World Briefs / Foe objects to Egypt constitution

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CAIRO -- One of Egypt's leading opposition figures pledged continued resistance Monday to his country's Islamist-oriented constitution even if it is declared to have passed, contending that the process was fundamentally illegitimate.

Unofficial tallies say nearly two-thirds voted in favor of the draft constitution, but turnout was so low that opponents are arguing that the vote should be discounted.

Hamdeen Sabahi, who finished third in the nation's first free presidential race over the summer, said in an interview with The Associated Press that the majority of Egypt's people are not Islamists.

He argued that the election triumphs by President Mohammed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood group are the result of unfair electoral practices and key mistakes by the liberal opposition, particularly a lack of unity and organization.

Deadly cold snap

MOSCOW -- Freezing temperatures in Russia so far this season have cost the lives of dozens of people and sent around 1,200 others to hospital due to frostbite, Russian media reported Monday.

The region around Moscow experienced its coldest night this winter, hitting minus 25 Fahrenheit in the village of Cherusti just east of the capital city, according to the Itar Tass news agency.

New police chief

NAIROBI, Kenya -- Kenya on Monday swore in its first inspector-general of police, who vowed to fight terrorism and help prevent a repeat of ethnic violence that erupted in the country after the last general elections in 2007.

David Kimaiyo, a 32-year veteran of the force, takes over from Mathew Iteere, the police commissioner, Kenya's Chief Justice Willy Mutunga said in Nairobi, the capital.

Prosecutor ambushed

GUATEMALA CITY -- Guatemala's attorney general dispatched a special team Monday to investigate the slaying of a federal prosecutor and six other people in an attack near the Mexican border.

Attorney General Claudia Paz y Paz said she was sending prosecutors and investigators to the area of northern Guatemala where Irma Yolanda Olivares, who worked in one of the prosecutor's regional officers, was slain along with an official working for a government social service agency and five others Sunday night.

Budget OK'd amid unrest

SKOPJE, Macedonia -- Macedonia's parliament approved the 2013 budget late Monday, amid clashes outside the building between rival groups of protesters that left 11 police officers and at least three opposition lawmakers injured, police and party officials said.

Lawmakers voted, 65-4, in favor of the $3.6 billion draft budget in the Christmas Eve vote, as riot police were need to separate pro- and anti-government demonstrator, who hurled rocks and eggs at each other. Other deputies were absent for the vote in the 123-seat parliament. The budget must be adopted by year-end.

Chavez's inauguration

CARACAS, Venezuela -- President Hugo Chavez could be sworn in before the Supreme Court if his absence for medical reasons extends past the Jan. 10 inauguration date, Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Monday.

Mr. Chavez's health is improving and the constitution will be applied Jan. 10 in one way or another, Mr. Maduro said on state television. He didn't provide further details on Mr. Chavez's health, or say whether he could be sworn in from Cuba, where he is recovering from cancer surgery.



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