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WORLD NEWS

Kurds' battle for Kobani unites a people divided by borders

A Turkish policeman stands guard outside the gate of a camp that hosts Peshmerga fighters in the border town of SurucBy Isabel Coles ARBIL Iraq (Reuters) - Cloaked in Kurdish flags, thousands of people lined the roads to cheer on a military convoy headed for what was -- until recently -- an obscure Syrian border town, now the focus of a global war against the militants of Islamic State. The Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga were on their way to help fellow Kurds defend Kobani in a battle that has assumed huge significance in the United States' campaign to "degrade and destroy" the hardline Islamist insurgency. ...


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:33:26 -0400
Protesters in Burkina Faso call for Compaore to step down

People load goods looted from a building, which according to locals, belongs to Francois Compaore, the younger brother of Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore, in OuagadougouOUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) - Hundreds of protesters marched in the capital of Burkina Faso on Friday demanding that President Blaise Compaore step down, a day after the military dissolved parliament and announced a transitional government in the face of violent mass protests. "We don't want him. We want him out of power. He is not our president," demonstrator Ouedrago Yakubo told Reuters. The demonstrators gathered at the main Place de la Nation and in front of the army headquarters. ...


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:27:57 -0400
Russia may resume Ukraine gas supply next week if bills paid: Gazprom CEO

Russian Energy Minister Novak shakes hands with Ukraine's Energy Minister Prodan after gas talks at the EU Commission headquarters in BrusselsMOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia may restart gas supplies to Ukraine as soon as next week if all financial conditions are met, Alexei Miller, head of state gas monopoly Gazprom, said on Friday. Moscow, Kiev and the European Union clinched a deal on Thursday that would resume supplies of Russian gas to Ukraine over the winter in return for payments funded in part by the Ukrainian government's Western backers. ...


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:08:55 -0400
Thousands denounce HSBC board member's likening of Hong Kong people to freed slaves

Pro-democracy protesters hold up umbrellas and chant slogans to mark the one-month anniversary of the Occupy civil disobedience movement at Mongkok in Hong KongBy Anne Marie Roantree and Lisa Jucca HONG KONG (Reuters) - Thousands have signed an online petition denouncing reported comments by an HSBC Holdings board member in which she likened Hong Kong protesters' demands for democracy to the emancipation of slaves. Laura Cha, who is also a member of Hong Kong's policy-making Executive Council, chairwoman of the city's Financial Services Development Council and a member of China's parliament, was quoted as making the comments at an event in Paris. ...


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:21:25 -0400
Muslim men over 50 return to Jerusalem's Aqsa mosque, tension high
By Luke Baker JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Muslim worshippers over the age of 50 returned to pray at Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem's Old City on Friday, a day after Israeli authorities shut down all access to the sacred compound following violence in East Jerusalem. The Muslim quarter of the Old City was calm early in the day, the Muslim holy day, and police said pre-dawn prayers had passed off without incident. However, security was tight ahead of midday prayers, when more people were expected to attend. ...
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:07:14 -0400
Myanmar's leaders seek to revive peace talks, maintain reforms

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event for U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, who is running for Governor of Maine, in MaineBy Aung Hla Tun and Paul Mooney YANGON (Reuters) - Myanmar's political and ethnic leaders agreed on Friday to work together on reforms and peace talks ahead of a 2015 election after U.S. President Barack Obama urged the government to make every effort to end ethnic conflict. The president and the military chief met opposition parties and ethnic minority groups at a roundtable meeting in the capital Naypyitaw, the first meeting of its kind in the Southeast Asian nation. ...


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:36:04 -0400
Rowling reveals new tidbits on Pottermore site
LONDON (AP) — Just in time for Halloween, J.K. Rowling has given fans a glimpse of what makes a wicked witch tick.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 06:01:51 -0400
Official: Man slashes 3 schoolchildren in China
BEIJING (AP) — Chinese authorities say a first-grader in the southeastern province of Jiangxi was slashed to death and two others severely injured in the latest violent attack on children in the country.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 06:00:32 -0400
Hurley takes a 2-shot lead at CIMB Classic
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Billy Hurley III made six birdies on his front nine en route to a 5-under 67 Friday that gave him a two-shot lead after the second round of the CIMB Classic.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 06:00:02 -0400
'Qaeda' gunmen kill Yemen police officer, soldier

