International News Archive - January 12, 2006

BERLIN (Reuters) - German spies in Baghdad helped U.S. warplanes strike at least one target during the 2003 Iraq war despite Berlin's statements it was not involved in the conflict, German media reported on Thursday.

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Cardiologists were called to treat Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon for heart trouble on Wednesday as he was taken off sedatives at a Jerusalem hospital, Israel's Maariv newspaper reported on Thursday.

TOKYO (Reuters) - Representatives of 14 countries including Japan, China, the United States, Indonesia and Malaysia on Thursday urged tighter maritime security to prevent acts of terrorism and piracy.

MANILA (Reuters) - The U.S. embassy in Manila allowed a group of Philippine officials on Thursday to check on four soldiers who are being held inside the embassy pending a trial on charges of involvement in the rape of a Filipino woman.

By Ed Cropley BANGKOK (Reuters) - If you listen to exile groups and anti-junta lobbyists, Myanmar's generals are on their last legs. Hemmed in by U.S. sanctions, riven by internal feuding, in line for a ticking off from the U.N.

BEIJING (Reuters) - A Chinese hijacker who used a fake gun to divert a plane to self-ruled Taiwan has been released on parole for good behavior after serving more than a dozen years in prison, domestic media reported on Thursday.

By Jon Herskovitz and Rhee So-eui SEOUL (Reuters) - Disgraced South Korean scientist Hwang Woo-suk apologised on Thursday for wrongdoing at his laboratory, but hinted at a conspiracy and said he had been crazed and blinded by his zeal in advancing stem-cell studies.

By Ed Harris ASMARA (Reuters) - Eritrea has given a lukewarm reaction to an impending U.S. mission which hopes to mediate in its dispute with Ethiopia over a border where a 1998-2000 war cost 70,000 lives and tensions have risen in recent months.

PARIS (Reuters) - France said on Thursday that poultry confinement measures to prevent the spread of bird flu could be extended if the country's food safety agency deemed there was a renewed bird flu risk.

Corrects attribution in 2nd paragraph CAIRO (Reuters) - United Nations investigators probing the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri cannot meet Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Syrian Information Minister Mahdi Dakhl-Allah said on Thursday.