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Briefs

UN documents Rwanda, Uganda aid to Congo M23 rebels

– The Rwandan military is commanding and supporting the rebel force that overtook a major city in eastern Congo this week, a United Nations report released Wednesday said.

Uganda is also providing more subtle but nonetheless decisive backing to the M23 rebels, the report said.

The report’s release, just one day after the violent takeover of Goma, is sure to increase pressure on the international community to confront the two eastern African countries over their role in neighboring Congo’s conflict. Both have repeatedly denied supporting the M23 movement and have faced little international criticism over the allegations.

The highly anticipated report from the U.N. Group of Experts said both Rwanda and Uganda have “cooperated to support the creation and expansion of the political branch of M23 and have consistently advocated on behalf of the rebels. M23 and its allies include six sanctioned individuals, some of whom reside in or regularly travel to Rwanda and Uganda.”

Taliban bombs kill 2 Afghan guards

Two Taliban suicide bombers struck near a U.S. base in Kabul early Wednesday, killing two Afghan guards in the heart of a neighborhood filled with foreign forces and embassies.

The attack came despite increased security ahead of a Muslim holy day that last year saw one the capital’s deadliest attacks.

Large 1-year decline in abortions seen

U.S. abortions fell 5 percent during the Great Recession in the biggest one-year decrease in at least a decade, according to government figures released Wednesday.

The reason for the decline wasn’t clear, but some experts said it may be due to better use of birth control during tough economic times. Their theory is that some women believe they can’t afford to get pregnant.

“They stick to straight and narrow ... and they are more careful about birth control,” said Elizabeth Ananat, a Duke University professor of public policy and economics who has researched abortions.

While many states have aggressively restricted access to abortion, most of those laws were adopted in the past two years and are not believed to have played a role in the decline.

Ball State to help Myanmar colleges

Ball State University in Muncie and eight other U.S. universities are uniting to help strengthen higher education in Myanmar.

The Institute for International Education announced Tuesday the schools will begin planning for developing partnerships with universities in the southeast Asian nation and rebuilding its higher education capacity.

On his trip to Myanmar this week, President Obama stated his commitment to advance education there.

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