World Economic Forum

NPR's Julie McCarthy reports from Davos, Switzerland, that the annual World Economic Forum got under way today amid concern over a downturn in the U.S. economy. This year's event did not draw as many top leaders to Davos as last year's 30th anniversary meeting. The Bush administration — in the midst of confirmation hearings — sent no senior official to Davos. Swiss police have mounted a huge security operation to prevent the kind of "anti-globalization" protests that have surrounded recent meetings of the International Monetary Fund, World Bank and World Trade Organization.

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