- - Monday, May 16, 2011

PAKISTAN

Leaders pledge to work together on terrorist targets

ISLAMABAD | The U.S. and Pakistan agreed Monday to work together in any future actions against “high value targets” in Pakistan, even as U.S. Sen. John F. Kerry defended Washington’s decision not to tell Islamabad in advance about the American raid that killed Osama bin Laden.

The pledge, which was made in a joint statement, could help mollify Pakistani officials and citizens, who were enraged that one of the country’s most important allies would conduct a unilateral operation on its soil. But details of the promised cooperation were unclear.

It was also unclear whether Mr. Kerry, Massachusetts Democrat and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was able to extract any promises from Pakistan to go after Afghan Taliban militants in Pakistan.

ETHIOPIA

Rebels accuse troops of killing 100 civilians

ADDIS ABABA | Ethiopian government troops have killed more than 100 civilians, including a local U.N. worker, during a five-day military operation in the oil and gas-rich Somali Region, a rebel group said on Monday.

More commonly known as the Ogaden, the ethnic Somali province is home to a low-key insurgency led by the Ogaden National Liberation Front, which has fought for independence since 1984.

Government officials could not be reached for comment.

RUSSIA

Tycoon to head pro-Kremlin party

MOSCOW | Russian tycoon and New Jersey Nets basketball team owner Mikhail Prokhorov says his decision to head a pro-Kremlin political party was an “uneasy” one.

Mr. Prokhorov said Monday he would head the Just Cause party in what he called “an uneasy and somewhat surprising decision.”

Just Cause hopes to win legislature seats in December parliamentary elections.

Mr. Prokhorov, who made a fortune in metals and banking, bought a majority share in the New Jersey Nets basketball team last May.

AFGHANISTAN

Four U.S. soldiers killed in blast

KABUL | Four American soldiers serving with NATO forces in Afghanistan died Monday in an explosion in the country’s south, a NATO official said.

The official said they were hit by a homemade bomb. He spoke on condition of anonymity because relatives of those killed were still being notified. The latest deaths make a total of 16 NATO troops killed so far this month and 167 so far this year.

EGYPT

Ex-first lady pledges assets to state amid graft probe

CAIRO | The wife of ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak on Monday pledged to hand over her money and property to the state, days after she was ordered detained on corruption charges, the official MENA news agency reported.

Suzanne Mubarak, 70, was under arrest, along with her husband, in a hospital in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. She reportedly suffered from a suspected heart attack on Friday.

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