BBC news with Mick Cooper.
The German manufacturer of a drug, which left thousands of children with birth defects, has apologized to those affected. Thepharmaceuticalcompany Gruenenthal produced thalidomide in the 1950s and 60s to help pregnant women suffering from morning sickness. With the details, here is Mike Wooldridge.
The apology came as the chief executive of the Gruenenthal Group Harald Stock unveiled a bronze statue symbolising a boy born without a limbs because of thalidomide. He said the company sincerely regretted the consequences of the thalidomide, and apologized to all those affected and to their mothers for attempted for as he put it not reaching out their personally for almost 50 years. But he also repeated the firm's long standingassertionthat it acted according to the state of scientific knowledge up to time that challenged by campaigners.
The runner-up in Mexico's presidential elections Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador says he won't accept the court ruling thatvalidatesthe July's poll. Earlier, the country's electoral court dismissed an appeal by Mr. Lopez Obrador against to victory central right candidate Enrique Pena Nieto whom he accused of electoral fraud. Will Grant reports from Mexico City.
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador accused Mr. Pena Nieto's party the PRI of vote buying and otherirregularities, and entered the petition that the election be declared valid. That request was formally denied on Thursday when an electoral tribunal called and found its claims and lack of evidence.The tribunal has now taken the next step and confirmed that Enrique Pena Nieto will besworn inon 1 December as the Mexico's president.Mr. Lopez Obrador meanwhile has reacted by rejecting the tribunal's decision.
Lawyers in South Africa are threatening legal action on behalf of 270 miners who have been charged murder after 34 of their colleagues were shot dead by police. They say the arrested miners must be released by Sunday or they will apply to the high court to order their release. Earlier, the justice minister Jeff Radebe asked prosecutors to explain the murder charges as Karen Allen reports from Johannesburg.
The justice minister Jeff Radebe said the decision to charge the protesting miners with causing the death of their own colleagues had led to shock, panic and confusion across South Africa. Prosecutors have charged 270 demonstrators with murder under the common purpose doctrine, anapartheidera law used in crowd situations when there is uncertainty about blame. But the governing ANC is trying to distant itself from what critics say is a politically motivated decision, which appears tocontradictTV footage of the violence broadcast at the time.
Industrial unrest is spreading elsewhere. The big mine on a gold field says 12,000 of its miners have been on strike since Wednesday evening. Talks to end the three weeks strike at the Marikana platinum mine have been suspended on Monday.
World news from the BBC.
Voting has ended in Angola for a new president and parliament after an initial rush polling was said to have been slow and there were complaint of irregularities in some polling stations. President Jose Eduardo dos Santos is seeking another term after more than 30 years in power.
Spain is setting up what has been called a bad bank to take over thetoxicassets held by country's banks following the property crash. The government hopes the bank can help draw a line under the debt crisis. Spain recently requested a multi-billion-dollar bailout from its European partners to help its struggling banking sector. Speculation continues that it may ask for a bailout for its public finances.
The Chairman of the US Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke has described the America's economic situation as far from satisfactory. Mr. Bernanke told the gathering certral bankers and academics that the FED would be taking additional steps to prompt a stronger recovery. Here is Andrew Walker.
Mr. Bernanke's speech was not quite a promised to take any particular immediate action, but it was a strong suggestion that the FED is ready to try further stimulus. He described thestagnationin the job's market as a grave concern. He also said that without previous FED actions, the recession would be in deeper and recovery slower. The options include further purchases in the markets of financial assets such as government debt with newly created money. A policy is known as quantitative easing. Critics say it could lead to sharply higher inflation.
A senior Brazilian politician from the governing Workers Party haspulled out ofmayoral elections in October after being convicted of corruption, making him the first political casualty of a major long-running trial.Joao Paulo Cunha, the former president of lower house of Congress, said he would not run for mayor of Osasco city. On Thursday the Supreme Court convicted him of corruption and money laundering as part of alleged scheme to pay coalition partners for support in Congress between 2002 and 2005.