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World news briefs — Compiled Aug. 26


U.S. accused of spying

The United Nations said Monday that it will contact the United States about reports that the National Security Agency hacked its internal communications, and the world body emphasized that international treaties protect its offices and all diplomatic missions from interference, spying and eavesdropping. U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq said Monday that the United Nations will “reach out” to U.S. officials about the reports of eavesdropping. The German magazine Der Spiegel reported Sunday that documents it obtained from American leaker Edward Snowden show the NSA secretly monitored the U.N.’s internal video conferencing system by decrypting it last year. Der Spiegel also reported that the NSA installed bugs in the European Union’s office building in Washington and infiltrated the EU’s computer network.


City installs ‘sex boxes’

Switzerland’s largest city on Monday launched a new dimension in drive-through services: prostitution. In an effort to move the sex trade from central Zurich’s banking and business districts, city officials have built a cluster of garagelike “sex boxes.” A motorist in search of a tryst can troll past a sidewalk lined with licensed hookers and drive the one of his choosing to the relative privacy accorded by three wooden walls. Prostitution has been legal in Switzerland since 1942. Zurich officials and city business leaders led the campaign to create the new car-sex complex at the edge of town to better protect prostitutes and prevent their being drawn into drugs and other illegal activities.


Top politician in hospital

Sonia Gandhi, India’s most powerful politician and the leader of the ruling Congress party alliance, was in stable condition after falling ill during a debate in Parliament. Press Trust of India, quoting unidentified sources at the hospital where Gandhi was taken, said she was no longer in the intensive care unit, where she had been taken because of chest pain. Gandhi, 66, appeared fine during a parliamentary speech Monday, but reports said she had to be escorted from Parliament in the evening by colleagues and her son Rahul.

Compiled from wire reports.


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