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Protesters in Hong Kong to vote on government proposals
05:49 AM, 10.24.2014

A woman sits under a yellow umbrella as pro-democracy protesters gather on a main street they occupy at Mongkok shopping district in Hong KongBy Diana Chan and Donny Kwok HONG KONG (Reuters) - Hong Kong protesters plan to hold a straw poll on government proposals they rejected earlier in the week as their street campaign pushing for democracy for the Chinese-controlled city entered its fifth week on Friday. With crowds likely to swell at the weekend, student leaders late on Thursday announced a plan for an electronic poll of protesters on reform proposals tabled by senior city government officials in talks on Tuesday that failed to break the deadlock. ...


 
China says U.N. rights covenant no measure for Hong Kong reform
05:48 AM, 10.24.2014

BEIJING (Reuters) - China rebuffed a U.N. call for full political rights for Hong Kong on Friday, saying that an international covenant on such rights was not a "measure for reform" in the Chinese-ruled territory. The U.N. Human Rights Committee on Thursday said residents in the former British colony, now a "special administrative region" of China with wide-ranging autonomy, should have the right to stand for election as well as the right to vote. ...

 
Ford profit beats Street; sales down on F-150 launch
05:48 AM, 10.24.2014

A man walks past new Ford car at Jacob Javits Convention Center during New York International Auto Show in New YorkBy Bernie Woodall and Ben Klayman DETROIT (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co's third-quarter earnings beat Wall Street expectations on a strong showing in North America and China even as revenue fell due to the cost of introducing the F-150 pickup truck. Ford's launch of its F-150 made with an aluminum body is on track, the company said on Friday. A 3 percent drop in third-quarter revenue to $34.9 billion is largely linked to the shutdown of the F-150 plant in Dearborn, Michigan. Ford net profit of $835 million, or 21 cents per share, was down 34 percent from $1. ...


 
Chad says Nigeria deal with Boko Haram to free girls still on
05:44 AM, 10.24.2014

A student who escaped when Boko Haram rebels stormed a school and abducted schoolgirls, identifies her schoolmates from a video released by the Islamist rebel group at the Government House in MaiduguriBy Emma Farge and Moumine Ngarmbassa N'DJAMENA (Reuters) - Chad said it believed Nigeria's secret deal with Boko Haram Islamists to free more than 200 kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls would go ahead despite the breakdown of a truce, and revealed that the key to the agreement was a prisoner swap.     The accord mediated by Chad for the release of the girls seized from Chibok in northeast Nigeria in April has been called into question since it was announced by the Nigerian military last week. ...


 
South Africa platinum town, wider economy still hurting from strike
05:42 AM, 10.24.2014

By Zandi Shabalala MARIKANA South Africa (Reuters) - Mamsi Ngobeni sat alongside the main road of the South African platinum belt town of Marikana, hunched over a table with a pile of onions, apples, loose cigarettes and tomatoes. By just after noon she had sold about 20 rand ($1.8245) worth of goods, well down from what she said was her usual 1,000 rand take before a five-month strike against the world's top platinum producers drained this gritty town of cash. ...

 
Officer critical but stable after hatchet attack
05:38 AM, 10.24.2014

In this frame grab taken from video provided by the New York Police Department, an unidentified man approaches New York City police officers with a hatchet, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014, in the Queens borough of New York. The man injured two with the hatchet before the other officers shot and killed him, police said. A bystander was wounded in the gunfire. Investigators were still trying to confirm the identity of the assailant and determine a motive. (AP Photo/New York Police Department)NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City police officer who suffered a serious head wound after being attacked by a hatchet-wielding man remains in critical but stable condition, police said Friday.


