SRI LANKA: Sri Lankan authorities say two bus bombings have killed at least 23 people and injured more than 50 others in separate attacks across the country. Defense Ministry officials said at least 21 people were killed and 50 more wounded in the first attack today near a Buddhist temple outside of the capital Colombo. Officials blamed Tamil Tiger rebels for detonating a roadside bomb that ripped through a crowded passenger bus in the southwestern suburb of Moratuwa during the morning rush hour. Hours later, officials said another explosion hit a bus in the central Sri Lankan city of Kandy, killing two people and wounding at least 12 others.
US POLITICS: Presumptive U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama has held a private meeting with rival Hillary Clinton, as the two seek to unify the party after their long and bruising nominating contest. An Obama campaign spokesman says the two rivals met Thursday night in Washington, but denied earlier reports it took place at Clinton's home. Their campaigns issued a joint public statement saying Obama and Clinton had a "productive discussion" about the November general election. Supporters of the New York senator have launched an effort to convince Obama to select Clinton as his vice presidential running mate.
CHINA - QUAKE: Authorities in the southwestern Chinese province of Sichuan say water levels of a lake formed by last month's earthquake are rising to the point where it could flow into a man-made drainage channel. As of late Thursday, the Tangjiashan lake stood at 739 meters above sea level, just over one meter below the 475-meter long drainage ditch. But officials are warning that the lake's rising waters are threatening to burst the naturally formed dam. More than one million people are estimated to be in areas that could be inundated if the natural dam breaks. More than 250-thousand people have already been evacuated from low-lying areas near the lake.
BURMA: Burma's military government is criticizing foreign media outlets for airing what it calls false reports on the devastation caused by last month's deadly cyclone. An editorial in the state run newspaper (New Light of Myanmar) accused "self-seekers" of filming "made-up stories" in storm-affected areas in the Irrawaddy delta, then passing them on to foreign journalists. It says the news agencies are trying to tarnish Burma's image and mislead the world. Cyclone Nargis killed 78-thousand people and left another 56-thousand missing when it struck the delta on May second.
JAPAN - NORTH KOREA: Japan says it will hold bilateral talks with North Korea for the first time in nine months. A Foreign Ministry spokesman says Japanese envoy Akitaka Saiki will meet with North Korean diplomat Song Il Ho in Beijing on Saturday and Sunday. The talks will focus on North Korea's abductions of 13 Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 80s to train its spies. Five of the abductees were sent home, and Pyongyang says the rest of them have died. But Tokyo believes many others were kidnapped, and that some may still be alive.
ISRAEL - PALESTINIANS: Palestinian officials say a Hamas militant has been killed in an Israeli army raid in the Gaza Strip. Officials say the army operation took place early today but they did not provide additional details.. Meanwhile, Palestinian medics say an Israeli air strike has wounded at least 10 Palestinians in the north of the Gaza Strip. Israel's army says the airstrike was targeted at a Hamas base in the northern town of Beit Lahiya today. Israel has said it is moving closer to a military offensive in the Gaza Strip, after a Palestinian and Israeli were killed in separate incidents in the region Thursday.
IRAQ: The U.S. military in Iraq says two Shi'ite militia leaders have surrendered to coalition forces during a military operation south of Baghdad. A military statement says coalition troops raided the suspects' homes near the city of Kut today. It says one of the men is suspected of ordering attacks on coalition forces and local authorities. He is also suspected of smuggling Iranian weapons into Iraq. In a separate statement, the military says coalition troops killed four suspected terrorists and detained more than 20 others in a raid in northern Iraq Wednesday.
UN FOOD SUMMIT: Delegates at the emergency United Nations food summit in Rome have approved a declaration vowing to work together to ease the suffering caused by the global rise in food prices. The final resolution promises to fight world hunger by stepping up food production. Envoys nearly failed to reach an agreement on Wednesday, after a number of Latin American countries raised strong objections to a draft version of the declaration. Cuba demanded language condemning long-standing U.S. sanctions against its communist government, while Argentina criticized the pact's stance on trade barriers.
Listen to our World News for details.