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PAKISTAN: Bombings of buses kill four

Islamist militants bombed two Pakistani navy buses taking employees to work Tuesday, killing four people in the country's largest city, Karachi. The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility. Also Tuesday, Pakistan's interior minister defended the country's premier spy service against what he called defamation, a day after the release of leaked documents showing U.S. officials at Guantánamo Bay had listed the agency as a terrorist organization. The roadside blasts took place 15 minutes apart in different areas of Karachi. More than 50 people were wounded, Navy Commander Salman Ali said.


NORTH KOREA: Carter arrives in Pyongyang

Ex-President Jimmy Carter and three other former heads of state arrived Tuesday on a three-day mission, planning to discuss dangerous food shortages and stalled nuclear disarmament talks. Children presented flowers to Carter, former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari, former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Brundtland and former Irish President Mary Robinson at the Pyongyang airport, and the group was greeted by Vice Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho. The delegation hopes to have talks with leader Kim Jong Il and his son and heir apparent Kim Jong Un.


VATICAN CITY: A relic for sainthood

Blood taken from Pope John Paul II during his final hospitalization will be used as the official relic for veneration after he is beatified. The Vatican made the announcement Tuesday, putting to rest questions about what relic would be presented during Sunday's beatification. The Vatican said four small vials of blood were taken from John Paul during his final days for a possible transfusion, but were not used. Two vials were given to John Paul's private secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, and another two remained at the Vatican's Bambin Gesu hospital in the care of nuns. One of the hospital vials will be placed in a reliquary and presented Sunday; the other will remain with the nuns. John Paul died April 2, 2005.

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