World

The six envoys to foundering talks on dismantling North Korea's nuclear program agreed to reconvene Monday for a fifth and final day of negotiations in Beijing. "The situation remains severe," Japanese envoy Kenichiro Sasae told reporters late Sunday. Negotiators from the US, China, Japan, North and South Korea, and Russia failed to overcome differences on the North's demands for energy aid. Participants had hoped the talks would result in the North taking its first concrete steps to dismantling its nuclear program in more than three years.

Citizens of Turkmenistan flocked to the polls Sunday for the first presidential election with multiple candidates. Prospects for any sort of major change seemed remote, as the country has only one legal political party and acting President Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov is expected to retain office. He took over after Saparmurat Niyazov, who tightly controlled the central Asian country for two decades, died two months ago. Many foreign journalists were denied visas to cover the election.

Rioting by thousands of people engulfed Guinea's eastern city of Kankan on Sunday the day after protests turned deadly, with 14 fatalities. Union leaders in the mineral-rich West African country want an independent prime minister and have vowed to resume a crippling general strike until a close ally of President Lansana Conte is ousted.

"We will give no truce or quarter to the enemies of Mexico," Mexican President Felipe Calderón told troops at a military base in Mexico City Saturday. His remarks were aimed at the drug gangs suspected of pulling off a murderous plot last week, in which attackers disguised as soldiers killed seven law enforcement officials in Acapulco.

Two ethnic Albanian protesters were killed Saturday when a clash with police in Pristina, Serbia, turned violent. The fatalities occurred as demonstrators marched on a government building to register their opposition to a UN plan calling for internationally supervised self-rule for Kosovo, a province in southern Serbia. The protesters demand full independence from Serbia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin concludes the first trip by a Russian leader to Saudi Arabia Monday following meetings with top officials in the kingdom. Discussions reportedly have centered on economic and military cooperation and conflicts in the region. Under Josef Stalin, Moscow broke off diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia in 1938 and did not restore them until 1990.

The Israeli Cabinet voted Sunday to proceed with renovations at a disputed holy site in Jerusalem despite calls from Palestinians and Muslims throughout the world to halt the project. Israel says the work to replace a walkway will not affect the hillside compound known to Muslims as the Nobel Sanctuary and to Jews as the Temple Mount.

British opposition leader David Cameron, who is credited with refashioning the Conservative Party, said Sunday that he wouldn't deny newspaper reports that he smoked cannabis 25 years ago as a student at Eton. He said politicians are "entitled to a past that is private." Party officials said they don't expect the reports to affect Cameron's political standing.

Aided by several days of relatively dry weather, many people displaced during the height of last week's flood in Jakarta returned to their homes by Sunday, officials reported. Roughly 80,000, however, may need weeks or months to sufficiently to remove mud and debris.

On Sunday, Tokyo set a new record for the longest it's ever gone snowless at the beginning of a winter, the national meteorological agency said. Forecasters are calling for the weather to remain warm for the rest of February. The mild winter has forced cancellations of snow festivals and hurt the sale of winter clothes and heaters.

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