United States: Envoy resigns
WASHINGTON President Bush's special envoy for Sudan, Andrew Natsios, resigned Friday and was replaced by a former U.S. diplomat to the United Nations amid questions about the administration's policies toward the vast African nation.
The White House announced that Natsios would step down after just over a year on the job, during which officials said he was frequently frustrated by internal bureaucratic battles in Washington over the direction of Sudan policy. Natsios, who will return to academia, is to be replaced by Richard "Rich" Williamson, an attorney, former ambassador and senior Republican party official in Illinois, the White House said.
Bahrain: Rioting continues
MANAMA Riot police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse another day of demonstrations in Bahrain on Friday, rounding up scores of protesters and injuring at least one, witnesses said.
The protests, the fourth this week, came after dawn raids by security forces on the homes of the country's most outspoken opposition group, arresting at least seven of its members, the group said. Shiites account for about 70 percent of Bahrain's 450,000 citizens, but the ruling family is Sunni. Economic disparities between the ruling elite and the poorer majority have contributed to feelings of marginalization among Shiites, who have waged an occasionally violent campaign against the government.
Guatemala: Obese man dies
GUATEMALA CITY A man who weighed 698 pounds died Friday of heart failure after undergoing an operation to remove 80 percent of his stomach in a desperate effort to reduce his weight.
Carlos Marroquin, 47, was so heavy at the time of Thursday's operation that hospital workers used a forklift to place him on the operating table, surgeon Isaias Sandigo, who participated in the procedure, said. "He had two heart attacks in 20 minutes, there was nothing we could have done for him."
Iraq: Suicide bomber kills 5
BAGHDAD A suicide bomber rammed his truck into a police station in a town south of Baghdad on Friday, killing four police officers and one civilian.
The attack took place in Yousifiya, about 10 miles outside the capital, in an area once dubbed the "triangle of death" because of the level of Sunni Muslim insurgent violence. In the past year, however, violence there has subsided considerably. U.S. officials have credited the turnabout in large part to the recruitment of former backers of the insurgency, often referred to as Concerned Local Citizens, who now work as volunteers alongside U.S. and Iraqi security forces.
New Zealand: Aftershock rattles
WELLINGTON A magnitude 4.8 earthquake rattled a New Zealand city Saturday after it was hit by a powerful temblor earlier this week that resulted in millions of dollars in damage and 16 injuries.
Geological agency GNS Science said the aftershock was centered 18 miles southeast of Gisborne city at a depth of 18 miles. There were no reports of injuries or damage from the third magnitude 4 aftershock in a day and a half. Thursday's 6.8-magnitude temblor wrecked an apartment building and two shops in the port city, 30 miles from the quake's epicenter.
Peru: Fujimori apologizes
LIMA Former president Alberto Fujimori, on trial for murder and kidnapping, apologized Friday for two death squad massacres that could land him in prison for 30 years.
Fujimori, 69, is accused of authorizing the 1991 military death-squad killings of 15 people, including an eight-year-old boy, in a tenement in Lima's Barrios Altos neighborhood as well as the 1992 slayings of nine students and a professor at La Cantuta University.
"I ask for forgiveness from all the victims," Fujimori said in court, responding to questioning from a lawyer representing victims' families. "It hurt my soul."