Image taken on May 1, 2014 and made available by the Yemeni Ministry of Defense on May 2, 2014 shows Yemeni troops taking part in a military operation against suspected militants near the southern Abyan province village of MaajalaSuspected Al-Qaeda gunmen killed a Yemeni police officer and a soldier in two separate attacks in the south of the strife-torn country, security sources said Friday. "Two Al-Qaeda gunmen on a motorcycle shot and killed commander Fadl al-Majidi on Thursday night in downtown Huta," capital of Lahij province, a security source told AFP. Farther south in Mahfad, a town in Abyan province, gunmen fatally wounded a soldier in his barracks on Thursday night, said another security source who blamed Al-Qaeda. Yemen has fallen deeper into turmoil since an uprising forced out autocratic president Ali Abdullah Saleh in 2012 after a year of unrest, with rivals, including Shiite rebels and Al-Qaeda, battling each other.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:58:05 -0400
Russia: gas flow will resume after Ukraine pays

EU Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger, center, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak , left, and Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan sign an agreement that guarantees Russian gas will continue to flow to Ukraine and, by extension, parts of the EU this winter as EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, center back, Gazprom CEO Alexey Miller, left back and EU Commissioner for Inter-Institutional Relations and Administration Maros Sefcovic look on, at the European Commission headquarters in Brussels, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)MOSCOW (AP) — Russia says gas supplies to Ukraine will resume after it pays off the first debt installment next week.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:58:05 -0400
Child stabbed to death, two injured in latest China attack
BEIJING (Reuters) - An 8-year-old Chinese boy was stabbed to death and two classmates seriously injured on Friday in the latest attack on school children in the country, state media reported. A suspect who was released from jail in April attacked the children in the eastern province of Jiangxi as they walked home from school and then fled to a nearby mountain, the official Xinhua news agency reported. The two injured children were in intensive care in hospital, Xinhua added. It gave no more details. ...
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:56:20 -0400
Africans worst responders in Ebola crisis

FILE - In this Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014 file photo, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, chairperson of the African Union Commission, speaks at United Nations headquarters in New York. The head of Africa’s continental body did not get to an Ebola-hit country until last week - months after alarm bells first rang and nearly 5,000 deaths later. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The head of Africa's continental body did not get to an Ebola-hit country until last week — months after alarm bells first rang and nearly 5,000 deaths later.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:55:04 -0400
Foreign jihadists flock to Iraq, Syria on 'unprecedented scale': UN

Image grab taken from a video released by the Islamic State group's al-Furqan Media on March 17, 2014 allegedly shows IS fighters on a vehicle mounted with the trademark Jihadists flag at an undisclosed location in Iraq's Anbar provinceJihadists from more than 80 countries have flocked to fight in Iraq and Syria on an "unprecedented scale", according to extracts of a UN report published by Britain's Guardian newspaper on Friday. Around 15,000 people have travelled to fight alongside Islamic State (IS) and other hardcore militant groups from "countries that have not previously faced challenges relating to al-Qaeda," said the report. Britain's top police officer, Bernard Hogan-Howe, estimated last week that five people a week were leaving the country to fight with IS. Security officials estimate that there are currently around 500 British nationals fighting in Syria and Iraq.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:51:09 -0400
Japan stocks soar 5 percent, yen falls on stimulus

A man stands watching an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Friday, Oct. 31, 2014. Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average surged 5 percent and the yen slid against the dollar after the Bank of Japan unexpectedly announced new stimulus to boost a flagging economic recovery. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Japan's stock benchmark surged 5 percent to the highest level since late 2007 and the yen slid against the dollar Friday after the Bank of Japan unexpectedly announced new stimulus to boost a flagging economy. Expectations Japan's $1.1 trillion public pension fund would boost its equity holdings gave a further boost to the market.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:40:58 -0400
Heavy security as Israel reopens Jerusalem site

Palestinian youths clash with Israeli border police after Moatez Higazi was shot in east Jerusalem, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. Israeli police shot and killed Higazi suspected of trying to kill a hard-line Jewish activist in Jerusalem, an incident that quickly sparked clashes between masked stone throwers and Israeli riot police, threatening to further enflame the already high tensions in the city.(AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel has reopened a contested Jerusalem holy site and deployed hundreds of security personnel amid rising tensions in the city.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:39:12 -0400
Tropical Storm Vance moving slowly in Pacific
MIAMI (AP) — Tropical Storm Vance is moving slowly in the Pacific far from Mexico's coast.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:35:17 -0400
Top Asian News at 9:30 a.m. GMT
KOSLANDA, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lankan authorities are warning of more landslides at a tea plantation where a deadly torrent of mud swept away scores of homes this week, residents said Friday. But with the shelters already crowded, the residents say there is no room left for anyone else.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:33:22 -0400
Hungary suspends Internet tax after huge protests
BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Hungary's prime minister says the government will suspend a planned tax on Internet use and reconsider the matter next year.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:32:45 -0400
Japan's huge pension fund to boost share purchases
TOKYO (AP) — Japan's $1.1 trillion public pension fund on Friday approved a plan to double its holdings of shares and cut back sharply on bonds to help improve its investment returns.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:32:03 -0400
Myanmar hosts talks with Suu Kyi to show progress

