Congo refugees suffer shooting, rape, looting

KIBATI, Congo - Looting soldiers tried to rape one woman and fatally shot another at a refugee camp, witnesses said Friday, as the United Nations prepared to send more peacekeepers to help protect traumatized civilians in eastern Congo.

But Congo's president said the 3,100 additional troops proposed by the U.N. would not be enough to halt the unfolding disaster.

Some 67,000 people have overrun the village of Kibati, just north of the provincial capital of Goma. The U.N. refugee agency said Friday it was postponing plans to move refugees from the area, which is near the front line between soldiers and rebels.

Islamists say they'll fight Somali pirates

MOGADISHU, Somalia - A radical Islamic group in Somalia said Friday it will fight the pirates holding a Saudi supertanker loaded with $100 million worth of crude oil.

Abdelghafar Musa, a fighter with al-Shabab who claims to speak on behalf of all Islamic fighters in the Horn of Africa nation, said ships belonging to Muslim countries should not be seized.

'We are really sorry to hear that the Saudi ship has been held in Somalia. We will fight them (the pirates),' Musa told AP Television News.

Myanmar court gives comedian prison term

YANGON, Myanmar - Myanmar's courts continued a crackdown on activists Friday, handing out a 45-year prison sentence to a comedian who went to the delta to help cyclone victims and criticized the junta's slow relief response.

Comedian and activist Zarganar, whose birth name is Maung Thura, was among at least 100 people to receive sentences of two to 65 years since early November.

Iraqi Shiites burn Bush effigy in protest

BAGHDAD - Thousands of followers of a radical Shiite cleric protested a proposed U.S.-Iraqi security deal Friday, burning an effigy of President George W. Bush in the same square where Iraqis beat a toppled Saddam Hussein statue five years ago.

Chanting and waving flags, Muqtada al-Sadr's followers filled Firdous Square to protest the pact that would allow American troops to stay for three more years.