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Twenty-one bodies were found overnight Tuesday in a mass grave near Bamako, believed to be the remains of soldiers close to Mali's ousted president Amadou Toumani Toure, officials said. "We have found 21 bodies, probably of 'red beret' soldiers, in a mass grave in Diago. A security official told AFP that "identity cards found in the mass grave seem to confirm that they were missing 'red beret' soldiers." The discovery near the capital Bamako comes a week after the arrest and detention of Amadou Haya Sanogo, leader of the March 22, 2012 coup against Toure that plunged Mali into chaos.
Adelaide (Australia) (AFP) - England face a critical challenge to their four-year Ashes reign in the second Test against Australia starting in Adelaide on Thursday against a re-energised home team looking to drive home their advantage. Alastair Cook's tourists were swept away by the Mitchell Johnson-inspired home side in the first Test, going down by an enormous margin of 381 runs in a match overshadowed by a sledging barrage from Australian captain Michael Clarke. It was England's first defeat in 14 Tests since losing to India in Ahmedabad a year ago and another loss in Adelaide could prove an insurmountable blow in their bid to hold on to the Ashes after three successive series wins dating back to 2009. England urgently need to regroup after wilting under Australia's bowling and verbal barrage in Brisbane, their task made all the more difficult by having to find a replacement at number three following the shock departure of Jonathan Trott with a stress-related illness.
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) - At least 12 people including children and a pregnant woman, have been killed by Christian vigilantes in the Central African Republic, a military source said Wednesday, amid rising fears of sectarian massacres in the strife-torn country. The attack comes with the UN Security Council set to vote on creating a large peacekeeping force for the impoverished country, where the transitional government has lost control since rebels forced the president to flee in March. "The assailants were seen not far from the camp and they returned in the night to attack the herdsmen who were there with just knives," a military source said. Some managed to escape and there are more than 10 wounded who have been transferred to Bangui," the source added.
OPEC was expected to stick by its oil output limit at a meeting here on Wednesday, even as Iraq and Iran eye higher crude exports amid slashed Libyan production. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries does not see a need to alter the cartel's crude production ceiling of 30 million barrels per day, member nations led by the world's biggest oil producer Saudi Arabia said in Vienna ahead of the meeting. Pumping about one third of the world's crude, OPEC will decide also on whether to replace Abdullah El-Badri as secretary general. "We know demand is good, economic growth is good, supply is good," Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi told reporters at OPEC headquarters in the Austrian capital.