 
Marine murder case reveals US-Philippine sore spot
05:36 AM, 10.24.2014

Riot police watch protesters placing a mock coffin during a rally outside the U.S. Embassy in Manila, Philippines Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. The rally was held to coincide with the funeral of Filipino transgender Jeffrey "Jennifer" Laude in Olongapo city in northwest Philippines. U.S. marine PFC Joseph Scott Pemberton is being tagged as a suspect and is now detained in a US facility inside the sprawling general headquarters of the Philippine armed forces. The coffin reads: "Down with U.S. Imperialism." (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)MANILA, Philippines (AP) — American forces are guarding Marine Pfc. Joseph Scott Pemberton, yet a ring of Filipino troops surrounds them. The seemingly redundant security effort around the suspect in a Philippine murder case reflects Manila's uneasy ties with Washington, its former colonial master.


 
Pakistan detects more polio cases on awareness day
05:36 AM, 10.24.2014

ISLAMABAD (AP) — World Health Organization says three more polio cases have surfaced in Pakistan, bringing the number of those affected by the crippling disease in the country this year to 220.

 
Sweden calls off search for mystery subs
05:35 AM, 10.24.2014

Sweden's military has deployed planes and ships in an eight-day search for a foreign vessel in the waters of the Stockholm ArchipelagoSweden called off a massive hunt Friday for at least one mystery foreign submarine in its waters that had worrying echoes of Cold War stand-offs, after calling the incursion "unacceptable". The search, which stirred up memories of cat-and-mouse games with suspected Soviet submarines along Sweden's long, rugged coastline before fall of the Berlin Wall, had involved battleships, minesweepers and helicopters as well as more than 200 troops. "Our assessment is that there was at least one (vessel)," Rear Admiral Anders Grenstad told reporters in Stockholm, saying it had now probably left. It was the first time the Swedish armed forces suggested that more than one vessel might have been operating in the Stockholm archipelago, whose 30,000 islands, islets and rocks make the area notoriously hard to patrol.


 
More than 300 Telkom South Africa managers have taken voluntary redundancy: union
05:34 AM, 10.24.2014

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - More than 300 Telkom SA managers have left the company voluntarily in the landline provider's restructuring process, the Solidarity union said on Thursday. Telkom is slashing jobs from a management layer of 2,650 posts to make it more agile in an aggressively competitive environment. Most of the managers have been placed in new positions, but another 104 do not have the skills required for an outstanding 168 positions yet to be filled. They might still be forcibly laid off, Solidarity spokesman Marius Croucamp told Reuters. ...

 
Britain slams EU budget demand, others see 'molehills'
05:33 AM, 10.24.2014

Britain's PM Cameron arrives at an European Union leaders summit in BrusselsBy Paul Taylor and Andrew Osborn BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister David Cameron challenged a demand from the European Union for an additional 2.1-billion-euro payment into this year's EU budget after a revision of economic statistics showed his country was better off. EU leaders, scrambling to defuse a potentially damaging row with London, agreed at a summit in Brussels that their finance ministers would hold emergency talks with the executive European Commission to review the figures in the coming weeks, diplomats said. A note from the Commission to member states set a deadline of Dec. 1 for payment. Cameron's Eurosceptic opponents, gaining ground fast on his Conservative party ahead of a May election, seized on what EU officials called an unusually extensive version of the regular annual adjustment.


 
New York confirms first Ebola case
05:28 AM, 10.24.2014

A New York City Department of Health and Hospitals Police (NYHP) officer walks past the entrance to Bellevue Hospital October 23, 2014 where a doctor who recently returned to New York from West Africa is being treated for EbolaNew York confirmed the first case of Ebola in the largest city in the United States as the EU dramatically ramped up aid Friday to contain the killer epidemic ravaging west Africa. The EU announcement of one billion euros ($1.3 billion) for the worst-hit countries comes as fears of a spread of the virus grew, with the first confirmed case in Mali, where a two-year-old girl has tested positive. The World Health Organization (WHO), which has warned the Ebola crisis in west Africa "remains of great concern", held talks Thursday on efforts to ensure access to and funding for potential vaccines. The New York case is a doctor who recently returned from treating Ebola patients in Guinea, the epicenter of the world's worst outbreak of the disease.


