World

Eighty-eight suspects in sectarian attacks were captured in Iraq and a weapons cache used for assembling improvised explosive devices destroyed during American and Iraqi raids last week, the US military said Sunday. Nine of the suspects were held after questioning. The Iraqi Army also reported killing 30 militants Saturday just north of Baghdad's Green Zone as efforts intensify to crush militants in the city. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has committed 20,000 soldiers to rooting them out.

During a protest Sunday in Dhaka, Bangladesh's capital, riot police injured several stick-wielding and stone-throwing demonstrators while trying to disperse them by firing rubber bullets and tear gas. The protesters want the Jan. 22 national election postponed, but interim President Iajuddin Ahmed said the constitution prevents changing the date.

Israeli government officials denied a report in The Sunday Times of London that Israel has drafted plans to knock out three Iranian uranium-enrichment facilities with "bunker-buster" nuclear weapons. The Times cited multiple unidentified Israeli military sources in its report, which said that Israeli pilots have been training to make bombing runs. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has repeatedly said the situation needs to be handled diplomatically.

In what observers said was one of the biggest rallies of the Fatah movement in recent memory, tens of thousands of supporters of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met in the Gaza Strip Sunday. The show of strength occurred in the stronghold of the governing Hamas militant movement, with which Abbas supporters are locked in a major power struggle.

The US and North Korea have provisionally agreed to discuss American sanctions against the communist regime in the week starting Jan. 22, South Korea's foreign minister said Sunday. Before six-nation talks to disarm North Korea can progress, the North says it wants sanctions lifted.

Indian security forces stepped up counterinsurgency operations Sunday in India's Assam State after separatist rebels killed 56 people in recent attacks. Officials said that the Army, police, and paramilitary forces would seek out rebel camps across the remote northeast state, where 10,000 people, mostly civilians, have died since the rebellion began in 1979.

In the view of British Prime Minister Tony Blair, the manner in which former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's Dec. 30 execution was carried out was "completely wrong," Blair's office said Sunday. Blair said he supports an Iraqi inquiry into leaked cellphone images that showed observers at the hanging taunting Hussein.

Nearly 700 fresh Indonesian troops were deployed Sunday to join several thousand soldiers, police, and civilians who've spent nearly a week trying unsuccessfully to locate a plane that disappeared with 102 people on board.

Hundreds of heavily armed Somali government troops patrolled in Mogadishu on Sunday in an effort to prevent further unrest from anti-Ethiopian protesters who've disrupted the capital city. Ethiopian forces helped to push Islamists out of the city on Dec. 28.

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