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World Digest: Opponents of Venezuela's Ch&#225;vez jailed in crackdown

Environmentalists who campaigned against expanding Heathrow Airport celebrate the ruling outside the High Court in London.
Environmentalists who campaigned against expanding Heathrow Airport celebrate the ruling outside the High Court in London. (Lefteris Pitarakis/associated Press)

EUROPE

Catholic leaders voice support for pope

Catholic churches in Europe rallied behind Pope Benedict XVI on Friday, rejecting claims that he had covered up child sex abuse by priests and praising his leadership on the issue.

The French bishops' conference, the archbishop of London and the Munich Archdiocese, which Benedict once led, all rejected allegations in the news media a day after the Vatican accused its critics of an "ignoble attempt" to smear him.

-- Reuters

Pakistani troops kill dozens of militants: Pakistani troops killed at least 34 militants after about 150 Taliban fighters attacked a military post in the northwest, undermining government assertions that crackdowns have weakened the group. A senior military officer and four paramilitary soldiers were also killed in the attack in Orakzai, a day after Pakistani jets killed nearly 50 people, mostly militants, in strikes on a school and a seminary in the region.

-- From news services


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