N. Korea’s nuke threat termed ‘dangerous’
SEOUL | The threat posed by North Korea’s nuclear program has reached an “extremely dangerous level,” an adviser to South Korea’s president said in comments published Wednesday.
It was not clear whether the comments by Kim Tae-hyo, President Lee Myung-bak’s deputy national security adviser, were based on new intelligence.
They followed a report last week by the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security that satellite images from Sept. 29 showed new construction activity in the area surrounding North Korea’s nuclear reactor.
Israeli premier weighing new settlement curbs
RAMALLAH | Israel’s prime minister has been sounding out key Cabinet members on extending a freeze on new construction in West Bank settlements in hopes of keeping peace talks with the Palestinians alive, but he is encountering stiff resistance, Israeli officials said Wednesday.
In Ramallah, key members of the Palestinian leadership — in an increasingly tense waiting mode — expressed optimism that an extension nonetheless was imminent.
The future of President Obama’s ambitious Mideast peace effort remained uncertain Wednesday as the U.S. pressed ahead with efforts to broker a compromise over the settlement issue, which has threatened to derail negotiations just a month after they were launched at the White House.
French warned of terror risk in Britain
PARIS | France’s Foreign Ministry is warning French travelers of a high terrorism risk in Britain, asking them to be watchful in public transport and busy tourist areas across the English Channel.
France has not issued any recent warnings for other countries in Europe, though officials have insisted the threat is high in France as well and have boosted security at busy tourist sites such as Notre Dame Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower.
France and Britain are among several European countries that have stepped up terrorism alert vigilance recently. Germany, meanwhile, says it remains watchful but that there is no reason to be “alarmist.”