World Briefs: Taiwanese officer accused of spying for China
TAIPEI — Taiwan's Defense Ministry said Wednesday that an air force officer has been detained on suspicion of passing military secrets to China, the latest case involving the transmission of classified information from the democratic island to the communist mainland.
Presidential election set for May
CAIRO — Egypt on Wednesday set May 23 and 24 for its first-ever free presidential election, a much-anticipated vote that would bring to an end the rocky transitional period that followed the ouster of Hosni Mubarak a year ago.
The ruling military has pledged to turn over power to civilians after the presidential election, and that would mean an end of six decades of authoritarian rule during which secretive generals pulled the strings of power from behind the scenes.
If no candidate wins 50 percent of the vote, a runoff between the top two finishers would take place June 16 and 17.
Cocaine seizures drop as traffic moves
MEXICO CITY — Cocaine seizures have dropped in Mexico in recent years, and a top U.N. drug-control official said the trade appeared to be moving to Central America because of law enforcement pressure and infighting among cartels.
Mexican officials seized 53 tons of cocaine in 2007 and only 10 tons last year, according to a report Tuesday from the International Narcotics Control Board, which monitors global drug-control agreements.
Antonio Mazzitelli, a representative in Mexico of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, said traffickers are diverting their cocaine operations elsewhere, but he cautioned that seizures of drugs produced inside Mexico, such as methamphetamine and marijuana, remain stable.