• HK activists say Beijing 'brutally strangled' democracy, vow action

    HONG KONG (Reuters) - A pro-democracy movement that has threatened to blockade Hong Kong's financial district has said Beijing "brutally strangled" its fight for full democracy and vowed to take action. On Monday, Hong Kong police used pepper spray to disperse pro-democracy activists after China's…

  • Fukushima workers sue Tepco over unpaid wages, reliance on contractors

    By Kevin Krolicki IWAKI Japan (Reuters) - A group of Fukushima workers on Wednesday sued Tokyo Electric for unpaid wages in a potentially precedent-setting legal challenge to the utility and its reliance on contractors to shut down a nuclear plant destroyed by the industry's worst accident since…

  • Ramirez removed as PDVSA head, oil minister in Venezuela shake-up

    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday pushed Rafael Ramirez from his twin posts as oil minister and a chief of state oil firm PDVSA in a cabinet shake-up that opposition critics said fell short of the overhaul needed to reverse the OPEC nation’s economic decline. Maduro promoted former…

    Reuters40 mins ago
  • Detroit's historic bankruptcy trial has its first day in court

    Detroit’s bankruptcy finally entered the courtroom Tuesday, beginning the final phase of a trial to determine if the city can emerge from under the weight of $18 billion in debt. It has taken Detroit 14 months of mediation, legal wrangling, and behind-closed-door negotiations with creditors and…

    Christian Science Monitor
  • Yelp! engaged in ‘hard bargaining,’ not extortion, appeals court says

    A federal appeals court in San Francisco on Tuesday threw out a lawsuit filed by small business owners who accused Yelp! Inc., of attempting to extort advertising payments by manipulating positive and negative reviews of their businesses. A three-judge panel of the Ninth US Circuit Court of…

    Christian Science Monitor
  • Obama approval rating slumping even in bluest of the blue California

    In a development many say harbingers ill for US Democrats everywhere in the midterm elections, President Obama’s approval ratings have fallen to a record low in California. A statewide Field Poll, released Tuesday, found that nearly as many Californians disapprove of the president’s job…

    Christian Science Monitor
  • Federal judge takes up contentious Texas voter ID law

    A federal judge took up the Obama administration’s challenge to a stringent voter ID law in Texas Tuesday in the first test of the Voting Rights Act weakened by the US Supreme Court last year. For two years, Texas voters have been required to show an approved form of identification before entering…

    Christian Science Monitor
  • UN Security Council meets on Ukraine crisis

    The U.N. Security Council met Thursday in an emergency session on the growing crisis in Ukraine with some members expressing outrage.

    Associated Press
  • Second Syria beheading raises stakes for US

    BEIRUT (AP) — Islamic State extremists have released a video purportedly showing the beheading of a second American journalist, Steven Sotloff, and warned President Barack Obama that continuing airstrikes against the group in Iraq will be met with the killing of more Western captives.

    Associated Press7 mins ago
  • Japan PM Abe appoints China-friendly lawmakers to key posts

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe picked two veteran lawmakers with friendly ties to China for top party posts on Wednesday in an apparent signal of hope for a thaw in chilly ties with Beijing and a summit with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. The change in executives in Abe's Liberal Democratic Party…

    Reuters24 mins ago
  • Obama to Europe: NATO to oppose Russian aggression

    TALLINN, Estonia (AP) — Confronted by a Kremlin-backed military offensive in Ukraine, President Barack Obama and Western allies will approve plans this week to position at least 4,000 troops and military equipment in Eastern Europe, bolstering NATO's security commitments to nervous member states…

    Associated Press35 mins ago
  • Top Asian News at 4:30 a.m. GMT

    ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan's lawmakers rallied behind the country's embattled prime minister Tuesday in an emergency session, even as thousands of protesters remained camped outside of parliament demanding his ouster. Speaking for the government in the joint session of Pakistan's National Assembly…

    Associated Press39 mins ago
  • McGrath to coach Indian pacers at MRF academy

    NEW DELHI (AP) — Former Australia test paceman great Glenn McGrath will have a hand in coaching India's promising fast bowlers after the Indian cricket board signed an agreement with his Chennai-based bowling academy.

    Associated Press45 mins ago
  • Bank of England set to hold rates at record low 0.50%

    The Bank of England is set to keep interest rates at a record-low 0.50 percent this week, as it eyes slowing inflation before next year's election, analysts say. Both Britain and the separate eurozone are worried about unduly low inflation, but this is a much bigger problem in the single currency…

    AFP49 mins ago
  • Asian teams turn focus from Brazil to Asian Cup

    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Less than three months after Asia's teams earned just three points at the World Cup, Australia, Japan and South Korea are back in action and ready to put Brazil behind them as the countdown to the 2015 Asian Cup begins.

    Associated Press50 mins ago
  • French mum reunited with daughter taken by alleged jihadi father

    A young French mother whose daughter had been smuggled out of the country by her father arrived home with the two-year-old girl on Wednesday after they were reunited earlier in Turkey. Meriam Rhaiem, 25, made headlines in March with an emotional appeal to French authorities to recognise her baby…

    AFP59 mins ago
  • Tropical storm Dolly hits Mexico's northeast coast

    (Reuters) - Tropical storm Dolly lashed Mexico's northeast coast on Tuesday night, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said, bringing torrential rain and life threatening flash floods. Dolly was blowing maximum sustained winds of 45 miles per hour (72 km per hour), but having made landfall…

    Reuters59 mins ago
  • PG&E faces record fines over deadly California pipeline blast

    By Rory Carroll SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - The California Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday levied penalties of a record $1.4 billion on Pacific Gas and Electric Co, stemming from the deadly 2010 San Bruno natural gas pipeline rupture and fire near San Francisco. This is the largest…