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Reuters World News Highlights at 1745 GMT, Jan 11

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Jan 11 (Reuters) - TOP STORIES

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BEIRUT/GENEVA - Rebels seized control of one of Syria's largest helicopter bases on Friday, opposition sources said, in their first capture of a military airfield used by President Bashar al-Assad's forces.

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WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai began a crucial round of talks on Friday that are expected to help determine how fast the United States withdraws troops from Afghanistan and whether it leaves a residual force after 2014.

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WASHINGTON/NEW YORK - The United States ordered a wide review of Boeing's latest passenger jet, the 787 Dreamliner, citing "concern" over a spate of technical problems in recent weeks.

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LIBREVILLE - Central African Republic's government and rebels agreed to the formation of a national unity government under a ceasefire deal on Friday to end an insurgency that swept to within striking distance of the capital.

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PARIS/BAMAKO - France's armed forces began a military intervention in Mali on Friday to help the government stem a push south by Islamist rebels who control much of the north, President Francois Hollande said.

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KAMPALA - Uganda expects foreign donors to restore aid which makes up a quarter of its budget after the government pledged to refund stolen and embezzled funds and to prevent future pilferage, it said on Friday.

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ISTANBUL - Kurdish rebels suggested on Friday that clandestine Turkish nationalists may have assassinated three Kurdish activists in Paris, but Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said the killings appeared to have been the result of an internal feud.

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LONDON - Britain on Friday sought to counter perceptions of discord with the United States over the European Union, saying U.S. President Barack Obama had told Prime Minister David Cameron that he supported his drive to renegotiate Britain's EU membership.

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Sharon Begley - Influenza has reached epidemic proportions in the United States, with 7.3 percent of deaths last week caused by pneumonia and the flu, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Friday.

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QUETTA, Pakistan - In a rare challenge, a Shi'ite Muslim leader publicly criticised Pakistani military chief General Ashfaq Kayani over security in the country on Friday after bombings targeting the minority sect killed 118 people.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/130111/reuters-world-news-highlights-at-1745-gmt-jan-11