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Bombers kill 40 at anti-Taliban meeting in Pakistan

PESHAWAR, Pakistan — Two suicide bombers dressed as police officers detonated explosive vests at a meeting of hundreds of people with the top civilian official in the tribal agency of Mohmand, killing more than 40 and wounding at least 100, government officials said.

The meeting, called a peace jirga, had been assembled to plan a strategy to stand up to the Taliban, who have carved out a haven in the strategic tribal region on the Afghan border, resisting a nearly two-year campaign by the Pakistani military to oust them.

Top test scores from Shanghai stun educators

With China’s debut in international standardized testing, students in Shanghai have surprised experts by outscoring their counterparts in dozens of other countries, in reading as well as in math and science, according to the results of a respected exam.

U.S. officials and Europeans involved in administering the test in about 65 countries acknowledged that the scores from Shanghai are by no means representative of all of China.

About 5,100 15-year-olds in Shanghai were chosen as a representative cross-section of students in that city. In the United States, a similar number of students from across the country were selected as a representative sample for the test.

Obama urges China to rein in North Korea

WASHINGTON — In a sign of mounting tension between the United States and China over North Korea, President Barack Obama telephoned President Hu Jintao and warned that China was emboldening its unruly neighbor by not publicly challenging its behavior, a senior administration official said Monday.

In a frank, 30-minute discussion Sunday night, Obama urged China to put the North Korean government on a tighter leash after a series of provocations, most recently its shelling of a South Korean island, which has stoked fears of a wider military confrontation in the Korean Peninsula.

Gillick elected to Hall of Fame; Steinbrenner and Miller not

ORLANDO, Florida — When Pat Gillick left the Yankees’ front office in 1976 to build the expansion Toronto Blue Jays, George Steinbrenner was upset. He did not like a new American League East rival poaching his scouting director.

Gillick and Steinbrenner did just fine apart. Both went on to careers filled with championships, and both appeared on the veterans committee’s Hall of Fame ballot for the first time this year. But only Gillick was elected in voting results announced Monday.

Gillick, the former general manager of the Blue Jays, the Baltimore Orioles, the Seattle Mariners and the Philadelphia Phillies, was named on 13 of 16 ballots, with 12 needed for election. Steinbrenner, who owned the Yankees from 1973 until his death on July 13, was named on fewer than eight ballots. The Hall of Fame would not specify exactly how many votes Steinbrenner received.