CANBERRA, Australia — Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard is ousted as Labor Party leader by her predecessor, Kevin Rudd, in a vote of party lawmakers hoping to avoid a huge defeat in upcoming elections. The ballot takes place three years and two days after Gillard ousted Rudd in a similar internal government showdown to become the country's first female prime minister. Wednesday's vote makes Rudd leader of the party, but he is not yet prime minister and may not get the job if lawmakers abandon Labor's ruling coalition. Moved. By Rod McGuirk. AP Photos.


BEIJING — Assailants attack police and other people with knives and set fire to police cars in China's restive far-western region in violence that kills 27 people, one of the bloodiest incidents since unrest in the regional capital killed nearly 200 in 2009. The early-morning violence — described by state media as riots — also leave at least three people injured in a remote area of the Turkic-speaking Xinjiang region, the official Xinhua News Agency says. Moved. By Gillian Wong.


GAUCHAR, India — Paramilitary soldiers recover 20 bodies from a steep hillside in northern India where a helicopter crashed while on a mission to rescue people stranded by monsoon floods that have killed more than 1,000 people and washed away thousands of homes, roads and bridges in the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand. Moved. By Rafiq Maqbool. AP Photos.


KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Ecuador's foreign minister says his government could take months to decide whether to grant asylum to fugitive U.S. National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden. Moved. AP Photos.


ISLAMABAD — Pakistan's prime minister orders the government to begin a treason investigation into ex-military ruler Pervez Musharraf. Moved.


ULAN BATOR, Mongolia — Mongolians cast ballots in the country's presidential election, with the Harvard-educated incumbent expected to hold off challenges from a popular ex-wrestler and a physician who is the country's first woman to seek the top office. Moved. By Ganbat Namjilsangarav. AP Photos.


BEIJING — A Chinese space capsule with three astronauts lands safely on the country's northern grasslands after a 15-day trip to a prototype space station, marking the latest success for China's manned space program as it enters its second decade. Moved. By Christopher Bodeen. AP Photos.


THE HAGUE, Netherlands — Japan's annual whale hunt is a commercial slaughter of marine mammals dressed up as science, Australian lawyers argue as they urge the United Nations' highest court to ban the hunt. Moved. By Mike Corder. AP Photos.


TOKYO — Prime Minister Shinzo Abe says his ruling party must win next month's upper house elections to ensure a stable future for Japan after years of indecisive politics hampered by a divided parliament. Moved.


TOKYO — The world's first space conversation experiment between a robot and humans is ready to be launched. Moved. By Azusa Uchikura.



SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea's largest mobile operator is launching what it says is the world's fastest wireless network. SK Telecom Co. says the LTE-Advanced network can download data at speeds twice as fast as LTE networks and 10 times faster than third generation services. Moved. By Youkyung Lee.


YANGON, Myanmar — Foreign companies will tap into one of the world's final telecom frontiers when Myanmar hands out licenses to operate two new mobile phone networks — part of efforts by the long-isolated nation to use technology to spur economic development. Moved. By Robin McDowell. AP Photos.


TOKYO — Shareholders angry at the utility company behind Japan's nuclear catastrophe pepper executives with questions about leaking radioactive water and demand a phase-out of atomic power. Moved. By Yuri Kageyama. AP Photos.


BANGKOK — Tobacco giant Philip Morris and more than 1,400 Thai retailers will sue Thailand's health ministry over a rule that would nearly cover cigarette packets with smoking warnings, a tobacco trade representative says. Moved.


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