UN: Money, time running out for Iraqis who fled
BAGHDAD - One-third of Iraqi refugees who fled to neighboring Syria expect their money to run out within three months, the U.N. refugee agency said Friday in a report highlighting what some believe is the main reason families are returning to their still-violent homeland.
The report from the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, which drew on surveys of Iraqis in Syria, Lebanon and Jordan, found that the refugees were most concerned about money, schooling for their children and lack of work.
A U.N. spokeswoman said those worries - not improved security in Iraq - appear to be the driving force behind the decision by thousands of Iraqis to return.
Algerians mourn relatives, friends dead in bombings
ALGIERS, Algeria - Bearded men in flowing white robes prayed and women in Muslim head scarves wiped away tears Friday as Algerians buried victims of suicide bombings at U.N. offices and a government building that killed at least 37 people.
The bombings claimed by a former insurgent group now calling itself al-Qaida in Islamic North Africa sent a chilling reminder that the government's fight against religious extremists is far from over - and becoming increasingly international.
Kenya's first lady accused of slapping official
NAIROBI, Kenya - Kenyan security agents seized and erased a video showing the first lady slapping a government official, apparently angered because he introduced her by the name of a woman widely believed to be the president's second wife, officials said Friday.
Kenya's media regulator gave President Mwai Kibaki's office two weeks to explain the incident, which happened at the president's official residence during Wednesday's Independence Day celebration. The deadline means no response is due until after the Dec. 27 presidential election, in which polls show Mwai Kibaki is trailing and which is shaping up to be the closest in Kenyan history.
Mortar shells slam Mogadishu for second day
MOGADISHU, Somalia - Mortar shells rained down on Mogadishu for a second day Friday, killing at least five people, and the African Union's new representative for Somalia said he expected more peacekeepers to arrive starting this month.
More troops would bolster a peacekeeping force operating in one of the world's most violent and gun-infested cities. But earlier promises reinforcements would arrive soon have not been fulfilled.