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Thai Court Clears Way to Extradite Alleged Arms Dealer to US

A court in Thailand has dismissed charges against an alleged arms dealer, clearing a legal technicality that was preventing the 43-year-old Russian citizen's extradition to the United States.

The U.S. government wants to try Viktor Bout, known as the "Merchant of Death," on a variety of criminal charges. But there is push back from the the Russian government, which says he is an innocent businessman.

Thai Court Allows More Charges Against Russian Arms Dealer

A Thai court has ruled more charges against Russian arms dealer, Victor Bout, should be heard. The ruling will delay steps to extradite Bout to the United States to face charges of conspiracy and support for foreign terrorist organizations.

The 43-year-old Victor Bout arrived at the Thai court under heavy armed escort in a separate van and wearing a bullet proof jacket over his prisoner uniform.

Additional charges

Ecuador in State of Siege

Ecuador's government says the country remains under a state of emergency, with the military controlling security, the day after soldiers rescued President Rafael Correa from a police rebellion.

The president has called the revolt - in which police angry over proposed benefit cuts seized control of the country's main airport and shut down highways - an attempt to overthrow his administration, and not just a simple protest.

Mr. Correa accused supporters of former president Lucio Gutierrez of inciting the violence, but Mr. Gutierrez has denied the accusation.

Protests Erupt in Ecuador; Soldiers Seize Main Airport

Angry military troops and police officers are taking to the streets of Ecuador where the country's president is refusing to back down over a new round of budget cuts.

Troops upset about salary and benefit cuts seized the country's main airport Thursday, while police officers fired tear gas, burned tires and shut down highways leading to the capital of Quito.

There were also reports of protests in Guayaquil and other cities.

Establishment of "Sang Ae Die Degar" Christian Church in Vietnam

The Montagnard Foundation announces the establishment of the Sang Ae Die Degar church, which means Church of the Degar (Montagnard) People. Our Church is a Christian denomination that believes in the basic principals of Christianity. While our physical Church is located in Greensboro, North Carolina and we are free to practice Christianity in the United States, inside Vietnam our people are persecuted, tortured and even killed by the Vietnamese authorities.

North Korean Supreme Leader's Son Elevated to Key Posts

The youngest son of North Korea's supreme leader has received powerful posts in the ruling party. Regional experts say while that may solidify his path to succeed his father, for now there is no doubt that Kim Jong Il remains in charge.

Hours after Kim Jong Un was promoted to four-star general in North Korea, state media early Wednesday announced he also was appointed to the Workers' Party Central Committee and - more significantly - named vice chairman of the powerful Central Military Commission.

Somali Sufi Group Backs Out of Government Power-Sharing Deal

A leader of Somalia's moderate Islamist Ahlu-Sunna Wal-Jama'a group says members of al-Shabab are holding top positions in the U.N.-backed Transitional Federal Government. The accusation follows the Sufi group's withdrawal from a power-sharing deal it signed with the government six months ago.

The chairman of Ahlu-Sunna Wal-Jama'a's Shura Council, Sheik Omar Sheik Abdul Karidir, says his group has documents that show some leaders of the Transitional Federal Government are also members of al-Shabab, an al-Qaida-linked extremist group fighting to topple the government.

China, Russia Agree to Strengthen Strategic Partnership

The leaders of China and Russia have signed a statement to deepen their strategic partnership and cooperation.

President Hu Jintao and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev inspected an honor guard at a welcoming ceremony Monday at Beijing's Great Hall of the People.

Following a closed-door meeting, the two leaders signed a statement calling for comprehensively deepening what was described as "the strategic partnership of cooperation."

The two giant neighbors also signed agreements to fight separatism and extremism, and commercial deals covering coal, nuclear energy and banking.

Somali Prime Minister Resigns

The prime minister of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government has resigned, bringing an end to months of dispute that has further weakened the U.N.-backed administration in Mogadishu.