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Gunman Kills Three in Afghan Capital


AFGHANISTAN: Afghan authorities say a gunman has shot and killed two Westerners and an Afghan security guard outside the Kabul office of an international shipping company. An Interior Ministry official says a guard inside the German-owned DHL shipping office opened fire on a company vehicle today, killing two DHL employees and another guard. He says it is not clear what prompted the shooting, which took place in a busy, upscale area of the capital across from the Iranian Embassy. Police say they have detained 11 people for questioning in connection with the incident.

PAKISTAN - UNREST: Pakistan's army says it has captured a key militant stronghold near the Afghan border, in an ongoing offensive against al-Qaida and Taliban militants in the Bajaur tribal region. Pakistani Major General Tariq Khan says military forces gained control of Loi Sam, a strategic town at the center of militant supply routes. He told reporters visiting the area today that the military victory followed heavy resistance from militant fighters. Pakistani security forces have been battling al-Qaida and Taliban militants in Bajaur since August. Khan says nearly 15-hundred suspected militants and 73 troops have died in the operation so far.

WORLD ECONOMY: Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao told an economic forum in Beijing today that China was glad to see many countries taking measures to cope with the worldwide financial crisis, but that more needs to be done. In an address on the final day of the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM), Mr. Wen said China will take an active part in the G-20 summit on the financial crisis scheduled for November 15th in Washington. Mr. Wen told the ASEM delegates that Beijing will take a cooperative and pragmatic approach in working with other countries to solve the problem.

US POLITICS: Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama returns to the campaign trail today after taking time off to visit an ailing relative. Obama is scheduled to make appearances in the closely-contested western states of Nevada and New Mexico, before traveling to Colorado on Sunday. Obama spent Friday in his home state, Hawaii, visiting with his 85-year-old grandmother (Madelyn Dunham). His rival, Republican candidate John McCain, visits New Mexico, Texas, and Iowa today before traveling to the key state of Ohio on Sunday.

TAIWAN - PROTEST: Tens of thousands of people marched through Taiwan's capital today to protest the island's warming ties with Beijing. The demonstrators marched through Taipei's streets waving flags and chanting slogans protesting the upcoming visit of Beijing's top negotiator and voicing anger at a series of Chinese export scandals, including tainted milk products. The size of the crowd had not been confirmed, but the opposition Democratic Progressive Party, which organized the rally, was expecting half-a-million people to hit the streets.

US - TURKEY - KURDS: The commander of U.S. forces in Iraq says the United States is committed to working with Baghdad and Ankara to fight Kurdish rebels who launch attacks into Turkey from northern Iraq. The U.S. military says General Ray Odierno pledged to support both countries during talks in Turkey Friday. A military statement says Odierno met with a senior Turkish military official, General Hasan Igsiz, to discuss U.S. forces' ongoing assistance to Turkey in its fight against rebels of the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK. It says the U.S. general also pledged to share intelligence.

KOREAS - MILITARY TALKS: North and South Korea have agreed to hold military talks to discuss unsettled issues, including improving military hotlines between the two nations. South Korea's Defense Ministry said in a statement today the talks will be held Monday morning on the west coast near the border city of Paju. The North proposed Friday that officer-level talks be held about improving telecommunications lines between the two sides. South Korea's Yonhap news agency says the two countries have nine military hotlines, but one is currently out of service because of technical problems.

PHILIPPINES - UNREST: Philippine military authorities say communist guerrillas have ambushed security forces in the southern Philippines, killing six soldiers and wounding two. Army spokesmen said today that New People's Army gunmen set off a landmine and then opened fire on a convoy Friday as it was on its way to a community meeting in New Bataan town on the island of Mindanao. The army said the soldiers were sent to talk to villagers about a planned military medical mission next month.

US - ENTERTAINER - CRIME: The mother and brother of Academy Award-winning actress Jennifer Hudson have been found shot to death at the family's home in Chicago. Police say a relative discovered the victims Friday, hours after neighbors reported hearing gunshots. Authorities say they are questioning a suspect in the case, but say they are still searching for a seven-year-old boy who might have been abducted from the home during the incident. News reports say the child is Hudson's nephew. Police say the shooting appears to be the result of a domestic incident, but they did not immediately identify the victims.

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