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WORLD NEWS

Ukraine seeks to join NATO; defiant Putin compares Kiev to Nazis

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen speaks during a news conference at the Alliance headquarters in BrusselsBy Alexei Anishchuk and Richard Balmforth LAKE SELIGER Russia/KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine called on Friday for full membership in NATO, its strongest plea yet for Western military help, after accusing Russia of sending in armored columns that have driven back its forces on behalf of pro-Moscow rebels. Russian President Vladimir Putin, defiant as ever, compared Kiev's drive to regain control of its rebellious eastern cities to the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union in World War Two. Speaking to young people at a summer camp, Putin told his countrymen they must be "ready to repel any aggression towards Russia." He described Ukrainians and Russians as "practically one people," language that Ukrainians say dismisses the very existence of their thousand-year-old nation. Kiev and Western countries say the reversal was the result of the arrival of armored columns of Russian troops, sent by Putin to prop up a rebellion that would otherwise have been near collapse.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 16:21:34 -0400
Silva widens lead ahead of Brazil presidential election

iPresidential candidate Silva of the PSB speaks during a ceremony to launch her campaign platform in Sao PauloBy Anthony Boadle BRASILIA (Reuters) - Environmentalist Marina Silva has widened her lead over President Dilma Rousseff to 10 percentage points in what could be a likely runoff in Brazil's October election, a survey by polling firm Datafolha showed on Friday. It was the third poll in less than a week that projected the Oct. 5 election would go to a second-round vote in which Rousseff would be unseated by Silva, who entered the race just 10 days ago following the death of her party's candidate. Silva has surged to 34 percent support from 21 percent in a previous Datafolha poll conducted before she launched her candidacy. If the race goes to a runoff on Oct. 26 as expected, Silva would win 50 percent of the votes, while Rousseff would get 40 percent, widening her margin of victory from six to 10 percentage points, according to Datafolha.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 20:20:59 -0400
Six killed in attack on Afghan intelligence agency
By Rafiq Shirzad JALALABAD Afghanistan (Reuters) - At least six people were killed and dozens wounded when a suicide car bomber and Taliban gunmen attacked an office of the Afghan intelligence agency in the eastern city of Jalalabad on Saturday, officials said. Heavy fighting was continuing between the Taliban and Afghan security forces hours after the attack on the Jalalabad headquarters of the National Directorate of Security began, said Ahmad Zeya Abdulzai, a spokesman for the governor of eastern Nangarhar province near the border with Pakistan. Nangahar's public health director, Najib Kamawal, said: "So far six bodies and 45 wounded have been transferred to the local hospital." "Most of the victims are civilians," Kamawal said. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, part of a broader pattern of bold offensives by militants across Afghanistan that has emerged in recent weeks during the summer "fighting season." The violence coincides with a political deadlock in the capital, Kabul, where rival presidential candidates have been unable to resolve months-long disputes over an election meant to mark the first democratic transfer of power in Afghan history.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:57:36 -0400
After hard bargaining, EU set for deal on new leadership

A woman walks past the entrance of the European Council headquarters in BrusselsBy Alastair Macdonald and Julia Fioretti BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders are set to end weeks of wrangling over top jobs in Brussels and agree on Saturday on who will fill key posts in EU institutions that face major challenges from a combative Russia and a stuttering economy. A summit in Brussels that was called after a pre-vacation meeting two months ago ended in deadlock is likely, diplomats and officials said, to hand Poland's conservative prime minister the influential role of European Council president and Italy's little tested young foreign minister given the running of the EU's common diplomatic efforts.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 18:02:27 -0400
Obama, in Estonia and at NATO summit, to send strong message to Putin

U.S. President Obama departs the White House Press Briefing Room after addressing reporters in WashingtonPresident Barack Obama will visit Estonia and attend a NATO summit in Wales next week to send a strong message to Russian President Vladimir Putin that his incursion into Ukraine must be reversed and to keep his hands off the Baltic nations. A fresh move into eastern Ukraine by Russian forces in support of separatists is rattling the region, and Obama will reassure NATO's Baltic allies Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania that the alliance will stand with them should Moscow turn its attention to them. It will be the second visit ever to Estonia by an American president, following George W. Bush's 2006 stop there.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 19:00:26 -0400
U.N. was told Golan peacekeepers seized 'for their protection'

