- - Sunday, July 11, 2010


Google gets OK to operate in China

BEIJING | China confirmed Sunday that it renewed Google’s license to operate after a monthslong standoff over Internet censorship, saying the company has pledged not to provide “lawbreaking content.”

The California-based giant said Friday it had received approval to operate in the world’s most populous country, after it agreed to stop automatically rerouting users of Google.to its site in Hong Kong, which is not subject to China’s online censorship.

Search requests at Google.cn from within mainland China will now require an extra click that then takes the user to the Hong Kong site. That small concession by Google comes as the company tries to uphold its anti-censorship principles while protecting its economic interests.

The Mountain View, Calif., company wants to remain in China because its online advertising market has the potential to grow as high as $15 billion to $20 billion annually in just a few years. From China’s point of view, renewing Google’s license also mutes a high-profile dispute at a time when American and European companies have said China has become a less-friendly environment in which to do business.


Four killed in sporadic violence

MOSUL | Gunmen fatally shot two policemen in the main northern city of Mosul on Sunday while a soldier and a pro-government militiaman were killed in separate attacks, security sources said.

Gunmen opened fire at the policemen in the central Zangili neighborhood of Mosul and fled, the police said. Outside the city, on the road to Baghdad, another soldier was wounded when a bomber blew himself up.

Meanwhile, a soldier was killed in Tal Afar northwest of Baghdad when unidentified assailants threw a hand grenade at a patrol, the military said.

A fourth person was killed when a bomb exploded in Baqouba, the capital of Diyala province north of Baghdad, police there said.

The victim was a member of the anti-Qaeda Sahwa militia, police said. Another member of the militia, which had joined with U.S. and Iraqi forces in 2006 and 2007 to fight the Islamist militants, was hurt in the blast.

Although overall levels of violence in Iraq have fallen markedly since their peak in 2006 and 2007, deadly attacks against civilians and security forces in Baghdad occur almost every day.


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