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UK judge approves sale of US ports operating rights to Dubai firm

[JURIST] A British judge on Thursday approved the takeover of a British shipping and ports company by the United Arab Emirates [government website] company Dubai Ports World [corporate website], a move which could lead to the Arab company taking control of operations of six major US ports. A US company, Eller & Co. [corporate website], had asked the court to block the takeover [JURIST report] because it would cost jobs, but a High Court judge in London denied the request and has approved DP World's takeover of P&O [corporate website]. BBC News has more.

Meanwhile, a US federal judge on Wednesday refused to grant an order for a full government investigation into the controversial takeover of port operations [JURIST news archive] by DP World. Judge Jose Linares said there was no need for a federal investigation because DP World voluntarily agreed to allow the US government a 45-day review of the takeover. The decision effectively denies New Jersey's request [JURIST report] for an injunction to force the federal government to investigate whether the takeover presents a security risk. Linares also denied New Jersey's request to access DPW documents used in an earlier federal review. The DPW takeover is controversial in the US, and critics, including members of Congress from both parties, say the US government is putting national security at risk by allowing the Dubai-based company to control the ports. President Bush has said that the deal does not place Americans in any danger. DPW agreed to the review in part to appease critics of the deal. BizWorld has more.

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