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World/National News

February 2, 2014

Around the World and Nation Kerry decries 'disturbing trend' of governments trampling aspirations of the people

MUNICH (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry yesterday decried what he calls a “disturbing trend” of governments in central and eastern Europe — including in Ukraine — trampling on the aspirations of ordinary people.

“The aspirations of citizens are once again being trampled beneath corrupt, oligarchic interests — interests that use money to stifle political opposition and dissent, to buy politicians and media outlets, and to weaken judicial independence and the rights of non-governmental organizations.”

Speaking at an international security conference at which the crisis in Ukraine was a prominent topic, Kerry said, “We see a disturbing trend in too many parts of Central and Eastern Europe, and the Balkans.”

Kerry said the crisis in Ukraine is about ordinary people fighting for the right to associate with the European Union. And he said Ukrainians have decided their futures don’t have to lie with one country — an allusion to Russia.

“Nowhere is the fight for a democratic, European future more important today than in Ukraine. While there are unsavory elements in any chaotic situation, the vast majority of Ukrainians want to live freely in a safe, prosperous country,” Kerry said.

Trial of Egypt’s ousted leader on charges of incitement to murder resumes

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt’s official news agency says the trial of ousted President Mohammed Morsi and 14 others, all accused of inciting the killing of protesters in 2012, has resumed.

The agency’s report gave no details on yesterday’s proceedings, held in a makeshift courtroom in the national police academy in eastern Cairo.

The trial is one of four the Islamist Morsi and top leaders of his Muslim Brotherhood face. The charges they face mostly carry the death penalty.

Morsi was ousted by a popularly backed military coup on July 3.

The charges against the defendants stem from violence outside the presidential palace in December 2012 when his supporters attacked protesters staging a sit-in. The clashes killed at least 10 people. The defendants are charged with inciting the killing of three of those protesters.

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