The commander of prisons in Iraq apologized, and the Red Cross was invited to open an office inside the Abu Ghraib facility in Baghdad as the US sought to defuse the issue of inmate mistreatment by American guards. But a tour of the prison for journalists threatened to worsen the image problem for the US as more inmates clamored for attention with stories of abuse and demands for their release.

Defying the state of emergency declared by their provincial leader, thousands of protesters crowded the capital of Ajaria, demanding his resignation. Many of them regrouped after Aslan Abashidze's armed supporters and police had dispersed them with water cannon and nightsticks. In other signs that his days in power may be numbered, police reportedly were seen joining the protesters; Ajaria's security chief defected to the side of Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili, Abashidze's political enemy; and the province's chief prosecutor resigned.

Worry about security for this summer's Olympic Games grew as three bombs exploded minutes apart outside a police station in central Athens. No one was hurt, and the Greek government hastened to call the predawn blasts "an isolated incident" for which local leftists were responsible. But the station - which is near the hotels in which Olympics officials are booked for the Aug. 13-29 event - was heavily damaged. Australia, which staged the 2000 Summer Games, said the attack wouldn't affect plans to send a team to Athens but that it would not try to change the minds of any athletes who decided against going.

A school janitor was shot to death and a businessman was wounded in the first attacks by suspected Muslim militants in southern Thailand since last week's fighting with police and Army troops there. The incidents, which fit the pattern of previous shootings blamed on Muslims in the volatile area, came as Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra was scheduled to arrive for a three-day inspection tour. A warrant was issued for the arrest of a fugitive Muslim religious teacher suspected of inciting the violence, now in its fifth month.

The final tally, released a month to the day after Indonesia's national election, returned the political party of former dictator Suharto to its former status as the largest in parliament. The results showed Golkar won 21.6 percent of the vote. President Megawati Sukarnoputri's Democratic Party of Struggle finished second, with 18.5 percent, a result that analysts said dims her reelection hopes in the July balloting. Due to the complex election system, however, the totals do not necessarily correlate to the number of seats Golkar will have in parliament.

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