President Obama has called the Afghan President Hamid Karzai to express his shock and sadness at the killing of 16 Afghan civilians by a rogue American soldier, but he stressed the soldier didn't represent the US military or America's respect for the Afghan people. Quentin Sommerville reports from Kabul.
The gunman, a serving US soldier, left his base at 3:00am. He travelled to a nearby village and entered three Afghan homes. In one, he awoke all 11 family members, gathered them together and shot them dead. Then he burnt the bodies. In nearby homes, he killed five others. Locals are calling it a massacre . The soldier was careful and precise. Most were killed by a single shot to the head, including the children. The soldier, believed to be a staff sergeant, gave himself up and is now in US custody.
The international peace envoy for Syria, Kofi Annan, says he's handed over a set of concrete proposals aimed at defusing the crisis there during a second round of talks with President Bashar al-Assad. Jon Donnison reports from neighbouring Lebanon.
Emerging from a second round of talks in as many days, Kofi Annan told reporters his meetings with President Assad focused on three core objectives: an immediate end to the violence, access for aid and the start of a political dialogue with the opposition. But he gave no details of how any of those things might be achieved. Both sides have so far rejected the idea of peace talks. Mr Annan said the natural response was for the Syrian leader to embrace change and reform, but he said bringing an end to a year of violence would not be easy.
A suicide bomb attack on a church in the central Nigerian city of Jos has killed at least 10 people. It's the second such attack in Jos in two weeks. Here's Mark Lobel.
Eyewitnesses said the suicide bombers refused to open the boot of their car when challenged at church gates before detonating the explosives as worshippers approached them. It took place in St Finbar's Catholic Church in the affluent Rayfield suburb of Jos, a town in which thousands have died from religious and ethnic violence over the past decade. Security forces denied allegations of opening fire on onlookers who gathered after the blast. No groups admitted responsibility for the attack although suspicion will fall on the militant Islamist group Boko Haram, who were behind a similar church attack in Jos two weeks ago, in which three people were killed.
An Egyptian military court has acquitted an army doctor who was charged with carrying out forced virginity tests on women detained during protests last year. One of the women, Samira Ibrahim, who pressed charges against the doctor, said she'd been forced to undergo a test in March after being arrested in Tahrir Square. She said that witnesses she believed would testify for her had changed their story.
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The authorities in China say police rescued more than 24,000 abducted Chinese women and children in the course of last year. The public security ministry said in a report that some had been sold for adoption or forced into prostitution as far away as Angola. It said police had broken up more than 3,000 trafficking gangs.
The President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, has said that unless European Union immigration controls are strengthened, he will suspend French participation in the EU's visa-free travel area, the Schengen zone. Addressing an election rally near Paris, he said that EU measures to combat illegal immigration must be strengthened.
"Europe will not be able to integrate those who are struggling so hard to find a place in our society. It will not be able to finance its social protection anymore. This truth, my dear friends, needs to be heard because it is an exact description of the reality our fellow citizens and 450 million other Europeans are experiencing every day."
Mr Sarkozy is campaigning ahead of French presidential elections next month. Immigration has been a focus of attention in France in recent weeks.
Tuareg rebels in northern Mali have seized a military base where hundreds of civilians had sought refuge from weeks of fighting. Soldiers reportedly fled the camp at Tessalit when the rebels launched an attack. The fate of the civilians is unclear. The BBC West Africa correspondent says it's a highly symbolic victory for the Tuareg-led fighters who've taken several towns since fighting began two months ago.
The Swiss have rejected proposals for more annual leave . The plans were turned down in a referendum. Two thirds of voters said no to bringing the annual entitlement from four to six weeks, the standard in most of Western Europe.