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WORLD IN BRIEF: Gunmen kill 24 in Sunni area

BAGHDAD -- Gunmen trying to pass themselves off as U.S. and Iraqi soldiers raided a Sunni village outside Baghdad and killed at least 24 people in an execution-style attack, apparently targeting a Sunni group that revolted against al-Qaida in Iraq, authorities and witnesses said Saturday.

The bloodshed late Friday comes amid increasing concerns that insurgents will take advantage of Iraq's political turmoil to further destabilize the country, nearly a month after parliamentary elections failed to give any candidate a decisive win.

US delaying currency report over China

WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration is delaying a report to Congress on currency policies amid calls from some lawmakers that it should cite China as a currency manipulator harmful to the U.S. economy.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Saturday that he will delay publication of the report, due April 15, because several high-level international meetings in the coming months will be a better way to advance the United States' position.

Still, Geithner said in a statement that China should adopt ''a more market-oriented exchange rate'' to balance a U.S. trade deficit with China, which totaled $226.8 billion last year, the largest imbalance with any country. U.S. manufacturers say China's yuan is undervalued by as much as 40 percent and is a big reason for the massive trade deficit.

Afghan leader's comments draw criticism

KABUL -- President Hamid Karzai's scathing attack on the West for its role in Afghanistan drew criticism Saturday from Afghan politicians after the White House described his remarks as genuinely troubling.

Despite Karzai's attempt at damage control, including a telephone conversation with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, his allegations laid bare the growing mistrust between the Afghan government and its international partners as the United States and NATO ramp up troop levels to try to turn back the Taliban.

Karzai's speech also heightened an ongoing political power struggle between Karzai and an increasingly independent-minded parliament, which has refused to confirm nearly half of his Cabinet nominees.