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Top News Stories 2008-04-02 06:54:03

Front Page: More Troops for Afghanistan, Pelosi Calls for Boycott, UK Troop Reductions Stalled

  • President Bush asked NATO allies to send more troops to Afghanistan in a speech delivered before a big NATO summit. Bush quoted Sarkozy saying, "As [French] President Sarkozy put it in London last week, we cannot afford to lose Afghanistan. Whatever the cost, however difficult, we cannot afford it, we must win. If we do not defeat the terrorists in Afghanistan, we will face them on our soil." NATO-led forces currently number 47,000 troops. France has already answered the call for more — Prime Minister Francois Fillon said that his country would send several hundred more troops.

  • Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is calling for President Bush to boycott the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics. Pelosi has just returned from a visit with the Dalai Lama. She said, “the president of the United States, if he is going to give credibility to the Chinese government, he should also take the time to say to them we are very concerned, not only about human rights, which are a very important value to us, but we are also concerned about our trade situation.” Pelosi says a high profile boycott of the opening will send a message without affecting the games. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has already announced she will be skipping the ceremony.
  • British Prime Minister Gordon Browne announced the draw-down of British troops from Iraq will be postponed given the recent violence in Basra. The plan was to reduce the number of troops from 4,000 to 2,500 this spring. Browne said, "In the light of the last week's events, however, it is prudent that we pause any further reductions while the current situation is unfolding. It is absolutely right that military commanders review plans when conditions on the ground change."
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