Israeli soldiers observe the Syrian side of the Quneitra border crossing between the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights and Syria.The United Nations on Friday said it had been informed that the Islamist militants who seized 44 Fijian peacekeepers in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights did so "for their own protection" and that all the detained blue-helmeted soldiers are safe. U.N. officials had been trying to establish the whereabouts of the peacekeepers, who were seized by al-Qaeda-linked rebels this week inside Syrian territory along the rocky frontier between Syria and the Golan Heights. "The United Nations has received assurances from credible sources that the 44 peacekeepers from the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) who were taken from their position on the morning of Thursday, 28 August, are safe and in good health," the U.N. press office said in a statement.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 19:23:03 -0400
20 miners rescued alive in Nicaragua collapse: official

Managua (AFP) - Twenty miners trapped underground for more than 24 hours have been rescued after a cave-in at an unlicensed gold mine in Nicaragua, but five more workers were still missing.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:42:46 -0400
What dispute? India and China ignore land squabble

FILE - In this Oct. 21, 2012 file photo, an Indian girl poses for photos with an Indian flag at the Indo China border in Bumla at an altitude of 15,700 feet (4,700 meters) above sea level in Arunachal Pradesh, India. For more than 50 years, it has pitted India against China - a smoldering dispute over who should control a swath of land larger than Austria. Two militaries have skirmished. A brief, bloody war has been fought. And today, thousands of soldiers from both countries sit deployed along their shared frontier, doing little but watching each other. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath, File)NEW DELHI (AP) — For more than 50 years, it has pitted India against China — a smoldering dispute over who should control a swath of land larger than Austria. Two militaries have skirmished. A brief, bloody war has been fought. And today, thousands of soldiers from both countries sit deployed along their shared frontier, doing little but watching each other.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:41:48 -0400
Top Asian News at 5:30 a.m. GMT
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A suicide bomber in a truck blew himself up at an intelligence headquarters in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, killing at least two people and setting off an intense firefight with security forces, officials said. After the bombing outside the headquarters of the National Directorate of Security in Jalalabad, militants battled with security forces for an hour before authorities were able to put down the attack, said Ahmad Zia Abdulzai, a spokesman for the Nangahar governor.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:32:51 -0400
11 of 24 trapped gold miners rescued in Nicaragua

Miners wait for their turn to help in the rescue operations at El Comal gold and silver mine after a landslide trapped at least 24 miners inside, in Bonanza, Nicaragua, Friday, Aug. 29, 2014. Rescuers on Friday located 20 of at least 24 gold miners trapped by a landslide in northern Nicaragua, but were not immediately able to bring them to safety. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)BONANZA, Nicaragua (AP) — The first 11 of 24 freelance gold miners trapped by a collapse in a mine in northern Nicaragua have been rescued and crews were working early Saturday to free more, officials said.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:29:29 -0400
Sharapova gets past Lisicki in 2 sets at US Open

Maria Sharapova, of Russia, watches a return to Sabine Lisicki, of Germany, during the third round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament Friday, Aug. 29, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)NEW YORK (AP) — Maria Sharapova reached the U.S. Open's fourth round by taking five of the last six games after her opponent, Sabine Lisicki, was warned by the chair umpire about receiving coaching help.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:19:05 -0400
Taliban attack intel office in eastern Afghanistan
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A suicide bomber in a truck blew himself up at an intelligence headquarters in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, killing at least two people and setting off an intense firefight with security forces, officials said.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:17:40 -0400
South Korea's Kim extends lead at Portland Classic golf

South Korea's Kim In-Kyung tees off on the 9th hole during the second round of the LPGA Portland Classic on August 29, 2014South Korea's Kim In-Kyung fired a five-under 67 to stretch her lead to three shots after the second round of the LPGA Tour's Portland Classic. The last of Kim's three career wins on the USLPGA Tour came in the 2010 season. Carlota Ciganda and Hur Mi-Jung both fired seven-under 65s in the second round at the Columbia Edgewater Country Club. She was joined there by Mina Harigae (69), China's Lin Xi Yu (68) and Paula Reto (69).


