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Lawmakers ban foreign military bases
TASHKENT — Uzbek lawmakers on Thursday approved a foreign-policy bill that bans the creation of foreign military bases in the Central Asian country and its participation in military blocs.
The bill, which has yet to be signed by President Islam Karimov, outlines a “foreign policy concept” for Uzbekistan and is seen as a symbolic gesture toward both Russia and the U.S. as the country’s geopolitical importance grows ahead of the pullout of NATO troops from Afghanistan.
The concept, initiated by Mr. Karimov, comes shortly after Tashkent exited a Russia-led military alliance, a move that sparked talk of Uzbekistan’s changing allegiances and seeking to establish U.S. bases on its soil.
Miners charged with deaths of 34 killed by police
JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s National Prosecuting Authority said it is charging 270 miners with the murders of 34 striking colleagues who were shot and killed by police officers.
The strange development — which comes under an arcane Roman-Dutch common law — seems to show that President Jacob Zuma’s government is trying to shift the blame for the killings from police to the striking miners.
The killings shocked the nation, and Thursday’s news likely will inflame already angry South Africans.
Prosecuting Authority spokesman Frank Lesenyego said all 270 miners who were arrested after the shootings were charged Thursday at a court near the Lonmin PLC platinum mine where the fatalities occurred.
On Aug. 16, striking miners armed with clubs, machetes and at least one gun allegedly charged at police, who opened fire.
• From wire dispatches and staff reports
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