• Egypt militants post beheading video

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — An al-Qaida-inspired militant group in Egypt has posted an online video showing the beheading of four men in the Sinai Peninsula accused of spying for Israel, whose bodies were found earlier this month. The Ansar Beit al-Maqdis group, whose name means Champions of Jerusalem in Arabic, posted a 30-minute video showing detailed confessions of the four men. The four said that in exchange for money they helped Israel target the group's members with drone strikes in the northern Sinai Peninsula. Among those killed in the alleged strikes were Khaled el-Menaei, the brother of the group's leader Shadi el-Menaei. Egyptian authorities have said Khaled and others were killed in clashes with security forces at the end of J

  • UN: Afghan election audit done around Sept. 10

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A massive audit of Afghanistan's disputed presidential election won't be done until around Sept. 10, the U.N. said Thursday, quashing hopes the new president would be determined before an upcoming NATO summit. The U.N. has been helping supervise an audit of eight million ballots to see who will succeed President Hamid Karzai, with the goal that the new president would be inaugurated by the end of August. But the audit has become increasingly contentious, which has slowed down the process. The announcement by the U.N.'s representative in Afghanistan, Jan Kubis, came after a meeting with Karzai. The U.N. said in a statement that Kubis told Karzai: "....a rigorous and credible audit required tim

  • Egypt probes video showing police abuse

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian authorities are probing allegations of police abuse after a video circulated online showing three policemen taunting a nearly naked corpse, a senior police official said on Thursday. Maj. Gen. Mahmoud Yousseri, police chief of the Nile Delta governorate of Qalubiya, said the video is authentic. He identified the slain man as a fugitive named Mohammed Sultan, who escaped after being detained on charges of murder and theft. He also confirmed the identities of the three policemen who appeared in the video, which was shot inside a hospital room. The video, which surfaced earlier this week, shows policemen laughing and snapping mobile phone pictures of the body, which is naked except for bloody underwear.

  • EU struggles with dearth of women in top jobs

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    BRUSSELS (AP) — Don't be fooled by Angela Merkel. The German chancellor may be the most powerful leader in the European Union, but she hardly paints a true picture of the place of women in EU politics. EU leaders meet on Saturday to divide top jobs for the next half decade, and after years of paying lip service to increasing equality between the sexes, the problem of inequality is still plain for all to see at these meetings — where are the women? "If you look at the family picture of these European summits for the past few years, there always is this blot of grey men in lookalike suits and the color of only a few women," said European political science Professor Hendrik Vos of Ghent University. One summit won't cha

  • US to begin safety testing Ebola vaccine next week

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal researchers next week will start testing humans with an experimental vaccine to prevent the deadly Ebola virus. The National Institutes of Health announced Thursday that it is launching the safety trial on a vaccine developed by the agency's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and GlaxoSmithKline. Beginning Tuesday, it will test 20 healthy adult volunteers to see if the virus is safe and triggers an adequate response in their immune systems. Even though NIH has been testing other Ebola vaccines in people since 2003, this is a first for this vaccine and its trial has been speeded up because the outbreak in West Africa "is a public health emergency that demands an all-hands-on-deck

  • Israel finds body where US student disappeared

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli police said Thursday "there is a strong possibility" they have found the body of an American seminary student who disappeared while hiking in Jerusalem last week. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the body was found in the same area where Aharon Sofer disappeared. Sofer, 23, of Lakewood, New Jersey, had been hiking with a friend in a hilly, forested area on the outskirts of Jerusalem. "There is a strong possibility that it is the body of the missing student," Rosenfeld said, stressing that a forensics team was still trying to confirm the identification. Rosenfeld would not elaborate or say whether there had been any signs of foul play.

