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(All times GMT/ET)


Kenya chief justice pledges fair hearing for election challenge

NAIROBI - Kenya's Supreme Court will handle any challenge to result of last week's presidential election in fair and speedy manner, chief justice says two days after defeated candidate Raila Odinga threatened legal action over outcome. (KENYA-ELECTIONS/ (UPDATE 1, TV), moved, by James Macharia and Humphrey Malalo, 784 words)

+ See also:

- KENYA-ICC/CHARGES (UPDATE 2), moved, by Thomas Escritt, 580 words

Nigerian Islamists increasingly turn guns on the West

LAGOS - For long time it seemed violent Islamist groups plaguing Nigeria were more interested in their grievances with government than in any global jihad against Western "infidels". Killing of seven foreign hostages in Nigeria shows that, increasingly, this is no longer the case. (NIGERIA-HOSTAGES/ISLAMISTS, moved, by Tim Cocks, 885 words)

+ See also:

- NIGERIA-HOSTAGES/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Tim Cocks, 686 words

Violations in Syria intensify as war worsens - UN

GENEVA - Syrian government intensifies its shelling of cities and deploys more local militia, while rebels executing prisoners condemned in their own makeshift courts without due process, U.N. investigators say. (SYRIA-CRISIS/WARCRIMES (UPDATE 3, PIX), moving shortly, by Stephanie Nebehay, 783 words)

Capriles, Maduro at each other's throats in Venezuela election

CARACAS - Presidential candidates Nicolas Maduro and Henrique Capriles begin Venezuela's election race with scathing personal attacks even as mourners still file past late Hugo Chavez's corpse. (VENEZUELA-ELECTION/ (UPDATE 3, PIX, TV), expect by 2030 GMT/4.30 PM ET, by Andrew Cawthorne and Mario Naranjo, 965 words)


As Afghan trip goes off-script, Hagel focuses on troops

WASHINGTON - It is harrowing international debut for Chuck Hagel, whose first trip to Afghanistan as defense secretary goes dramatically off-script and challenges American narrative about the 11-year-old war. His first full day in Afghanistan begins with sound of suicide bomb attack. But real damage comes when Afghan President Hamid Karzai accuses United States of colluding with the Taliban. (USA-AFGHANISTAN/HAGEL, (UPDATE 1), expect by 1945 GMT/3.45 PM ET, by Phil Stewart, 800 words)


Falkland Islands vote to stay British in referendum

STANLEY, Falkland Islands - Residents of barren and blustery Falkland Islands expected to vote overwhelmingly to stay under British rule in referendum that inflames long-running sovereignty dispute with Argentina. (FALKLANDS-REFERENDUM/ PIX, TV, expect by 0000 GMT/8 PM ET, by Marcos Brindicci, 700 words)

ANALYSIS-After Chavez, Latin America ideological war to thaw

CARACAS - Hugo Chavez's exit from the world stage may take sting out of an ideological battle that has enveloped Latin America since new batch of leftists started taking power about 15 years ago to challenge U.S. "imperialism." (VENEZUELA-CHAVEZ/REGION, moved, by Terry Wade, 1,000 words)


France urges EU to look again at lifting Syria arms embargo

BRUSSELS - Conflicting proposals from France and Germany over arming Syrian rebels fighting President Bashar al-Assad underscore divisions in European Union over how to respond to 2-year-old civil war. (SYRIA-CRISIS/EU, moving shortly, by Adrian Croft and Justyna Pawlak, 557 words)


Cardinals hold last discussions before Vatican lockdown

VATICAN CITY - Cardinals hold a last day of discussions on the troubled state of the Roman Catholic Church before they are sequestered in the Vatican to elect the 266th pontiff, prelates say there is still no frontrunner. (POPE-SUCCESSION/ (UPDATE 1, PIX, TV), moved, by Crispian Balmer, 646 words)

+ See also:

- POPE-SUCCESSION/CONCLAVE, moved, by Tom Heneghan, Religion Editor, 824 words



- POPE-SUCCESSION/RESIDENCE (TV, PIX), moved, by Keith Weir, 400 words

Iberia parent IAG agrees compromise over job cuts

MADRID - Spanish airline Iberia and its workers move closer to agreement on mass job cuts after owner IAG, which also owns British Airways, accepts a compromise proposal put forward by a government-appointed mediator. (IBERIA-STRIKE/ (UPDATE 2), moved, 397 words)


Congo keen to sign peace deal; rebel response uncertain

KINSHASA - Democratic Republic of Congo says it will give eastern rebels amnesty and positions in army if they agree by end of this week to lay down their arms, but rebel leader says more talks are needed. (CONGO-DEMOCRATIC/REBELS (UPDATE 3), moved, by Jonny Hogg, 697 words)


Man accused in India gang rape found dead in cell

NEW DELHI - Man police say was ringleader in gang rape on New Delhi bus in December that outraged India hangs himself in his cell, prison authorities say, raising questions about jail monitoring and security. (INDIA-RAPE/ (UPDATE 7, PIX, TV), moved, by Annie Banerji and Satarupa Bhattacharjya, 710 words)