DUBAI - The Islamic State militant group released a video on Tuesday purporting to show the beheading of a second American hostage, journalist Steven Sotloff, raising the stakes in its confrontation with Washington over U.S. air strikes in Iraq.
WASHINGTON - Even for a freelance journalist covering the tumult in the Arab world, Steven Sotloff's travels seemed nonstop.
HONG KONG - Hong Kong activists threatening to blockade the financial district in protest against China's curbs on democracy said Beijing had "brutally strangled" their hopes but that they would persevere with the struggle.
JERUSALEM - Israel is lobbying world powers anew against any Iranian nuclear deal that would let Tehran retain potential bomb-making technologies, a senior Israeli official said on Wednesday as another deadline for the international diplomacy loomed.
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama has ordered an increase of about 350 troops in Baghdad to protect the U.S. Embassy in the Iraqi capital and is sending top officials to the Middle East to "build a stronger regional partnership" against Islamic State militants, the White House said on Tuesday.
HONG KONG Sep 3 - An unofficial referendum on democracy in the southern Chinese gambling hub of Macau showed 89 percent of nearly 9,000 people who took part don't trust their leader, who was re-elected on Sunday as the sole candidate.
BRUSSELS/DONETSK Ukraine - EU officials proposed sanctions on Tuesday to starve Russian firms of cash as punishment for Moscow's role in Ukraine, where rebels said they were storming Donetsk airport, potentially their biggest prize since turning the war's tide last week.
SYDNEY - Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Wednesday declined to rule out sending combat troops to support U.S. air strikes in Iraq, amid a growing confrontation with radical Islamists who have seized large swaths of that country and neighbouring Syria.
SEOUL - Some crew of a ferry that capsized in April in South Korea's worst maritime disaster in 44 years drank beer while waiting for rescue, one of them told a court, in an admission likely to fuel anger at their conduct during the final moments of the mishap.
TOKYO - 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.