Turkey – Kurds – Iraq: Turkey's foreign minister says Ankara is keeping all options open in its fight against Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq, including diplomacy and military force.
Ali Babacan was speaking today (Sunday) after talks with his Iranian counterpart, Manouchehr Mottaki in Tehran. Babacan thanked Iran for helping to fight rebels of the Kurdistan Workers' Party and said he discussed continuing Turkish-Iranian cooperation.
Ankara is threatening a military incursion into northern Iraq to attack the bases of PKK rebels, who killed 13 Turkish soldiers last Sunday in southeastern Turkey. Turkish leaders have rejected Iraqi proposals for dealing with PKK rebels in northern Iraq as insufficient.
Also today, Iranian state media say President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad strongly criticized the PKK in a telephone conversation with Turkish President Abdullah Gul. Mr. Ahmadinejad said terrorist activities by the PKK are harming the interests of Turkey, Iran and Iraq.
Iraq: U.S. and Iraqi officials say U.S. forces will hand over control of the southern Shi'ite province of Karbala to Iraqi authorities on Monday.
Karbala will be the eighth of Iraq's 18 provinces to be transferred to Iraqi control. U.S. troops will step in if Iraqi forces ask for help.
Karbala is home to the shrines of two revered Shi'ite saints (Imam Abbas and Imam Hussein). Rival Shi'ite militias have been struggling for power in the province. Fighting between them killed 52 people in August during a major pilgrimage festival.
Meanwhile, at least 23 people were killed in attacks or found dead across Iraq Saturday.
Iraqi police say a bomb exploded in a restaurant area in a town (Jisr Diyala) southeast of Baghdad, killing eight people.
Afghan Violence: The U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan says troops have killed about 80 Taliban fighters in a six-hour battle in the south of the country.
A coalition statement today (Sunday) says the fight broke out Saturday when the Taliban tried to ambush a patrol of Afghan and international soldiers in Musa Qala in the volatile province of Helmand.
Coalition officials say the troops called in air support, resulting in the deaths of scores of Taliban fighters.
Helmand province is a major poppy growing region where opium production helps fund the Taliban insurgency.
On Saturday, U.S. and Afghan officials said a suicide bomber dressed in a security uniform blew himself up near an American military base in eastern Afghanistan, killing four Afghan soldiers and one civilian.
Pakistan – Bhutto: Former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto is in her ancestral district in southern Pakistan today (Sunday), meeting with supporters and visiting families of victims of the October 18th suicide blast that killed about 140 people.
Surrounded by heavy security, Ms. Bhutto made her way through hundreds of supporters today to offer condolences to the families of two party workers who were victims of the attack.
She is expected to meet later in the day at her residence with leaders of her Pakistan People's Party.
Ms. Bhutto was greeted Saturday by thousands of supporters as she arrived under heavy security in Garhi Khuda Baksh village in Sindh province.
After reading the Koran and sprinkling rose petals on her father's tomb, she told her supporters it was good to be home after more than eight years in self-imposed exile.
Sri Lanka Unrest: Sri Lanka's military says government troops killed 15 Tamil Tiger rebels over the last two days with the loss of at least two soldiers.
The military said today (Sunday) that troops fought four separate battles with Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, killing 11, in the northern district of Vavuniya on Saturday.
Officials said four more rebels were killed today (Sunday) on the Jaffna peninsula that separates government and rebel held regions.
The Tigers did not immediately confirm the clashes and there were no independent accounts of the incidents because journalists are not allowed into the region.
The Tigers struck a key air base at Anuradahapura Monday, killing at least 13 airmen and destroying several aircraft.
Listen to our World News for details.