 
Exclusive: Chad says Nigeria deal with Boko Haram to free girls still on
05:22 AM, 10.24.2014

Campaigners from "#Bring Back Our Girls" march during a rally calling for the release of the Abuja school girls who were abducted by Boko Haram militants, in AbujaBy Emma Farge and Moumine Ngarmbassa N'DJAMENA (Reuters) - Chad said it believed Nigeria's secret deal with Boko Haram Islamists to free more than 200 kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls would go ahead despite the breakdown of a truce, and revealed that the key to the agreement was a prisoner swap.     The accord mediated by Chad for the release of the girls seized from Chibok in northeast Nigeria in April has been called into question since it was announced by the Nigerian military last week. ...


 
Tornado rips roofs in Washington state
05:20 AM, 10.24.2014

In this photo provided by Eric Atcheson, a large tree lies where it was felled by a tornado that ripped down power lines and damaged property in the southwest Washington State city of Longview Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. Police asked residents to avoid a section of the city. Video taken by a citizen appeared to shows roof tiles being blown off a building. "I could see the funnel cloud forming and where it touched down between the alleyway and onto the street right next to us," The Rev. Eric Atcheson said. (AP Photo/Eric Atcheson)LONGVIEW, Wash. (AP) — A rare tornado ripped roofs off buildings, uprooted trees and shattered windows Thursday afternoon in the southwest Washington city of Longview, but there were no reports of injuries.


 
AP PHOTOS: North Korea farmers expect good harvest
05:17 AM, 10.24.2014

A farmer carries a fully grown cabbage after plucking it out from the main crop which will be harvested early next month, and used to make Kimchi, Friday, Oct. 24, 2014 at the Chilgol vegetable farm on the outskirts of Pyongyang, North Korea. It looks like the residents of Pyongyang won’t be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested. Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea, which suffered a near cataclysmic famine in the 1990s but has since managed to increase its agricultural production to what international organizations believe is closer to the self-sufficiency level than the country has seen in years. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — Providing enough food to feed the nation is always a struggle for North Korea. But it looks like the residents of Pyongyang won't be lacking for cabbage and vegetables come next month, when the crops will be harvested.


 
EU to review figures after UK objects to extra payment - sources
05:15 AM, 10.24.2014

Britain's Prime Minister, Cameron leaves number 10 Downing Street in LondonEuropean Union finance ministers will hold an emergency meeting to review a disputed adjustment of EU budget contributions after Britain objected to demands for an extra 2.1 billion euro payment this year, EU diplomats said. They said EU presidency Italy agreed to host a special meeting of ministers with the executive European Commission to review the figures in the coming days, which British Prime Minister David Cameron challenged at an EU summit on Friday. Diplomats said Cameron was supported by Italy and the Netherlands, which were also due to make extra payments by Dec. 1, but Germany, France and Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the figures were adjusted each year when final national economic data were available, and the EU should stick to the rules.


 
Nominees for Grammy Awards to be announced Dec. 5
05:15 AM, 10.24.2014

FILE - In this Aug. 29, 2014 file photo, Ariana Grande performs on NBC's "Today" show in New York. The Recording Academy will announce the nominees for the 2015 Grammy Awards the morning of Dec. 5, 2014, except for one category: album of the year. The nominees for the top prize will come later that day when the Academy debuts the TV special, “A Very GRAMMY Christmas,” featuring Grande and Pharrell, to air on CBS at 9 p.m. EST. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)NEW YORK (AP) — The Recording Academy will announce the nominees for the 2015 Grammy Awards the morning of Dec. 5, except for one category: the coveted album of the year.


 
Shakira to release baby toys with Fisher-Price
05:13 AM, 10.24.2014

FILE - In this Oct. 18, 2014 file photo Colombian singer Shakira, left, holds her son Milan prior to the Spanish La Liga soccer match between FC Barcelona and Eibar at the Camp Nou stadium against Eibar in Barcelona, Spain. Shakira is partnering with Fisher-Price to launch a collection of baby toys. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez, File)NEW YORK (AP) — Shakira is partnering with Fisher-Price to launch a line of baby toys as well as a Web series for moms.


