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Chinese Dissident's 'Suspicious' Death Raises Questions

Online petitioners are calling for China to investigate what they call the "suspicious death" of a prominent dissident jailed for his involvement in the 1989 Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests.

Li Wangyang' s family found him dead on Wednesday in his hospital room in Hunan province, apparently hanged by a bandage around his neck.

Police said Li committed suicide. But his family disputes that claim, saying Li was optimistic and had never expressed suicidal tendencies during the more than two decades he was in prison.

Burma State Media Offers Praise of Aung San Suu Kyi

Burmese state media have offered rare praise of longtime democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi, in an editorial that would have been unthinkable just months ago under the reforming country's strict censorship laws.

In an article entitled, "To the leaders who are the hope of Myanmar," the New Light of Myanmar said Tuesday that the future of the country "depends completely" on the cooperation of Aung San Suu Kyi and President Thein Sein.

Chinese Media Issue Warning on US Military Shift

Chinese state media warned Tuesday, that Washington's planned military shift towards the Asia-Pacific threatens to create rifts between the two countries and may upset regional stability.

The warnings come days after Defense Secretary Leon Panetta outlined a plan to transfer the majority of U.S. warships to the region by the end of the decade as part of the Obama administration's "strategic re-balance" toward Asia.

German Police Arrest Alleged Murderer Dubbed 'Canadian Psycho'

German police have arrested a murder suspect dubbed the "Canadian Psycho" by the media for allegedly dismembering his homosexual lover and mailing body parts to Canadian politicians.

Witnesses say Luka Rocco Magnotta simply said, "You got me," when police arrested him Monday after someone recognized him in a Berlin Internet cafe. Interpol had issued a "red notice" for him, its highest alert.

Canadian authorities say Magnotta fled Montreal for France last week and took a bus to Berlin.

Preparation, vigilance key when hurricanes hit

When a hurricane is bearing down on the area, it is not exactly the ideal time for people to start figuring out what to do to stay safe.

People need to be prepared and have a plan before disaster strikes, according to Army Ready, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security and Fort Rucker Information Operations Center officials.

"This area will usually have warning before a hurricane makes landfall," said Willie Worsham, Fort Rucker duty battle captain, adding that the IOC tracks potential storms when they leave the coast of Africa heading west to Fort Rucker.

Church Bombing Kills 15 in Nigeria

Nigerian officials say the bombing of a church in Bauchi State has killed 15 people and wounded 42.

The chairman of the state emergency operations team, Muhammad Inuwa Bello, says a suicide bomber attacked the Living Faith Church outside the state capital Sunday morning, but the agency cannot yet comment on who it thinks was responsible.

Witnesses say the church collapsed after the blast, trapping worshipers, killing civilians and security personnel, and leaving others with gruesome injuries.

Chavez Meets Belarus Leader

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who is undergoing radiation therapy for cancer, made his first public appearance since April on Saturday, hosting Belarus Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Semashko.

President Chavez was shown on state television leaving his meeting with Semashko at Miraflores Palace in Caracas. They had discussed a visit by Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko scheduled for later this month.

RULE OF LAW: THE AFGHAN WAY

Rule of law, according to U.S. Army doctrinal definition, is defined as: . . . a principle of governance in which all persons, institutions and entities, public and private, including the state itself, are accountable to laws that are publicly promulgated, equally enforced, and independently adjudicated, and which are consistent with international human rights principles.
U.S. Army, 2011 Rule of Law Handbook

Aung San Suu Kyi Calls for Skepticism of Burma's Reforms

Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi called on the international investors Friday to exercise "healthy skepticism" as her country implements reforms after half a century of military rule.

In an address to the World Economic Forum on East Asia in Bangkok, the Nobel peace laureate condemned the lack of change in Burma's corrupt legal system and said she did not want investment to mean further corruption and greater inequality. Instead, she said it was necessary to improve secondary education to defuse what she called the "time bomb" of high unemployment among youth.

Anti-Slavery Activists Await Trial in Mauritania

Seven anti-slavery activists in Mauritania were formally charged this week with threatening state security after they burned religious books last month. Thousands of people then marched to protest the burning of the religious texts, which activists said promoted slavery.

Despite the public outcry that occurred after the book burnings, Amnesty International West Africa Researcher Gaeton Mootoo said the activists should be released. “These human rights defenders have the right to express their opinion,” he said.

South Korea Arrests 2 Alleged Spies for North

South Korean police Thursday revealed they arrested two men this month for alleged espionage activities on behalf of North Korea.

Prosecutors say they are attempting to determine whether the suspects played a role in the recent widespread jamming of global positioning signal (GPS) receivers in South Korea. The interference forced planes and ships to rely on backup navigational equipment.

Sudan Peace Talks ‘Progressing Slowly’

African Union-led peace talks between top negotiators from Sudan and South Sudan were said to be progressing slowly Wednesday, despite reports of fresh fighting and questions about Sudan's complete withdrawal from the key oil region of Abyei.

Tensions were high as the second day of negotiations began three hours late. South Sudan's chief negotiator Pagan Amum said the initial discussions were limited to basic procedural issues.

Burma’s Democracy Leader Headed to Thailand on Historic Visit

Burma’s democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, is leaving the country for the first time in 24 years. She is scheduled to arrive in Bangkok Tuesday evening and is expected to visit migrant workers and refugees from Burma and speak at an international economic forum.

First trip in 24 years

Aung San Suu Kyi’s trip to Thailand marks the first time she has been outside Burma since 1988.

Fifteen of the years since were spent under house arrest for opposing Burma’s military rulers.

She was finally freed after a 2010 election put reformist President Thein Sein in office.

Suu Kyi Thailand Visit Stirs Excitement Among Burma Exiles

Burma’s opposition said leader Aung San Suu Kyi next week will take her first trip outside the country since 1988. The National League for Democracy said she will attend the World Economic Forum in Bangkok ahead of a tour of Europe. Thailand hosts a large community of Burmese activists and exiles and they are quite excited about her trip.

S. Korea Says North Korean Nuclear Test Could Come Any Time

South Korea's government on Thursday issued its clearest public statement to date expressing a belief that North Korea has made technical preparations to conduct another nuclear test at any time.

Defense ministry spokesman Kim Min-seok explained to reporters this conclusion is based on recent satellite imagery showing excavation work at the Punggye-ri site, combined with other undisclosed intelligence data