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:04:20 -0400
At least 2 miners rescued alive in Nicaragua collapse

A miner is moved on a stretcher after being rescued in an operation to reach a group of miners trapped in a gold mine in the community of El Comal, near Bonanza in northeastern Nicaragua, on August 29, 2014Rescuers in Nicaragua started pulling out miners who had been trapped deep underground for more than 24 hours after a cave-in at an unlicensed gold mine, state television reported. Using a pulley system rigged through a narrow tunnel, the emergency crews first rescued two miners named Roger Darse and Abel Herrera, according to a broadcast of the official TV channel 8 from the site of the collapse. There had been 28 "guiriseros," or informal gold miners, working in the shaft when the mouth of the mine caved in because of a landslide triggered by heavy downpours, early Thursday morning. Two workers buried near the surface had earlier managed to dig their way out after the collapse in the remote village of El Comal in northeastern Nicaragua, according to the local disaster prevention committee.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:03:09 -0400
Top Asian News at 5:00 a.m. GMT
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — An official says a suicide bomber targeting an intelligence office in eastern Afghanistan killed at least two people. Ahmad Zia Abdulzai, a spokesman for the Nangahar governor, said that early Saturday a truck packed with explosives blew up at the gate of the Jalalabad office of the National Directorate of Security, killing at least two people.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 01:03:02 -0400
Taiwan to spend $2.5 billion on anti-missile systems

File photo taken on October 10, 2007 shows the Tien Kung 3 surface-to-air missile system during the National Day parade in TaipeiTaiwan plans to spend Tw$74.8 billion ($2.5 billion) in the next nine years to acquire anti-missile systems to boost its aerial defences against China, a lawmaker and media said Saturday. The defence ministry aims to purchase the locally-made Tien Kung 3 (Sky Bow 3) surface-to-air missile system between 2015 and 2024 to replace the ageing Hawk missile systems, said lawmaker Lin Yu-fang of the parliament's defence committee. The Tien Kung 3 surface-to-air missile system, developed by Taiwan's Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology, is designed to counter tactical ballistic missiles for air defence missions and missile interception, according to Lin. Taiwan unveiled the Tien Kung 3 missile to the public at a national day parade in 2007 and tested it at a major missile drill in 2011.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:45:31 -0400
Top Asian News at 4:30 a.m. GMT
BEIJING (AP) — China warned against foreign meddling in Hong Kong's politics Saturday ahead of an expected announcement to recommend highly contentious restrictions on the first direct elections for the leader of the Chinese-controlled financial hub. An article in the ruling Communist Party's flagship newspaper People's Daily said that some in the former British colony were colluding with outside forces to interfere in Hong Kong's governance.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:32:54 -0400
Bummed to face a friend, Gulbis loses at US Open

Ernests Gulbis, of Latvia, wipes sweat from his brow between points against Dominic Thiem, of Austria, during the second round of the 2014 U.S. Open tennis tournament, Friday, Aug. 29, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)NEW YORK (AP) — Ernests Gulbis was surprised by how conflicted he felt during his second-round loss at the U.S. Open.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:30:51 -0400
New Zealand justice minister resigns amid scandal

FILE - In this Nov. 23, 2010 file photo, then New Zealand's Police Minister Judith Collins speaks at the afternoon media briefing on the 29 miners and contractors trapped in the Pike River mine, Greymouth, New Zealand. New Zealand's Justice Minister Judith Collins has resigned from her portfolios amid a scandal about her ties to a controversial blogger. The resignation Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014 comes just three weeks before New Zealand's general election and could impact the chances of Prime Minister John Key returning for a third term in office. (AP Photo/NZPA, Ross Setford, File) NEW ZEALAND OUTWELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand's Justice Minister Judith Collins resigned Saturday from her portfolios amid a scandal about her ties to a controversial blogger.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:27:17 -0400
Errani's 'cottage cheese' serve tops Venus at Open

Sara Errani, of Italy, reacts after defeating Venus Williams, of the United States, during the third round of the 2014 U.S. Open tennis tournament, Friday, Aug. 29, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)NEW YORK (AP) — A day before facing Venus Williams — and a partisan crowd — at the U.S. Open, Italy's Sara Errani came across a video posted on Twitter that gave her a little extra motivation.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:23:41 -0400
Pakistan wins toss, elects to bat
DAMBULLA, Sri Lanka (AP) — Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq won the toss and elected to bat in the series-deciding third and final one-day international against Sri Lanka on Saturday.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:20:13 -0400
Tony Stewart back at the track, looking to heal

FILE - In this Feb. 23, 2014, file photo, Tony Stewart is introduced before the NASCAR Daytona 500 Sprint Cup series auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. Stewart will return to Sprint Cup competition Sunday night at Atlanta Motor Speedway, ending a three-race hiatus taken after he struck and killed a fellow driver during a dirt-track race. (AP Photo/Terry Renna, File)HAMPTON, Ga. (AP) — Tony Stewart took his seat on the podium — unshaven, his eyes glassy — and unfolded a sheet of paper. His voice quivered as he read, pausing to maintain his composure as he described the death of a driver he hit as "one of the toughest tragedies I've ever had to deal with."