 
Pistorius prosecutors consult expert over appeal
05:13 AM, 10.24.2014

Oscar Pistorius sits in court in Pretoria, South Africa, Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014 after judge Thokozile Masipais sentence Pistorius to five years imprisonment for culpable homicide in the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp last year. (AP Photo/Herman Verwey, Pool)STELLENBOSCH, South Africa (AP) — Oscar Pistorius could still face a murder conviction and 15 years in prison for killing his girlfriend as prosecutors said Friday they had consulted a South African criminal law expert over an appeal.


 
Italian court to rule on Dolce&Gabbana tax case
05:11 AM, 10.24.2014

MILAN (AP) — An Italian prosecutor has demanded that Italy's high court uphold a tax evasion conviction against Milan designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana.

 
Syrian government forces shell rebel areas, kill 9
05:11 AM, 10.24.2014

BEIRUT (AP) — Activists say that Syrian government forces have stepped up shelling of rebel-held areas, killing nine people in a village in the country's north.

 
Tunisia forces kills six after standoff with militants outside Tunis: ministry
05:07 AM, 10.24.2014

TUNIS (Reuters) - Tunisian security forces on Friday killed six people, including five woman, after a standoff with an Islamist militant group on the outskirts of Tunis two days before a parliamentary election, authorities said. At least two militants and women and children had been holed up in the house in Oeud Ellil, west of Tunis, since Thursday after clashes in which one police officer was killed when troops surrounded the building, according to security officials. ...

 
Doctor with Ebola in New York hospital after return from Guinea
05:06 AM, 10.24.2014

An exterior view of Bellevue Hospital in New York CityBy Ellen Wulfhorst and Sebastien Malo NEW YORK (Reuters) - A doctor who worked in West Africa with Ebola patients was in an isolation unit in New York City on Friday after testing positive for the virus, becoming the fourth person diagnosed with the disease in the United States and the first in its largest city. Dr. Craig Spencer, 33, was placed in a quarantined unit at Bellevue Hospital on Thursday, six days after returning from Guinea, renewing public jitters about transmission of the disease and rattling financial markets. ...


 
Botswana votes in poll set to test ruling party dynasty
05:05 AM, 10.24.2014

By Tiisetso Motsoeneng and Joe Brock GABORONE (Reuters) - Botswanans went to the polls on Friday in an election that is expected to see President Ian Khama's ruling party win a reduced majority as young and middle-class voters send out a warning to a political dynasty which has ruled for nearly five decades. Khama's Botswana Democratic Party (BDP), which has been in charge of the world's biggest diamond producer since independence from Britain in 1966, is credited with overseeing one of the most stable and democratic countries on a continent often tainted by conflict and corruption. ...

 
Algeria's Bouteflika consolidates curbs on state intelligence agency
05:03 AM, 10.24.2014

By Lamine Chikhi ALGIERS (Reuters) - President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has signed a decree to curb the presence of Algeria's military intelligence service in public institutions, government sources said, to downgrade his rivals and ensure a smooth transition when he steps down. Since independence from France in 1962, Algerian politics has often been dominated by an opaque behind-the-scenes power struggle between military and civilian leaders to control branches of North African state's government. ...

 
Cameron: EU secures $1.25 billion for Ebola fight
04:56 AM, 10.24.2014

British Prime Minister David Cameron walks past journalists on the second day of an EU summit in Brussels, on Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. EU leaders gather for a two-day summit in which they discuss Ebola, climate change and the economy. (AP Photo/Yves Logghe)BRUSSELS (AP) — British Prime Minister David Cameron says that the European Union and its 28 member nations have secured 1 billion euros ($1.25 billion) to fight the Ebola crisis in West Africa.


 
After 1st Ebola case in NYC, 3 others quarantined
04:43 AM, 10.24.2014

FILE - In this Oct. 8, 2014, file photo, Bellevue Hospital nurse Belkys Fortune, left, and Teressa Celia, Associate Director of Infection Prevention and Control, pose in protective suits in an isolation room, in the Emergency Room of the hospital, during a demonstration of procedures for possible Ebola patients in New York. A doctor who recently returned to New York City from West Africa is being tested for the Ebola virus. The doctor had a fever and gastrointestinal symptoms and was taken Thursday to Manhattan's Bellevue Hospital. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)NEW YORK (AP) — A doctor who became New York City's first Ebola patient was praised for getting treatment immediately upon showing symptoms, and health officials stressed that the nation's most populous city need not fear his wide-ranging travel in the days before his illness began.


