World Digest

World Digest

Saturday, May 9, 2009

BRAZIL

Flooding Displaces Nearly 300,000

Brazilians huddled in cow pens converted into emergency shelters Friday, as northern Brazil's worst floods in decades boosted the number of homeless to nearly 300,000. The death toll rose to 39, and with swollen rivers continuing to rise, coffins started popping out of the soaked earth.

More than 1,000 people forced from their homes were crammed into a sprawling complex of stables and wooden shacks used for the annual August cattle fair in Bacabal, a city of 95,000 surrounded by small farms and jungle.

Unusually heavy rains have saturated 10 of Brazil's 26 states, covering an area three times the size of Alaska.

Experts have warned that by next month, rivers, including the Amazon, could rise to levels not seen since 1953.

-- Associated Press

IRAN

President Confirms Bid for 2nd Term

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Friday officially declared his candidacy for a second term in an election that is expected to pit him against a moderate former prime minister.

The hard-line president, who has proved a polarizing figure in Iranian politics with his anti-Western speeches and profligate government spending, registered as a candidate in the June 12 vote at the Interior Ministry in Tehran.

Former premier Mir Hossein Mousavi, a moderate who is seen as Ahmadinejad's main challenger, is expected to register Saturday.

-- Reuters


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