• Dutch to send 100 troops to Afghanistan in 2015

    Updated: 23 hr ago

    THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Dutch government says it plans to send 100 troops to northern Afghanistan as part of a NATO mission due to start in 2015, when the alliance's combat mission in the war-weary nation ends. The Dutch Foreign Ministry said in a statement Monday the Dutch contingent would be made up of trainers, medical personnel, transport and security staff and a logistics unit. It will be based in the northern town of Mazar-i-Sharif and will have an "advisory role in the highest echelons of the army and police." Dutch troops will be part of NATO's Resolute Support mission, the successor to the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, which winds down at the end of the year.

  • Filipino force defied UN commander in Golan crisis

    Yesterday

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine military said Monday that a U.N. peacekeeping commander in the Golan Heights should be investigated for allegedly asking Filipino troops to surrender to Syrian rebels who had attacked and surrounded their camp. Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang said he advised the 40 Filipino peacekeepers not to lay down their arms, and they defied the U.N. peacekeeping commander's order. Instead, they staged a daring escape from the Golan camp over the weekend, ending a tense, dayslong standoff. The disagreement is another blow to a U.N. peacekeeping mission that has been threatened by an escalation of violence in a buffer zone it has been guarding between Israel and Syria.

  • Federer to play Brisbane International in January

    Yesterday

    BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Roger Federer has confirmed he will return to the Brisbane International in January to kick off his preparation for the Australian Open. Federer was beaten in last year's final by local favorite Lleyton Hewitt at the Queensland Tennis Centre and said he expected to be in top form for January's tournament. The world No. 3 said conditions in Brisbane are similar to Melbourne, where the first Grand Slam of the season will be played from Jan. 19 to Feb. 1. Federer will be bidding for his 18th Grand Slam title. He said the Jan. 4-11 Brisbane International, is "an ideal preparation (for the Australian Open). It's an important tournament on my calendar. When I sign up for a tournament it's because

  • Ryan Nelsen fired by Toronto FC

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    TORONTO (AP) — Major League Soccer side Toronto FC fired New Zealand-born manager Ryan Nelsen on Sunday. Greg Vanney, head of TFC Academy, was selected as Nelsen's replacement. Jason Bent has been offered a position to remain with club, while five other assistants were let go. Nelsen and general manager Tim Bezbatchenko were reportedly at odds with the GM flexing his muscle in the wake of news that Tim Leiweke CEO of Toronto owner Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment and a champion of Nelsen and the team, is planning to leave. The team, while ravaged with injuries to Jermain Defoe and key defenders, was fourth going into Sunday with a chance at the playoffs for the first time. The top five in each division advance to

  • Philippine troops pull 'greatest escape' in Golan

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    BEIRUT (AP) — Under cover of darkness, 40 Filipino peacekeepers escaped their besieged outpost in the Golan Heights after a seven-hour gunbattle with Syrian rebels, Philippine officials said Sunday. Al-Qaida-linked insurgents still hold captive 45 Fijian troops. The getaway, combined with the departure of another entrapped group of Filipino troops, marked a major step forward in a crisis that erupted on Thursday when Syrian rebels began targeting the peacekeeping forces. The United Nations Security Council has condemned the assaults on the international troops monitoring the Syrian-Israeli frontier, and has demanded the unconditional release of those still in captivity.

  • Police, protesters clash in Pakistani capital

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    ISLAMABAD (AP) — Anti-government protesters armed with slingshots and hammers clashed repeatedly with police Sunday in the Pakistani capital, and the powerful military cautioned the prime minister against further use of force in the crisis that has triggered the biggest challenge yet to his authority. At least three people were killed and nearly 400 admitted to hospitals in clashes that started Saturday night and continued to boil over Sunday, officials said. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif met with top advisers seeking a way to ease the violence, which has raised the stakes in the two-week sit-in led by opposition politician Imran Khan and fiery cleric Tahir-ul-Qadri.

