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N Korea orders rockets on standby to fire at US bases

North Korea's young leader Kim Jong-Un has launched a long-range rocket and tested a nuclear bomb in recent months. Credit: REUTERS/KCNA

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un has ordered rocket units to be placed on standby to fire at US bases in the south and Pacific after a stealth bomber run, Reuters has reported, citing the Korean Central News Agency.

Read: Ambitious threats and worrying claims from North Korea.

US Secretary of State Kerry in surprise Iraq visit

US Secretary of State John Kerry has been touring a succession of countries since assuming the role. Credit: REUTERS/Jacquelyn Martin

US Secretary of State John Kerry has arrived in Iraq on an unannounced visit and is set to urge the country's prime minister to ensure Iranian flights over Iraq were not carrying arms to Syria.

"He will be very direct with Prime Minister (Nuri al) Maliki about the importance of stopping the Iranian overflights and the transits across the territory or, at a minimum, inspecting each of the flights," an unnamed senior US official said.

Mr Kerry will also ask Mr Maliki and the Iraqi cabinet to reconsider a decision to postpone elections in two provinces, Anbar and Nineveh, the official said.


US nuclear storage tanks leaking radioactive waste

The Hanford site, seen here in 1999, housed nuclear reactors before accommodating the storage tanks. Credit: PA Archive

Six underground storage tanks at a nuclear site in the US state of Washington have been leaking radioactive waste, officials have said.

The seeping at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation poses no near-term danger of polluting the Columbia River and the leak provides no immediate health risk, state governor Jay Inslee said.

But he described the updated findings, which come a week after radioactive waste was found at one tank on the site, as "disturbing news for all Washingtonians".


US defence chief orders Patriot missiles to Turkey

A US soldier stands next to a Patriot surface-to-air missile battery at an army base in Morag, Poland.
A US soldier stands next to a Patriot surface-to-air missile battery at an army base in Morag, Poland. Credit: Reuters

US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed an order to send two Patriot missile batteries to Turkey with 400 American staff to operate them, his spokesman George Little told reporters, before Panetta landed on an unannounced visit to Turkey.

"The purpose of this deployment is to signal very strongly that the United States, working closely with our NATO allies, is going to support the defence of Turkey, especially with potential threats emanating from Syria," the spokesman said.

Hillary Clinton: US budget crisis critical to security

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said sealing a deal to tackle America's budget crisis is critical to its global leadership and national security.

Speaking in Singapore, as part of a tour of Asia and Australia, she said an agreement would bolster efforts to project US economic power around the world.

When she was in Asia last year, the region's leaders asked her whether the US Congress would allow the United States to default on its debt.

Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi to visit the United States

Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi will visit the United States today for the first time since his election to power in June.

The visit is overshadowed by the recent events in the Middle east when American missions in Egypt, Yemen and Libya were attacked by angry protesters.

Mohammed Mursi will visit the United States later today.
Mohammed Mursi will visit the United States later today. Credit: REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghan
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