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:18:13 -0400
Funeral of disaster-hit ferry owner starts in S. Korea

People watch a news broadcast on July 22, 2014 after the badly decomposed body of Yoo Byung-Eun, the fugitive business tycoon wanted over the Sewol ferry disaster, was found in Seoul on June 12The funeral of a South Korean tycoon who was the target of a massive manhunt connected to April's ferry disaster began Saturday under tight security at the compound of the religious group he led. Yoo Byung-Eun, 73, was the head of the family which owned and operated the Sewol ferry that sank on April 16 with the loss of around 300 lives, most of them schoolchildren. Following a 24-hour vigil, Yoo will be buried on Sunday at the compound of the pseudo-Christian religious group he headed in Anseong, 80 kilometres (50 miles) south of Seoul.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:16:47 -0400
Pentagon: Iraq operations cost $560 million so far
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. military operations in Iraq, including airstrikes and surveillance flights, have cost about $560 million since mid-June, the Pentagon said Friday.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:08:53 -0400
Russian-backed rebels aim to push west along coast

Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside MoscowNOVOAZOVSK, Ukraine (AP) — Their tanks bearing the flag of their would-be state, Russian-backed separatists held control Friday over this coastal town on the new front in the Ukraine conflict and announced their intention to keep pushing west toward a major port city.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:07:54 -0400
Mexico operations thwart child, family migrants

In this Aug. 27, 2014 photo, a sole clown shoe belonging to Honduran migrant Jorge Ruiz Williams, 20, lies atop a freight train after it arrived at the station in Ixtepec, Mexico. Migrants who had been riding atop the train from Arriaga to Ixtepec reported that authorities staged a raid on the train in the middle of the night, arresting many migrants and sending others fleeing into the darkness. Ruiz Williams was one of the lucky handful who was able to escape the police and re-board the train. Seen later in a migrant shelter in Ixtepec, he said he had lost both shoes, but the rest of his professional clown costume was intact. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)CHAHUITES, Mexico (AP) — Mexico is making a big effort to stop the flow of Central Americans trying to reach the United States, and has dramatically cut the number of child migrants. But it is unclear for how long federal officials will keep up the raids.


Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:04:05 -0400
Top Asian News at 4:00 a.m. GMT
BEIJING (AP) — China warned against foreign meddling in Hong Kong's politics Saturday ahead of an expected announcement to recommend highly contentious restrictions on the first direct elections for the leader of the Chinese-controlled financial hub. An article in the ruling Communist Party's flagship newspaper People's Daily said that some in the former British colony were colluding with outside forces to interfere in Hong Kong's governance.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:03:19 -0400
China warns against foreign meddling in Hong Kong
BEIJING (AP) — China warned against foreign meddling in Hong Kong's politics Saturday ahead of an expected announcement to recommend highly contentious restrictions on the first direct elections for the leader of the Chinese-controlled financial hub.
Date Posted : Sat, 30 Aug 2014 00:00:00 -0400
Big wreck in final IndyCar practice at Fontana
FONTANA, Calif. (AP) — Rookie IndyCar driver Mikhail Aleshin was taken away from the track in an ambulance and airlifted to a hospital Friday night after a frightening crash in the final practice session for the series season finale.
Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:52:41 -0400
Many happy returns for Roger Federer at US Open

Roger Federer, of Switzerland, stretches in vain to return a shot to Sam Groth, of Australia, during the second round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament Friday, Aug. 29, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)NEW YORK (AP) — When Roger Federer smacked a backhand return winner off his opponent's 142 mph (229 kph) serve Friday night, he glanced at the speed readout, just to find out exactly how difficult what he'd done had been.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:44:30 -0400
Former Spain international Amor joins Adelaide
ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — Former Barcelona and Spain international Guillermo Amor has joined Adelaide United as the A-League club's technical director.
Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:41:56 -0400
Brazilian club promises to punish racist fans
SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazilian club Gremio has promised to help identify and punish those of its fans who taunted a player in the latest case of racism to taint the national game.
Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:33:44 -0400
Top Asian News at 3:30 a.m. GMT
BEIJING (AP) — China is issuing harsh warnings against foreign meddling in Hong Kong's politics ahead of an expected announcement recommending restrictions to the first direct elections for the leader of the Chinese-controlled financial hub. An article in the ruling Communist Party's flagship newspaper People's Daily on Saturday says some in the former British colony were colluding with outside forces to turn it into a bridgehead for subverting and infiltrating the Chinese mainland.
Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:32:52 -0400
Family, sect members mourn South Korea ferry owner at funeral

