A soldier loyal to Ivory Coast's democratically elected president, Alassane Ouattara, sits in a pickup truck alongside a belt of ammunition as he prepares to deploy from a checkpoint serving as a republican forces operating base, at one of the main entrances to Abidjan, Ivory Coast. Days into an offensive aimed at dislodging him from the presidential mansion, Ivory Coast's strongman former president, Laurent Gbagbo, refused to budge from a bunker underneath his home, insisting he would never surrender despite the immense international pressure bearing down on him. Rebecca Blackwell/AP
Indian farmers carry cucumbers along the banks of the River Ganges in Allahabad, India. The cucumber, a summer vegetable of north India, becomes popular with the rise in temperature. Rajesh Kumar Singh/AP
A graduate steps off to receive his graduation certificate during an Afghan Uniform Police graduation at the Qalat Police Training Center in the Zabul Province of Afghanistan. More than 240 officers graduated from training and will return to their respective communities to serve. USAF Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson/AP
Hot air balloons take off from Lydden Hill Race Circuit near Canterbury, southeast England, during a world-record-breaking attempt for the largest number of hot air balloons to cross the English Channel. A total of 51 balloonists took off for the estimated four-hour flight to France. Gareth Fuller/AP
A boy wades in neck-deep seawater filled with debris while searching for valuable items after a fire razed some 500 houses along a coastal village in Malabon city, north of Manila. The fire, believed to be caused by an exploding liquefied petroleum gas tank, started before dawn. No casualties were reported but at least 3,000 residents lost their homes. Erik de Castro/Reuters
Libyan rebel fighters ride a motorcycle as they beat a hasty retreat from Ajdabiya, Libya, fearing that pro-Qaddafi forces could use the disarray among rebel units following airstrikes on them. Rebel fighters claimed NATO airstrikes blasted their forces in another apparent mistake that sharply escalated anger about coordination with the military alliance in efforts to cripple pro-Qaddafi forces. Ben Curtis/AP
During a photocall at the London Zoo, a Bolivian squirrel monkey checks sunglasses with bitter apple smeared on them to deter monkeys from stealing visitors' sunglasses. Zookeepers decided to train the monkeys to stop them from grabbing people's sunglasses as monkeys don't like the taste of anything sour. Matt Dunham/AP
A South Korean student holding an umbrella at Midong elementary school in Seoul, South Korea, talks on his mobile phone as he goes to his home, amid fears that the rain may contain radioactive materials from the crippled nuclear reactors in Japan. More than 100 South Korean schools have canceled or shortened classes over fears that rain falling across the country may include radiation from Japan's stricken nuclear plant. Ahn Young-joon/AP
Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill releases white doves in Moscow's Kremlin to mark the Russian Orthodox holiday of the Annunciation. Vladimir Rodionov/RIA Novosti/AP
Parents and relatives of schoolchildren wait outside Tasso da Silveira school where a gunman opened fire on children in the Realengo neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro. A gunman killed 12 people in a shooting spree at the school before killing himself, police said, an incident apparently unrelated to the city's ongoing gang violence. Sergio Moraes/Reuters
An Indian mahout sits atop his elephant as it stands in a vacant parking spot while resting on a roadside in New Delhi. There are an estimated 28,000 wild elephants in India, along with thousands of domesticated ones that do everything from performing in shows to carrying heavy loads in the country's big cities. Kevin Frayer/AP
The sculpture 'Rainforest tree,' at 141 feet, towers over the space in the Gasometer in Oberhausen, Germany. The giant tree, by artist Wolfgang Volz, transforms the industrial colossus into a cathedral of nature and is part of the new UNESCO exhibition 'Magic places - nature and culture monuments of the world.' Martin Meissner/AP
A model waits backstage before a show during the Wills Life Style India Fashion Week in New Delhi. Manish Swarup/AP
US Defense Secretary Robert Gates talks with troops from the US Army 25th Infantry Division from Hawaii and answers their questions during a visit at Camp Victory in Baghdad, Iraq. Gates is meeting with military and civilian leaders during what he described as possibly his last trip to Iraq as Defense secretary. Chip Somodevilla/AP
Artist Tyree Guyton adjusts shoes at his 'Street Folk' installation on Edmund Place in Detroit. Guyton says 'the shoes are a reflection of people, all going in different directions and yet they are all in the streets.' Carlos Osorio/AP
An Afghan man and children gather around a fire on a hillside neighborhood in Kabul, Afghanistan. Hossein Fatemi/AP
Dogs wander around the town of Minami Soma inside the deserted evacuation zone established for the 20-kilometer radius around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex in northeastern Japan. Hiro Komae/AP
Danielle Healt, dressed for a photo shoot at Ontario Beach, walks near the shore of Lake Ontario in Rochester, N.Y. Tina Yee/Democrat & Chronicle/AP
Tiger Woods of the US hits from a sand trap on the eighth fairway during first round play in the 2011 Masters Golf Tournament at the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga. Brian Snyder/Reuters
Thousands shut down the main highway in Caracas to express their anger with the increasingly embattled administration of President Nicolas Maduro.
ByFabiola Sanchez and Hannah Dreier, Associated Press
Protesters sprawled in lawn chairs, worked on math homework and played cards on main roads around Venezuela's cities Monday, joining in sit-ins to disrupt traffic as the latest slap at the socialist government.
Thousands shut down the main highway in Caracas to express their anger with the increasingly embattled administration of President Nicolas Maduro. They turned the road into a kind of public plaza, with protesters settling in for picnics, reading books and reclining under umbrellas they brought to protect against the blazing Caribbean sun.
In the provinces, protests turned deadly. The public prosecutor announced that 54-year-old Renzo Rodriguez was killed by a gunshot to the chest Monday at a protest in the plains state of Barinas. In the mountain town of Merida, state worker Jesus Sulbaran was fatally shot in the neck at a pro-government rally. In addition, five people were injured at the Merida protest, Venezuela ombudsman Tarek William Saab said.
The two killings raised to 23 the number of deaths linked to unrest that began almost a month ago over the Supreme Court's decision to gut the opposition-controlled congress of its powers.
The Caracas gathering was largely peaceful, though some protesters wrapped bandanas around their faces and threw stones at police, prompting state security forces to release a cloud of tear gas.
Juan Carlos Bautista passed the afternoon playing dominos.
"We want to be free. I'm here fighting for my children and my children's children," he said.
The current wave of protests is the most intense the economically struggling country has seen since two months of anti-government protests in 2014 that left dozens dead. But while those protests were led by young people who built flaming barricades in the street, this month's movement is attracting masses of older protesters, who say they are fighting not for themselves, but for the younger generations.
Protesters in at least a dozen other cities staged sit-ins, with some building barricades to stop traffic. In Caracas, protesters dragged concrete slabs, garbage and even a bathtub into the road. Retired professor Lisbeth Colina said she decided to participate in the sit-in for her grandchildren.