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PAKISTAN: Bomb kills 15 on minibus

A roadside bomb ripped through a minibus Sunday near the Afghan border, killing 15 passengers and wounding 12 others, police said. The bomb was buried in a dirt road in Lower Dir district and apparently detonated by remote control, said local police chief Ejaz Abid. Two children were among the dead, said Mahmood Aslam, a local government official. The bus was not carrying tribal elders, anti-Taliban militia or others often targeted by militants, he said.

MALI: 5 suspected thieves amputated

Islamic police said they used a stage in a public square Monday to amputate the right hand and left foot of five accused thieves in the northern city of Gao, in the latest application of Sharia law. The region, an area the size of France, was overrun by rebels allied with al-Qaida five months ago. Despite an outcry from the international community, the Islamists have applied an extreme interpretation of Islam, and have stoned to death an adulterous couple, cut off the hand of another thief and publicly whipped people accused of other transgressions.

TURKEY: Kurds blamed as bomb kills 8

Media reports say suspected Kurdish rebels detonated a land mine in eastern Turkey, killing eight police officers. Anadolu News Agency said the mine exploded as a police vehicle drove along a highway Sunday in Bingol province. Nine other officers were wounded. The attack comes amid a surge in fighting between Turkish security and Kurdish rebels seeking self-rule in the southeast.

CHINA: Leader's reappearance a mystery

Vice President Xi Jinping's emergence from a two-week absence without explanation highlights the opaque way in which the world's second-biggest economy changes leaders. Xi's visit Saturday to China Agricultural University in Beijing, his first public appearance since Sept. 1, was covered by state media but none mentioned his disappearance or the speculation about his health.

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