ASIA:

JAPAN-US MILITARY — Even as Japan remains divided over proposed changes in the role it should play in regional security issues, senior U.S. and Japanese military officers say they hope the Japanese navy may soon be freed up to play a more active role in the Pacific and beyond, plying some of the world's most hotly contested waters. By Eric Talmadge. SENT: 630 words, photos.

PHILIPPINES-TYPHOON — A super typhoon blamed for the deaths of at least four people on islands in the western Pacific Ocean has weakened after entering Philippine waters and is expected to further lose strength as it approaches the country's northeastern coast. SENT, photos.

THAILAND-MARTIAL LAW MAKEOVER — The big topic of conversation in Thailand is martial law. Technically it's gone, but in reality it's still there. By Jocelyn Gecker. SENT: 900 words, photos.

VIETNAM-SHOE FACTORY STRIKE — Workers at a major Vietnamese footwear factory for Nike and Adidas ended a weeklong strike after the government agreed to their demands on retirement payouts. By Tran Van Minh. SENT: 350 words.

HONG KONG-WOMEN KILLED — A British banker accused of the murders of two Indonesian women appears briefly in a Hong Kong court, where pretrial proceedings were adjourned for five more weeks as prosecutors requested more time. By Kelvin Chan. SENT: 310 words, photos.

AUSTRALIA-PRINCE HARRY — Prince Harry arrives in Australia's national capital next week to begin four weeks of training with the Australian army before the British royal ends his decade-long military career. By Rod Mcguirk. SENT, photos.

INTERNATIONAL

FRANCE PLANE CRASH - LE VERNET, France - Investigators say all visible remains have been collected from the Germanwings crash site in the French Alps — now the spotlight turns to DNA testing. By Lori Hinnant. SENT: 840 words, photos.

NIGERIA-ELECTION - Nigerians celebrate Muhammadu Buhari's electrifying victory in presidential elections but sobering challenges confront their next leader, from an Islamic uprising to widespread poverty and graft. By Michelle Faul. SENT: 840 words, photos.

YEMEN-PERILS AHEAD-ANALYSIS - A Saudi-led ground offensive in Yemen may be inevitable to defeat Iranian-backed Shiite rebels, but it also carries enormous risks. An AP News Analysis. By Hamza Hendawi. SENT: 1,260 words, photos.

IRAN-NUCLEAR TALKS - Iran nuclear talks stumble after missing deadline, heading for double overtime. By Matthew Lee and George Jahn. SENT: 900 words, photos, video. With: IRAN-NUCLEAR TALKS-NEWS GUIDE, IRAN-NUCLEAR TALKS-ASSETS-GLANCE and OBAMA-IRAN NUCLEAR TALKS (all sent).

ISLAMIC STATE - TIKRIT, Iraq - The government declares victory in driving the extremists of the Islamic State group out of Tikrit and warns the militants holding other Iraqi provinces that they are next. By Qassim Abdul-Zahra and Sameer N. Yacoub. SENT: 1,060 words, photos. With AP VIDEO IRAQ TIKRIT.

SMUGGLED ANTIQUITIES - Honolulu Museum of Art to hand over looted, smuggled Indian antiquities it unwittingly acquired. SENT: 530 words, photos.

ADOPTION CITIZENSHIP-DEPORTATION - More than three decades after Adam Crasper came to the United States as an adopted child from South Korea, he is facing deportation because his abusive parents never sought his green card or citizenship. By Gosia Wozniacka. SENT: 900 words, photos, video.

MENENDEZ PROBE - Sen. Bob Menendez, the son of Cuban immigrants who rose to become one of the highest-ranking Hispanic members of Congress, was charged with accepting nearly $1 million worth of gifts and travel from a longtime friend in exchange for a stream of political favors on the donor's behalf. By Eric Tucker and Sean Carlin. SENT: 620 words, photo.

IRS-INVESTIGATION - The Justice Department won't seek criminal contempt charges against Lois Lerner, the former IRS official at the center of a controversy over how the agency treated conservative political groups. By Sam Hananel. SENT: 420 words, photos.

SENATE LEADERSHIP FIGHT - Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid's decision to retire has sparked a very public feud between the No. 2 and No. 3 Senate Democrats, Dick Durbin of Illinois and Chuck Schumer of New York. By Erica Werner. SENT: 660 words, photos.

OBAMA-CYBER SANCTIONS - Obama authorizes sanctions on those who carry out cyberattacks against the U.S. from overseas. SENT: 710 words, photo.

TOO MUCH ICED TEA - Doctors traced an Arkansas man's kidney failure to an unusual cause — his habit of drinking a gallon of iced tea each day. By Medical Writer Mike Stobbe. UPCOMING: 370 words, photo.

EASIER WALKING - These boots were made for walking: Engineers have come up with a motor-free device to make walking more efficient and easier. By Seth Borenstein. SENT: 440 words, photos.

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HOW TO REACH US: The editor in charge at the AP Asia-Pacific Desk in Bangkok is Scott McDonald. Questions and story requests are welcome.

The news desk can be reached at (66) 2632-6911 or by email at asia@ap.org. The Asia Photo Desk can be reached at (81-3) 6215-8941. Between 1600 GMT and 0000 GMT, please refer queries to the North America Desk in New York at (1) 212-621-1650.

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