January 1, 2018 / 6:49 AM / a year ago

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TOP STORIES

North Korea’s Kim says ‘open to dialogue’ with South Korea, will only use nukes if threatened

SEOUL - Kim Jong Un on Monday warned the United States that he has a “nuclear button” on his desk ready for use if North Korea is threatened, but offered an olive branch to South Korea, saying he was “open to dialogue” with Seoul. (NORTHKOREA-MISSILES/KIMJONGUN (UPDATE 4, TV), moving shortly, by Heekyong Yang and Josh Smith, 728 words)

- NORTHKOREA-MISSILES/SOUTHKOREA-SHIP (UPDATE 2), moved, by Yuna Park and Hyunjoo Jin, 480 words

Iran protesters rally again despite warning of crackdown

LONDON - Anti-government protesters demonstrated in Iran on Sunday in defiance of a warning by authorities of a crackdown, extending for a fourth day one of the most audacious challenges to the clerical leadership since pro-reform unrest in 2009. (IRAN-RALLIES/ (UPDATE 10, TV), moved, by Bozorgmehr Sharafedin, 1001 words)

In frigid Times Square, relief arrives with the new year

NEW YORK - Intrepid revelers from around the world endured hours of waiting in a frigid Times Square on Sunday to witness the glittering New Year’s Eve ball make its annual descent at midnight, undeterred and perhaps reassured by a massive police presence. (NEW-YEAR/USA-NEW YORK (UPDATE 3, PIX, TV), moved, by Daniel Trotta and Chris Francescani, 676 words)

ASIA

Probe into deadly fire at US firm’s Philippines offices focuses on possible safety lapses

DAVAO CITY - A government investigator into a blaze that led to the deaths of 37 staff at the southern Philippines offices of an American market research firm says there are indications of fire safety lapses that may have contributed to the tragedy. (PHILIPPINES FIRE/ (INSIGHT, PIX, TV), moved, by Neil Jerome Morales, 1254 words)

Hundreds of Indonesian couples ring in the new year at mass wedding

JAKARTA - Hundreds of Indonesian couples celebrated New Year’s Eve on Sunday night by tying the knot in a mass wedding in the capital Jakarta. (NEW-YEAR/INDONESIA-MASS WEDDING (TV, PIX), moved, by Kanupriya Kapoor, 374 words)

Compass Group chief, five others dead in Sydney seaplane crash

MELBOURNE - The CEO of Compass Group Plc, the world’s biggest catering firm, and four of his close family members were among the six people who died when the seaplane they were travelling in crashed into Sydney river on New Year’s Eve. (AUSTRALIA-SEAPLANE/ (UPDATE 2, PIX, TV), moved, 333 words)

EUROPE

UK may use taxes to get tech giants to do more to fight extremism, minister says

LONDON - Britain may impose new taxes on tech giants such as Google and Facebook unless they do more to combat online extremism by taking down material aimed at radicalising people or helping them to prepare attacks, the country’s security minister says. (BRITAIN-SECURITY/TECH (UPDATE 1), moved, 500 words)

MIDDLE EAST

Likud party votes for de-facto annexation of Israeli settlements

LOD - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party unanimously calls on legislators to effectively annex Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, land Palestinians want for a future state. (ISRAEL-PALESTINIANS/LIKUD (TV, PIX), by Rami Amichay, moved, 419 words)

AMERICAS

As Peru president faced impeachment, jailed Fujimori worked to save both

LIMA - Last week, as Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski scrambled to survive a bid in Congress to oust him in the wake of a graft scandal, his jailed authoritarian predecessor, Alberto Fujimori called on his loyalists in Congress to save the head of state. (PERU-FUJIMORI/ (PIX), by Mitra Taj and Marco Aquino, moved, 915 words)

AFRICA

Congolese forces kill at least seven during anti-government protests -UN

KINSHASA - Security forces killed at least seven people in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday during protests against President Joseph Kabila’s refusal to step down from office, United Nations peacekeepers said. (CONGO-PROTESTS/ (UPDATE 5, PIX), moved, 511 words) (Editing by David Gregorio)

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