• Losing Indonesia presidential candidate files suit

    Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Lawyers say the losing candidate in Indonesia's presidential election has filed a legal challenge of the outcome in the country's highest court. Attorneys for former General Prabowo Subianto said they filed the complaint Friday in the Constitutional Court. Election officials announced Tuesday that Subianto had received 47 percent of the vote in the July 9 election, less than the 53 percent received by Jakarta Gov. Joko Widodo. Subianto has alleged massive fraud in the election and charged that it was unfair and undemocratic. Election observers found the vote to be generally fair and free, with minimal abnormalities. A Constitutional Court official said a verdict would be issued Aug. 21

  • Kyrgyzstan's ex-preident sentenced to life

    Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan (AP) — A former president of Kyrgyzstan has been convicted and sentenced in absentia to life in prison for his role in violently breaking up an opposition rally, resulting in 77 deaths. The Supreme Court in this Central Asian nation on Friday found Kurmanbek Bakiyev guilty of orchestrating the response to street protests in April 2010. Bakiyev was ousted in the mass uprising stoked by indignation over a stagnant economy and rampant corruption. He fled the country and has been living in Belarus. Following a trial that lasted nearly four years, the court handed down verdicts in absentia for six out of the 21 defendants.

  • Philippine soldiers clash with militants; 5 dead

    Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine military says soldiers attacked a Muslim militant hideout on southern Basilan island, triggering a clash that killed three Abu Sayyaf members believed to have been involved in the 2011 kidnapping of an American woman and her teenage son. Two government militiamen were killed and two others were wounded. A military report said the operation Thursday in Ungkaya Pukan township targeted Abu Sayyaf sub-leader Sulaiman Ajanti, who was allegedly behind atrocities in Basilan and Zamboanga City, including the kidnapping of Gerfa Yeatts Lunsmann and her then 14-year-old son. The Philippine-born woman adopted as a child by an American couple was released after 2 ½ months in captivity. Her son escap

  • Australia readies 90 police for Ukraine crash site

    Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    SYDNEY (AP) — Australia's prime minister says his country is close to finalizing a deal with Ukraine to send police and a small number of troops to secure the Malaysian plane crash site as part of a multinational team. Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Friday that Australia has 90 federal police officers in Europe ready to be deployed to the site in eastern Ukraine where Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was downed last week. Abbott says some of the officers could be armed and would be accompanied by members of Australia's defense force. Pro-Russian separatists control the area and have hampered investigators' attempts to access the site.

  • Surgeons in India remove 232 teeth from teen

    Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    MUMBAI, India (AP) — Dental surgeons in India's largest city say they have removed 232 small "tooth-like structures" from the mouth of a teenage boy with a rare medical condition. They said the 17-year-old from a small village in western India had been suffering from jaw pain and swelling for more than 18 months. Surgeon Dr. Vandana Thoravade said Ashik Gavai suffered complex odontoma, a rare condition in which a tumor grows under a gum and creates smaller tooth-like growths called denticles. "We are very happy, while operating, we were removing one after another denticles and passing on to the medical staff to keep, but when surgery was over and when we spread the denticles and started counting ...

  • Sri Lankan asylum seekers to be taken to Australia

    Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    SYDNEY (AP) — Australia's immigration minister says Sri Lankan asylum seekers who have been languishing on board an Australian customs vessel for weeks will temporarily be brought to the mainland. Immigration Minister Scott Morrison's announcement Friday comes amid a court challenge and outrage from human rights groups. Two boats of Sri Lankans were intercepted by Australia's border patrol in the Indian Ocean in late June. Australia handed the passengers on the first boat to the Sri Lankan government after their refugee claims were assessed at sea and rejected. Rights advocates said the migrants could face persecution back home. The second boat originally set off from India.

  • Malaysia to send officer to face NZ sex charges

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Malaysian officials said Friday they still plan to send a military officer back to New Zealand to face sexual assault charges despite not returning him in early July as they had promised. However, the officials also expressed concerns about media coverage of the case in New Zealand and the decision of the alleged victim to speak out. Muhammad Rizalman Ismail was working at the Malaysian Embassy in Wellington when he was arrested May 9 for allegedly following a 21-year-old woman home and assaulting her. He was charged with burglary and assault with the intent to rape, each of which carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years. He claimed diplomatic immunity and returned home May 22.

