Twin explosions rattle Stockholm
STOCKHOLM, Sweden - A car explosion and what appeared to be a suicide attack injured two people, killed the apparent bomber, and caused panic Saturday among Christmas shoppers in Stockholm.
City police spokeswoman Petra Sjolander said a car exploded near Drottninggatan, a busy shopping street in the center of the city. Shortly afterward, a second explosion was heard a short distance away on the same street, and a man was found injured on the ground. He was later pronounced dead.
Ten minutes before the blasts, Swedish news agency TT received an e-mail that said, "The time has come to take action." According to the news agency, the e-mail referred to Sweden's silence about artist Lars Vilk's drawing of Muhammad as a dog and its soldiers in Afghanistan.
"Now your children, daughters and sisters shall die like our brothers and sisters and children are dying," the news agency quoted the e-mail as saying. - AP
Iraqi leader still seeking cabinet
IRBIL, Iraq - Iraq's prime minister said Saturday he was still seeking cabinet nominations from the country's top politicians, signaling he likely will not form a new government much earlier than the Dec. 25 deadline.
Nouri al-Maliki, a Shiite Muslim, had pledged to announce his government by Dec. 15 and end the political deadlock that began after parliamentary elections in March failed to produce a clear winner. The delay announced Saturday reflects Maliki's struggle to form an inclusive government.
But Maliki assured political leaders Saturday that he remained committed to meeting a 30-day constitutional deadline - ending Dec. 25 - to bring together Shiite, Sunni, and Kurdish factions in a government that can overcome enduring sectarian tensions, and appealed for their help to do so. - AP
Palin, in Haiti, tours relief site
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin arrived Saturday in Haiti as part of a brief humanitarian mission in an impoverished nation struggling to overcome postelection violence and a cholera epidemic.
Her first stop was to tour a shelter with the Rev. Franklin Graham, whose Samaritan's Purse relief organization helped build temporary houses for those left homeless by January's devastating earthquake.
"I've really enjoyed meeting this community," Palin said in a statement posted on the organization's website. "They are so full of joy. We are so fortunate in America and we are responsible for helping those less fortunate."
The Sudanese army on Saturday attacked a village in South Darfur for a second consecutive day in violence that has left one person dead and driven at least 250 civilians from their homes, the U.N.-African Union peacekeeping mission said. Khor Abeche is known to be home to supporters of elements of the Sudan Liberation Army loyal to Minni Minnawi, who signed a peace deal with the government in 2006, the peacekeepers said.