  • Egypt's Morsi accused of leaking secrets to Qatar

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's ousted and jailed Islamist President Mohammed Morsi refused to answer a prosecutor's questions about allegations that he leaked classified documents — some related to the army's budget— to Qatar via the Doha-based Al-Jazeera broadcaster, Egypt's official news agency reported Thursday. If the charges are referred to court, it would be the fourth case underway against Morsi, who was overthrown by the military last summer amid mass protests against his yearlong rule. According to Egypt's Middle East News Agency, Morsi refused to answer any of the prosecutor's questions during a four-hour interrogation session held inside Borg al-Arab prison, near the Mediterranean city of Alexandria.

  • South African court orders release of tapes

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South Africa's Supreme Court of Appeals on Thursday ordered the release of taped phone conversations about corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma, a move that could resurrect a case that has dogged the leader since before he took office. Zuma had applied to prevent the tapes from being released while the opposition Democratic Alliance party sought access to them. Conversations on the recordings were cited as a reason to drop fraud and corruption charges against Zuma before he became president in 2009. The prosecuting authority at that time said the conversations showed there was a political conspiracy against Zuma, but the actual recordings were never made public.

  • France suggests Europe could help as Gaza monitor

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    PARIS (AP) — France's president called on the international community to help enforce the cease-fire in Gaza, suggesting Thursday that Europe could play a role in monitoring the dismantling of tunnels dug by Hamas militants as well as helping to secure gateways between Gaza and Egypt and Israel. The comments Thursday from President Francois Hollande lacked specifics, including how a monitoring mission would be pulled together or who would lead it. Hollande said France had proposed international supervision of the destruction of the tunnels, securing the re-opening of gateways from Gaza to Israel and Egypt, and providing the Palestinian Authority "the means to respond to the humanitarian crisis and to begin reconstruction.

  • Filipino bishops to counter Islamic State group

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Leaders of the Philippine Roman Catholic Church, Asia's largest, vowed Thursday to counter extremist religions such as that espoused by Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq. Archbishop Socrates Villegas, who heads the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, also asked the country's bishops to collect donations for Christians who have been displaced by the militants and whose places of worship have been razed "by a godless rage with which no genuine religion can ever identify." Citing brutal actions by the Islamic State group, including the beheading of American journalist James Foley, Villegas said the Philippine Catholic church will "do our part ... to counter the defacement of relig

  • Tim Hortons a big part of Canadian identity

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    TORONTO (AP) — Few things unite Canadians the way Tim Hortons does. For half a century, they have warmed themselves on chilly mornings with the chain's coffee and Timbits — or doughnut holes to Americans. So news this week that Burger King will buy Tim Hortons served as a bittersweet reminder of how beloved the homegrown chain is in Canada, where 75 percent of the all the coffee sold at fast food restaurants comes from "Timmy's," as it is affectionately known. Tim Hortons is found in just about every small town and large city across Canada, and hockey-mad Canadians often head to their local Timmy's before or after their kids' games.

  • A flavor out of favor: Dog meat fades in S. Korea

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — For more than 30 years, chef and restaurant owner Oh Keum-il built her expertise in cooking one traditional South Korean delicacy: dog meat. In her twenties, Oh traveled around South Korea to learn dog meat recipes from each region. During a period of South Korean reconciliation with North Korea early last decade, she went to Pyongyang as part of a business delegation and tasted a dozen different dog dishes, from dog stew to dog taffy, all served lavishly at the Koryo, one of the North's best hotels. She adapted famous dishes to include dog meat, replacing beef with dog in South Korea's signature meat and rice dish bibimbap. But the 58-year-old's lifelong experience with a food eaten for centuries

  • A look at the Islamic State militants in Syria

    Updated: Thu, Aug 28, 2014

    BEIRUT (AP) — As the U.S. strikes Islamic State targets in Iraq, extremists belonging to the same militant group across the border in Syria are capturing new territory and becoming bolder by the day. There, in its power base, the Islamic State group controls thousands of square kilometers (miles) of territory, including most of Syria's oil-producing region. In the areas under its control, it has established an elaborate governing system that oversees every aspect of people's lives. The U.S. has begun surveillance flights over Syria as a possible precursor for airstrikes against Islamic State targets there. U.S. Army Gen.

