World news briefs: 11/3/12

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Iranians against talks with U.S.

TEHRAN, Iran -- Angry Iranians gathered in front of the former U.S. Embassy in Tehran on Friday to celebrate the annual "Day of Fighting the Global Arrogance," and a senior security official warned against any compromise with the "great Satan."

Holding up models of missiles, which had "Made in Iran" proudly written on them, bearded youths stood before the former U.S. mission, almost 33 years after it was seized by Islamic students on Nov. 4, 1979. The hostage crisis that ensued led to 444 days of captivity for 52 U.S. diplomats and the break in diplomatic relations between Washington and Tehran that continues today.

While The New York Times reported last month that Washington and Tehran were testing the waters for direct talks -- an idea denied in both capitals -- Iranian hard-liners turned the annual commemoration on Friday into a stage for opposing any form of compromise.

Nigerian forces kill dozens

DAKAR, Senegal -- The spiral of violence in northern Nigeria took another deadly turn this week as security forces in the city of Maiduguri shot dead dozens of young men whom they accused of belonging to the radical Islamic sect Boko Haram, according to hospital staff, local journalists and a human rights activist there.

Nigeria has waged a grinding, low-intensity war with the sect since 2009, with nearly 3,000 people killed by Boko Haram or soldiers and the police, rights groups say.

This week's violence in the war's epicenter, Maiduguri, where Boko Haram was created, added to that toll. At least 39 people, and possibly as many as 70, were killed in raids by the Nigerian army and the police late Wednesday and early Thursday. There was no immediate comment from the Nigerian military on Friday.

5 arrested in kidnap plot

TUNIS, Tunisia -- Tunisian authorities have arrested five people over an alleged plot to kidnap young people from wealthy Jewish families and hold them for ransom, an interior ministry spokesman told the German news agency dpa.

An interior ministry spokesman said the plot targeted "two young Tunisians from two rich families."

Tunisia is home to a small community of about 2,000 Jews, concentrated mainly in the south and on the island of Djerba.

China to suspend coal mines

SHANGHAI -- China, the world's biggest producer and user of coal, is suspending operations at smaller mines in a bid to improve safety before the nation's once-in-a-decade leadership transition this month.

Ahead of the 18th Party Congress, which begins Thursday in Beijing and runs for at least a week, the State Administration of Work Safety has sent inspectors to mines to "spot hazards" and accelerate shutdowns over the next month, it said in an Oct. 24 statement on its website.

China has been working to improve safety in an industry in which accidents killed 1,973 people last year and 2,433 in 2010, according to Chinese work safety officials. That compares with 48 deaths in 2010 in the U.S., the world's second-biggest coal producer.

Also in the world...

Germany's drive to generate more than a third of its electricity from the sun and wind is boosting daytime supplies and reducing the extra cost of consuming power during office hours to the lowest level in 11 years. Solar capacity may jump 43 percent by 2015, further cutting daytime prices, analysts said. ... Bankrupt tycoon Sean Quinn, once Ireland's richest man and a celebrated self-made billionaire, was sent to jail for nine weeks Friday after a judge found him guilty of stripping foreign assets from his crumbling business empire in violation of court orders.

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