- - Thursday, April 7, 2011

CHINA

China says artist faces economic charges

BEIJING | China confirmed Thursday that it has detained a renowned artist who had been missing for four days, but it insisted that his case involves unspecified “economic crimes” and not human rights.

Ai Weiwei, an internationally famed avant-garde artist who is also an outspoken government critic, was last seen early Sunday in police custody after he was barred from boarding a flight to Hong Kong at a Beijing airport.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei told a regular news conference that police were investigating Mr. Ai.

INDIA

Hunger strike focuses on government corruption

NEW DELHI | A 73-year-old Indian activist harnessing the tactics of Mohandas K. Gandhi has galvanized public anger at rampant corruption with a high-profile hunger strike demanding the government adopt immediate reforms.

Anna Hazare’s fast, which entered its third day Thursday, has drawn breathless, round-the-clock TV coverage; attracted the support of an array of opposition - and even some ruling-party - politicians; and has sent the government scrambling in search of a compromise.

AFGHANISTAN

Suicide attack kills 6 at police compound

KANDAHAR | Suicide bombers and gunmen stormed a police compound in southern Afghanistan on Thursday, opening fire and setting off explosions in a coordinated attack that killed six members of Afghan security forces.

American Black Hawk helicopters and at least eight U.S. armored vehicles rushed to support dozens of Afghan troops battling the assailants at the three-building police complex in restive Kandahar province.

One suicide bomber pretended to be an ambulance driver and detonated his explosives after wounded officers were placed inside the marked rescue vehicle, Kandahar Police Chief Khan Mohammad Mujahid said.

All three attackers blew themselves up, Chief Mujahid said.

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