Britons voted on Thursday in a knife-edge general election that could put their country's membership of the European Union in question and raise the likelihood of independence for Scotland. Voters were casting ballots in a choice between a government led by Prime Minister David Cameron's centre-right Conservatives or by Ed Miliband's centre-left Labour in the closest vote in decades. While the leaders of both main parties insist they can win a clear majority in the 650-seat House of Commons, they will almost certainly have to work with smaller parties to form a government. The last three polls released on Wednesday showed a dead heat between the two main parties, tied at 34 percent, 35 percent and 31.4 percent.
By Joe Bavier GAMINA, Ivory Coast (Reuters) - Nestled among the cocoa plantations of western Ivory Coast is a gold mine that does not feature on any official maps. The unlicensed mine is a key part of a lucrative business empire headed by the deputy commander of the West African nation's elite Republican Guard, United Nations investigators allege. He is one of the principal players in a network of senior officers – former rebel commanders who have integrated into the Ivorian army – that has seized control of mines that generate tens of millions of dollars a year, and that engages in illegal taxation, smuggling and racketeering, they say. Interviews with more than two dozen military insiders, diplomats, U.N. officials, local authorities, analysts and miners also reveal that the network of former rebels continues to maintain loyalist fighters under their exclusive control. Elections in October are expected to return President Alassane Ouattara for a second and final term.