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WORLD: Iran launches new satellite

Iran launches new satellite

TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran launched a satellite into earth orbit Wednesday, Iran's state TV reported, in a feat that is likely to raise concerns among those who fear Iran's intentions and nuclear development program.

The report said the locally produced satellite, called Rasad, or observation, was launched successfully by a Safir missile on Wednesday. There was no independent confirmation of the launch or of the satellite achieving orbit.

It the second satellite Iran has put into orbit. The first, named Omid, was launched in 2009.

The Iranian TV report said the new satellite is designed to produce high resolution maps.

Iran's decade-long space program has raised alarms in the West, because the same technology that allows missiles to launch satellites can be used to fire warheads.

White House defends Libya involvement

WASHINGTON -- The White House says the cost of U.S. military involvement and humanitarian assistance in Libya is about $800 million as of early June.

Officials estimate the U.S. will spend about $1.1 billion in Libya through the beginning of September.

The administration included those cost estimates in a report on the Libya mission sent to Congress on Wednesday. The report is in response to a House resolution that chastised Obama for failing to provide Congress enough information on the scope and cost of U.S. military campaign in Libya.

The White House also says in the report that President Barack Obama has the authority to continue U.S. military involvement in Libya even without authorization from Congress.

Farrakhan blasts NATO

NEW YORK -- Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan on Wednesday lambasted the U.N., the U.S., and the ''coalition of demons'' that he said makes up NATO, accusing them of trying to assassinate Moammar Gadhafi and promote regime change in Libya.

Farrakhan said the United Nations and its 15-member Security Council, who he referred to as ''the terror council,'' have no legitimate right to exist for passing the resolution that has allowed NATO to take military action in Libya.