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Obama reassures Japan, other allies on China ahead of visit

TOKYO - U.S. President Barack Obama has said Washington welcomes China's rise but that engagement with Beijing would not come at the expense of its Asian allies - as Chinese state media greeted his imminent arrival in the region with a broadside accusing the United States of wanting to "cage" the emerging superpower. | Video

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Netanyahu tells Abbas to choose peace partner: Hamas or Israel

JERUSALEM - Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cautioned Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday over just-revived unity talks with Hamas, saying he had to choose between peace with Israel or its Islamist enemy.

Israel 5:01am EDT

Lebanese MPs fail to pick new president in first vote

BEIRUT - Lebanese parliamentarians failed to elect a new president in a first round of voting on Wednesday, with leading candidate Samir Geagea falling well short of the required two-thirds majority.

5:52am EDT

Hong Kong and Philippines settle spat over 2010 bus tragedy

HONG KONG - Hong Kong on Wednesday scrapped travel sanctions against the Philippines after Manila offered an apology and compensation for a hostage tragedy almost four years ago, settling a lengthy diplomatic spat between the two.

6:12am EDT

Pirates raid oil tanker off Malaysia, take away three crew

KUALA LUMPUR/SINGAPORE - Armed pirates raided an oil tanker off the coast of Malaysia and took three crew members with them, Malaysian maritime officials said on Wednesday, underscoring increasing threats to shipping in one of the world's busiest waterways.

Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar 6:04am EDT

China won't swallow 'bitter pill' of ceding sovereign rights: military official

QINGDAO, China - China will not "swallow the bitter pill" of ceding its sovereign rights to others, a senior military official told foreign naval leaders on Wednesday, as the country takes an increasingly assertive approach to guarding its maritime territory.

China 5:51am EDT

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