U.S., nuclear powers to attend memorial
HIROSHIMA | The site of the world’s first atomic bomb attack echoed with choirs and Buddhist prayers Thursday as Hiroshima prepared to mark its biggest memorial yet, the first to be attended by representatives of the U.S. and other major nuclear powers.
Washington’s decision to send Ambassador John Roos to the 65th anniversary is seen by many as a move toward paving the way for President Obama to visit Hiroshima - which would be unprecedented for a sitting U.S. leader.
Along with the U.S., Britain and France are to make their first official appearance at the memorial Friday, along with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Altogether, 75 nations are to be represented.
U.S. Army flies flood relief missions
KALAM | U.S. Army helicopters flew their first relief missions in Pakistan’s flood-ravaged northwest on Thursday, airlifting hundreds of stranded people to safety from a devastated tourist town and distributing emergency aid.
In the country’s south, authorities began evacuating a half-million people as the worst monsoon rains in decades threatened more destruction.
NATO admits killing civilians in operations
“Following information received from provincial and local Nangarhar officials, it appears that between four and a dozen or more civilians were killed,” the statement from NATO’s International Security Assistance Force said.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai had ordered a probe into the deaths of at least 12 civilians after a district chief said a total of 26 people had been killed in two separate incidents in the area.
Kazakh leader to host OSCE summit
ASTANA | Kazakhstan’s long-serving strongman, President Nursultan Nazarbayev, announced Thursday that the Central Asian nation would hold a summit of OSCE heads of state and government in December.
Foreign ministers from the 56 nations of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) agreed to hold the summit in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana, on Dec. 1 and 2, Mr. Nazarbayev said in a declaration published on his website.
Kyrgyz leader says coup attempt foiled
BISHKEK | Kyrgyz forces arrested an opposition party leader on suspicion of plotting the overthrow of the government on Thursday, after troops fired blank rounds into a crowd trying to join mass demonstrations near parliament.
Acting President Roza Otunbayeva said security forces seized firearms and grenades from Urmat Baryktabasov and 26 supporters after a day of protests in the capital of the Central Asian state, which plans to hold parliamentary elections in October.
Ms. Otunbayeva’s interim government has struggled to impose its authority since an uprising in April toppled President Kurmanbek Bakiyev. Savage ethnic fighting followed in June, killing more than 350 people over several days and burning thousands of homes.
Indian forces kill 1, wound 15 in Kashmir
SRINAGAR | Government forces fired live ammunition to stop a protest march in Indian-held Kashmir on Thursday, killing one person and wounding at least 15, pushing the death toll from two months of civil unrest to 49.
India’s portion of the divided Himalayan region has been racked by weeks of clashes between rock-throwing Kashmiri protesters who have set official buildings and vehicles ablaze, and paramilitary police using guns and tear gas in an effort to contain the large anti-India crowds.
From wire dispatches and staff reports
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