World News: Hotel suicide blast leaves four dead
After the bomber detonated his cache of explosives, two other militants stormed inside the hotel in Kunduz city and engaged police in a two-hour gunbattle, said Mubobullah Sayedi, a provincial spokesman.
EU beefs up Syria sanctions as UN ponders resolution
The European Union expanded its sanctions against Syria, imposing asset freezes and travel bans against five more military and government officials.
The EU decision brings the number of individuals it has targeted to 35, including President Bashar Assad. The EU said it would release the names of the new additions to the list today.
In Washington, US president Barack Obama said the latest attacks on anti-government demonstrations in Syria, launched as the Muslim holy month of Ramadan began, were "outrageous" and his secretary of state Hillary Clinton urged Assad "to stop the slaughter now".
At the United Nations, the Security Council, which has been deeply divided over Syria, met behind closed doors at Germany's request to discuss a revised European-drafted resolution backed by the US that has been languishing since late May that would condemn the Syrian government's attacks against civilians.
It has faced opposition from Russia, China, India, South Africa and Brazil.
India's UN ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri, this month's council president said members would meet again today to discuss the draft resolution.
Ovation as Giffords returns
Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords received a rapturous welcome in the House of Representatives at last night's debt vote - her first appearance since she was shot in a rampage which left six dead.
Members crowded around the Arizona Democrat to shake her hand.
Record haul of heroin
Panamanian police seized more than half a ton of heroin on the Caribbean coast, the largest seizure of the drug in the country's history, an official said.
Anti-drug prosecutors said police found the heroin inside an abandoned truck parked along a road in the remote coastal town of Gobea on Saturday.
The drug was in 639 packages each package apparently weighing 1kg.
The shipment is said to have originated in South America and been heading to North America.
Chavez backs old ally Gaddafi
VENEZUELAN president Hugo Chavez says his country would not recognise the governing body of Libya's rebels, defending Colonel Gaddafi and urging his ally to stand firm against the armed movement aimed at ousting the Libyan leader.
"I respect him a lot," Chavez said. "He's resisting there."Long live Libya!"
Man admits turtle traffick
A JAPANESE man has admitted smuggling 55 live turtles and tortoises into the United States by hiding them in snack food boxes.
Prosecutors say 39-year-old Atsushi Yamagami faces a maximum of 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on October 31.