WORLD BRIEFS: New EU talks with Turkey urged

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BERLIN — Germany’s foreign minister has called for a fresh effort to restart stalled talks on Turkey joining the European Union.

Guido Westerwelle said it is in the interest of both the European Union and Turkey to give the talks a “new push” in 2013.

Mr. Westerwelle spoke at the recent opening of Turkey’s new embassy in Berlin, the Muslim-majority country’s biggest diplomatic presence abroad. About 3 million Turks live in Germany.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan did not mention his nation’s 25-year effort to join the EU in his speech at the opening ceremony.

Earlier this month, Mr. Erdogan’s government slammed an EU report that was scathing about Turkey’s imprisonment of journalists and growing restrictions on freedom of speech.

UNITED NATIONS

Storm floods chamber of Security Council

Superstorm Sandy caused serious water damage to the U.N. Security Council chamber, forcing it to move to a temporary base for a special meeting last week, diplomats said.

The 15-nation council hurriedly called a meeting to pass an emergency resolution extending the mandate of the African-U.N. peacekeeping mission in Somalia for seven days.

The Security Council chamber is in the basement of the U.N. headquarters overlooking the East River, which spilled over into Manhattan during the storm.

There is “some water damage to the basement,” said a U.N. spokesman, but the United Nations gave no other details.

Diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the damage to the underground floors is understood to be “quite bad.”

Palestinian Territories

Foreign minister reveals new push for U.N. status

RAMALLAH — Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki says Nov. 15 or 29 are possible dates for submission of a Palestinian bid to seek upgraded U.N. status.

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