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Turkish Ship Close to Cypriot Gas Search Zone

A Turkish exploration ship is searching for gas and oil "close to" a Cypriot drilling zone off the divided Mediterranean island of Cyprus, a senior energy ministry official said Tuesday.

"Our ship is exploring gas close to the Greek Cypriot zone, and under the escort of Turkish naval vessels," the official told Agence France Presse, speaking on condition of anonymity.

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Seven Dead as Typhoon Nesat Strikes Philippines

At least seven people were killed as Typhoon Nesat smashed the Philippines on Tuesday, authorities said, with the capital Manila enduring waist-deep floods, blackouts and dramatic storm surges.

The Philippines is hit by about 20 major storms annually, many of them deadly, but the government said Nesat was one of the largest the country had faced this year, with its rain and wind path twice as big as average.

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Three Face Trial in Norway over 'Cartoonist Attack Plot'

Three men suspected of plotting an attack on a Danish newspaper that printed controversial cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in 2005 will go on trial in Norway next month, a state prosecutor said Tuesday.

The three suspects, who were arrested in July 2010, have been charged with "conspiracy to commit a terrorist attack in northern Europe," the prosecutor Geir Evanger told Agence France Presse.

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Spanish Police Raid Qaida Financing Ring, 5 Algerians Arrested

More than 150 Spanish police raided a suspected al-Qaida financing ring Tuesday, arresting five Algerian men and seizing computer material, the government said.

Police suspected the men sent money to al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, which has its roots in Algeria and carries out attacks and kidnappings in north Africa, the interior ministry said in a statement.

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Subway Trains Crash in China, 240 Injured

Two metro trains collided in Shanghai on Tuesday, injuring more than 240 people, the system operator said, just months after a deadly high-speed rail crash that shocked China.

The firm blamed the accident on a signal failure -- the same cause as a July train crash that killed at least 40 people and shook public confidence in China's vast rail network.

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Report: China Rail Staff Beat Passenger to Death

A passenger was beaten to death by staff on a train in eastern China, state media reported, dealing a fresh blow to the rail industry's reputation following a fatal crash in July.

Three train staff seized the middle-aged man by the throat and savagely beat him after he intervened in an argument involving another passenger, Jiangxi Television, a local station, reported on Monday.

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Minister: Australian Women to Take Front-line Military Roles

Australia will remove all gender barriers in its military over the next five years, opening up positions that had previously been considered too dangerous for women, including front-line combat roles, a minister said Tuesday.

Australia will follow Canada and New Zealand in allowing women who meet physical and psychological criteria to perform any role they choose, Defense Minister Stephen Smith said.

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5 Killed in Car Bomb near Afghan Police HQ

A suicide car bombing killed five people and wounded two dozen others near a police headquarters in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday, officials said.

Mohammad Rasoul, a spokesman for the Afghan army, said three police were killed and three others wounded in the blast in Lashkar Gah, capital of troubled Helmand province.

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Fresh Allegations in Berlusconi Sex Scandal

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi may have told a businessman to lie to investigators about paying call girls to attend parties he hosted, the Ansa news agency said Tuesday.

The businessman, Gianpaolo Tarantini, is on trial accused of having spent nearly 30,000 euros ($41,000) on recruiting dozens of women for Berlusconi's private parties in 2008 and 2009 in order to win lucrative contracts.

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Two Airliners in near Miss over Hong Kong

Two Hong Kong-bound flights carrying more than 600 people narrowly missed each other over the Asian city, officials said Tuesday, after pilots scrambled to react to warning signals.

A Cathay Pacific Boeing 777 arriving from New York and a Dragonair Airbus A330 from Taiwan were both told to hold off landing due to bad weather on September 18 but strayed into each other's path.

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