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  • US Marines testify at Philippines murder trial of colleague
    US Marines testify at Philippines murder trial of colleague

    Four US Marines took the witness stand Tuesday at the murder trial of their comrade accused of killing a local transgender woman in the Philippines, lawyers who attended the closed-door proceedings said. The American servicemen were asked to testify on what the defendant, Private First Class Joseph Pemberton, had told them shortly after the October 24, 2014 killing, the lawyers said. "I think I may have killed a he or she," Lance Corporal Michael Rose told the court when asked what Pemberton …

  • Philippines says prepared to help boatpeople
    Philippines says prepared to help boatpeople

    The Philippines said Tuesday it was ready to help Rohingya and Bangladeshi boatpeople, as its Southeast Asian neighbours faced outrage for turning them away. The Philippines is obliged to help the migrants, many of whom are fleeing persecution, because it is party to the 1951 United Nations convention on refugees, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima and foreign department spokesman Charles Jose both said. "We have the commitment and the obligation to extend humanitarian assistance to these asylum …

  • Robert De Niro opens Asia's 1st Nobu Hotel in Philippines
    Robert De Niro opens Asia's 1st Nobu Hotel in Philippines

    Robert de Niro and his business partners formally opened Asia's first Nobu Hotel in Manila on Monday as the luxury brand gears up for global expansion. The 321-room hotel within the bayside casino and ... …

  • Mexico gunfight kills 43, as government hits gang hard

    By Alexandra Alper ZAMORA, Mexico (Reuters) - Government security forces killed 42 suspected drug cartel henchmen and suffered one fatality in a firefight in western Mexico on Friday, an official said, one of the bloodiest shootouts in a decade of gang violence wracking the country. National Security Commissioner Monte Alejandro Rubido said one federal policeman died and another was injured in the three hour battle on a ranch just inside the Michoacan state border with Jalisco, home of …

  • Wild card Australia seeks upset at Eurovision pop fest
    Wild card Australia seeks upset at Eurovision pop fest

    Australian singer Guy Sebastian will try to beat the Europeans at their own game in Vienna on Saturday night in the 60th annual Eurovision Song Contest, the uproarious pop extravaganza. Eurovision has a cult following in Australia, which led to the special invitation to mark six decades of the show. …

  • IS suicide bomber attacks Saudi Shiite mosque, killing 21
    IS suicide bomber attacks Saudi Shiite mosque, killing 21

    An Islamic State group suicide bomber attacked a Shiite mosque in Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia, killing 21 people and wounding 81 in an assault that threatens to fan sectarian tensions. The bomber struck during the main weekly prayers in Eastern Province, where assailants linked to the Sunni extremist IS killed seven members of the minority Shiite community in November. The interior ministry said a suicide bomber detonated a bomb at the mosque in the Shiite-majority city of Qatif, the official …

  • Choppy slick is harder to clean up; more oily animals found
    Choppy slick is harder to clean up; more oily animals found

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — A 10-square-mile oil slick off the coast of California is thinner than a coat of paint and it's becoming harder to skim from choppy waters, officials said Friday as more dead animals were discovered on the Santa Barbara coast. …

  • Gunfight kills 43 in troubled Mexican state
    Gunfight kills 43 in troubled Mexican state

    Mexican federal forces killed 42 suspected drug cartel members during a three-hour-long gunfight in a ranch in a violence-torn western region, marking one of the drug war's bloodiest battles. Only one federal police officer was killed in the operation, which authorities launched after learning that "armed criminals" were occupying the ranch in Tanhuato, Michoacan state, near the neighboring state of Jalisco, officials said. "Up to now, we have counted 42 suspected criminals killed and three …

  • IS cements grip on Iraq-Syria border in jihadist surge
    IS cements grip on Iraq-Syria border in jihadist surge

    The Islamic State group consolidated its control of the Iraq-Syria border Friday after capturing an Iraqi provincial capital and a famed Syrian heritage site in an offensive that has sparked criticism of US military strategy in the region. A suicide bomber from the extremist Sunni organisation also attacked a Shiite mosque in Saudi Arabia, raising sectarian tensions. The jihadists, who now control roughly half of Syria, reinforced their self-declared transfrontier "caliphate" by seizing …

  • Mexico: 43 dead in 3-hour firefight on ranch in west
    Mexico: 43 dead in 3-hour firefight on ranch in west

    ECUANDUREO, Mexico (AP) — At least 43 people died Friday in what authorities described as a fierce, three-hour gunbattle between federal forces and suspected drug gang gunmen on a ranch in western Mexico, the deadliest such confrontation in recent memory. …