  • Thai junta leader stacks Cabinet with military men

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    BANGKOK (AP) — The general who transitioned from Thailand's junta leader to prime minister has awarded key Cabinet posts to his trusted allies from the armed forces, the latest in a series of moves that critics say will prolong the military's grip on power. Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha's government lineup, announced Sunday after being approved by the king, includes 11 active or retired senior military officials with no political experience who will serve as the ministers of justice, education, defense, transport, commerce and foreign affairs, among other posts. Prayuth also named 21 civilians to the 32-member Cabinet, including former Finance Minister Pridiyathorn Devakula, who will serve as a deputy prime minister.

  • Magnitude-6 earthquake jolts northern Pakistan

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — Authorities in Pakistan say a magnitude-6 earthquake has struck the country's north, though there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage. Pakistan Meteorological Department official Mohammad Shahid said people felt the quake Sunday in Peshawar and Islamabad. He said its epicenter was in the Hindu Kush mountains on the country's border with Afghanistan and Tajikistan. The U.S. Geological Survey described the temblor as a magnitude-5.1 quake that hit in Afghanistan, some 280 kilometers (170 miles) northeast of the capital, Kabul. Such conflicting data is common immediately after an earthquake. Pakistan and the region, along an active continental plate boundary, is often hit by earthqua

  • Australia to fly guns and ammunition into Iraq

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian military aircraft will soon fly guns and ammunition to the northern Iraqi city of Irbil to help Kurds fight Islamic State militants as part of a U.S.-led multination mission, Australia's prime minister said on Sunday. Prime Minister Tony Abbott said his government would join the United States, Britain, Canada, France and Italy in delivering rocket-propelled grenades, mortars and assault rifle ammunition at the request of the U.S. and Iraqi governments. "While we understandably shrink from reaching out to these conflicts, the truth is that these conflicts reach out to us," Abbott told reporters.

  • Afghanistan crash kills 23

    Updated: Sun, Aug 31, 2014

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A van slammed into a fuel tanker in western Afghanistan on Sunday, killing 23 people in the latest horrific accident in a country with poorly maintained roads and often reckless driving. The crash happened Sunday morning on the main highway between the city of Herat and the Iranian border, said Raouf Ahmadi, a spokesman for the provincial police chief in western Herat province. He added that four people were injured in the accident. Authorities do not know what caused the accident, but Ahmadi said initial reports indicated that "both drivers' carelessness" was to blame. Afghanistan has frequent traffic accidents often caused by bad roads and poor driving. On Aug.

  • All Filipino peacekeepers escape Golan standoff

    Updated: Sat, Aug 30, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Under cover of darkness, 40 Filipino peacekeepers made a daring escape after being surrounded and coming under fire by Syrian rebels in the Golan Heights, the Philippine military chief said Sunday, while 44 Fijian troops remained in the hands of the al-Qaida-linked insurgents. After coming under rebel attack Saturday, the first group of 35 Filipino peacekeepers was successfully escorted out of a U.N. encampment in Breiqa by Irish and Filipino forces on board armored vehicles, Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang and other military officials said.

  • Pakistan protesters march on PM's residence

    Updated: Sat, Aug 30, 2014

    ISLAMABAD (AP) — Hundreds of people were injured as Pakistani police battled throngs of protesters demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif with tear gas, batons and rubber bullets outside the prime minister's official residence and the adjacent parliament building. After a night of clashes, protesters started regrouping at daybreak Sunday and made repeated attempts to make their way through heavy deployment of police and barricades to reach the premier's residence. Police strengthened their lines and responded by lobbing tear gas canisters.

  • Syrian rebels attack peacekeepers in Golan Heights

    Updated: Sat, Aug 30, 2014

    BEIRUT (AP) — Clashes erupted between al-Qaida-linked Syrian rebels and U.N. peacekeepers in the Golan Heights on Saturday after the militants surrounded their encampment, activists and officials said, as the international organization risked being sucked further into the conflict. Other U.N. peacekeepers were able to flee from a different encampment that that was also surrounded by rebels of the Nusra Front, al-Qaida's Syrian affiliate, they said. Late Saturday, the U.N. spokesperson's office reported that "the situation on the ground is calm but tense' in the Golan.

