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AP Top International News At 2:34 a.m. EDT

Analysis: Putin likely to ignore West on Ukraine
MOSCOW (AP) -- Since he took over Crimea, President Vladimir Putin has seen his popularity soar and his opposition fall silent. So when the U.S. vice president told Russia to defuse tensions in Ukraine, Putin had few reasons to listen....

Obama visit to Asia seen as counterweight to China
TOKYO (AP) -- President Barack Obama's travels through Asia aim to reassure partners about the renewed U.S. commitment to the region, with an eye both to China's rising assertiveness and the fast-growing markets that are the center of gravity for global growth....

Ukraine orders new military operation in the east
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) -- Ukraine's acting president ordered security forces to resume operations in the country's east on Tuesday after the bodies of two people allegedly abducted by pro-Russia insurgents were found and a military aircraft was reportedly hit by gunfire....

Sherpas leave Everest; some expeditions nix climbs
KATMANDU, Nepal (AP) -- Sherpa guides packed up their tents and left Mount Everest's base camp Wednesday in an unprecedented walkout to honor 16 of their colleagues who were killed last week in the deadliest avalanche ever recorded on the mountain, climbers said....

'Piles and piles' of bodies in S. Sudan slaughter
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- The townsfolk believed the mosque was safe. They crammed inside as rebel forces in South Sudan took control of the town from government troops. But it wasn't safe. Robbers grabbed their cash and mobile phones. Then gunmen came and opened fire on everyone, young and old....

Pope John XXIII launched Vatican II and then some
VATICAN CITY (AP) -- On the night of Oct. 11, 1962, Pope John XXIII did something so natural that it's astonishing it was so revolutionary at the time. He came to the window of the Vatican's Apostolic Palace and spoke to thousands of candle-bearing faithful below - not in the arcane, scripted words of pontiffs past but in those of a father and pastor looking out for his flock....

Syrian rebels make last stand for Homs
BEIRUT (AP) -- Weakened Syrian rebels are making their last desperate stand in Homs, as forces loyal to President Bashar Assad launch their harshest assault yet to expel them from the central city, once known as the capital of the revolution....

SKorea ferry toll hits 150 as search gets tougher
JINDO, South Korea (AP) -- The grim work of recovering bodies from the submerged South Korea ferry proceeded rapidly Wednesday, with the official death toll reaching 150, though a government official said divers must now rip through cabin walls to retrieve more victims....

Australia signals deeper search for Malaysian jet
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) -- Australia's prime minister said Wednesday that failure to find any clue in the most likely crash site of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet would not spell the end of the search, as officials planned to soon bring in more powerful sonar equipment that can delve deeper beneath the Indian Ocean....

Acts of bravery emerge from pilloried ship crew
MOKPO, South Korea (AP) -- As the ferry sank, some crew members gave their lifejackets to passengers. One refused to leave until she shepherded students off the ship, and was later found dead. Others worked from rescue boats to break windows with hammers and pull people trapped in cabins to safety....

AP Photo
AP Photo/Mikhail Klimentyev
World Video
Up to the Minute
Africa
'Piles and piles' of bodies in S. Sudan slaughter

Asia
SKorea ferry toll hits 150 as search gets tougher

Europe
Former Iron Curtain still barrier for deer

Latin America/Caribbean
Violence erupts in Rio slum near Olympic venues

Middle East
Amnesty: Qatar fails to protect domestic workers


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