By Kevin Yao BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s plan to spend $6.5 trillion on urbanization to bolster the economy is running into snags, sources close to the government said, as top leaders fear another spending binge could push up local debt levels and inflate a property bubble. Premier Li Keqiang has rejected an urbanization proposal drafted by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), seeking changes to put more emphasis on economic reform, according to the sources, who are familiar with the matter. …
NIAMEY, Niger (AP) — Attackers in Niger detonated two car bombs, one in the city of Agadez where a military barracks was targeted and one in Arlit where a French company operates a uranium mine, injuring more than a dozen people.
Read more here: Simultaneous car bomb attacks in Niger
PARIS (Reuters) – Areva said on Thursday that 13 staff had been injured in an attack at its Somair mine near Arlit in northern Niger. The French nuclear reactor maker condemned what it called a “despicable attack” and said it was working closely with the Niger and French forces. (Reporting by James Regan; Editing by John Irish)
Read more here: Areva says 13 staff injured in Niger attack
BEIRUT (AP) — A Lebanese security official says five people have been killed in overnight gunbattles between opponents and supporters of the Syrian regime in the Lebanese city of Tripoli.
Read more here: 5 dead in Lebanon clash of Assad foes, backers
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysian authorities detained three anti-government figures, charged a student activist with sedition and seized hundreds of opposition newspapers Thursday, raising political tensions after recent national elections triggered claims of fraud.
Read more here: Malaysian charged with sedition, 3 more arrested
TOKYO (AP) — Keeping the meltdown-stricken Fukushima nuclear plant in northeastern Japan in stable condition requires a cast of thousands. Increasingly the plant's operator is struggling to find enough workers, a trend that many expect to worsen and hamper progress in the decades-long effort to safely decommission it.
Read more here: Stricken Japan nuke plant struggles to keep staff
By Andrei Khalip LISBON (Reuters) – President Anibal Cavaco Silva thanked Portugal's patron saint for a long-delayed approval of Lisbon's bailout review last week, but the head of state could claim a share of the credit for himself. The conservative president's role has grown far beyond his figurehead status in the past few weeks. With the president on his side, Prime Minister Passos Coelho appears immune to opposition calls for an early election, despite a teetering coalition, record-low popularity in opinion polls and protests and strikes promised for late May and June. …
Read more here: Portuguese leaders build faith in bailout exit
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Afghanistan’s cricket board says gunmen have kidnapped the father of its national team captain.
Read more here: Father of Afghanistan cricket captain abducted
DENVER (AP) — Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper's decision to block the execution of convicted killer Nathan Dunlap for as long as he is governor infuriated victims' relatives and drew quick criticism from Republicans ahead of the 2014 election.
Read more here: Colorado killer's reprieve sharply criticized
Read more here: US, Israel raise hopes for Mideast peace restart