  • Australia to fly guns and ammunition into Iraq

    Updated: Sat, Aug 30, 2014

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australian military aircraft will fly guns and ammunition into Iraq to help fight Islamic State militants, Australia's prime minister said on Sunday. "The United States government has requested that Australia help to transport stores of military equipment, including arms and munitions, as part of a multi-nation effort," Prime Minister Tony Abbott said in a statement. "Royal Australian Air Force C-130 Hercules and C-17 Globemaster aircraft will join aircraft from other nations including Canada, Italy, France, the United Kingdom and the United States to conduct this important task," Abbott added. He did not say when the air drops would begin, but News Corp.

  • Taliban attack intel office in eastern Afghanistan

    Updated: Sat, Aug 30, 2014

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A suicide bomber in a truck blew himself up at an intelligence headquarters in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, killing at least two people and setting off an intense firefight with security forces, officials said. After the bombing outside the headquarters of the National Directorate of Security in Jalalabad, militants battled with security forces for an hour before authorities were able to put down the attack, said Ahmad Zia Abdulzai, a spokesman for the Nangarhar governor. He would not say how many attackers were involved or whether they were all killed or some escaped. He said authorities were searching the grounds.

  • What dispute? India and China ignore land squabble

    Updated: Sat, Aug 30, 2014

    NEW DELHI (AP) — For more than 50 years, it has pitted India against China — a smoldering dispute over who should control a swath of land larger than Austria. Two militaries have skirmished. A brief, bloody war has been fought. And today, thousands of soldiers from both countries sit deployed along their shared frontier, doing little but watching each other. But as Beijing confronts countries across the South China and East China seas, displaying its diplomatic and strategic strength in a series of increasingly dangerous territorial disputes, the India-China standoff results in almost nothing beyond regular diplomatic talks and professions of international friendship. Because the last thing the world's two most populous c

  • New Zealand justice minister resigns amid scandal

    Updated: Fri, Aug 29, 2014

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand's Justice Minister Judith Collins resigned Saturday from her portfolios amid a scandal about her ties to a controversial blogger. The resignation comes just three weeks before New Zealand's general election and could impact the chances of center-right Prime Minister John Key returning for a third term in office. Opposition parties will see the move as victory while Key will hope it will bring closure to the scandal. Collins was one of Key's top ministers and observers had considered her a possible future prime minister.

  • Former Spain international Amor joins Adelaide

    Updated: Fri, Aug 29, 2014

    ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — Former Barcelona and Spain international Guillermo Amor has joined Adelaide United as the A-League club's technical director. Amor, who played 37 internationals for Spain, signed a one-year contract Saturday with the Reds after a one-month consultancy stint with his friend, Adelaide's Spanish coach Josep Gombau. Gombau's friendship with Amor goes back to their time as development coaches at Barcelona, where Amor made 311 La Liga appearances from 1988 to 1998. Amor also had club stints with Fiorentina and Villareal.

  • UN: 'Very fluid' situation on held peacekeepers

    Updated: Fri, Aug 29, 2014

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The plight of dozens of U.N. peacekeepers in Syria remained "very, very fluid" Friday, the secretary-general's spokesman said, as talks aimed at their release stretched into a second day. Some radio contact has been made with the 72 peacekeepers from the Philippines who have been restricted to their positions, Stephane Dujarric told reporters. Another 44 peacekeepers from Fiji remain detained. On Friday evening, the U.N. said in a statement it "had received assurances from credible sources," that the peacekeepers "are safe and in good health." The statement added that they had been informed "the intention behind holding the peacekeepers was to remove them from an active battlefield to a safe area

  • Budget issues delay Guam Army Guard training

    Updated: Fri, Aug 29, 2014

    HAGATNA, Guam (AP) — The Guam Army National Guard is postponing training because of a budget shortfall. The Pacific Daily News (http://bit.ly/1nKe9eb ) reports soldiers were originally scheduled to participate in a drill next weekend, but these exercises have been delayed. Commanders haven't set a new date yet. But the Guam National Guard said in a news release that it's confident it will be able to hold training at the end of next month. "It is unfortunate as we rely on the scheduled drills each month to ensure our soldiers remain trained and ready," said Maj. Gen. Benny M. Paulino, the adjutant general for the Guam National Guard. "We are confident, however, that we will receive the funds to execute (Guam Army Natio