- - Monday, January 2, 2012

IRAN

Navy tests cruise missile as part of drill

TEHRAN — Iran test-fired a surface-to-surface cruise missile on Monday, during a drill that the country’s navy chief said proved Tehran is in complete control of the strategic Strait of Hormuz, the passageway for one-sixth of the world’s oil supply.

The missile, called Ghader, was described as an upgraded version of a missile that has been in service before. The official IRNA news agency said the missile “successfully hit its intended target” during the exercise.

No other details were released about Ghader. An earlier version of the same cruise missile had a range of 124 miles and could travel at low altitudes.

On Sunday, Iran’s navy test-fired an advanced surface-to-air missile that state TV said is designed to evade radar.

Iran’s 10-day navy drill, which ends Tuesday, was Tehran’s latest show of strength in the face of mounting international criticism over its nuclear program. The exercise came amid conflicting comments from Iranian officials over Tehran’s intentions to close the Strait of Hormuz, and U.S. warnings against such an ominous move.

UNITED KINGDOM

Cameron predicts tough year ahead

LONDON — Prime Minister David Cameron on Monday predicted that the Summer Olympics and the queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebration will raise Britain’s profile on the international stage, but he predicted 2012 still will be a tough year.

“There are fears about jobs and paying the bills,” he said in a video message meant to mark the new year. “I know how difficult it will be to get through this, but I also know that we will.”

Rising joblessness and the European financial crisis have weighed heavily on Mr. Cameron’s government, which came to power in 2010 on the back of promises to control the country’s debt and restore economic growth.

NIGERIA

Outcry arises as fuel prices double with subsidy removed

LAGOS — Irate drivers in Africa’s most populous nation paid more than twice the usual price Monday after the government quietly removed a long-cherished consumer subsidy that had kept gas affordable, prompting fears of strikes and unrest.

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