Maritime police search for missing passengers near capsized South Korean ferry "Sewol" at the sea off JindoBy Ju-min Park SEOUL (Reuters) - Family and church members mourned at a private funeral on Saturday a South Korean businessman linked to a ferry that sank in April killing hundreds of children, though his death remained shrouded in mystery. Yoo Byung-un, 73, was found dead in a plum orchard in June, but his body was not identified for more than a month, despite him being wanted in connection with the sinking of the Sewol ferry, with 476 passengers and crew on board. Around 300 people drowned in South Korea's worst maritime accident in decades, while 172 survived. The tragedy caused an outpouring of nationwide grief, and the government of President Park Geun-hye was heavily criticized for the ineffective response to the disaster.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:26:47 -0400
Ebola hits 5th WAfrican state as Senegal confirms first case

Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) medical staff wearing protective clothing treat the body of an Ebola victim at their facility in Kailahun, on August 14, 2014The Ebola epidemic that has killed more than 1,500 people across West Africa spread to a fifth country in the region on Friday with the first confirmed case of the deadly virus in Senegal. The case marks the first time a new country has been hit by the outbreak since July and comes a day after the World Health Organization warned the number of infections was increasing rapidly. On Friday, scientists writing in the journal Nature said 18 lab monkeys given high doses of the Ebola virus fully recovered after being given the prototype drug ZMapp, which reversed bleeding in the animals. ZMapp has been given to a handful of frontline health workers who have contracted Ebola, two of whom have recovered, and two of whom have died.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:05:34 -0400
Top Asian News at 3:00 a.m. GMT
HONG KONG (AP) — Hong Kong's simmering summer of discontent gets even hotter Sunday when Beijing is expected to recommend restricting the first direct elections for the Chinese-controlled financial hub's leader, stepping up chances of a showdown with democracy groups. The former British colony, which was handed back to China in 1997, has been the scene of escalating tension for the past year after activists threatened a mass sit-in paralyzing the financial district if Beijing rules out genuine democratic reforms.
Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:02:48 -0400
Iceland raises volcano aviation alert briefly

FILE - This is a Aug. 19, 2014 file image taken from video of a sign is posted on the road next to Bardarbunga, a subglacial stratovolcano located under Iceland's largest glacier. Earthquakes are rocking Iceland's Bardarbunga volcano, adding to concerns that magma movements may trigger an eruption that could hinder air traffic. Iceland's Met Office says two earthquakes measuring over magnitude 5 shook the volcano under the vast Vatnajokull glacier on Wednesday Aug. 27 2014. Some 500 quakes have hit the area since midnight. (AP Photo/Courtesy Channel 2 Iceland, File) ICELAND OUTREYKJAVIK, Iceland (AP) — Icelandic authorities briefly raised the aviation warning code to red Friday after a small fissure eruption near Bardarbunga volcano, but no volcanic ash was detected by the radar system.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 23:00:06 -0400
What to watch at US Open: Isner-Kohlschreiber III

Jan-Lennard Struff, of Germany, returns a shot John Isner, of the United States, during the second round of the 2014 U.S. Open tennis tournament, Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)NEW YORK (AP) — John Isner is not the sort to study a lot of video of past matches in order to prepare for an upcoming opponent.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 22:52:10 -0400
EU leaders seek riposte to Russia

A Ukrainian serviceman sits on a tank while speaking on the phone inside a military camp in the Donetsk region, on August 29, 2014European Union leaders gather in Brussels Saturday to thrash out a response to Russia's deeper involvement in war-torn Ukraine and to bring new faces to key EU posts. The 28 heads of state and government sit down for talks as accusations rain down on the Kremlin that Russian combat troops are fighting inside Ukraine, with fears growing that Europe may soon face a full-scale war on its eastern borders. It has only been five weeks since EU states toughened their sanctions against Russia, but with the West's almost unanimous belief that Moscow is now a direct and hostile force inside Ukraine, the EU is under pressure to once again up the stakes. "Such behaviour cannot remain without consequences," German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday amid the reports by NATO that "well over" a thousand Russian soldiers were waging war in Ukraine.


Date Posted : Fri, 29 Aug 2014 22:36:22 -0400
 

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