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  • Thousands beg Australia not to deport autistic Filipino boy
    Thousands beg Australia not to deport autistic Filipino boy

    A 10-year-old autistic Filipino boy made an emotional plea Monday for permission to stay in Australia, as tens of thousands called for him not to be deported despite the potential cost of his condition. Tyrone Sevilla, who arrived in Australia from the Philippines legally as a two-year-old with his mother Maria Sevilla, has written to Immigration Minister Peter Dutton asking to stay. The letter, which reads: "Dear Mr Dutton, can I stay in Australia please... Tyrone," was the first one her son …

  • Indonesia to look into condemned Filipina's case: Philippines
    Indonesia to look into condemned Filipina's case: Philippines

    Indonesian President Joko Widodo is "sympathetic" about the plight of a Filipina facing death for drug trafficking and has promised to look into her case, a spokesman for Philippine President Benigno Aquino said Monday after he made a personal appeal. While the comments seemed to indicate a faint prospect of reprieve for Mary Jane Veloso, the Indonesian leader is seen as extremely unlikely to change course on the executions which he has insisted for months are essential to halting a national …

  • Pacquiao a national symbol of hope in Philippines
    Pacquiao a national symbol of hope in Philippines

    Emmanuel "Manny" Pacquiao is idolised by tens of millions in the poverty-afflicted Philippines both for his punching power and as a national icon of hope after rising from the streets to the pinnacle of world boxing. Known to his countrymen in the Asian archipelago as "The National Fist", Pacman fights undefeated American Floyd Mayweather on May 2 to decide who is the world's best "pound-for-pound" boxer. To most of the Philippines' population of almost 100 million, Pacquiao, winner of an …

  • Mali peacemaking in danger after rebel attack near Timbuktu - U.N.

    By Tiemoko Diallo and Souleymane Ag Anara BAMAKO (Reuters) - Tuareg rebels shot at peacekeepers outside the city of Timbuktu in northern Mali on Tuesday in an attack that endangers the United Nations-brokered peace process, the U.N. mission in the West African country said. In another northern town, Menaka, fighting erupted anew as separatists sought to wrest it back from pro-government armed groups who had seized it the day before, the rival groups said. Mongi Hamdi, U.N. special envoy in …

  • Sri Lanka parliament passes diluted reforms
    Sri Lanka parliament passes diluted reforms

    By Shihar Aneez and Ranga Sirilal COLOMBO (Reuters) - Sri Lanka’s parliament overwhelmingly passed reforms on Tuesday reducing some of the president’s powers, in a move that did not go as far as President Maithripala Sirisena had promised but is nevertheless seen as a victory for the leader. Sirisena became president in January after he defected from the party of the former president, Mahinda Rajapaksa, whose rule had become increasingly authoritarian and is the subject of multiple …

  • House GOP bill blocks new air flights, cruise ships to Cuba

    WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republicans unveiled legislation on Tuesday to sharply curb the Obama administration's recent moves to ease restrictions on travel to Cuba. …

  • Troops flood Baltimore as Obama questions police tactics
    Troops flood Baltimore as Obama questions police tactics

    National Guard troops deployed to head off further rioting in Baltimore on Tuesday as President Barack Obama warned that recent incidents "raise troubling questions" about the policing of black communities. Violence and looting erupted in Baltimore on Monday after the funeral of 25-year-old African American man Freddie Gray, who died after suffering severe spinal injuries during a police arrest. "Since Ferguson... we have seen too many instances of what appears to be police officers …

  • Japan PM says 'deeply pained' over WWII 'comfort women'
    Japan PM says 'deeply pained' over WWII 'comfort women'

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday expressed his remorse over the sexual slavery of Asian women during World War II, but stopped short of issuing his own apology. "I am deeply pained to think about the comfort women who experienced immeasurable pain and suffering as a result of victimization due to human trafficking," Abe said at a joint White House press conference with US President Barack Obama. Mainstream historians say an estimated 200,000 women from Korea, China and other …

  • Forest fire rages near Ukraine Chernobyl nuclear site
    Forest fire rages near Ukraine Chernobyl nuclear site

    A forest fire broke out Tuesday near the Chernobyl plant in Ukraine, scene of the world's worst civil nuclear disaster in 1986, but posed no danger to the site, officials said. "The fire is at a distance of 15 to 20 kilometres (9 to 12 miles) from Chernobyl," Maya Rudenko, a spokeswoman for the plant, told AFP by telephone, adding there was "no problem" there. "The situation is under control," the head of the emergency services, Zoryan Shkiryak, said on Facebook. Interior Minister Arsen …

  • U.S. says Iranian forces fire on and board cargo ship in Gulf
    U.S. says Iranian forces fire on and board cargo ship in Gulf

    By Noah Browning and David Alexander DUBAI/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iranian forces boarded a Marshall Islands-flagged cargo ship in the Gulf on Tuesday after patrol boats fired warning shots across its bow and ordered it deeper into Iranian waters, the Pentagon said. U.S. planes and a destroyer were monitoring the situation after the vessel, the MV Maersk Tigris, made a distress call in the Strait of Hormuz, one of the world's most important oil shipping channels. Iran's Tasnim news agency …