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A U.N. human rights investigator met for a second time Wednesday with a North Korean official on a possible groundbreaking visit and the North's demand that a U.N. effort to refer the country's situation to the International Criminal Court (ICC) be dropped.
 

Australia on Thursday passed a law criminalizing travel to terror hotspots, a tough counter-terrorism measure aimed at stopping jihadists from going to Iraq and Syria to fight.
 

A South Korean soldier was sentenced to 45 years in military prison on Thursday for beating a conscript to death in a highly publicized case of barrack-room bullying.
 

Myanmar's president has called an unprecedented summit of army top brass and political rivals including Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition party, political figures said Thursday, a year ahead of crucial elections.
 

Suspected U.S. drone-fired missiles struck a house early on Thursday in a restive tribal region in northwest Pakistan, killing two militants, officials said.
 

Hundreds of desperate Sri Lankan villagers clawed through the wreckage of a deadly landslide Thursday, defying police orders after a top disaster official said there was no chance of finding more survivors in the broken red earth of the high-elevation tea plantation.
Sri Lanka gov't gives up hope for survivors

 

A special Bangladeshi court on Wednesday handed the death sentence to the leader of the country's largest Islamist party for war crimes, in a long-awaited verdict that triggers fears of fresh violence.
Bangladesh Islamist leader sentenced to hang

 

As a Japanese schoolgirl in the 1970s, Kazumi Kaminaga had never seen something as cute as Hello Kitty when she first laid eyes on the moon-faced, mouthless character in a shop.
Hello Kitty at 40, giving adults a 'license to play'

 

New Zealand will hold a binding referendum in 2016 on changing the national flag, with Prime Minister John Key hoping to drop the current design featuring Britain's Union Jack in favor of a silver fern.
New Zealanders to vote on changing flag

 

The second and final day of talks was underway Wednesday between North Korean and Japanese officials assessing progress into an investigation of the fates of Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea in the 1970s and '80s.
 
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