At least 11 dead after mine fire
CHINA: A fire at a coal mine in the north of the country has killed 11 workers and two others are still missing.
Workers at a coal mine in Zhangjiakou city died from carbon monoxide poisoning on Thursday when an air compressor caught fire underground.
There were 13 miners underground when the fire started.
GREECE: A 20-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of belonging to a racist gang that mounted a string of attacks on Pakistani immigrants in Athens last year.
The arrest came amid a crackdown on surging racist crime in Greece, which is the European Union's main entry point for illegal immigrants and has seen a sharp rise in support for the xenophobic Golden Dawn party.
The suspect is believed to have taken part in three stabbings and one road attack - three of which were carried out within one hour in September.
FRANCE: Officials have condemned Armenian and Azerbaijani activists for clashing with one another in France's parliament.
Azerbaijan and Armenia have been in conflict since 1988 over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.
Things came to a head on Tuesday at the National Assembly in Paris during a conference when two Azerbaijanis tried to interrupt an event commemorating the anniversary of violence against Armenians in 1988.
NETHERLANDS: ABN Amro, the Dutch bank that was nationalised in 2008, says profits rose 43 per cent in 2013 as it booked fewer investment losses.
Net profit was €948 million (£822m), up from €665m (£577m) a year ago when the company took large losses on bonds it held in Greece.
And that is after ABN took large loan loss provisions against exposures to the foundering Dutch real estate and construction markets.
TURKEY: The US and Israel have rejected statements by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan which compared zionism to fascism at a UN meeting.
Mr Erdogan said Islamophobia ought to be considered a crime against humanity "just like zionism, antisemitism and fascism."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sharply condemned the statement, calling it "dark and mendacious."
IRAQ: A pair of car bombs exploded at a livestock market in the south of the country today, killing five and wounding dozens.
Provincial council head Jubair al-Jabouri said that 70 people were wounded in the attack in Diwaniyah.
The attacks come a day after bombings in Baghdad and towns south of the Iraqi capital killed at least 22 people.
UNITED NATIONS: Nearly 100 MPs from the US, Britain and Australia are calling on the security council to take urgent action to address the humanitarian crisis in Sudan's Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile provinces.
In a joint letter, the 98 MPs urged security council members to demand an end to aerial bombing against civilians, urgently address the humanitarian situation and press for an end to Sudan's conflicts, including Darfur.
US: A bipartisan group of senators is pushing a resolution saying that if Israel attacks Iran, the United States will offer assistance.
Senate foreign relations committee chairman Robert Menendez and Republican Lindsey Graham are chief sponsors of the measure, which specifies the US would provide military, diplomatic and economic support to Israel.
The senators hope to pass the measure before President Barack Obama's next trip to Israel, due in April.
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