 
Man with 'Islamic extremist leanings' attacks NY police
04:43 AM, 10.24.2014

Four police officers in the city's Queens borough were posing for a photographs when they were attackedsuspicion of smoking marijuana in BrooklynThe man who attacked New York City police officers with a hatchet before being shot dead was reported to have Islamic "extremist leanings" police and a monitoring group said. The man, identified in the US media as Zale Thompson, had posted an array of statements on YouTube and Facebook that "display a hyper-racial focus in both religious and historical contexts, and ultimately hint at his extremist leanings," the SITE monitoring group said. Four rookie police officers in the city's Queens borough were posing for a photograph at the request of a freelance photographer when the man walked up and without saying a word attacked them with the hatchet, a city hall statement said. One officer was hit in the arm and another in the head before the other officers shot and killed the attacker, according to police commissioner Bill Bratton.


 
UK boy finishes proton therapy in Prague for tumor
04:36 AM, 10.24.2014

PRAGUE (AP) — A clinic in Prague says British boy Ashya King has completed his proton beam therapy treatment for a life-threatening brain tumor.

 
Tunisian forces assault home, killing 5 women
04:29 AM, 10.24.2014

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisian authorities have assaulted the home of suspected militants to end a 24-hour standoff, killing five women and one man.

 
Iraqi officials say IS militants used chlorine gas
04:25 AM, 10.24.2014

FILE - In this Oct. 6, 2014, file photo, Army soldiers search Iraqis amid tight security during Eid al-Adha celebrations in Baghdad, Iraq. Iraq’s fractured army has begun to regroup and stage modest, localized attacks on the Islamic State militants who routed them last spring and summer, but they are unlikely to be ready to launch a major counteroffensive for many months, senior U.S. military officials said Thursday. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim, File)BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraqi officials say Islamic State militants used chlorine gas during fighting with Iraqi security forces and Shiite militiamen last month north of Baghdad.


 
Gestapo impostor tricked Nazi sympathizers in WWII
04:23 AM, 10.24.2014

An undated photo made available by The National Archives of Eric Roberts, a lone MI5 agent who secretly penetrated the ranks of Britain's wartime Nazi sympathizers and who has been identified as an unassuming suburban bank clerk. Time and time again, the low-key “Jack King” was able to convince British traitors that he was a Gestapo man, hoovering up potentially lethal information intended for the Nazis and keeping it safely in British hands. A secret Security Service document made public Friday, Oct. 24, 2014, unveils his real identity: “King” was really Eric Arthur Roberts, a bank clerk seemingly without special training. (AP Photo/The National Archives)LONDON (AP) — At the height of World War II, Hans Kohout wanted to give the Nazis advance word of a top-secret British tactic that could neutralize an enemy's air defenses, leaving major cities exposed to devastating air raids, according to secret intelligence files released Friday.


 
10 Things to Know for Today
04:03 AM, 10.24.2014

FILE - In a Monday, Jan. 17, 2011 file photo, gun violence protesters participate in a lie-in during an anti-gun rally at the Capitol in Richmond, Va. Nearly six in 10 Americans want stricter gun laws in the aftermath of last month's deadly school shooting in Connecticut, with majorities favoring a nationwide ban on military-style, rapid-fire weapons and limits on gun violence depicted in video games and movies and on TV, according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll. A lopsided 84 percent of adults would like to see the establishment of a federal standard for background checks for people buying guns at gun shows, the poll showed. President Barack Obama was set Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013 to unveil a wide-ranging package of steps for reducing gun violence expected to include a proposed ban on assault weapons, limits on the capacity of ammunition magazines and universal background checks for gun sales. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today:


