A "decisive victory" was proclaimed by Chinese authorities Tuesday after water from the nation's most dangerous "quake lake" roared down a man-made spillway just before new rains that could swell it further were expected. By nightfall, more than half the water in Tangjiashan Lake had drained, easing pressure on the rock-and-mud dam caused by the May 12 quake. Above, soldiers aim a rocket launcher at objects that could impede the flow of water from the lake.
Saying, "our victory is certain" in Zimbabwe's June 27 presidential runoff, opposition candidate Morgan Tsvangirai dismissed talk of a unity government as premature Tuesday. Earlier, a senior aide to incumbent Robert Mugabe appeared to lend new credence to suggestions that sharing power with Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change would be good for the nation. Since the disputed election in March, Zimbabwe "is effectively being run by a military junta," not by Mugabe, Tsvangirai said.
A bomb exploded under the car of Saddam Hussein's tribal leader in Tikrit, Iraq, Tuesday, killing him and his driver and seriously wounding three bodyguards. Sheikh Ali al-Neda had accepted the dictator's remains for burial following his execution in 2006 and later called on Iraqis to "build a future without revenge." His Sunni al-Bu Nasir tribe consists of about 20,000 members, among them Hussein's remaining relatives.
UN analysts headed to the cyclone-ravaged Irrawaddy Delta of Burma (Myanmar) Tuesday for a village-by-village tour to assess the need for food, clean water, shelter, and means to restore the local economy. Without using the word "finally," a UN spokeswoman said the ruling junta "is on board by its commitment to facilitate the relief operation." The May 2-3 storm left more than 1 million people in the delta in dire need of help, the UN has estimated. The junta has been criticized sharply for its handling of the disaster and for barring foreign relief personnel from the delta.
Wasting no time, the leader of the militant Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) rejected the cease-fire signed Monday night by Somalia's interim government and the opposition Alliance for Reliberation. Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys called the truce, which was brokered by the UN, "rubbish" and said UIC units "shall continue fighting until we liberate our country." The UIC ruled much of Somalia in 2006 before being ousted by government and Ethiopian forces.
Despite years of growth and prosperity under European Union membership, voters in the Republic of Ireland appeared divided on whether to OK or reject the bloc's proposed new constitution in a referendum Thursday. One late opinion survey put the likely "yes" vote at 42 percent compared with 39 percent opposed. Another poll showed a five-point lead for the "no" vote. Ireland is the only one of 27 EU members holding such a vote. The proposed charter would replace the one rejected by French and Dutch voters three years ago. Below, a "vote no" slogan decorates a wall in Dublin.
Nine members of Nigeria's Navy were killed and four civilians were wounded Tuesday when militants targeted a supply ship belonging to foreign-owned Addax Petroleum, reports said. The attack was the second against the company's vessels in the Niger Delta in two days. Another sailor died and an unspecified number of others were hurt in Monday's incident. Addax is a Canadian-owned affiliate of an oil and gas exploration company based in Geneva.
Deposed King Gyanendra of Nepal spent his final night in the royal palace before vacating it on the orders of the nation's new Constituent Assembly. He and his family are being permitted to move to the royal summer home near Katmandu until private quarters can be found for them. The assembly abolished the monarchy last month, declaring Nepal a republic and nationalizing most royal assets.