Greece sets elections for early May
Greece's interim prime minister, Lucas Papademos, on Wednesday called a general election for May 6, after his coalition government pushed through landmark financial relief deals that rescued the country from the threat of bankruptcy, but condemned his recession-hit countrymen to greater hardship. Opinion polls have indicated that no party will be able to win the majority needed to govern alone, potentially putting Greece's international bailout plan in jeopardy. It's unclear if the country's main political leaders will agree to a new power-sharing deal.
Seoul, South Korea
Ruling party holds edge in voting
President Lee Myung Bak's governing party appeared to have kept its majority in Parliament after elections Wednesday. With Lee's government reeling under corruption scandals implicating his former aides, Park Geun Hye took over the party leadership this year and headed its election campaign. With 99.7 percent of the votes counted, the governing New Frontier Party was leading in 152 races for the 300-seat Parliament, according to the National Election Commission.
Shell sends crew to check out slick
Shell Oil reports it has mobilized an oil spill response vessel after a light 10-square-mile oil slick was spotted between two of its major production sites in the central Gulf of Mexico. A Shell Oil statement Wednesday says it notified the National Response Center of what it describes as "a light sheen" about 130 miles southeast of New Orleans. Shell says it doesn't know the source of the slick but has found no evidence it originated from its Mars or Ursa wells.
New Orleans: The Justice Department has agreed to turn over at least 100 scientific documents in response to BP's claims that the government may have overestimated the amount of oil that spewed into the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 from the company's Macondo well.
Iran: Iran's top nuclear negotiator said Wednesday he would offer "new initiatives" at coming talks with world powers on its disputed nuclear energy program, apparently attempting a posture of conciliation.
Algeria: Ahmed Ben Bella, Algeria's first president in 1963 and a historic leader of its bloody independence struggle from France, died at his family home in Algiers on Wednesday. He was 95.
Kentucky: Gov. Steve Beshear signed a law Wednesday that lets Amish people use gray or reflective tape instead of a bright orange reflective triangle on their horse-drawn buggies to make sure other vehicles can see them at night.