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Turkey Quake Toll Nears 600 as Search Efforts Wind Down

The death toll from eastern Turkey's devastating earthquake rose to 596 on Sunday while bulldozers were replacing sniffer dogs as search efforts wound down.

More than 4,150 people were injured in the 7.2 magnitude quake that shook the eastern Van province near the Iranian border a week ago, the prime ministry's emergency unit said in a statement on its website.

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India Footbridge Collapses, Over 30 Feared Drowned

Two bodies have been recovered and 30 other people were feared drowned after a footbridge spanning a river in northeast India collapsed, police said Sunday.

Police and paramilitary forces rescued at least 31 villagers from the river following Saturday's accident, senior police officer Kyle Ayasaid. One later died in a hospital.

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Early Season Snowstorm in U.S. East Coast Kills 3

Freezing conditions hit the U.S. East Coast Sunday after a rare October snowstorm and icy rain reportedly killed at least three people, sparked long airport delays and caused massive power outages.

The "historic early season" snowstorm wrought havoc on air, rail and road traffic from Washington to Boston, with the National Weather Service warning that travel at night would be "extremely hazardous."

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U.S. Drone Kills Four in Northwestern Pakistan

A U.S. drone strike on Sunday killed four militants in Pakistan's northwestern tribal region, a hotbed of Taliban insurgents near the Afghan border, officials said.

The drone fired two missiles into a vehicle as it drove through a village near Datta Khel town about 30 kilometers (20 miles) west of Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan district, Pakistani security officials told Agence France Presse.

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China Coal Mine Gas Blast Kills 29 Workers

A gas explosion at a coal mine in central China has killed 29 workers, Chinese authorities said Sunday.

Six other miners survived Saturday evening's blast at a state-owned coal mine in Hengyang city in Hunan province, China's State Administration of Work Safety said in a statement on its website.

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Poet Higgins Elected Ireland's Ninth President

Irish poet and human rights activist Michael D. Higgins was officially confirmed as his country's ninth president on Saturday with nearly 57 percent of the vote from elections this week.

The 70-year-old former culture minister for the Labor party, the junior partner in the coalition government in Dublin, staged a remarkable comeback to beat an ex-IRA commander Martin McGuinness and a reality TV star.

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Iran Scoffs at U.S. 'Contradictions' in Dialogue Offer

Iran on Saturday dismissed a renewed U.S. offer of dialogue by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, saying the "contradictions" of pursuing talks at the same time as threats undermined the proposal.

Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi made the comment at a joint media conference in Tehran with the visiting leader of the autonomous Kurdish region in neighboring Iraq, Massud Barzani.

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75 Killed in Rebel Attack in South Sudan State

Seventy-five people were killed on Saturday when government forces in the oil-rich South Sudanese Unity state repelled an attack by rebel militia, in which 15 civilians also died, the state's information minister said.

"There was a militia attack at 5 or 6 o'clock in the morning (02:00-03:00 GMT) in Mayom county," said Gideon Gatpan Thoar, adding that another 18 were wounded.

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Serbia Arrests 17 Following Attack on U.S. Embassy in Sarajevo

Serbian police on Saturday said they had arrested 17 people in the southwestern Muslim-dominated district of Sandzak, on suspicion of links to an Islamic extremist who opened fire on the U.S. embassy in Sarajevo.

"Police detained 17 persons suspected of being members of the radical Wahhabi movement and having close links with Mevlid Jasarevic," the Interior Ministry said in a statement. Wahhabism is a strict and ultra-conservative branch of Islam.

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Kenya to Stay in Somalia as Long as Necessary

Kenya vowed Saturday to keep troops in Somalia as long as needed to prevent attacks on its soil by the Islamist group Shebab and called for reinforcements in an increasingly regionalized conflict.

"When the Kenyan government and the people of this country feel they are safe enough we shall pull back," the country's military chief General Julius Karangi told journalists Saturday, refusing to put a timeline on the operation.

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