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National Security Brief: May 25, 2012

— The International Atomic Energy Agency has found evidence at an underground bunker in Iran that the Islamic Republic has moved closer to enriching uranium at a closer level needed for nuclear weapons. Diplomats told the AP that the IAEA found traces of uranium enriched up to 27 percent at Iran’s Fordo enrichment plant.

— Egyptians voted yesterday in the first major post-Arab Spring election, likely setting up a run off between the Muslim Brotherhood candidate and a former air force general who served as prime minister in the last days of the fallen Hosni Mubarak regime.

— A new United Nations repot has found that Syrian government forces continue to commit “gross violations” in the country’s ongoing civil war.   — Fresh off his election win, French President François Hollande arrived in Afghanistan today and reaffirmed his pledge to remove the country’s combat troops — NATO’s fourth largest contingent — two years before the rest of the allies. “We have accomplished the mission,” Hollande said.   — Amid already heightened tensions, the U.S. launched unmanned drone air strikes in each of the last two days, killing between 11 and 14 alleged militants.

— A nearly $300 million fleet of cargo planes provided to Afghanistan by the U.S. will be grounded because of maintenance and safety issues.

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