia Fed Bank President Charles Plosser, the inflation hawk, for the first time detailed his preferred approach to reversing the Fed's easy money policy to prevent future inflation, driving the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield higher on Friday.

The Fed has kept short-term interest rates near zero since December 2008 and has bought more than $2 trillion in long-term securities to push borrowing costs down further and boost recovery from the 2007-2009 recession. At the Fed's most recent policy-setting meeting, policymakers unanimously voted to continue the bond-buying program begun last November which is slated to end in June.

"Following through on that to the tune of $600 billion, like we've said, I think is appropriate," Chicago Fed President Evans told reporters at the regional bank's headquarters. "I personally don't see as many needs for a further amount, as I probably thought last fall."

Reuters:Iraq's Maliki says Bahrain may ignite sectarian war

Iraq's Maliki says Bahrain may ignite sectarian war

(Reuters) - Iraq's Shi'ite prime minister, Nuri al-Maliki, said on Friday military intervention by Sunni Arab neighbors in Bahrain could spark a sectarian war in the region and must end.

Bahrain has witnessed a month of protests from mainly Shi'ite demonstrators seeking constitutional reform. Its ruling al Khalifa family, from the minority Sunni population, has cracked down on the rallies and called in troops from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states.

"The situation in Bahrain is different from those in Libya and Egypt. In Libya and Egypt the issue is not sectarian while in Bahrain it has become between Sunnis and Shi'ites," Maliki told the BBC Arabic television service in an interview aired on Friday.

"We did not move to support the Shi'ites in Bahrain but we called for interference in Bahraini affairs to be stopped and don't want to make it a sectarian issue. Because if it happens, it will be like a snowball, it will get bigger if it is ignored ... The region may be drawn into a sectarian war."

Reuters:Yemen ruler ready to step down, Syria protests spread

Yemen ruler ready to step down, Syria protests spread

(Reuters) - Yemeni President Ali Abdullah said on Friday he was ready to cede power, the third Arab ruler who may be forced out by popular protests which began in North Africa and have now spread into the Gulf, Syria and Jordan.

Saleh said he would cede power only into "safe hands" and Yemeni political sources said talks were under way to work out the details of a peaceful transition.

But in Syria, protests challenging the rule of President Bashar al-Assad spread across the country after security forces killed dozens of demonstrators in the south.

"The barrier of fear is broken. This is a first step on the road to toppling the regime," said Ibrahim, a middle-aged lawyer in the southern Syrian city of Deraa. "We have reached the point of no return."

Reuters:High radiation levels at Japanese plant raise new worry

High radiation levels at Japanese plant raise new worry

(Reuters) - Highly radioactive water has been found at a second reactor at a crippled nuclear power station in Japan, the plant's operator said, as fears of contamination escalated two weeks after a huge earthquake and tsunami battered the complex.

Underscoring growing international concern about nuclear power raised by the accident in northeast Japan, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a statement it was time to reassess the international nuclear safety regime.

Earlier, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan, making his first public statement on the crisis in a week, said the situation at the Fukushima nuclear complex, 240 km (150 miles) north of Tokyo, was "nowhere near" being resolved.

"We are making efforts to prevent it from getting worse, but I feel we cannot become complacent," Kan told reporters. "We must continue to be on our guard."

Reuters:Healthcare and global warming impede budget deal

Healthcare and global warming impede budget deal

(Reuters) - Healthcare, global warming, birth control and other hot-button political issues are threatening to derail a compromise over U.S. spending cuts, lawmakers and aides said on Friday.

The dispute again raises the possibility of a government shutdown that would force thousands of layoffs and rattle financial markets, even as Republican and Democratic negotiators began to bridge a $50 billion gap between their rival spending plans.

Aides said the closed-door talks were initially productive. But leaders from both parties later issued sharply worded statements that any shutdown would be the fault of the other.

"The status quo is unacceptable, and right now that is all Washington Democrats are offering," said House Speaker John Boehner.

Reuters:Obama seeks to assure lawmakers on Libya strategy

Obama seeks to assure lawmakers on Libya strategy

(Reuters) - President Barack Obama told U.S. lawmakers on Friday American military forces are not seeking to topple Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi from power but are engaged in a limited effort to protect civilians.

After days of complaints that he had not properly consulted Congress, Obama and top aides held an hour-long conference call from the White House Situation Room and briefed Democratic and Republican leaders.

Lawmakers said Obama stuck to his position that while U.S. policy favors Gaddafi's departure, the U.S. involvement in support of a U.N. Security Council resolution was limited to stopping Gaddafi from killing Libyans opposed to his rule.

Both Democrats and Republicans had questioned Obama's handling of the six-day conflict. The Republican speaker of the House of Representatives, John Boehner, charged that Obama committed forces to battle without properly defining the mission.

Bloomberg:Kodak Wins a Round in $1 Billion Apple, RIM Patent Dispute

Kodak Wins a Round in $1 Billion Apple, RIM Patent Dispute

Eastman Kodak Co. (EK) won the latest round in its patent dispute with Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Research In Motion Ltd. (RIMM), a victory with the potential to generate more than $1 billion in new licensing revenue for the camera company.

Kodak rose as much as 25 percent in late trading after the U.S. International Trade Commission said it will review a judge’s findings from January that Apple’s iPhone and RIM’s BlackBerry don’t violate Kodak’s patent on a way to preview digital images using less processing power and storage space. The ITC, which can block imports of products that violate U.S. patents, plans to make a final determination by May 23.

Kodak, the 131-year-old company that popularized photography with the Brownie and Instamatic cameras, may be able to extract $1 billion from Apple and RIM should it win the case, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Antonio Perez said in an interview yesterday. His figure was based on the combined $964 million received from settlements reached with Samsung Electronics Co. and LG Electronics Inc. (066570) over the same patent.

The patent covers a feature that previews low-resolution versions of a moving image while recording still images at a high resolution. Higher resolution requires more processing power and storage space. Kodak, which generated $838 million from patents last year, contends the image-preview feature is used in every digital camera and phone with a camera.  

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