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Highlights from the world's press

Compiled by Carlyle Laurie for CNN
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(CNN) -- News of sectarian violence in Iraq covers the pages of most U.S. newspapers.

The Washington Post reported that families in towns north of Baghdad were being forced to leave their homes as militias allied with Iraq's Shiite-led government held sway in Balad city.

"Balad was 'under siege from all sides,' police 1st Lt. Bassim Hamdi said by telephone from the city," the paper reported.

"We demand that leaders from both sides intervene to stop the bloodshed. Because if this goes on, it will explode sectarian violence all over Iraq."

Also on Iraq, the Los Angeles Times reported that, "Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki told President Bush on Monday that U.S. officials have been undermining his government, and sought reassurance that the administration was not preparing to abandon him."

"During a 15-minute morning phone call, Maliki said he was concerned that U.S. officials had openly suggested imposing a two-month deadline for him to gain control of militias and quell sectarian violence, said White House Press Secretary Tony Snow."

Moves to indict Katsav

Israel's Haaretz said it had learnt that, "The Jerusalem District Prosecutor's Office has begun formulating the indictment that will be submitted against President Moshe Katsav.

"The draft indictment, together with the legal opinion of Jerusalem District Prosecutor Eli Abarbanel will be handed over to Attorney General Menachem Mazuz and State Prosecutor Eran Shendar within two weeks.

"Justice ministry sources refused to confirm the information, saying this was 'an internal process.'"

Madonna adopts

The UK's Independent leads with the headline, "Madonna and child: a morality tale." The writer asks is this "another example of the overweening power of money and celebrity? Or a rare piece of good news from a land with 1,000,000 orphans?

"For critics, Madonna is simply another example of the growing and distasteful trend of rich celebrities 'shopping' for children to adopt from countries with which they have no ethnic ties, using their money and power to bend the rules without a thought for the children they do not choose."

'Bimbo' bliss

The UK's Daily Star says, "Celebrity Big Brother star Preston last night admitted he'd married a 'bimbo.'

"I think it's quite cool to be married to a bimbo... It's got to be every boy's dream."

The Ordinary Boys singer married Essex girl Chantelle Houghton, who he met while both were contestants on Celebrity Big Brother earlier this year, in August and admits, "It was ridiculously quick. But if our marriage falls apart the only people hurt are Chantelle and me."


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Madonna, pictured in London on Monday, faces criticism over her bid to adopt a Malawian baby.

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