  • Planes with Ukraine bodies arrive in Netherlands

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    KHARKIV, Ukraine (AP) — Two more military aircraft carrying remains of victims from the Malaysian plane disaster arrived in the Netherlands on Thursday, while Australian and Dutch diplomats joined to promote a plan for a U.N. team to secure the crash site which has been controlled by pro-Russian rebels. Human remains continue to be found a full week after the plane went down — underlining concerns about the halting and chaotic recovery effort at the sprawling site spread across farmland in eastern Ukraine. Armed separatists control the area and have hindered access by investigators. All 298 people aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 — most of them Dutch citizens — were killed when the plane was shot down on July 17. U.

  • Australian reporter imprisoned in Egypt to appeal

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian Al-Jazeera journalist will appeal his conviction on charges that he aided Egypt's outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, his brother said Friday. Journalist Peter Greste's brother Mike Greste said a Cairo legal firm had been appointed and was in the process of lodging the Al-Jazeera-funded appeal. Family spokeswoman Heidi Ross said she could not say whether the journalist's two Al-Jazeera colleagues would also appeal their convictions. "We have to have faith in the Egyptian system," Mike Greste told reporters in the family hometown of Brisbane, Australia. "We have to exhaust all legal channels prior to ... taking other strategies," he added, referring to options including appealing to Pr

  • Troubled Myanmar state invites back aid groups

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — Authorities in Myanmar's Rakhine state say international aid organizations are welcome to return to the area they left in April after Buddhist mobs disrupted their work helping displaced Rohingya Muslims. A state government announcement in Thursday's New Light of Myanmar newspaper said the move followed a meeting in June between officials and aid agencies to discuss a peace plan. The announcement specifically invited Doctors without Borders, which had been kicked out in February after it publicized alleged attacks on Rohingyas. No details were provided of how the groups' security could be assured. A human rights envoy from the U.N., which has criticized the government, has been visiting Myanmar

  • 2 Finnish aid workers killed in Afghanistan

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Afghan officials say two Finnish aid workers have been shot dead in the western city of Herat. Sami Wafa, the chief of staff of the Herat governor, said the two women were riding in a taxi on Thursday when they were shot dead by two men on a motorcycle. Herat police spokesman Raouf Ahmadi confirmed the details and said the taxi driver had been detained as part of the investigation. Finland's Foreign Ministry confirmed that two Finnish citizens have died in Afghanistan. Spokesman Keijo Norvanto says they were aid workers for the International Assistance Mission. The ministry was not immediately able to provide further details. The IAM, which has been operating in Afghanistan since the 1960s,

  • Thailand to re-launch women-only train carriages

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand's railway authority said on Thursday it will re-launch women- and children-only carriages in main routes nationwide after a 13-year-old girl was raped and killed in her berth on an overnight train earlier this month. The State Railway of Thailand said in a statement that the special carriages will start operating on trains traveling to the north, the northeast and the south on Aug. 1. Female passengers and boys younger than 10 and shorter than 150 centimeters (4 feet 11 inches) can ride in the carriages, which will be run by female employees. The move followed public furor over the assault allegedly carried out by the train's staff in early July. One employee was arrested in the rape and murder and a

  • 18 children, 1 man die in train-bus crash in India

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    HYDERABAD, India (AP) — Eighteen children were killed Thursday when a train crashed into their school bus at an unmanned railroad crossing in southern India, police said. The bus driver also died while another 20 children ages 7 to 14 were injured and hospitalized, 15 of them in critical condition, said Telangana state education minister G. Jagdishwar Reddy. They were on their way to school Thursday morning when the train hit the bus, dragging it several hundred feet (about 100 meters) along the tracks, according to the Hindustan Times newspaper. Hundreds of angry villagers rushed to the scene in Medak district, 95 kilometers (60 miles) north of Hyderabad, the capital of Telangana state. Some of them hurled stones at

  • India angered by basketball's no turban rule

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    NEW DELHI (AP) — India's sports minister has criticized the 'no-headgear' rule of basketball's world body FIBA after two Sikh players on the national team were told to remove their turbans during the recent Asia Cup in China. Sarbananda Sonowal said in a statement Thursday he was "shocked and outraged" and was seeking a report from the Basketball Federation of India as well as urging the International Olympic Committee to instruct sporting federations to alter rules so such an incident is not repeated. According to FIBA rules, players are not allowed to use headgear, hair accessories and jewelry.

