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WORLD IN BRIEF: Bombers hit Somali airport, killing 9 others

Bombers hit Somali airport, killing 9 others

MOGADISHU, Somalia -- A suicide car bomber exploded at the gate to Mogadishu's airport Thursday, and suicide bombers in a second vehicle rushed toward the terminal before exploding themselves short of their goal, officials said. Up to 14 people were killed, including five attackers.

The coordinated assault by al-Shabab fighters was the latest in a surge of attacks by Islamist insurgents, who last month declared a new, stepped-up effort to oust the country's weak government. The barrage took place about 40 minutes after Somalia's president flew out of the country.

4 prisoners escape US custody in Iraq

BAGHDAD -- Four prisoners with links to al-Qaida being guarded by American troops escaped from a maximum-security prison in Baghdad and are still at large, U.S. and Iraqi officials said Thursday.

The breakout from Karkh Prison, formerly called Camp Cropper, is an embarrassment for the U.S. military, which has handed over control of all of the detention facilities it used to run to the Iraqi government. But at the request of the Iraqis, the U.S. has retained custody over some of the most dangerous prisoners, including those with ties to terrorist groups or Saddam Hussein's former regime.

U.S. troops found two detainees attempting to escape from the compound on Wednesday evening, the military said in a statement. When they conducted a sweep of the whole facility, they discovered that four other detainees were missing.

Iran to free one American as an act of clemency

TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran said Thursday it will free Sarah Shourd, one of three Americans jailed for more than 13 months, as an act of clemency to mark the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

The imprisonment of the Americans has deepened tensions between the U.S. and Iran, a relationship already strained over Washington's suspicions that Tehran is trying to manufacture nuclear weapons -- something Iran denies.

Bak Sahraei, the second counselor of Iran's UN mission sent an e-mail confirming the release of Shourd, following up an earlier text message from the Culture Ministry telling reporters them to come to a Tehran hotel on Saturday morning to witness the release.