South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun walked across North Korea's militarized border today (Tuesday) and was later greeted in Pyongyang by the country's leader, Kim Jong Il, marking the start of a historic three-day summit. In Pyongyang, hundreds of cheering North Koreans waved pink flowers as Mr. Roh shook hands with Mr. Kim and the two walked down a red carpet together. North Korea's state news agency (KCNA) said the rare summit was of "weighty significance," and commented that it had put people in a "festive mood." Earlier today, Mr. Roh became the first South Korean leader to cross a yellow
plastic strip in the middle of the Demilitarized Zone that has divided the two Koreas for over half a century.
BURMA: A United Nations envoy has met with Burma's top leader today (Tuesday) in a bid to end the military-ruled country's crackdown on pro-democracy protests. Special envoy Ibrahim Gambari met General Than Shwe today (Tuesday), in Naypyitaw, the remote capital, far away from Rangoon, where massive protests were crushed last week. After meeting Than Shwe, he returned to Rangoon and met for a second time with detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Gambari then left Burma.
PAKISTAN-POL: The Pakistan government has decided to drop corruption charges against exiled former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. The move meets one of the demands made by Ms. Bhutto who has been trying to work out a power-sharing deal with President Pervez Musharraf. Ms. Bhutto served twice as prime minister in the 1990s. She left Pakistan to live in exile after her government was dismissed over allegations of graft. Also today (Tuesday), Pakistan's army says a former intelligence chief has been appointed to replace President Musharraf as army chief after he leaves the post -- as he has promised to do if he is re-elected.
AFGHANISTAN: Afghan officials say a suicide bomber has blown up a police bus near Kabul, killing 13 people, including at least three children. The interior ministry said eight policemen and five civilians were killed. At least seven other people were wounded in the attack that happened on a narrow road in the city's western outskirts early today (Tuesday). A spokesman for Taleban insurgents said the group carried out the attack.
SUDAN-DARFUR ATTACK: The United States is threatening new sanctions against the Sudanese government and Darfur rebel groups if they continue to attack civilians and peacekeepers. The warning came Monday as African Union officials investigated Saturday's attack on a Darfur peacekeeping base that killed at least 10 AU soldiers and left dozens more missing.
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