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In brief

Goats on the go after the summer A herder dressed in traditional Bavarian clothes drives goats down the Alps near Mittenwald, southern Germany, on Saturday. The goats are driven down after they spent the summer months on the grazing lands in the Bavarian mountains.

AP PHOTO
KABUL, Afghanistan NATO kills former detainee

NATO and Afghan forces have killed a former Guantanamo detainee who returned to Afghanistan to become a key al-Qaida ally, international officials said Saturday.

The militant’s death was a reminder of the risks of trying to end a controversial detention system without letting loose people who will launch attacks on Americans.

Saber Lal Melma, who was released from Guantanamo in 2007, had been organizing attacks in eastern Kunar province and funding insurgent operations, NATO spokesman Capt. Justin Brockhoff said.

A NATO statement described Melma as a “key affiliate of the al-Qaida network” who was in contact with senior al-Qaida members in both Afghanistan and Pakistan.

CARTHAGE, N.C. Man gets life for slayings

A North Carolina man has been sentenced to spend the rest of his life behind bars for killing eight people at a rural nursing home.

Robert Stewart was sentenced Saturday to spend between roughly 16 and 20 years in prison for each of the murders, with the sentences running consecutively. That would put the overweight 47-year-old in prison for between 128 and 160 years. Judge James Webb added up to 22 years, stemming from assault and firearms charges, which will also be consecutive.

After two days of deliberation, the jury convicted Stewart of second-degree murder for shooting and killing seven elderly residents and a nurse at Pinelake Health and Rehabilitation Center on March 29, 2009. Stewart’s lawyers say he plans to appeal.

VATICAN CITY Vatican rejects criticism

The Vatican on Saturday vigorously rejected claims it sabotaged efforts by Irish bishops to report priests who sexually abused children to police and accused the Irish prime minister of making an “unfounded” attack against the Holy See.

Irish officials defended their claims that the Vatican exacerbated the abuse crisis and criticized the Holy See for offering an overly “legalistic” justification of its actions in dealing with priests who rape and molest children.

The Vatican issued a 24-page response to the Irish government following Prime Minister Enda Kenny’s unprecedented July 20 denunciation of the Vatican’s handling of abuse — a speech that cheered abuse-weary Irish Catholics but stunned the Vatican and prompted it to recall its ambassador.

NEW YORK Strauss-Kahn leaves home

Former International Monetary Fund leader Dominique Strauss-Kahn has left his New York City town home and may be headed back to his native France.

Strauss-Kahn, his wife and daughter left the rented house Saturday afternoon, carrying luggage. He didn’t say where he was going, but French media have reported he was expected to board a plane to Paris on Saturday.

It would be the one-time French presidential contender’s first return home since he was arrested in New York in May when a Guinean hotel maid accused him of trying to rape her.

Prosecutors dropped the sexual assault charges against him last week. They said they no longer trusted the maid. She continues to press her claims in a lawsuit.

Strauss-Kahn denies the allegations. He resigned from the IMF days after his arrest.

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