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Indonesian Ship Rescues 14 Survivors of Sunken Ferry


Indonesia Ship: Indonesian officials say a ship has rescued 14 people who have spent the past nine days on a life raft after their ferry sank off the coast of Java.
The head of the search and rescue agency on Bali island says (today/Monday) a 15th person was picked up with the group late Sunday, but died hours later.
The survivors were found by a passing cargo ship just east of Kangean island, some 400 kilometers east of where their ferry sank in a storm December 29th.
The ferry was carrying about 600 people when it capsized. More than 220 have been rescued and 100 bodies have been recovered. .

Thailand Pol:

Thailand's military government has selected the head of the country's Constitution Drafting Council in what is seen as a first step toward restoring democracy after last year's military coup.
Following his election to the council today (Monday), political science professor Noranit Setabutr said a new draft constitution would be completed within 180 days. He said the new constitution must be acceptable to the Thai public and bring about democracy.
Members of Thailand's military overthrew the government of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra last September. They accused him of exploiting the old constitution to amass more personal power than his office afforded him.
The coup leaders have promised to hold a general election under a new constitution within a year.

Malaysia – Thailand: Malaysia's former prime minister says he has been told to curb his efforts to resolve an Islamist insurgency in neighboring Thailand.
Mahathir Mohamad said today (Monday) that he had been indirectly advised to maintain a "low profile" in the peace process. He did not say who had advised him.
Mr. Mahathir helped establish a dialogue between the Islamist separatists and Thailand's government last year, and the Malaysian government has offered to take a greater role in brokering peace talks.
Mr. Mahathir's participation in the process has become increasingly unpopular, however, since he made a series of verbal attacks against the administration of current Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

US Hmong Shooting:

Authorities in (the midwestern U.S. state of) Wisconsin are investigating the death of a Hmong hunter in a community still recovering from a 2004 mass shooting that exposed racial tensions.
The body of Cha Vang of Green Bay was found in a wildlife preserve Saturday, about 12 hours after he was reported missing. Police say unattended deaths are routinely listed as homicides, pending investigation. An autopsy is planned Monday.
Another man, who is white, is being held as a person of interest after he showed up at a hospital with a gunshot wound that is not life threatening.
Ties between whites and the Hmong community in eastern Wisconsin have been tense since a Hmong hunter killed six whites in 2004.
The shooter, Chai Vang, said he shot in self defense when he was racially threatened. Survivors of the shootings say he was trespassing on private property.

Iraq: Iraqi officials say gunmen have ambushed a bus carrying workers to Baghdad's international airport, killing at least nine people and wounding about 10 others.
Officials say most of the passengers were Shi'ite Muslims. The bus was passing through a Sunni district of western Baghdad today (Monday) at the time of the incident.
Buses carrying workers are frequently attacked by kidnappers and gunmen in Iraq. The main road to Baghdad's airport passes through some of the most dangerous Sunni areas of Baghdad.

Indonesia Plane: An Indonesian navy commander says ships searching for a missing passenger plane have found metal objects on the sea floor.
The commander said today (Monday) rescue teams are now awaiting the arrival of a U.S. Navy ship that could be able to identify whether the metal is the wreckage of the missing Adam Air Boeing 737. The plane disappeared in stormy weather last week with 102 aboard.
The commander said the metal was found in three locations on the sea floor, off the country's western coast.

Listen to our World News for details.

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