U.S. protests treatment of diplomat in Hue
HANOI | The U.S. government has strongly protested to Vietnam over the treatment of an American diplomat, the ambassador said Thursday. A media report said the human rights officer was roughed up while trying to meet with a prominent dissident.
U.S.-funded Radio Free Asia said Christian Marchant, a political officer at the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi, was attacked by police Wednesday outside the home of the Rev. Thadeus Nguyen Van Ly, a Catholic priest, in the central city of Hue.
Mr. Marchant was wrestled to the ground by authorities and later put into a police car and driven away, it said.
Flood-weary area hit with new storms
BRISBANE | Cleanup crews toiled under more pounding rains Thursday to clear mountains of debris in flood-ravaged communities across northeastern Australia, as one mayor warned it could take his city up to a year to recover from the worst flooding in decades.
Officials were only beginning to see the scope of the damage as river levels across Queensland state started dropping despite new thunderstorms.
Floodwaters were expected to stay high in many areas for at least another week.
Around 1,200 homes have been inundated, with another 10,700 suffering some damage in the flood zone, an area greater than France and Germany combined.
The flooding has had a major economic impact on the region, shutting down three-quarters of the state’s lucrative coal mines and devastating crops.
Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said the cost of rebuilding homes, businesses and infrastructure coupled with economic losses could be as high as $5 billion.
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