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Israel vows response as 4 troops wounded in Golan blast

Four Israeli soldiers were wounded by a roadside bomb on the occupied Golan Heights Tuesday, prompting artillery fire into Syria and a sharp warning that Israel would act forcefully to defend itself. The army said one of the soldiers was severely wounded in what was the third such incident in two weeks along Israel's northern frontier, prompting a blunt warning from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Blast in Golan wounds Israeli soldiers: security sources

A blast along the Syria-Israel frontier in the occupied Golan Heights on Tuesday wounded several Israeli soldiers, security sources told AFP. The explosion damaged an army jeep as it drove near the ceasefire line with Syria, outside the town of Majdal Shams, the sources said, without giving further details. mib/jad/bpz

Japan, Vietnam leaders meet, focus on maritime security

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang held talks Tuesday, focusing on ways to boost bilateral cooperation in ensuring maritime security in light of China's growing maritime activities in regional waters. Abe and Sang are also believed to have discussed regional issues such as North Korea's nuclear program and measures to strengthen bilateral economic cooperation such as infrastructure-building in Vietnam, according to Japanese officials.

India suspends search for plane, awaits new instructions

India on Sunday suspended its search for a Malaysia Airlines plane around the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and in the Bay of Bengal and is awaiting a new request from Malaysia, a defence official said. "The entire operation is on hold for now. We are awaiting fresh instructions from Malaysia," said Colonel Harmit Singh, spokesman for India's army, navy and air force command in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. "None of the planes from our air fleet took off today. Even the navy vessels involved in search operations have moved to another island," Singh told AFP.

Israel fires into Lebanon after bomb targets its soldiers

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel fired tank rounds and artillery into southern Lebanon on Friday, its military said, in retaliation for a bomb that targeted Israeli soldiers patrolling the border. No injuries were reported on either side. The Israel-Lebanon border has been mostly quiet since Israel and the Lebanese militia Hezbollah fought an inconclusive war in 2006, even as civil war has raged in neighboring Syria over the past three years.

Six Indian ships deployed in search for Malaysian jet

India's navy said Friday it has nearly doubled the number of ships and planes deployed to search the Andaman Sea for a missing Malaysian jet which disappeared with 239 people on board. It said six ships and five aircraft were now scouring for any sign of the vanished plane in the Andaman Sea, which surrounds India's remote Andaman and Nicobar group of islands that lie far to the country's southeast. "We want to cover the area and it should be strictly done," Indian naval spokesman D.K. Sharma told AFP.

Philippines vows to stand its ground at shoal disputed with China

The Philippines said Friday it will defy China's call to remove a stranded vessel that serves as an outpost for Philippine troops on disputed Second Thomas Shoal in the South China Sea. Tension rose at the shoal last Sunday when Chinese coast guard ships blocked two Philippine navy chartered ships sent there "to undertake rotation and resupply operations," forcing the military to airdrop supply to the troops there and prompting Manila to lodge a diplomatic protest with Beijing.

Exclusive: Radar data suggests missing Malaysia plane flown deliberately toward Andamans - sources

By Niluksi Koswanage and Siva Govindasamy KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Military radar-tracking evidence suggests a Malaysia Airlines jetliner missing for nearly a week was deliberately flown across the Malay peninsula towards the Andaman Islands, sources familiar with the investigation told Reuters on Friday.

Top Kashmir separatist flies to Delhi for treatment

One of Indian Kashmir's best-known separatist leaders, Sayed Ali Geelani, is battling an acute respiratory infection and has been flown to New Delhi for hospital treatment, a party spokesman said Thursday. Geelani, 84, has for years suffered from multiple health ailments including a heart condition that requires a pacemaker and serious kidney problems. The leader, who describes India's rule of disputed Kashmir as a "military occupation" and who has been a vehement campaigner for the territory's right to self-determination, fell seriously ill March 5.

Israel's parliament toughens referendum-on-peace law

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel's parliament on Wednesday toughened a law requiring a public referendum on potential land-for-peace deals involving withdrawals from land annexed by Israel. The law turns legislation already passed in 2010 into a constitutional amendment that would require an absolute majority of 61 of the Israeli Knesset's 120 lawmakers to rescind.
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