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Japan gov't starts releasing minutes of Cabinet meetings

The Japanese government has started releasing minutes of the Cabinet's official and unofficial meetings for the first time, beginning with the minutes of meetings on April 1. The minutes, including date, place, the name of participants and their statements, were posted on the website of the prime minister's office at noon Tuesday. Cabinet minutes are being compiled based on memos written by the deputy chief Cabinet secretary, head of the Cabinet Legislation Bureau and other senior officials in attendance.

Chinese police to receive gun training

Police in China are set to receive firearms training as part of a nationwide plan to boost armed patrols, state media said Tuesday, after a string of high-profile violent incidents. China announced last month that it plans to roll out armed patrols across the country following a spate of violence, including a knife attack in the southwestern city of Kunming on March 1 which left 33 people dead. The country's stability-obsessed Communist leadership responds harshly to any perceived threats to its rule, but most members of its police force do not carry weapons.

US police arrest man after LA Times shooting threat

US police arrested a man late Friday after he entered the Los Angeles Times building and threatened to start shooting, the newspaper said. It was unclear if the man was carrying a weapon or fired any shots, but building employees locked themselves in safe areas while police officers entered and detained the suspect. Witnesses told the LA Times the man said he had been depressed and did not mind killing someone. He reportedly handed one person a bag of bullets and said that he did not want to go to jail.

Kansas City police arrest suspect in highway shootings

(Reuters) - A suspect in a dozen shooting incidents that have left at least three people injured, mostly on highways and roads around Kansas City, Missouri, has been taken into custody, the city's police chief, Darryl Forte, said on Thursday evening. Police had been investigating a string of about 20 shootings since March 8, and announced earlier this month that detectives believed a dozen of them were connected. All but three of the shootings were in Kansas City, and most occurred on highways and at night.

New York police disband unit that spied on Muslims

New York police said Tuesday that they had disbanded a deeply controversial and heavily criticized unit that sent undercover officers to spy on local Muslims. Civil liberty groups welcomed the move, but called on New York authorities to address the damage exerted by unjustified spying based solely on religion. The decision by America's largest police force is the first sign that new commissioner William Bratton is moving away from some of the post-9/11 intelligence-gathering practices of his predecessor, The New York Times reported.

NY City police disband unit that monitored Muslim communities: report

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The New York Police Department has disbanded a surveillance unit that targeted and monitored Muslim communities, The New York Times reported on Tuesday. The unit, which began in 2003, has been largely inactive since the incoming Police Commissioner William Bratton took over the department in January, and its detectives have been reassigned, the report said.

UK names new head of GCHQ after Snowden leaks

Britain Tuesday named a top foreign ministry official as the new head of GCHQ, the electronic eavesdropping agency that came under scrutiny after leaks by former US analyst Edward Snowden. Robert Hannigan, currently the director of defence and intelligence at the Foreign Office, will replace Iain Lobban, who was in the post for six years. Lobban's departure was announced in January, although the government denied it was related to revelations by fugitive National Security Agency contractor Snowden.

Australia's GE Money warns customers of 'Heartbleed' bug

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Financial services firm GE Money has warned Australian customers against "worldwide internet vulnerabilities", urging them to change online passwords after a bug surfaced this month hitting email systems, security firewalls and possibly, mobile phones. "Heartbleed" surfaced in April, when it was disclosed that a pernicious flaw in a widely used Web encryption program known as OpenSSL opened hundreds of thousands of websites to data theft.

Presidential chief of staff to join NSC's standing committee

SEOUL, April 15 (Yonhap) -- The Cabinet on Tuesday approved a measure to add the presidential chief of staff to the standing committee of the National Security Council (NSC), South Korea's top decision-making body on security and foreign policy issues. The move is aimed at making the chief presidential secretary more familiar with security and external issues as those matters are closely related to other issues, officials said. The measure will also improve the efficiency of the committee's operations, they said.

Presidential chief of staff to join NSC's standing committee

SEOUL, April 15 (Yonhap) -- The Cabinet on Tuesday approved a measure to add the presidential chief of staff to the standing committee of the National Security Council (NSC), South Korea's top decision-making body on security and foreign policy issues. The move is aimed at making the chief presidential secretary more familiar with security and external issues as those matters are closely related to other issues, officials said. The measure will also improve the efficiency of the committee's operations, they said.
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