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Top of the Morning: USA Recognizes Syrian Opposition; DPRK Missile Test; Mess in Mali

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USA Formally Recognizes Syrian Opposition

The USA joins France, Turkey and several other countries in recognizing the Syrian opposition as the legitimate Syrian government. “President Obama announced on Tuesday that he was recognizing the new Syrian opposition council as the sole legitimate representative of the Syrian people, tightening U.S. ties to the group as Syrian President Bashar Assad’s grip on power appears to be slipping. Obama, who announced the move in an interview with ABC News, made the decision ahead of an international conference on the crisis scheduled to start on Wednesday in Morocco.” (USA Today http://usat.ly/T6tRTe)

North Korea Tests Long Range Rocket

Expect the Security Council to come down hard against DRPK this week. “Isolated and impoverished North Korea launched its second long- range rocket of 2012 on Wednesday and may have finally succeeded in putting a satellite into space, the stated aim of what critics say is a disguised ballistic missile test. The rocket was launched just before 10 a.m. Korean time (0100 GMT) and overflew the Japanese island of Okinawa. Its April rocket launch was aborted after less than two minutes flight.” (Reuters http://reut.rs/T6v7WF)

After Another Coup in Mali, International Community Divided Over Intervention

The USA and France are at loggerheads over how to proceed in Mali. “Key U.N. powers said today that Mali’s military’s arrest and ouster of the country’s transitional leader, Prime Minister Cheick Modibo Diarra, would not deter the U.N. Security Council from forging ahead with plans to intervene in Mali to confront Islamists militants in the north of the country. But it did little to paper over differences between the United States and France on how to get the job done. Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, offered a decidedly uncharitable assessment of a French- and African-backed plan to retake control of northern Mali from a coalition of Islamist militants linked to al Qaeda. ‘It’s crap,’ the U.S. envoy told a gathering of U.N.-based officials, according to one of the officials.” (Foreign Policy http://bit.ly/T6uHiX)


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