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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Material on Australian shore examined in jet hunt
PERTH, Australia (AP) -- Authorities say unidentified material that washed ashore in southwestern Australia is being examined for any link to the lost Malaysian plane.... 4/23/2014 5:54 AM

China says quality of its groundwater has worsened
BEIJING (AP) -- Chinese authorities say nearly 60 percent of the groundwater at sites monitored throughout the country is of poor or extremely poor quality, with excessive amounts of pollutants.... 4/23/2014 5:49 AM

Bomb, shooting in Egypt kills 2 police officers
CAIRO (AP) -- A senior Egyptian police officer was killed after an explosive device placed under his car went off in a western Cairo suburb on Wednesday while another officer died in a raid on a militant hideout in the country's second-largest city, officials said.... 4/23/2014 5:47 AM

Pakistan's army seeks closure of TV channel
ISLAMABAD (AP) -- The Pakistani army has filed a complaint asking the government to shut down the country's leading private Geo News TV channel over what the military calls "false" reports, an official said Wednesday.... 4/23/2014 5:40 AM

Obama: US-Japan treaty applies to disputed islands
TOKYO (AP) -- President Barack Obama confirmed Wednesday that America's mutual security treaty with Japan applies to the islands at the center of a territorial dispute between China and Japan.... 4/23/2014 5:38 AM

France unveils plan to fight jihadist threat
PARIS (AP) -- French authorities are taking steps to crack down on the flow of young would-be jihadis embarking to fight in Syria's civil war.... 4/23/2014 5:36 AM

HK, Philippines compromise over tourist deaths
HONG KONG (AP) -- Hong Kong and the Philippines have reached a compromise over Hong Kong's demand for an apology for the deaths of eight tourists in a bungled rescue attempt during a 2010 hostage-taking in Manila that soured relations.... 4/23/2014 5:30 AM

Blair: Radicalized Islam a growing threat
LONDON (AP) -- The West should set aside its differences with Russia and China to focus on the growing threat from radical Islam, Tony Blair said Wednesday, in a speech that included a call to support Egypt's military government against its Muslim Brotherhood opponents.... 4/23/2014 5:25 AM

Pro-Russian insurgents hold journalist hostage
DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) -- Pro-Russian gunmen in eastern Ukraine say they are holding an American journalist captive.... 4/23/2014 5:22 AM

Captain who left doomed ferry had 40 years at sea
MOKPO, South Korea (AP) -- A colleague calls Capt. Lee Joon-seok the nicest person on the ship. With more than 40 years' experience at sea, Lee could speak with eloquence about the romance and danger of a life spent on ships.... 4/23/2014 5:19 AM

More powerful sonar likely next step in jet search
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) -- Australia's prime minister said Wednesday that failure to find any clue in the most likely crash site of the lost Malaysia Airlines jet would not spell the end of the search, as officials planned soon to bring in more powerful sonar equipment that can delve deeper beneath the Indian Ocean.... 4/23/2014 5:04 AM

Government finances improved across Europe in 2013
BRUSSELS (AP) -- Official figures show that governments across the 28-country European Union recorded lower budget deficits in 2013 amid lower spending and an economic recovery that shored up revenues.... 4/23/2014 5:01 AM

UN heads say Syria aid needs 'largely unanswered'
GENEVA (AP) -- The directors of five United Nations agencies that provide humanitarian aid to Syria say their appeal for $6.5 billion in emergency funding for 2014 has been mostly ignored.... 4/23/2014 4:59 AM

Anti-Obama protesters clash with police in Manila
MANILA, Philippines (AP) -- Police armed with truncheons, shields and a fire hose clashed Wednesday with more than 100 left-wing activists who rallied at the U.S. Embassy in Manila to oppose a visit by President Barack Obama and an expected security pact that would increase the American military presence in the Philippines.... 4/23/2014 4:57 AM

Afghan election commission delays vote results
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Afghanistan's election commission has delayed a planned release of full results from the April 5 presidential election to allow for recounts and audits.... 4/23/2014 4:10 AM

Sherpas leave Everest; some expeditions nix climbs
KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) -- Dozens of Sherpa guides packed up their tents and left Mount Everest's base camp Wednesday, after the avalanche deaths of 16 of their colleagues exposed an undercurrent of resentment by Sherpas over their pay, treatment and benefits.... 4/23/2014 3:37 AM

AP PHOTOS: Syrians on treacherous trek to safety
MOUNT HERMON, Lebanon (AP) -- As the late-day sun slipped behind the mountains in front of them, a ragtag group of around a dozen Syrians desperate to flee their country's bloody civil war set off on their treacherous nighttime trek across the rugged frontier into neighboring Lebanon.... 4/23/2014 3:34 AM

Prof: Ferry turned further than 3rd mate ordered
MOKPO, South Korea (AP) -- A maritime professor who spoke with the third mate who was steering the South Korean ferry before it sank says he suspects a problem with the steering gear caused the sinking.... 4/23/2014 3:17 AM

AP PHOTOS: Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
YANGON, Myanmar (AP) -- With golden umbrellas covering them from the equatorial sun, boys in princely attire are hoisted onto the shoulders of their fathers and uncles, part of a ritual carried out this time every year at Buddhist pagodas all over Myanmar: young would-be-novices preparing to enter the monkhood.... 4/23/2014 3:01 AM

Former Iron Curtain still barrier for deer
PRAGUE (AP) -- The Iron Curtain was traced by an electrified barbed-wire fence that isolated the communist world from the West.... 4/23/2014 2:52 AM