CHINA - QUAKE: China's official state-run news agency says a woman has been rescued from a tunnel at a power plant nine days after she was trapped during a deadly earthquake. Xinhua says the woman was pulled out of the tunnel at a hydropower plant in the town of Hongbai today and airlifted to a nearby hospital. A doctor says the woman suffered multiple fractures, but her injuries are not life-threatening. News of the rescue comes as Chinese authorities raised the death toll to more than 41-thousand, with more than 32-thousand others still missing. Officials warn the final death toll could rise to more than 50-thousand.
TIBET - CHINA QUAKE: The Tibetan government-in-exile is calling for a temporary halt to protests against China in the wake of last week's deadly earthquake. In a statement released today from its headquarters in Dharamshala, India, the government urges Tibetans to stop the demonstrations in front of Chinese embassies around the world "to express our solidarity" with the Chinese people. The statement also asks Tibetans to send messages of condolences for the victims, raise funds for relief efforts and explore the possibilities of establishing "Sino -Tibetan friendship associations."
BURMA: United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says he will meet with Burma's most senior leader, General Than Shwe, during his visit to the cyclone-ravaged country in the coming days. After arriving in Bangkok today on his way to Burma, Mr. Ban stressed that his visit was about saving lives and not about politics. Mr. Ban will arrive in Burma on Thursday and meet with General Than Shwe on Friday. During his stay, he will visit devastated areas of the Irrawaddy Delta and try to get Burmese officials to agree to let more relief supplies and foreign aid workers into the country.
BURMA SDBR: US CONGRESS: A U.S. diplomat says the Burmese military government will be responsible for a "second catastrophe" if thousands of Burmese citizens die because the government is resisting international aid. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian Affairs Scott Marciel told lawmakers in Washington Tuesday that the Burmese government has yet to allow the amount of aid and access necessary to save tens of thousands of cyclone survivors. He said it is difficult to imagine a worse and more negligent response to a natural disaster.
PHILIPPINES - STORM TOLL: Authorities in the Philippines say the death toll from Tropical Storm Halong has risen to 37 people. The storm struck the main island of Luzon on Saturday, flooding roads and bridges and hampering repair efforts. Thousands of residents remain without power and vital communication lines. Civil defense officials say more than 13-hundred people remain in evacuation centers. The National Disaster Coordinating Council says Halong (locally known as Cosme) has damaged or destroyed more than 18-thousand homes and 70 school buildings. It has also caused millions of dollars worth of damage to infrastructure and agriculture.
US POLITICS: U.S. Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama says he has won a majority of committed delegates offered in the state-by-state presidential nominating contests, putting him within reach of the ultimate goal. Obama spoke Tuesday to thousands of cheering supporters in Des Moines, Iowa, the state where he won the first Democratic nominating contest for the 2008 election. The Illinois senator, who needs fewer than 100 delegates to secure the nomination, won Tuesday's primary in Oregon. He also praised his rival, Senator Hillary Clinton of New York, who scored a major win earlier Tuesday in a primary in Kentucky.
LEBANON: Lebanon's rival political factions have agreed on plans for a new president and unity government, breaking a volatile 18-month-long crisis. Representatives of the Hezbollah-led opposition and the pro-Western government signed the deal today in Doha, Qatar, after five days of negotiations. Officials say the deal will see parliament convene Sunday to elect army chief General Michel Suleiman as president. He will fill the post that has sat empty since November. The agreement calls for a new government with 30 ministers. The ruling party will be allocated 16 ministers; the opposition will have 11; and the president will assign three.
ISRAEL - SYRIA: Israel and Syria have officially confirmed they are holding indirect peace talks, eight years after negotiations broke down over the disputed Golan Heights. The two governments announced separately today that Turkey has been mediating the efforts to reach a comprehensive peace agreement. Turkey's foreign minister said last month that his country has been facilitating communication between Israel and Syria for more than a year. Israel and Syria have been in a conflict over the Golan Heights since 1967, when Israel captured the strategic plateau and mountainous region from Syria during the Six Day War. Israel officially annexed the area in 1981.
Listen to our World News for details.