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, front left, and Khin Maung Swe, front right, chairman of National Democratic Force party, arrive on stage as President Thein Sein, left, Vice President Nyan Tun, second left, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, third from left, and Tin Aye, chairman of Union Election Commission, gather for a group photo session before their meeting at Myanmar Presidential Palace in Naypyitaw, Myanmar Friday, Oct 31, 2014. Myanmar's president held rare talks Friday with Suu Kyi and more than a dozen of the country’s political and military heavyweights. (AP Photo/Khin Maung Win)NAYPYITAW, Myanmar (AP) — Myanmar's president hosted talks Friday that brought together opposition leader and the nation's military chief for the first time, a meeting that appeared timed to showcase the Southeast Asian nation's ongoing reforms ahead of a regional summit that will be attended by President Barack Obama in less than two weeks.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:30:52 -0400
Chinese official allegedly hides $33M in bribes
BEIJING (AP) — Investigators in China say they have found more than 200 million yuan ($33 million) in cash at the home of an official suspected of taking bribes, in the country's largest cash seizure ever.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:29:43 -0400
China says nets 180 graft suspects in overseas manhunt

China's President Xi Jinping arrives before the opening session of the National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in BeijingBEIJING (Reuters) - China says it has captured 180 people suspected of committing economic crimes as part of an aggressive anti-corruption campaign targeting suspects who have fled abroad, state news agency Xinhua reported. The campaign, dubbed Operation Fox Hunt, included the arrests of 104 suspects, Xinhua said late on Thursday, citing China's Ministry of Public Security. Seventy-six people returned to China to give themselves up, according to Xinhua. ...


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:28:32 -0400
Younis Khan guides Pakistan to 405-3 in 2nd test
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Younis Khan continued his domination of Australia's bowlers on Friday, progressing to 141 not out as Pakistan reached 405-3 at lunch on the second day of the second cricket test.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:28:14 -0400
Downey, Watson, Dench honored by British Academy

Honorees Robert Downey Jr., from left, Emma Watson and Judi Dench appear on stage at the BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)LOS ANGELES (AP) — There was a bit of a British invasion of Beverly Hills, as BAFTA Los Angeles hosted its annual Britannia Awards, honoring film and television talent from both sides of the pond, including director Mike Leigh and actors Dame Judi Dench, Emma Watson, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Robert Downey Jr.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:22:08 -0400
Colsaerts builds 1-shot lead at BMW Masters
SHANGHAI (AP) — Nicolas Colsaerts of Belgium is among the longest hitters in golf. When he's hitting it straight, it can be a dangerous combination.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:20:53 -0400
British Airways owner IAG logs improving Q3 profits

British Airways owner IAG has seen fuel costs fall as a result of more efficient new planesLondon (AFP) - British Airways owner International Airlines Group on Friday logged rising third-quarter profits, lifted by growing revenues and falling fuel costs, and increased its annual earnings forecast.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:20:35 -0400
Hong Kong protesters: Images of determination

In this Oct. 10, 2014 photo, Hacken Tse, 38, a freelance photographer, poses for a portrait on a main road in an occupied area near government headquarters in Hong Kong. Tse said "It has increased people’s civil awareness, but the youngsters have yet to learn many things. The development of the movement has come to a time when they should take a turn, but they still haven’t realized it. Some people just want to get the aura of glory, yet have done nothing since the beginning. They don’t know their rights and duty.” (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)HONG KONG (AP) — On the evening of Sept. 28, Hong Kong police struggling to hold back thousands of democracy protesters unleashed dozens of rounds of tear gas in a failed attempt to disperse them. When the smoke cleared, Hong Kong had changed. Many young people who previously were indifferent to politics say they experienced an awakening.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:17:38 -0400
Hungary's Orban says will scrap draft internet tax law

