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Former Singapore foreign minister George Yeo started his new job yesterday, saying he wanted to build a "secular, international university''.

He has taken over as chancellor of India's revived Nalanda University for a three-year term.

"Our challenge is to build a secular, international university that is worthy of the name Nalanda, dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge,'' The Straits Times quoted him as saying.

Construction of a new campus is expected to start soon in the town of Rajgir, some 12km from the ruins of the ancient university.

Mr Yeo took over from Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, who has agreed to continue as a member of the university's governing body.


Greek banks will reopen tomorrow after a three-week closure and withdrawal limits have been relaxed, but capital controls remain in place, a government decree said.

It sets a new cumulative weekly withdrawal limit of 420 euros (S$622), with the daily limit remaining at 60 euros. To facilitate Greeks studying abroad the decree permits the transfer of up to 5,000 euros per trimester.

But a broad range of capital controls still remain in place. It includes a block on capital transfers and a ban on the opening of new accounts, among other things.

The shutdown has cost the country about three billion euros not counting lost tourism revenue.

- AFP


Saudi authorities said yesterday that they have broken up an organisation linked to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). They have so far arrested 431 of its members, mostly Saudis.

Network members were engaged in a "plot managed from areas of unrest abroad, with the aim of sowing sectarian sedition and spreading chaos", the interior ministry said.

The cells were involved in several attacks and plots, including the deadly suicide bombings that hit Shiite mosques in the kingdom's Eastern Province, it said.

ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attacks. The terror group controls swathes of Iraq and Syria.

- AFP


Seven prison officials from the Mexican jail from which drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman escaped on July 11 have been charged and taken to a federal detention centre.

Prosecutors have held 22 prison officials, including the facility's director, for questioning since last Sunday, but it was unknown whether the director was among those charged.

Guzman had managed to get into a 1.5km tunnel built under the prison for his second escape in 14 years.

It took 18 minutes for guards at the Altiplano prison to go into his cell after they noticed he had vanished.

The escape has dealt a heavy blow to President Enrique Pena Nieto, who had pointed to Guzman's arrest last year as his biggest victory in Mexico's war on drugs.

- AFP