  • Mother of US reporter in Syria begs for his life

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    BEIRUT (AP) — The mother of a hostage American journalist pleaded for his release Wednesday in a video directed at the Islamic State group, while new images emerged of mass killings, including masked militants shooting kneeling men after the capture of a strategic air base in Syria. Shirley Sotloff's plea came as a U.N. commission accused the group, which dominates a broad swath of territory spanning the Syria-Iraq border, of committing crimes against humanity and President Barack Obama weighs options for targeting the extremists' stronghold in Syria. The Islamic State militants have threatened to kill 31-year-old Steven Sotloff unless the U.S. halts its airstrikes against it.

  • New counterterrorism units at Australian airports

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — New counterterrorism units have been working at Australia's two largest airports since last week and had already prevented two suspected jihadists from leaving the country, officials said. Prime Minister Tony Abbott said on Wednesday that the units operating at Sydney and Melbourne airports would soon be introduced at all Australian international airports to monitor the movements of travelers on security watch lists. Biometric screening of passengers will also be introduced at the airports. "I'm advised that these new units have already intercepted at least one person of interest," Abbott told Parliament. "This government will do — I'm sure this Parliament will do — everything that is reasonab

  • UK sex abuse report prompts outrage, reflection

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    ROTHERHAM, England (AP) — Rotherham is a working-class town that is remarkable in its ordinariness — a collection of charmless discount stores, betting shops and kebab counters, surrounded by sleepy residential streets lined with brick houses that have seen better days. But below the drab surface, shock was evident Wednesday as the people of this northern English town learned that for 16 years, girls as young as 11 in their community had been subjected to sexual exploitation on a vast scale. The number of victims — 1,400 — was terrifying enough for a community of just 250,000.

  • Battle for Ukraine's southeast coast heats up

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    NOVOAZOVSK, Ukraine (AP) — Pushing west in a new offensive along Ukraine's strategic coastline, heavily armed Russian-backed separatist forces captured new territory Wednesday far from their previous battles with government troops. The bold offensive along a new southeastern front raised the prospect that the separatists are seeking to create a land link between Russia and Crimea, which also would give them control over the entire Azov Sea. After a third day of heavy shelling that sent many residents fleeing, rebel fighters with dozens of tanks and armored vehicles entered Novoazovsk, a resort town of 40,000 on the Azov Sea, the mayor told The Associated Press.

  • AP ANALYSIS: A grim stalemate at war's end in Gaza

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — The third Gaza War in six years appears to have ended in another sort of tie, with both Israel and Hamas claiming the upper hand. Their questionable achievements have come at a big price, especially to long-suffering Palestinians in Gaza. In a sense, Israel got what it wanted: Hamas stopped firing rockets in exchange for mostly vague promises and future talks. But the cost to Israel was huge: Beyond the 70 people killed — all but six of them soldiers — the economy has been set back, the tourism season destroyed, its people rattled for 50 days and its global standing pummeled by images of devastation in Gaza.

  • Israeli premier, Hamas declare victory in Gaza war

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    JERUSALEM (AP) — Both Israel's prime minister and Hamas declared victory Wednesday in the Gaza war, though their competing claims left questions over future terms of their uneasy peace still lingering. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's comments, delivered in a prime-time address on national television, appeared aimed at countering critics of the war, with both hard-liners in his governing coalition, as well as residents of rocket-scarred southern Israel, saying the war was a failure because it did not halt Hamas' rocket attacks or oust the group from power.

  • US official warns Ebola outbreak will get worse

    Updated: Wed, Aug 27, 2014

    FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (AP) — A third top doctor has died from Ebola in Sierra Leone, a government official said Wednesday, as a leading American health official warned that the outbreak sweeping West Africa would get worse. The disease has already killed more than 1,400 people in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone, and Doctors Without Borders warned that the tremendous influx of patients in Liberia, in particular, is overwhelming their treatment centers there. "I wish I didn't have to say this, but it is going get worse before it gets better," Dr. Tom Frieden, the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said of the outbreak at the end of a visit to Liberia, where he described the situation a