Protesters demonstrate outside the headquarters of governor of Hungary's FIDESZ party against the goverment's new Internet tax plan in Budapest on October 26, 2014Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Friday said he was scrapping a draft Internet tax law that has sparked mass demonstrations in the central European country. "The Internet tax cannot be introduced in its current form," Orban said in a radio interview. Orban has said the tax law needed to be amended, and that a "national consultation" on the Internet and taxes would be organised in January.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:13:04 -0400
Romania to vote for new leader; corruption ignored

An elderly woman sells autumn flowers outside a subway station, in Bucharest, Romania, Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014. Romanians go to the polls on Sunday to elect a new leader as President Traian Basescu steps down after 10 years. (AP Photo/Octav Ganea, Mediafax) ROMANIA OUTBUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Romanians go to the polls Sunday to elect a new leader as President Traian Basescu steps down after 10 years. Prime Minister Victor Ponta is favored to win over challengers who include a city mayor and a glamorous lawyer. Here's a look at this Balkan nation's vote:


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:08:35 -0400
London's FTSE rallies at open on surprise BoJ stimulus

London's FTSE 100 index gained 1.24 percent to 6,543.59 points in early trades FridayLondon (AFP) - Shares in London rallied at the start of trading on Friday as investors welcomed the Bank of Japan's surprise stimulus boost, dealers said.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:04:51 -0400
Top Asian News at 9:00 a.m. GMT
KOSLANDA, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lankan authorities are warning of more landslides at a tea plantation where a deadly torrent of mud swept away scores of homes this week, residents said Friday. But with the shelters already crowded, the residents say there is no room left for anyone else.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 05:03:07 -0400
Myanmar moots changing constitution barring Suu Kyi from presidency

Myanmar President Thein Sein (L) greets Aung San Suu Kyi, chairman of National League for Democracy (NLD) and lower house member of Parliament, prior to their meeting at the persident's office in Naypyidaw, on October 31, 2014Myanmar's parliament will consider amending the country's constitution -- which currently bars opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi from becoming president -- ahead of elections next year, an official said Friday. "They agreed to discuss the issue of amending the constitution in parliament, according to the law," presidential spokesman Ye Htut told reporters after President Thein Sein held unprecedented talks with army top brass and political rivals including Suu Kyi. Suu Kyi is trying to change key sections of Myanmar's constitution ahead of 2015 elections that are widely expected to be won by her National League for Democracy (NLD) -- if they are free and fair.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:46:44 -0400
Top Asian News at 8:30 a.m. GMT
KOSLANDA, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lankan authorities are warning of more landslides at a tea plantation where a deadly torrent of mud swept away scores of homes this week, residents said Friday. But with the shelters already crowded, the residents say there is no room left for anyone else.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:33:05 -0400
Greek police clear apartment used by rebel monks
THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — Dozens of Greek police have taken part in an operation to clear an apartment used as the headquarters of a rebel monastery whose monks have been declared schismatic by the Orthodox Church.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:32:33 -0400
Labour downplays threat of Scotland collapse

Opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband has brushed off polls indicating his party faces collapsing support in former stronghold Scotland ahead of next year's general electionLondon (AFP) - Opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband has brushed off polls indicating his party faces collapsing support in former stronghold Scotland ahead of next year's general election.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:22:02 -0400
British press fights 'Big Brother' after sources outed

Britain's security services are set to clash with parliament and the country's powerful press over revelations police secretly used a controversial law to identify journalists' sourcesBritain's security services are set to clash with parliament and the press over revelations that police secretly used a controversial law to identify journalists' sources, triggering a wider debate about media freedom in the digital age. Other cases have since emerged, although the full scale of the practice is unknown since police do not need to go through a court under the Regulation of Invest Powers Act (RIPA). In the case of The Sun, the phone records of political editor Tom Newton Dunn were accessed to find out which officers were behind allegations that Andrew Mitchell, the government's senior representative in parliament, swore at police. "It was a fairly simple process for them to identify which telephone numbers could be linked to police officers," said Dominic Ponsford from the Press Gazette trade magazine, which is running a "Save Our Sources" campaign.


Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:20:02 -0400
Inbee Park takes 3-shot lead in LPGA Taiwan
TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Inbee Park shot a 10-under 62 on Friday to open a three-stroke lead in the LPGA Taiwan Championship, her first event since regaining the No. 1 ranking on Monday.
Date Posted : Fri, 31 Oct 2014 04:18:30 -0400
 

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