I am filling in during GangstaFeelsGood's extended absence as part of the Daily News Log backup team.

Here are today's headlines:

International Herald Tribune (www.iht.com)

  • Fed Trims Rates and Hints at More Cuts
    The American central bank reduced short-term interest rates by half a percentage point on Tuesday, the fifth easing this year, and warned the economy remained under pressure, raising speculation of another cut late in June.
  • Defiant Palestinians Mark 1948 Removal
    Tens of thousands of Palestinians froze in silence Tuesday as a three-minute siren sounded to mark the 53d anniversary of what Palestinians call "the catastrophe" of their displacement when Israel was founded.
  • Europe's Rightists See Hope in Berlusconi's Win
    Silvio Berlusconi's victory in Italy serves as a refreshing swig of psychic tonic for the center-right of Europe, where national elections will challenge the left's axis of parliamentary power in Britain, France and Germany over the next 18 months.
  • Olympic Bids by Beijing, Paris and Toronto Praised
    An official evaluation report Tuesday effectively reduced the five cities bidding for the 2008 Summer Olympic Games to three after placing Istanbul and Osaka behind the other three - Beijing, Paris and Toronto.
  • As Bush Envoy Visits, Beijing Assails Shield Plan
    Even as President George W. Bush's emissary was here making the case for an American missile-defense shield, the Chinese government on Tuesday publicly condemned the U.S. proposal, calling it a fruitless step that would endanger global security.
  • Taiwan and China: Ever Closer Bonds
    Despite visions of war conjured up by President George W. Bush's suggestion that the United States could help defend Taiwan from any Chinese invasion, social and economic integration between the mainland and the island is stronger than ever, and it is growing.
BBC (news.bbc.co.uk)
  • Labour Sets Out Ambitions
    UK Prime Minister Tony Blair is to outline his vision for the next 10 years in Labour's manifesto, promising to improve public services.
  • Palestinians press US on Middle East
    Palestinians urge the US to take a leading role in ending Middle East violence as Israel "admits error" in killing five Palestinian policemen.
  • China shuns US nuclear plans
    A United States envoy fails to overcome Chinese opposition to Washington's plans for a new missile shield defence system.
  • US to brand Real IRA 'terrorists'
    The US Government is set to introduce sanctions against the Irish republican group Real IRA as it designates it a "foreign terrorist organisation".
  • Amazon destruction surges
    The deforestation of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil is at a five-year high, following an improvement in the Brazilian economy.
New York Times (www.nytimes.com)
  • Still Wary About Economy, Fed Reduces Key Rates 0.5%
    The Federal Reserve cut its benchmark interest rate by half a percentage point for the fifth time this year, continuing its campaign to reinvigorate the economy.
  • Bush Task Force on Energy Worked in Mysterious Ways
    Much of Washington remains in the dark about how the Bush administration's Energy Development Task Force operated while it devised the nation's energy plan, which will be released on Thursday.
  • U.S. Panel Supports Widespread Use of Cholesterol Drugs
    A national panel recommended that millions more Americans take powerful cholesterol-lowering drugs or immediately alter their diets.
  • Lawyers Fail to Reach Deal on F.B.I. Spying Charges
    A lawyer for Robert P. Hanssen, the F.B.I. agent accused of spying for Russia, said plea bargain talks had broken off over the government's refusal to negotiate a deal that would spare Mr. Hanssen's life.
China Daily (www.chinadaily.com.cn)
  • Beijing, Paris and Toronto rated `excellent' for 2008 Games
    Beijing, Toronto and Paris won ringing endorsements Tuesday for their bids to stage the 2008 Summer Olympics. Osaka and Istanbul were virtually eliminated as potential hosts.
  • Resumed US spy flights meet Chinese jets
    The United States has dispatched three surveillance planes to spy on China since the April 1 plane collison incident, and each time they met chasing Chinese jet fighters, the Pentagon said.
  • Envoy: Talks with China constructive
    James Kelly, assistant US secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, said on May 16 that his whole-day talks on May 15 with Chinese officials on the American missile defence program is constructive. Kelly released a statement while departing Beijing for Hanoi to continue his mission to promote President Bush's missile defence system.
  • Bush aide proposes major adjustments in Asia
    A new report authored by one of President George W. Bush's senior aides advocates "major adjustments to US strategy and military posture" in Asia, including developing Guam as a key regional military hub and possibly opening new bases in Oman and Vietnam.
  • Economy enjoying 7% growth
    The Chinese economy appeared on track to enjoy the predicted 7 per cent growth rate this year, indicated statistics revealed Tuesday on the first third of 2001.
Panapress (Africa) (www.panapress.com)
  • South African Women Lobby for Sexual Rights Charter
    A university woman's health project has started the processes of developing South Africa's first Sexual Rights Charter.
  • South Africa Says UN Conference Cannot Fail Poorest of the Poor
    Key challenges facing the world's Least Developed Countries (LDCs) relates to their integration into the globalising world economy, according to South Africa's Foreign Affairs Minister Nkosasana Dlamini-Zuma.
  • NDA Leader Ready to Meet President El Bashir
    Exiled leader of Sudan's National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Mohammed Osman Almirgani has said he is ready to hold talks with President Ommar El Bashir in order to resolve the country's long-standing conflict.
  • Kenya to introduce disease resistant oranges
    Researchers from the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KEMRI) and the University of Nairobi are working on a project to produce disease-fee orange seedlings in the country.
  • Microsoft intensifies anti-piracy battle
    In one of its hardest stances to combat piracy in South Africa, Microsoft SA is seeking signed declarations from businesses attesting to a "clean bill of health" regarding the use of its software.