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Co-pilot suspected of deliberately crashing Germanwings jet

They offered no motive for why Andreas Lubitz, 27, would take the controls of the Airbus A320, lock the captain out of the cockpit and deliberately set it veering down from cruising altitude at 3,000 feet per minute. German police searched his home for evidence that might offer some explanation for what was behind Tuesday's crash in the French Alps. EasyJet, Norwegian Air Shuttle and Air Berlin

Yemeni leader Hadi leaves country as Saudi Arabia keeps up air strikes

By Khaled Abdallah and Sami Aboudi SANAA/ADEN, Yemen (Reuters) - Yemen's President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi left his refuge in Aden for Saudi Arabia on Thursday as Houthi rebels battled with his forces on the outskirts of the southern port city. Throughout the day, warplanes from Saudi Arabia and Arab allies struck at the Shi'ite Houthis and allied army units, who have taken over much of the count

U.S., allies conduct air strikes in Syria, Iraq against Islamic State: task force

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States and its allies staged 29 air strikes on Islamic State targets in Syria and Iraq in the latest round of daily attacks, the Combined Joint Task Force said on Thursday. In Iraq, the coalition conducted 17 air strikes near Tikrit, where Iraqi forces have mounted an offensive to try to oust Islamic State militants from the city. Seven air strikes were conducted

Airlines introduce two-person cockpit rule after Alps crash

By Victoria Bryan and Tim Hepher BERLIN/PARIS (Reuters) - Airlines rushed on Thursday to change their rules so as to require a second crew member in the cockpit at all times, hours after French prosecutors suggested a co-pilot who barricaded himself alone at the controls of a jetliner had crashed it on purpose. The United States already requires two crew members to be in the cabin at all times,

South Korea demands release of two men accused by North Korea of espionage

By James Pearson and Jack Kim SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea demanded on Friday the immediate release of two of its citizens that North Korea said it had arrested, accusing them of spying for the South. Late on Thursday, the North's official KCNA news agency showed images of two middle-aged men it identified as Kim Kuk Gi and Choe Chun Gil speaking at a news conference in the North Korean capital

Australia's NSW state election set to greenlight blockbuster energy sell-off

By Byron Kaye SYDNEY (Reuters) - The Australian state of New South Wales is expected to re-elect its conservative government on Saturday, endorsing the country's largest ever privatization, the partial sale of a state-owned electricity network worth around A$17 billion ($13 billion). Electricity privatization has been a divisive issue in the country's most populous state for two decades, but opini

Southee: Kiwis ready for 1 more big push in World Cup final

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Fast bowler Tim Southee says that after reaching the Cricket World Cup final for the first time and with its most well-rounded limited-overs team ever assembled, New Zealand is ready for "one more big push" to beat Australia and to write a new chapter in its history.

Wrong kitty litter led to radiation leak at New Mexico nuke waste dump

A radiation leak at an underground nuclear waste dump in New Mexico was caused by "chemically incompatible" contents, including kitty litter, that reacted inside a barrel of waste causing it to rupture, scientists said on Thursday. The U.S. Energy Department report on last year's radiation accident at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad showed that a drum of waste containing radio

Myanmar army commander pledges successful elections

NAYPYITAW, Myanmar (AP) — Myanmar's powerful military commander pledged Friday to work to support successful elections in November, calling it "an important landmark for democracy implementation," and warned that the army will not tolerate instability or armed threats.

Top Asian News at 5:00 a.m. GMT

BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand's junta leader has vowed to take legal action against companies using forced labor, after an Associated Press investigation revealed that fish caught by enslaved migrant workers was being exported from Thai ports to global markets. Speaking in an exclusive interview with the English-language Bangkok Post newspaper, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha acknowledged he had seen t

Nightmare start for Hamilton at Malaysia Formula One GP practice

Lewis Hamilton got off to a nightmare start at the Malaysian Grand Prix when mechanical problems forced him out of the opening practice session on Friday. The world title-holder and early championship leader departed the Sepang track on the back of a moped after being told to halt his Mercedes W06 after 28 minutes. "There was a click in the rear and the gears still worked but I just pulled over

Chinese NGO considering legal action over police raid

BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese anti-discrimination civic group said Friday it is considering legal action over a police raid on the group's offices that was apparently prompted by its advocacy for five women's rights activists whose detentions have drawn international scrutiny.

Seoul urges Pyongyang to release 2 South Korean detainees

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea on Friday urged North Korea to immediately release two of its citizens detained in the country over alleged espionage, the latest in a series of arrests in the North of foreign nationals.

