Rudd says AU’s economy the main issue for next election
World’s second-tallest building nears completion in Shanghai
Escape artist pulls off locked coffin skydive
Togo arrests large-scale ivory trafficker

Rudd says AU’s economy the main issue for next election
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd called an election for Sept. 7 and said that it will be fought over who can be trusted to manage the Australian economy as it transitions from a decade-old mining boom fed by Chinese industrial demand that is now fading.

World’s second-tallest building nears completion in Shanghai
A topping-out ceremony was held Saturday for China’s tallest building in the financial hub of Shanghai when the final beam was hoisted to the top of the skyscraper and installed in a flag-waving ritual. At 2,073 feet, the Shanghai Tower in the city’s Pudong district is the world’s second-tallest building, surpassed only by Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, which soars 2,722 feet.

Escape artist pulls off locked coffin skydive
A Wisconsin daredevil freed himself from shackles and a locked casket while plummeting to the earth at 130 miles per hour on Tuesday, eventually parachuting gently into a northern Illinois field. Anthony Martin, 47, waved to the cameras and the crowd that turned out to watch his stunt after he landed at a farm in Serena, Ill., about 70 miles southwest of Chicago.

Togo arrests large-scale ivory trafficker
A high-profile ivory trafficker whose work activists say has fueled the slaughter of more than 10,000 elephants dating back to the 1970s has been arrested in Togo, the country’s environment minister said Wednesday. The trafficker, Emile N’Bouke, was found to be in possession of 700 kilograms (1,500 pounds) of ivory at the time of his arrest Tuesday afternoon at his shop in Lome, the capital.

Pentagon may revise same-sex benefits
The Pentagon is poised to extend health care, housing and other benefits to the same-sex spouses of military members by the end of August, but may reverse earlier plans to provide benefits to gay partners who are not married. According to a draft Defense Department memo obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press, the department instead may provide up to 10 days of leave to military personnel in same-sex relationships so they can travel to states where they can marry legally.

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