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WORLD BRIEFS


ITALY: Election resulting in deadlock

Political paralysis loomed as near-complete results Monday in national elections showed no clear winner and raised the possibility of a hung parliament. The uncertainty bodes ill for efforts to pass the tough reforms needed in the economic crisis and to prevent a new round of global financial turmoil. A major factor was the astonishing vote haul of comic-turned-political leader Beppe Grillo, whose 5 Star Movement capitalized on a wave of disgust with the ruling class. The alliance of billionaire media mogul Silvio Berlusconi, who was driven from the premiership at the end of 2011, was neck-and-neck with center-left leader Pier Luigi Bersani's coalition for both houses of parliament.


Charges for cruise captain

Prosecutors officially requested an indictment of the Costa Concordia's captain on manslaughter charges in the shipwreck of the cruise liner that killed 32 people last year off the Tuscan coast. Prosecutors in Grosseto, Tuscany, are seeking a trial for Capt. Francesco Schettino on charges of causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship during the frantic evacuation of passengers and crew.


IRAN: Nuclear talks to resume

Iran meets world powers Tuesday in Kazakhstan in the latest round of talks intended to ensure Iran doesn't develop nuclear weapons. Diplomats convene in Almaty for their first meeting since negotiations broke down in June. European Union foreign policy head Catherine Ashton is leading the meeting on behalf of the so-called P5+1 group -- China, France, Germany, Russia, Britain and the United States. Iran calls the dozens of international sanctions affecting its economy unfair and says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes and is within the bounds of its treaty rights. The UN Security Council has ordered Iran to suspend atomic work until international inspectors can demonstrate Iran hasn't developed the technology with military intentions.

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