Superbugs could kill a million Chinese a year: economist

China faces a million deaths a year from antibiotic-resistant superbugs and a loss of $20 trillion by 2050, an economist and former top Goldman Sachs executive said Thursday. Beijing should "take ownership" of anti-microbial resistance (AMR) when it hosts the G20 summit next year, said Jim O'Neill, the leader of a British government-commissioned review on the subject. O'Neill, former chief econo

Flawless Lee Mi-Rim grabs LPGA Kia Classic lead

South Korea's Lee Mi-Rim had seven birdies without a bogey in a seven-under par 65 to take a one-shot lead in the LPGA Kia Classic. Lee, who missed the course record at Aviara Golf Club by one stroke, on Thursday birdied all four of the par-five holes, taking the lead with an eight-foot birdie putt at her 14th hole of the day -- the par-five fifth and adding one more birdie at the eighth. "My lo

Singapore urges restraint as Lee mourners queue for 10 hours

SINGAPORE (AP) — Singaporeans hoping for a glimpse of long-time leader Lee Kuan Yew's coffin are being urged to stay away from the sprawling queue as waiting times reach 10 hours.

Amanda Knox's fate in hands of Italy's top court

Amanda Knox will discover Friday if she is to be definitively convicted of murder as Italy's top court resumes a hearing on the 2007 slaying of British student Meredith Kercher. After hearing final arguments from the defence, judges will retire to consider whether to uphold the convictions of Knox and her Italian ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito. If they do, Sollecito could be taken straight back

Complex US-Iran ties at heart of complicated Mideast policy

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. and Iranian diplomats gather at a Baroque palace in Europe, a historic nuclear agreement within reach. Over Iraq's deserts, their militaries fight a common foe. Leaders in Washington and Tehran, capitals once a million miles from each other in ideological terms, wrestle for the first time in decades with the notion of a rapprochement.

Bomb hits police bus in southern Pakistan, wounding 10

KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) — Police and hospital officials say a roadside bomb has struck a bus carrying police officers in southern Pakistan, wounding at least 10 people.

The $50 device that symbolizes a shift in North Korea

By James Pearson SEOUL (Reuters) - A $50 portable media player is providing many North Koreans a window to the outside world despite the government's efforts to keep its people isolated - a symbol of change in one of the world's most repressed societies. By some estimates, up to half of all urban North Korean households have an easily concealed "notel", a small portable media player used to watc

Thai junta leader to fight forced labor in fish industry

BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand's junta leader has vowed to take legal action against companies using forced labor, after an Associated Press investigation revealed that fish caught by enslaved migrant workers was being exported from Thai ports to global markets.

Mirim Lee leads LPGA Tour's Kia Classic

CARLSBAD, Calif. (AP) — Mirim Lee birdied all four par-5 holes and finished with a bogey-free 7-under 65 on Thursday to take the first-round lead in the Kia Classic.

Little vetting of pilots for mental health, US experts say

WASHINGTON (AP) — Despite U.S. and international regulations requiring that airline pilots be screened for mental health problems, little effective, real-world checking takes place, pilots and safety experts say.

Critters found in Antarctic ice shows how tenacious life is

DECEPTION ISLAND, Antarctica (AP) — Deep below the ice, far from the playful penguins and other animals that bring tourists to Antarctica, is a cold and barren world that by all indications should be completely void of life.

Trouble for Mercedes and Hamilton at Malaysian FP

SEPANG, Malaysia (AP) — Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton suffered an engine failure in Friday's opening practice session for the Malaysian Grand Prix while his teammate Nico Rosberg set the fastest time at Sepang International Circuit.

US isolated as allies line up to join China-led bank

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. resistance to a Chinese-led Asian regional bank has left it isolated among its Asian and European allies and given some heft to China's frequent complaints that Washington wants to contain its rise as a world power.

Thailand keeps suspected Uighurs in custody amid Turkey-China tug-of-war

By Amy Sawitta Lefevre BANGKOK (Reuters) - A family of 17 suspected Uighur Muslims at the center of a diplomatic tug-of-war between Turkey and China will remain in custody after a Thai court on Friday rejected their argument that their prolonged detention was illegal. Turkey and China both claim the detainees as nationals in a dispute with potential implications for hundreds of other suspected Uig

Charley Hoffman takes lead in wind-swept Texas Open

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Charley Hoffman took advantage of calmer afternoon conditions to take the first-round lead in the wind-swept Texas Open, shooting a 5-under 67 on Thursday.

Assad says Syria open to dialogue with US

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is open to dialogue with the United States, the leader said in an interview with US television network CBS. Assad said such dialogue would need to be based on "mutual respect," but that so far there has been no contact from the Americans. "But as principal, in Syria we could say that every dialogue is a positive thing," he told television journalist Charlie Rose,

Flooding in Chilean desert region kills six

Copiapó (Chile) (AFP) - Flash floods in a normally bone-dry region of northern Chile killed six people and left 19 missing, officials said, prompting the government to declare a state of emergency and send in the army. The downpour began late Tuesday in the Atacama region, home to the world's most arid desert, and lashed the area for hours, turning riverbeds that had been dry for years into torr


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