BANGLADESH - UNREST: Firefighters in Bangladesh resumed the search Saturday for army
officers missing after a bloody two-day rebellion by border guards.
Firefighter Sheikh Mohammad Shahjalal says at least nine more bodies
have been found in mass graves in a military compound in the capital,
Dhaka. He says many more officers are still missing.
The death toll from the revolt now stands at about 75.
On Friday, troops uncovered a mass grave containing some four dozen
bodies during a search of the military compound, where this week's
two-day revolt unfolded.
OBAMA ECONOMY: U.S. President Barack Obama is using his weekly broadcast address to
urge lawmakers to pass his budget proposal, saying it represents
dramatic change from the status quo.
Mr. Obama said Saturday the proposal, which projects more than $3
trillion in spending, will cut taxes for 95 percent of working
Americans and invest in clean energy, healthcare and education.
He said the budget will help millions of Americans but only if Congress
overcomes resistance from lobbyists and special interest groups who are
"invested in the old way of doing business."
US - MIDEAST: U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says she will stress a
two-state solution and security for Israel when she meets with Middle
Eastern leaders next week on a tour of the region.
In an interview Friday with VOA, Clinton said she is also eager to hear
the thoughts of those leaders on the best way to advance the Middle
East peace process.
Clinton will attend a donors' conference Monday in Sharm el-Sheik,
Egypt, where she and other members of the international community will
discuss relieving the humanitarian crisis in Gaza. She said the U.S.
will be prepared to make a significant pledge to reconstruct Gaza.
ASEAN - RIGHTS: Burma and Cambodia blocked leading activists from attending talks with
Southeast Asian leaders Saturday in Thailand, where the regional bloc
is trying to promote human rights as part of its charter.
Leaders from the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations -
ASEAN - were set to hold rare talks with civil society representatives
at their annual summit, taking place in the Thai beach resort of Hua
But Burmese Prime Minister Thein Sein and his Cambodian counterpart Hun
Sen said they would not take part if activists from their own countries
CHINA FOOD SAFETY: China's state-run media say the legislature has approved a new food
safety law in an attempt to end repeated scandals involving dangerous
The Xinhua news agency said Saturday the National People's Congress
Standing Committee "gave the green light" to a law that will establish
a monitoring and supervision system, a set of national food safety
standards, a recall system and severe punishment for offenders.
On Friday, the Cabinet established a food safety commission in response
to a series of embarrassing scandals involving tainted food products.
CHINA - JAPAN: Japanese Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone arrived in Beijing Saturday
on a two-day mission to discuss the global financial crisis, North
Korea's nuclear program and other issues significant to the two sides.
High on the agenda with his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi will likely
be a dispute about a group of uninhabited islands in the East China
Sea, called the Senkaku by Japan and the Diaoyu by China.
Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso said Thursday the Japanese-held
islands should be protected under a mutual defense treaty with
Washington, because they are part of Japan's sovereign territory.
CHINA - TIBET - PROTEST: Activists say a Tibetan monk has set himself on fire in protest during a prayer festival in western China. A spokesman for the Free Tibet Campaign quoted witnesses as saying they heard shots as police surrounded the burning monk and carried him away. It is not clear whether the monk was shot, or if he is dead or alive. Witnesses say the monk, along with hundreds of other monks, was refused entry to the main prayer hall at the Kirti Monastery in Ngaba county (called Aba by the Chinese) to observe a traditional prayer festival.
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