Iraqi PM: Man who threw shoes blames militant for plot

BAGHDAD - Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki moved Monday to undermine the popularity of the Iraqi who threw his shoes at President George W. Bush, saying the journalist confessed that the mastermind of the attack was a militant known for slitting his victims' throats.

Tensions over the case also spilled into parliament, as a move to oust the abrasive Sunni speaker delayed a key decision on whether non-U.S. foreign troops will be allowed to stay in Iraq beyond New Year's Eve.

Al-Maliki said that in a letter of apology to him, Muntadhar al-Zeidi wrote that a known militant had induced him to throw the shoes.

Afghan leader presses US on strategy

KABUL, Afghanistan - President Hamid Karzai pressed America's top military leader Monday on the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan and preparations to pour up to 30,000 more forces into the country, reflecting Karzai's concerns over civilian casualties and operations in villages.

The Afghan president, stinging from a series of civilian casualties in U.S. military operations in recent years, said he doubts that sending more American forces into Afghan villages will tamp down the insurgency, and he has questioned a U.S. plan to deploy 3,500 U.S. forces in two provinces on Kabul's doorstep next month.

India FM: We will act on Mumbai if Pakistan won't

NEW DELHI - Pakistan is shifting blame and responsibility for last month's deadly attacks in Mumbai, India's foreign minister charged Monday, adding that Delhi would take action against the perpetrators if Islamabad failed to.

India's Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee said that if Pakistan doesn't deal with those responsible, India was prepared to 'take all measures necessary as we deem fit to deal with the situation.'

British ex-royal servant jailed in child sex cases

LONDON - A former butler to Queen Elizabeth II was sentenced Monday to at least six years in prison after admitting he molested three children, including one who accompanied him to a royal Christmas party.