Iraqi police say insurgents have assassinated the security chief for oil fields in the region around the northern city of Kirkuk.
An islamic website has shown a video of a blindfolded American held by militants in Saudi Arabia. On tape shown Tuesday, Paul Johnson's abductors threaten to kill him, unless Islamic militants held in Saudi prisons are set free by Friday.
An international religious rights group has criticized the Lao government for what it calls continued hostility toward religious freedom.
Norway-based Forum 18 says it has received numerous reports of Lao authorities trying to force Christians to renounce their faith or face severe punishment. The group also reported continued tight control of the country's Buddhists, Muslims, Animists and Baha'i.
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