WASHINGTON

D.C. court bars Libby from practicing law

Former top White House aide I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby was banned yesterday from practicing law in the nation’s capital following his perjury conviction in the case of a CIA operative’s leaked identity.

The disbarment order of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals had been expected.

When a member of the bar is convicted of an offense involving moral turpitude, disbarment is mandatory,” the appeals court ruled.

Last May, a court panel that oversees lawyer ethics recommended that Libby be stripped of his law license in Washington. The Board on Professional Responsibility then found that Libby’s conviction for lying to the FBI about the case of former CIA operative Valerie Plame amounted to “crimes that involve moral turpitude.”

CAIRO

Bin Laden lashes out during peace talks

Osama bin Laden lashed out yesterday at Palestinian peace negotiations with Israel and called for a holy war to liberate the Palestinian lands.

A day after a bin Laden audio on a militant Web site threatened Europeans, Al-Jazeera TV broadcast audio excerpts attributed to the al-Qaida leader that urge Palestinians to ignore political parties “mired in trickery of the blasphemous democracy” and to rely on armed might.

“Palestine cannot be retaken by negotiations and dialogue, but with fire and iron,” he said.

It was the first time bin Laden spoke of the Palestinian question at length since the deteriorating situation in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, where the Israeli military has been fighting with militants who fire rockets into southern Israel.

FENTON, Mo.

Midwesterners adjust to raging rivers, flooding

With more than a dozen people killed by floodwaters and rivers still rising, weary Midwesterners on Thursday weighed not just the prospect of a sodden cleanup but the likelihood that their communities could be inundated again.

Families in some areas have been forced from their homes multiple times in the past few years, making the routine of filling sandbags and rescuing furniture into a familiar drill.

“We’ve been through this before,” said Michelle Buhlinger, who works for the school district in Valley Park in suburban St. Louis. “We’re expecting the levee to hold up, but we don’t want to take any chances.”

ZHONGDIAN, China

China blankets restless Tibetan areas with troops

China blanketed restive Tibetan areas yesterday with a huge buildup of troops, turning small towns across a wide swath of western China into armed encampments.

Beijing acknowledged that last week’s anti-government protests had spread far beyond Tibet’s borders and that police opened fire on protesters. It warned foreign tourists and journalists to stay away from a huge expanse of territory across four provinces.

In an overture of peace, the Dalai Lama offered to meet with Chinese President Hu Jintao and other leaders, reiterating that he was not asking for Tibetan independence.

China has repeatedly ignored calls for dialogue, accusing the exiled Tibetan leader and his supporters of organizing violence in hopes of sabotaging the upcoming Beijing Olympics and promoting Tibetan independence.

– Compiled from Daily wire reports

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