Divers find bodies in capsized ferry following storm
SAN FERNANDO, Philippines - A coast guard diver searching for survivors Tuesday inside a ferry that capsized in a typhoon found bodies and a bit of comfort - a plastic rosary floating in the water.
Lt. Cmdr. Inocencio Rosario slipped on the string of light blue beads for luck and hoped it was an omen that a miracle was still possible, that survivors would be found inside the hulking vessel.
Typhoon Fengshen toppled the seven-story ferry Saturday as it cut a deadly swath through the central Philippines. Only four dozen survivors have been found; more than 800 passengers and crew are missing.
Two NATO troops killed, convoy torched near Kabul
KABUL, Afghanistan - Militants torched a convoy carrying military supplies just south of the Afghan capital Tuesday and killed two NATO troops in the turbulent south and east.
The attacks demonstrated the limited gains from the costly six-year effort to stabilize and bring security to Afghanistan, which is drawing in ever-larger numbers of NATO troops.
German defense officials said Tuesday they plan to increase the number of their troops in Afghanistan by 1,000 this fall, pushing their contingent to 4,500. There are now about 60,000 foreign troops in the country.
UN says fair vote in Zimbabwe impossible
UNITED NATIONS - Outraged at the turmoil in Zimbabwe, the U.N. Security Council declared a fair presidential vote is impossible because of a 'campaign of violence' being waged by President Robert Mugabe's government.
The 15-nation council said late Monday it 'condemns the campaign of violence against the political opposition ahead of the second round of presidential elections,' which has resulted in the killing of scores of opposition activists and other Zimbabweans.
Sadr City blast kills 4 Americans
BAGHDAD - A bomb exploded inside Sadr City's district council building Tuesday, killing 10 people, including four Americans working to restore local government and services in the former Shiite militia stronghold.
Iraqi officials said it appeared to be an inside job, and suspicion fell on the headquarters' Shiite guard force. The blast was the second deadly attack to strike Americans promoting municipal governments in as many days.
Countries commit $242M to strengthen Palestinian systems
BERLIN - Countries at an international conference Tuesday agreed to commit $242 million to strengthen the Palestinian Authority's police and judicial systems, sending what Germany's foreign minister called a 'clear signal of support' for building a Palestinian state.
The money will go to projects that include police training, building a forensic lab and prisons, installing communications networks and creation of courthouses.
Policeman suicide mars Sarkozy farewell in Israel
JERUSALEM - An Israeli official said a policeman committed suicide at an airport farewell for French President Nicolas Sarkozy, setting off panic at the ceremony.
The shooting at Israel's Ben-Gurion airport sent Sarkozy's wife, Carla Bruni, running up the stairs into their airplane. Security guards surrounded the French leader and whisked him aboard as well. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was also hustled away.
Police spokesman Shlomi Sagi said the policeman died in an apparent suicide. Police said there was no assassination attempt on Sarkozy.
Rockets fired at Israel from Gaza shake truce
JERUSALEM - Palestinian militants fired three homemade rockets into southern Israel on Tuesday, threatening to unravel a cease-fire days after it began, and Israel responded by closing vital border crossings into Gaza.
Despite what it called a 'gross violation' of the truce, Israel refrained from military action and said it would send an envoy soon to Egypt to work on the next stage of a broader cease-fire agreement: a prisoner swap that would bring home an Israeli soldier held by Hamas for more than two years.
Hamas, the militant Islamic group that rules Gaza, promised to rein in the Iran- and Syria-backed faction that carried out the rocket attacks and pledged to remain committed to the truce that went into effect June 19 and urged restraint by all sides.