CARACAS, Venezuela -- Venezuela's government-friendly electoral council quickly certified the razor-thin presidential victory of Hugo Chavez' hand-picked successor Monday, apparently ignoring opposition demands for a recount as anti-government protests broke out in the bitterly polarized nation.
People banged pots and pans in protest as the electoral council's president proclaimed Nicolas Maduro president for the next six years.
Thousands of students clashed with troops in riot gear who fired tear gas and plastic bullets to turn back the protesters. Students threw stones and pieces of concrete. There were no immediate reports of injuries.
Mr. Maduro was elected Sunday by 50.8 percent to 49 percent over challenger Henrique Capriles -- a difference of just 262,000 votes out of 14.9 million cast, according to an updated official count released Monday.
Is eurozone on right track?
DUBLIN, Ireland -- A two-year slump, 19 million unemployed and five countries on emergency aid are no reason to take bold, immediate action to spur economic growth, according to European officials set to defend their handling of the debt crisis this week.
Europe's economic managers say they are on the right track in propping up the 17-nation euro zone, even if evidence is taking time to filter through.
The Group of 20 finance ministers will meet Thursday in Washington, D.C.
Jobs are casualty of accord
ATHENS, Greece -- Greece's government and international creditors reached an agreement Monday on conditions related to the next payment of aid, including firing several thousand public-sector employees.
Greece has been locked in talks with international creditors in Athens for more than a month on meeting targets linked to receiving further bailout payments, including shrinking the government workforce.
Sentenced for offending
ISTANBUL -- A court handed down a suspended 10-month jail term Monday for Fazil Say, an internationally acclaimed Turkish pianist and composer convicted of insulting Islam and offending Muslims in postings on Twitter.
The sentence for Mr. Say, 42, was suspended for five years, meaning he will not be sent to prison unless he is convicted of re-offending within that period.
Orthodox leader resigns
PRAGUE -- The head of the Orthodox Church in the Czech Republic and Slovakia resigned Monday, amid allegations of affairs with women and fathering illegitimate children.
Having already denied the charges, Metropolitan Krystof, 59, opted to resign to help maintain the unity of the church, a church spokesman said. Broadcaster Nova cited church documents suggesting the metropolitan had an affair with a priest's wife. In the Orthodox Church, bishops are celibate, but priests need not be.
French officials tell assets
PARIS -- The wealthiest member of France's Socialist government is Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who inherited $7.8 million from his family's trade in art and antiques. Michele Delaunay, minister for the aged, disclosed a comfortable stash of $7 million, mostly in inherited real estate along the Atlantic coast.
All 38 members of President Francois Hollande's government were required to declare their assets in public Monday for the first time. The disclosures marked a historical departure for French politics, which has a long, notorious tradition of under-the-table campaign financing and polite silence on personal wealth often acquired on modest government salaries.