APTN, Associated Press
A TV frame grab shows an Afghan militant in Wardak province.

Afghanistan: 3 killed in attack

KABUL — Militants attacked troops from the U.S.-led coalition patrolling south of the Afghan capital on Thursday, killing three of them and an Afghan interpreter.

The nationality of the troops was not released, though the coalition is dominated by American forces. International and Afghan forces were searching for the attackers, a coalition statement said.

The convoy was attacked as it passed through Saydabad, a district of Wardak province, which borders the capital of Kabul.

Chile: Whale hunt denied

SANTIAGO — The International Whaling Commission voted down Thursday a request by indigenous Greenland fishermen to kill 10 humpback whales a year.

The fisherman offered to give up rights to eight fin whales in return for the humpbacks. Denmark pushed for a vote on the controversial proposal despite efforts by the whaling commission this week to find compromise between pro- and anti- whaling nations and postpone divisive issues.

Israel: Violence strains truce

JERUSALEM — Gaza militants fired two rockets into southern Israel on Thursday, further straining a shaky, week-old truce as Israel kept vital Gaza border crossings closed in response.

The rocket attack, the second since the cease-fire took effect, led to a call for retaliation by Israel's Foreign Minister while Palestinians charged that the continued closure of crossings violated terms of the cease-fire.

Mexico: Police official killed

MEXICO CITY — A gunman killed a top federal police official and his bodyguard Thursday as they ate lunch in Mexico City, the latest attack against authorities waging a nationwide battle against organized crime.

Insp. Igor Labastida was among officers in charge of combatting contraband, said Public Safety Department spokesman Eduardo Cano.

Labastida's two other bodyguards and a woman who was a Public Safety administrative employee were injured, Cano said.

Nepal: Leader resigns

KATMANDU — Nepal's prime minister cleared the way for a government led by former communist rebels Thursday with the announcement of his long-delayed resignation.

Word of Girija Prasad Koirala's decision came as a general strike swept through the capital to protest an increase in fuel prices, shutting down schools, businesses and markets.

Koirala had refused for months to step down and make way for a new government.

South Africa: Official faces trial

CAPE TOWN — A court on Thursday ordered the nation's top cop to stand trial on corruption charges next year, widening a leadership vacuum in law enforcement agencies struggling to control one of the world's highest crime rates.

Jackie Selebi is accused of accepting bribes from a businessman who was convicted of drug smuggling and of trying to shield him from prosecution. Selebi has been on a leave of absence from the police commissioner post since he was charged last February, when he also quit as president of Interpol.

Tonga: Quake shakes area

NUKU'ALOFA — Officials say a strong earthquake in the South Pacific has shaken homes and other buildings in Tonga, but there were no immediate reports of injury or damage.

The U.S. Geological Survey says the magnitude 6.1 temblor struck midmorning today about 125 miles northeast of the capital, Nuku'alofa, and some 12 miles below the sea floor.