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Wednesday Oct 07

At 'home' in Peru, World Bank chief unfazed by slower growth

CARABAYLLO, Peru (AP) - In the 1990s, Jim Yong Kim would climb the dusty streets and hillsides of this sprawling slum outside Peru's capital distributing expensive pharmaceutical drugs he'd brought hidden in his luggage to tuberculosis patients. Residents recall the Harvard-trained physician as a smiling do-gooder with basic Spanish and shoes permanently caked with dust.
Two decades later, he is back in Carabayllo as head of the World Bank, which along with the International Monetary Fund is holding its annual meeting this week in Lima, the first in nearly 50 years in Latin America.
Although he arrived in a caravan of luxury Lexus sedans and wore a clean pair of handcrafted leather boots, living and working

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Tax hike on humble Greek drink threatens town's future

TIRNAVOS, Greece (AP) - At Statiris Tavern, the patrons' faces are hardened from a life of hard work - truck drivers, builders, and farmers who've just ended their grueling grape harvest.
There's little talk of difficulties at work or the country's financial crisis. This is a place where friends wander in to share a joke, or snack on a plate of fries and octopus with a late afternoon glass of tsipouro, the potent local spirit.
A close relative of the Greek spirit ouzo, tsipouro has become increasingly popular during the recession as an affordable alternative to imported drinks, but is now facing a tax increase under European Union rules that could almost double its price.

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Hollande counters Putin remark on Syria alliance

BEIRUT (AP) - The latest developments after Syrian troops, emboldened by Russian airstrikes, launch a ground offensive against insurgents (all times local).
France's president says comments from Russian President Vladimir Putin suggesting an alliance of Syrian government forces and the Free Syrian Army are incorrect.
Putin was in Paris on Friday for talks with French President Francois Hollande as well as the leaders of Germany and Ukraine. The Russian leader said the idea came from French President Francois Hollande.

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Renewed AB InBev bid for SABMiller ups stake in beer battle

BRUSSELS (AP) - Any talk of a union between Budweiser and Miller - in fact, any talk of the creation of beer behemoth reaching all parts of the globe for that matter - should be put off for now as the owners of two of the world's most famous beers continue to haggle over the terms of a merger.
Earlier Wednesday, Budweiser's Belgian-Brazilian owner Anheuser-Busch InBev sweetened its offer for SABMiller to more than 68 billion pounds ($104 billion) but the reply remained as bitter as the rejection of the two previous proposals.
It's just not enough.
"AB InBev is very substantially undervaluing SABMiller," said SABMiller chairman Jan du Plessis.

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Round 2: Downstream South Carolina towns brace for flooding

GEORGETOWN, S.C. (AP) - Along South Carolina's coast, residents were preparing for a second round of flooding as rivers swollen from days of devastating rains make their way toward the Atlantic.
And in the Columbia area, where some have started to return home to assess damage and clean up, the threat of more flooding still hadn't lifted. About 1,000 residents near the compromised Beaver Dam were told to evacuate Wednesday morning. Crews were filling a sinkhole with rocks in hopes that would stabilize the dam.
In coastal Georgetown, one of America's oldest cities, Scott Youngblood was putting more sandbags Tuesday by the door of the Augustus & Carolina furniture store on Front Street, the popular tourist attraction that runs along the Sampit River.

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