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The Chinese government said Tuesday that it will increase subsidies to low-income families if soaring inflation keeps on rising. Officials have told businesses to seek permission before raising prices substantially and have warned that increases deemed unacceptable may be reversed.

Two of Turkey's major political parties reached a deal that would allow female students to wear Islamic head scarves at universities if their proposed constitutional amendment is passed by Parliament. The bill submitted Tuesday stipulates that scarves must be tied under the chin in order to leave faces more exposed.

Emergency teams in the central Venezuelan town of Altagracia de Orituco waited outside a bank Tuesday where a tense standoff continued Tuesday between four gunmen who held 30 customers and bank employees hostage and police who were trying to win their release.

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano met Tuesday with conservative leader Silvio Berlusconi (above), who has demanded early elections after last week's resignation of his center-left rival. Napolitano could choose to dissolve Parliament and call elections three years ahead of schedule or give the mandate to a respected, above-the-fray figure to create an interim government.

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