Morning Brief, Friday, April 13

ALI YUSSEF/AFP/Getty Images Middle East Iraq’s speaker of parliament called an emergency session to “defy terrorism” following yesterday’s Green Zone attack. The likely perpetrator? A bodyguard of one of the MPs. The interior ministry has now taken over security responsibilities in the parliament building from a private contractor. Meanwhile, in the Shiite south of Iraq, ...

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ALI YUSSEF/AFP/Getty Images

Middle East

Iraq's speaker of parliament called an emergency session to "defy terrorism" following yesterday's Green Zone attack. The likely perpetrator? A bodyguard of one of the MPs. The interior ministry has now taken over security responsibilities in the parliament building from a private contractor.

ALI YUSSEF/AFP/Getty Images

Middle East

Iraq’s speaker of parliament called an emergency session to “defy terrorism” following yesterday’s Green Zone attack. The likely perpetrator? A bodyguard of one of the MPs. The interior ministry has now taken over security responsibilities in the parliament building from a private contractor.

Meanwhile, in the Shiite south of Iraq, Basra is going wobbly, and in the north, Turkish troops are poised to intervene to stop Kurdish guerrillas from infiltrating into Turkey.

The proposed new “War Czar” position at the White House is intended to cut out bureaucratic delays, the Washington Post reports.

Thirty-two years after the breakout of Lebanon’s civil war, the country remains deeply divided.

Europe

Exiled Russian billionaire Boris Berezovsky set off a Kremlin investigation when he claimed from London to be funding a plot to overthrow Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Berezovsky also once claimed that the Chechens had the makings of a nuclear bomb.) Chess champ Gary Kasparov is launching a different gambit—organizing a coalition of opposition groups.

Former Prime Minister of France Michel Rocard, a Socialist, is calling for centrist Bayrou and Socialist Segolene Royal to band together to stop conservative frontrunner Nicolas Sarkozy. Bayrou hailed Rocard’s statement as “very important news.”

German firms are struggling to find qualified skilled workers, particularly in the IT sector, which faces a worldwide shortage of professionals.

Asia

North Korea will probably be late in shutting down its nuclear reactor and allowing U.N. inspectors to return.

The Chinese government is seeking to combat Internet pornography in another nanny state initiative.

India’s surprise missile test forced an Indonesian passenger plane to turn back yesterday on its way from Jakarta to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.  

Elsewhere

Hugo Chávez announced that the nationalizations of foreign oil interests in Venezuela would be backed with government troops

This is great: The Financial Times ran an unusual 6 pm editorial yesterday calling for Paul Wolfowitz to resign as head of the World Bank, and then reported at 7 pm that “Pressure Grows on Wolfowitz to resign.” (The Bank board met yesterday but issued no decision; this one is above their pay grade.)

U.S. radio “shock jock” Don Imus has already been canned by CBS for a racist remark about the Rutgers women’s basketball team. How long until we learn he’ll be joining Howard Stern at XM/Sirius satellite radio?

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