 
EU leaders agree to raise Ebola aid budget to 1 bln euros
04:01 AM, 10.24.2014

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders agreed on Friday to roughly double their financial support for efforts to fight the deadly Ebola epidemic in Africa to 1 billion euros, the chairman of their Brussels summit, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, said. "EU will increase financial help to 1 billion euros to fight Ebola in West Africa," he said in a Twitter messsage. Total contributions from the 28 nations had been running at about 500 million euros ($630 million) and there had been criticism that the wealthy Europeans were not doing more. (1 US dollar = 0.7908 euro)

 
Serbia awarded Albania win but docked points after fracas
03:56 AM, 10.24.2014

Serbia's Stefan Mitrovic grabs a flag featuring Albania's national symbol flown over the pitch by drone during the Euro 2016 qualifying match between Serbia and Albania in Belgrade on October 14, 2014UEFA's disciplinary committee on Friday awarded Serbia a 3-0 victory in their aborted Euro 2016 qualification match with Albania, but deducted them three points. Albania's football federation responded by saying they would appeal the decision. The match in Belgrade on October 14 was halted after home fans invaded the pitch and attacked Albania players after a pro-Albanian flag was carried over the stadium by a drone. The match was goalless when it was abandoned in the 41st minute as Albania players fled to the changing rooms as irrate fans invaded the pitch.


 
Islamic State push on Syria's Kobane stalls, Iraq fightback months off
03:45 AM, 10.24.2014

A militant of Islamic State (IS) is seen just after an air strike on Tilsehir hill near the Syria-Turkish border on October 23, 2014An attack by the Islamic State group on the Syrian town of Kobane has stalled but, in neighbouring Iraq, government troops are months from mounting a major fightback, US officials said. US-led aircraft have flown nearly 6,600 sorties in the air war against IS in Iraq and Syria, and dropped more than 1,700 bombs, the US military said. The air strikes have helped Kobane's Kurdish militia defenders hold out against the more heavily armed jihadists but have not stopped IS making new gains in parts of Iraq. US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel acknowledged that the results of the air campaign had been "mixed" but insisted that the overall strategy was "working".


 
WHO sending Ebola experts to Mali, 43 people monitored for virus
03:39 AM, 10.24.2014

Health workers put on protective equipment near Rokupa HospitalGENEVA (Reuters) - The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday it was sending experts to help Mali fight Ebola, a day after the first case of the disease was confirmed there. Authorities said on Thursday a two-year-old girl was infected - making Mali the sixth West African country to be touched by the worst outbreak on record of the haemorrhagic fever, which has killed nearly 4,900 people.. A WHO team of three experts has been in Mali evaluating its defences, and at least four more would set off over the next few days, WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib said. ...


 
World War II airmen fly again in storied B-29
03:29 AM, 10.24.2014

A B-29 bomber, passes over the shoreline of Lake Pontchartrain as it flies from Baton Rouge, La., en route to New Orleans, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2014. The bomber will spend the weekend at the WWII AirPower Expo put on by the Commemorative Air Force and the National World War II Museum. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The bomber best known for dropping the atomic bombs on Japan also flew countless other raids. Karnig Thomasian's final mission on a B-29 Superfortress ended in flames when bombs collided and exploded in the air over Burma in 1945.


 
Giants' Hudson hungry for baseball World Series start
03:23 AM, 10.24.2014

Tim Hudson of the San Francisco Giants pitches in the first inning against the St. Louis Cardinals during Game Three of the National League Championship eries in San Francisco on October 14, 2014San Francisco pitcher Tim Hudson takes the mound on Friday as the Giants host Kansas City in game three of the World Series, a chance on baseball's biggest stage he once feared might never come. The 39-year-old right-hander has 16 seasons in Major League Baseball -- making 457 career starts for Oakland, Atlanta and San Francisco. In the early years, when playoff appearances were plentiful, he never doubted that he would one day pitch in a World Series.


 
Ericsson profit down 10 pct despite higher sales
03:20 AM, 10.24.2014

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Wireless equipment maker Ericsson says its third-quarter earnings slumped 10 percent despite higher sales due to increased operating costs and negative effects from currency hedging.

 
 
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