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AFP 1900 GMT news advisory

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

News Editor: Susan Stumme

Tel: +1 202 414 0541

-- TOP STORIES --

+ Venezuela says enemies caused Chavez cancer

+ US, China call for new North Korea sanctions

+ Dow hits all-time high

+ China targets growth as power handover begins

Venezuela-politics-health-Chavez,3rdlead-WRAP

CARACAS

Venezuela accuses its enemies of causing the cancer of ailing President Hugo Chavez and expels two US officials accused of plotting against the government in Caracas.

850 words 1930 GMT by Laurent Thomet. Picture. Video. Graphic.

NKorea-UN-nuclear-military,2ndlead-WRAP

UNITED NATIONS

The United States and China call on the UN Security Council to sanction North Korean diplomats and "illicit" cash transfers to step up pressure on Pyongyang's nuclear program.

700 words 1530 GMT by Tim Witcher

Stocks-US-record,WRAP

NEW YORK

The Dow Jones Industrial Average powers to an all-time record, exactly four years after hitting bottom in the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

750 words 2130 GMT by John Biers. Picture. Video

China-politics-congress,4thlead-WRAP

BEIJING

China targets 2013 economic growth of 7.5 percent and vows to tackle corruption and improve the quality of life as an annual parliamentary session to seal its transition to new leadership starts.

800 words moved by Tom Hancock. Graphic. Picture. Video

-- AMERICAS --

US-Israel-Iran-military-nuclear-politics,lead

WASHINGTON

The Pentagon's new chief holds talks with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and pledges to ensure US budget cuts do not disrupt funding for military assistance to the Jewish state, officials say.

700 words 1930 GMT by Dan De Luce. Picture

US-crime-trial-cannibal-Britain,lead

NEW YORK

The Russian founder of the extreme fetish website where New York's so called "cannibal cop" discussed eating young women testifies by video link that his site is purely for fantasies.

550 words 2100 GMT by Sebastian Smith

-- MIDDLE EAST --

Syria-conflict,3rdlead-WRAP

DAMASCUS

President Bashar al-Assad says his regime has defeated the "conspiracy" against Syria, even as rebels overrun a provincial capital and capture its governor in the biggest coup of their revolt.

700 words 2000 GMT. Picture. Graphic.

Also moved: Syria-conflict-Iraq-soldiers,2ndlead-FOCUS

Athletics-marathon-PAL-Gaza-UN-women,2ndlead

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories

Gaza's third international marathon has been cancelled after the ruling Hamas movement refused to allow women to run alongside men, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees says.

650 words moved by Adel Zaanoun. Picture. Video

-- EUROPE --

Russia-ballet-crime-entertainment,WRAP

MOSCOW

Russian police detain three suspects, including a top dancer, over an acid attack on the Bolshoi ballet artistic director in a case that has exposed vicious infighting at the theatre.

600 words 1930 GMT by Anna Malpas. File picture. File video.

Vatican-religion-pope,lead

VATICAN CITY

The next pope's ideal profile begins to take shape as cardinals hold a second day of pre-conclave talks -- a man with pastoral experience, missionary energy and few ties to the Vatican's unruly government.

700 words moved by Ella Ide. Picture. Video. Graphic

Russia-politics-Stalin-history,lead

MOSCOW

Russia marks 60 years since the death of Joseph Stalin with the nation divided about whether to view him as a tyrant who slaughtered millions or a saviour who turned the country into a superpower after World War II.

550 words moved by Olga Rotenberg. Picture. Video

-- AFRICA --

Kenya-vote,WRAP

NAIROBI

Kenya's deputy prime minister Uhuru Kenyatta, who faces an international trial for crimes against humanity, takes an initial lead in the presidential election, the first since disputed polls five years ago triggered violence.

800 words 2030 GMT by Peter Martell. Graphic. Picture. Video

Also moved: Kenya-vote-Kenyatta,PROFILE

Kenya-vote-Odinga,PROFILE

SAfrica-sport-crime,2ndlead

JOHANNESBURG

The family of murder suspect Oscar Pistorius rejects his father's claim that white South Africans need to own guns because the ANC government does not protect them.

500 words moved by Andrew Beatty

-- ASIA --

China-politics-Congress-NPC-military,3rdlead

BEIJING

China announces a further double-digit rise in its defence spending, underlining its military ambitions as Beijing's new leadership pushes its claims in a series of territorial disputes.

750 words moved by Carol Huang

Also moved: China-politics-NPC-Wen,PROFILE

China-politics-congress,SCENE

Malaysia-Philippines-crime-security,6thlead-WRAP

FELDA SAHABAT, Malaysia

Malaysia's military launches a fierce assault including jet fighters on up to 300 Filipino intruders after a deadly three-week standoff, but the militants' supporters said they had escaped and were alive and well.

750 words moved by M. Jegathesan. Picture. Graphic

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