  • Philippines deports Australian Islamic preacher

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Philippine authorities said Thursday they deported an Australian Islamic preacher suspected of links to terrorists based on YouTube videos allegedly showing him advocating jihad and urging local Muslims to support militants in the Middle East. Robert Cerantonio, alias Musa, was accompanied on a flight to Melbourne late Tuesday by four Filipino immigration agents, said Elaine Tan, spokeswoman for the Bureau of Immigration and Deportation. Tan said Cerantonio was deported for being an "undocumented foreign national" after the Australian government canceled his passport. He was arrested two weeks ago in central Cebu province's Lapu-Lapu city but faced no formal charges, she said.

  • Australia vows help to secure Ukraine crash site

    Updated: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia's foreign minister said Thursday that her country stood ready to provide whatever resources were needed to secure the Malaysian airliner's crash site in Ukraine, as newspapers reported Australian troops and police could soon be sent. Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said she was traveling with her Dutch counterpart Frans Timmermans to meet with Ukraine leaders in Kyiv to discuss securing the crash site in rebel-held east Ukraine. She said securing the crash site was the next priority for Australia after repatriating the 37 Australian citizens and residents aboard the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 which was shot down by a suspected surface-to-air missile last week, with the loss of 298 lives.

  • New Zealand raises interest rate to 3.5 percent

    Updated: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand on Thursday raised its benchmark interest rate to 3.5 percent but signaled a pause in its program of rate hikes. The announcement prompted a sharp drop in the New Zealand dollar, which was trading down nearly 1 percent at $0.8625. New Zealand has been going it alone among developed nations this year by raising interest rates. Thursday's decision was the central bank's fourth successive hike of a quarter percentage point. However, economic conditions have changed significantly in recent months. The rate hikes have boosted the New Zealand dollar as global investors seek high-yield assets, hurting exporters. Prices for dairy products, the country's leading export, have fallen.

  • Silence for Malaysia jet victims at Glasgow Games

    Updated: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) — The 298 victims of the Malaysia Airlines crash have been remembered at the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow with a period of silence. Almost a third of the victims of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 which was shot down over Ukraine were citizens of the Commonwealth, including 44 from Malaysia and 27 from Australia. Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond asked the audience at Celtic Park to "observe a moment's silence to express our condolences and above all our solidarity with the loved ones of all of those of every nationality who lost their lives.

  • 40 bodies from jet solemnly returned to Dutch soil

    Updated: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    EINDHOVEN, Netherlands (AP) — Victims of the Malaysian jetliner shot down over Ukraine returned at last Wednesday to Dutch soil in 40 wooden coffins, solemnly and gently carried to 40 identical hearses, flags at half-staff flapping in the wind. The carefully choreographed, nearly silent ceremony contrasted sharply with the boom of shells and shattered glass in eastern Ukraine as pro-Russian rebels fought to hang onto territory and shot down two Ukrainian fighter jets. The bold new attack showed the separatists are not shying away from shooting at the skies despite international outrage and grief at the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.

  • Death sentence given in AP photographer's killing

    Updated: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A Kabul court announced Wednesday that the Afghan police officer charged with killing Associated Press photographer Anja Niedringhaus and wounding veteran AP correspondent Kathy Gannon has been convicted and sentenced to death. It was the first court hearing in the case and, under Afghan law, the verdict and sentence are subject to several stages of review. Six judges at the Kabul District Court found former Afghan police unit commander Naqibullah guilty of murder and treason over the attack in the southeastern city of Khost that targeted the international journalists as they prepared to cover the first round of the country's presidential election.