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Greece banned all boats in the Gaza flotilla from leaving port, citing security concerns after a similar flotilla last year was raided by Israeli forces, leaving nine activists on a Turkish boat dead.

INDIA

Health minister calls homosexuality a disease

NEW DELHI — India’s health minister has derided homosexuality as an unnatural “disease” from the West, drawing outrage Tuesday from activists who said the comments set back the country’s campaign for gay rights and its fight against HIV.

The comments Monday by Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad at a conference on HIV/AIDS in the Indian capital echoed a common refrain in the conservative South Asian nation that homosexuality is a Western import.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress Party leader Sonia Gandhi and other government ministers at the conference declined to comment on Mr. Azad’s remarks.

EUROPE

Seeds blamed for E. coli outbreak still being sold

LONDON — Egyptian sprout seeds blamed for a massive, deadly E. coli outbreak are still on the market and were shipped to more European countries than previously thought, officials said Tuesday, as the European Union banned further imports.

The European Food Safety Authority confirmed in a report that one lot of contaminated fenugreek seeds from Egypt was the probable source of the recent food poisoning outbreaks in Germany and France.

But the number of European countries that received parts of the suspected lot is “much larger than previously known,” and includes Austria, Britain and Spain, it said.

JAPAN

Reconstruction minister resigns after comments

TOKYO — Japan’s embattled government received a fresh blow Tuesday when the new disaster-reconstruction minister resigned, a week after his appointment because of criticism he was rude to officials on a trip to the tsunami-ravaged coast.

The teary-eyed minister, Ryu Matsumoto, apologized and stepped down after a weekend trip in which he berated a local governor for being late to a meeting and threatened to withhold aid.

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