Pakistan marks democratic milestone in violence-marred poll
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistanis voted in a landmark test of democracy on Saturday and were quickly reminded of the militant violence that plagues the country, with election-related bombings in several cities. An attack on the office of the Awami National Party (ANP) in the commercial capital, Karachi, killed 10 people and wounded 30, followed by another blast minutes later.
Former Guatemala dictator Rios Montt convicted of genocide
GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - Former Guatemalan dictator Efrain Rios Montt was found guilty on Friday of genocide and crimes against humanity during the bloodiest phase of the country's 36-year civil war and was sentenced to 80 years in prison. Hundreds of people who were packed into the courtroom burst into applause, chanting, "Justice!" as Rios Montt received a 50-year term for the genocide charge and an additional 30 years for crimes against humanity.
U.S. sends Japan currency warning as G7 meets
AYLESBURY, England (Reuters) - The United States told Japan it would be watching for any sign it was manipulating its currency downward, but Tokyo said it met no resistance to its policies at a meeting of Group of Seven finance ministers which will conclude on Saturday. As ministers and central bankers met on Friday in a stately home set in rolling countryside 40 miles outside London, differences were also evident over whether to prioritize debt-cutting or promoting economic growth.
Longest-held Cleveland captive now out of hospital, in seclusion
CLEVELAND (Reuters) - Michelle Knight, freed earlier this week as the longest-held of four captives in a dungeon-like Cleveland house, was discharged from the hospital on Friday and went into seclusion. Two other women held with Knight - Amanda Berry, 27, and Gina DeJesus, 23, along with a 6-year-old girl - left the hospital earlier this week and have been reunited with their families.
Woman pulled alive from rubble of Bangladesh factory
SAVAR, Bangladesh (Reuters) - A young Bangladeshi woman who spent 17 days buried alive under a collapsed garments factory was rescued on Friday when astonished workmen heard a voice calling "save me, save me" from the rubble. Pale, drawn but seemingly unhurt, Reshma Begum was cut from the ruins and hoisted onto a stretcher to wild cheers in scenes that captivated a nation which had long given up hope of finding any more survivors.
Iran to find out if political big hitters will run for president
DUBAI (Reuters) - The last day of registration for Iran's presidential candidates began on Saturday with several high-profile figures yet to declare whether they would run in the most uncertain election in decades. The June 14 poll will be the first presidential election in Iran since 2009, when mass protests dubbed the "Green Movement" erupted after the disputed re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad over reformist candidates Mirhossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi.
Pressure rises on White House over Benghazi talking points
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama's administration fought back on Friday against Republican accusations that it covered up details of last year's deadly assault on a U.S. mission in Libya, after a news report that memos on the incident were edited to omit a CIA warning of a threat posed by al Qaeda. The report by ABC News gave new momentum to the highly partisan flap over whether the administration tried to avoid casting the September 11, 2012, attack as terrorism at a time when the presidential election was less than two months away.
Wounded Syrians show signs of chemical attack, Turkey says
AMMAN (Reuters) - Syrian casualties treated in Turkey show signs of being victims of chemical weapons, the Turkish foreign minister said on Friday, adding to indications that President Barack Obama's "red line" on the use of such arms may have been crossed. Wary of the false intelligence used to justify the 2003 war in Iraq, the United States says it wants proof that chemical weapons have been used before taking any action in Syria.
German court rejects bias charge in neo-Nazi trial
MUNICH, Germany (Reuters) - A German court rejected on Friday accusations of bias from two defendants in a case involving neo-Nazi racist murders, removing legal hurdles to resumption of the trial. The trial of Beate Zschaepe and four others opened last Monday in Munich but was quickly adjourned after defense lawyers delivered motions accusing chief judge Manfred Goetzl of bias. The proceeding is due to resume next Tuesday.
Five suicide bombers dead in failed attacks in northern Mali
BAMAKO (Reuters) - At least five suicide bombers died in northern Mali on Friday in attacks aimed at Malian and Nigerien troops which failed to inflict serious casualties on their targets, a spokesman for Mali's army said. One of the towns hit was Gossi, the furthest south al Qaeda-linked Islamist rebels have struck in a guerrilla war launched against Malian and regional forces since the rebels were driven from their former strongholds in a French-led offensive this year.