rose 38 cents to $89.71 a barrel in early Asia trading, after dropping 55 cents the previous session. *Turkish President Abdullah Gul said on Monday the "worst-case scenarios" were now playing out in Syria and Turkey would do everything necessary to protect itself, as its army fired back for a sixth day after a shell from Syria flew over the border.
By Matt Falloon and Guy Faulconbridge. BIRMINGHAM, England, Oct 8- Britain's Conservatives would slash government spending on welfare by 10 billion pounds a year if re-elected, finance minister George Osborne said on Monday, though he offered few ideas on how to bring the economy out of recession.
*Marathon to purchase refinery for $598 million. HOUSTON, Oct 8- Marathon Petroleum Corp is buying BP Plc's Texas City refinery, the site of a deadly industrial accident, in a $2.5 billion deal that will make it the No. 4 U.S. refiner with a bigger potential slice of lucrative exports.
TOKYO, Oct 9- The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday cut its 2012 forecast for Africa along with most other countries around the world as the euro zone crisis dampens global demand and higher food prices weigh on food-importing countries in the region.
Oct 9- The Middle East and North Africa's oil exporting countries will see economic growth accelerate in 2012 to 6.6 percent, mainly due to a strong rebound of activity in Libya, the International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday.
Gbowee and Johnson-Sirleaf, Africa's first freely elected female head of state when she came to power in 2005, were named joint winners of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for their work promoting peace in Liberia. She had been serving as head of Liberia's Peace and Reconciliation Commission.
WASHINGTON-- Mitt Romney solely blamed President Barack Obama on Monday for potential defense cuts that Republicans in Congress worked out with the White House and Democrats and left the misimpression that Obama has ignored free trade initiatives.
Oct 8- Moody's cuts Old Mutual Life Assurance Co rating to A3 from A1, with a negative outlook.
LONDON, Oct 8- Liquefied natural gas will continue to be benchmarked to oil prices for several more decades, outgoing BG Group Chief Executive Frank Chapman said on Monday, despite complaints by top Asian importers that supplies are unaffordable.
Delta plans to add a flight between Seattle and Shanghai starting on June 17, 2013. Delta, which is based in Atlanta, is also proposing a flight between Seattle and Tokyo-Haneda, Japan, set to begin in March.
DUBAI, Oct 8- A battle of wills between Iran's government and foreign exchange traders may end with authorities taking over all legal trade in the rial, leaving many Iranians to seek hard currency illegally in a poorly supplied black market.
*Xstrata latest platinum firm to suffer wildcat walkout. JOHANNESBURG, Oct 8- South Africa's local government workers' union said on Monday it would launch a strike over pay in the next few days, the first sign of a wave of labour unrest in Africa's biggest economy spreading from the mines into the public sector.
*issue expected to be heavily oversubscribed. ACCRA, Oct 8- The Bank of Ghana will issue 500 million cedis worth of three-year government bonds on October 25 to restructure short-term debt, Finance Minister Kwabena Duffuor said on Monday.
*Says to take action against company. *Shares up over 5 pct By Tiisetso Motsoeneng JOHANNESBURG, Oct 8- South Africa's Cipla Medpro. South Africa's No.3 drug maker said in a statement that Jerome Smith had stepped down from the company he founded, after being suspended in August pending an investigation into charges against him.
ISTANBUL, Oct 8- Turkish lira and bonds eased in thin trade on Monday, with geopolitical risks weighing after bombardments between Syria and Turkish forces in the southeast of the country over the weekend.
JOHANNESBURG, Oct 8- Sishen Iron Ore, a unit of Kumba Iron Ore, has declared force majeure on its deliveries in South Africa following illegal strike action, ArcelorMittal South Africa said on Monday.
ACCRA, Oct 8- The Bank of Ghana will issue 500 million cedis worth of three-year government bonds on October 25 to restructure short-term debts, Finance Minister Kwabena Duffuor said on Monday.
LONDON, Oct 8- West African crude oil differentials slipped on Monday as a glut of unsold cargoes for loading in November showed that a range of grades were out of favour. Demand from China was reported to be lower, in part due to refinery outages and the closure of three Sinopec plants due to environmental problems.
ACCRA, Oct 8- Guinness Ghana Breweries Limited's. net profits rose to 25 million cedis during the 12 months through June 2012, up from 533,000 cedis during the same period a year earlier, the company said on Monday.
LONDON, Oct 8- Richland Resources Ltd:. *Tanzania ministry has informed co it will not provide support to mining. *Ministry informed co it will not provide support until claim for unpaid.