The military ruler of Egypt says beginning on Wednesday he will end part of the country's thirty-year-long state of emergency. Human rights groups and many countries have been pressing Egypt to cancel the law. Field Marshall Mohamed Hussein Tantawi made the announcement Tuesday in a speech on national television. He said he decided to end emergency rule except in case of acts of what he called “thuggery.” But, he did not give any details. Egyptians have lived under the emergency law since Islamists killed President Anwar Sadat in nineteen eighty-one. The law was extended repeatedly during the almost thirty-year rule of Hosni Mubarak. It remained in force under the military council that took over from Mr. Mubarak in the uprising last February. The law permits officials to ban public gatherings and detain people without charges.
France has decided not to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan sooner than planned. French President Nicolas Sarkozy had suspended military operations in Afghanistan after an Afghan soldier shot and killed four French troops last week. Mr. Sarkozy said he was considering removing French troops earlier than planned if security conditions did not improve. But, on Tuesday, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe told Parliament that France will not give in to extreme fear. He said it will not immediately withdraw all French troops from Afghanistan this year. He said calls for a complete withdraw of troops by the end of twenty twelve have been given enough thought. France has about three thousand six hundred soldiers in Afghanistan. All French fighting troops are to leave the country in twenty fourteen.
The United States has expressed concern about reports of Chinese security forces shooting at Tibetan protesters. Two Tibetan exile groups, Free Tibet and the International Campaign for Tibet, provided some details. They said about five people were killed and some thirty others wounded in the southwestern Chinese province of Sichuan. Tuesday was the second day of clashes. An American diplomat for human rights called on the Chinese government to stop the clashes. Maria Otero also called for China to open talks with Tibet's exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama. She said the talks could help find solutions to resolve the Tibetan protesters' problems.
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A bomb exploded at a police station in the Nigerian city of Kano Tuesday. The explosion comes four days after Islamic rebels killed one hundred eighty-five people in a series of attacks in the city. It is not yet known if anyone was killed in the bombings and no one has yet claimed responsibility. Earlier, Kano police found ten car bombs and hundreds of other explosives in the city. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has declared emergency conditions in most of the country's northern areas.
The United Nations says it is very worried about Monday's attacks on a South Sudan refugee camp. In a statement released Tuesday, the UN Refugee Agency said the attacks happened about ten kilometers from the Sudanese border. A child was wounded in the attack and fourteen other refugees are missing. About five thousand people live there. The agency did not say who was responsible for the attacks. But, it said the refugees who were targeted were in an especially weak position. Most of the people in the camp had recently fled violence in Sudan's Blue Nile state.
Officials in Kyrgyzstan say more than four thousand prisoners have sown their mouths closed. They are protesting living conditions and poor treatment. Officials say criminals in at least two detention centers are taking part in the protest and refusing to eat.
The International Monetary Fund has reduced its global economic prediction for twenty twelve. It says Europe's debt crisis may cause the world economy to enter a recession. Three months ago, the IMF said the world economy would grow four percent this year. But on Tuesday, it reduced that estimate to three point three percent.
Finally this news, the movie “Hugo” has received eleven Oscar nominations, including for Best Picture. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced its nominations Tuesday in Beverly Hills, California. The French-made silent movie “The Artist” was nominated for ten awards, including Best Picture. The star of “The Artist,” Jean Dujardin, was nominated for Best Actor. Other Best Actor nominees were George Clooney in “The Descendants” and Brad Pitt for “Moneyball.” Meryl Streep was nominated for Best Actress for her role as British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in “The Iron Lady.” The Academy Awards will be held on February twenty-sixth.
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem criticized an Arab League plan to end the violence against opponents but will extend their plan [to observe conditions in Syria] for an extra month. The military ruler of Egypt says that beginning on Wednesday he will end part of the country's thirty-year-long state of emergency. And, France has decided not to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan sooner than planned.
That's the news in VOA Special English from Washington.