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Anti-corruption judges to rule on Senegal ex-president's son

Judges in Senegal were deliberating Wednesday on the fate of former president Abdoulaye Wade's son Karim, detained for a year on corruption charges after accumulating a fortune worth more than $1 billion. The anti-corruption court in Dakar is expected to announce on Thursday whether it intends to dismiss the case, order that the younger Wade be tried or extend his detention for a further six months. "Within 48 hours the court we will know if the trial will take place or not," Justice Minister Sidiki Kaba told lawmakers on Tuesday.

Female Afghan MP shot in Kabul

A female member of Afghanistan's parliament was recovering in hospital Wednesday after being shot the previous night, officials and her sister said. The interior ministry said Mariam Koofi, a member of parliament from the northeastern province of Takhar, was shot in Kabul by a member of the security forces following an argument. It said police have detained a suspect and are investigating the motive behind the attack.

Sri Lankans urged to search for President's missing macaws

Four macaws belonging to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse have escaped his tightly-guarded official residence in Colombo, his office said Wednesday as it appealed for help to trace the colourful long-tailed birds. "The president is very fond of these birds," an official in his office told AFP, adding that he also cared for other species at the colonial-era President's House in the capital Colombo.

Juncker wants politicians not bureaucrats in new EU executive

Jean-Claude Juncker, a front-runner in the race to become president of the European Commission, told AFP he was ready to fight to have politicians rather than bureaucrats on his team. And to revive the European Union, it will be vital to get France and Germany back on the same page after May's European elections, the long-time former Luxembourg premier said in an interview.

Juncker wants politicians not bureaucrats in new EU executive

Jean-Claude Juncker, a front-runner in the race to become president of the European Commission, told AFP he was ready to fight to have politicians rather than bureaucrats on his team. And to revive the European Union, it will be vital to get France and Germany back on the same page after May's European elections, the long-time former Luxembourg premier said in an interview.

Abe meets Mongolian president possibly over N. Korea abductions

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met with Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj on Wednesday, in an unscheduled meeting that suggests Japan has been asking for help from Mongolia to address the past abductions of Japanese citizens by North Korea. Mongolia has diplomatic ties with North Korea, while the abductions by the country's agents in the 1970s and 1980s have prevented Japan and the North from normalizing bilateral relations.

Accused Boston bomber's attorneys to seek records on family

By Scott Malone BOSTON (Reuters) - Lawyers for the accused Boston Marathon bomber are due in court on Wednesday to ask a judge to order prosecutors to hand over more information on the defendant's family as they seek to build a case that could limit his blame for the attack. Defense attorneys have called on federal prosecutors to hand over any records they have on suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's older brother, Tamerlan, who authorities contend also played a role in the attacks but died a few days later in a gun battle with police.

Sydney welcomes Will and Kate with sunshine and cheers

Britain's Prince William and wife Kate charmed a welcoming crowd at the Sydney Opera House on Wednesday as they began the Australian leg of a tour Down Under with baby Prince George. The couple touched down in Sydney after a 10-day visit to New Zealand in which the royal infant George was the star attraction, and were taken by motorcade to the iconic harbourside building. Addressing a reception inside the Opera House, Prince William praised Australia's efforts in leading the search to find missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the remote Indian Ocean.

Armoured vehicles with Russian flags appear in east Ukraine

Armoured vehicles bearing Russian flags rolled through a flashpoint town in eastern Ukraine Wednesday, a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin warned the country was on the brink of civil war. Tensions continued to mount ahead of high-level diplomatic talks on the Ukraine crisis in Geneva on Thursday after Kiev sent in troops to oust pro-Moscow separatists from the east. An AFP reporter in the town of Slavyansk saw at least six APCs, some flying Russian flags, carrying dozens of armed men through the town.

Abe meets Mongolian president possibly over N. Korea abductions

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met with Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj on Wednesday, in an unscheduled meeting that suggests Japan has been asking for help from Mongolia to address the past abductions of Japanese citizens by North Korea. Mongolia has diplomatic ties with North Korea, while the abductions by the country's agents in the 1970s and 1980s have prevented Japan and the North from normalizing bilateral relations.
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