AFGHANISTAN -- Afghan government forces push overnight into the strategic northern city of Kunduz that was captured by the Taliban earlier this week, forcing the insurgents to retreat amid heavy street battles that were still underway. By Lynne O'Donnell. SENT: 940 words, photos. With: AFGHANISTAN-THE LATEST.
NEPAL-INDIA-UNEASY NEIGHBORS -- Nepal feels like it is being choked. It's running out of gasoline. Medical supplies are becoming scarce. All because of an unofficial economic blockade imposed by neighboring India from where Nepal gets almost all its essential supplies. Many Nepalese believe that India has been retaliating against their government since Sept. 20, when it approved a new constitution seen by New Delhi as discriminatory to an ethnic Indian community -- the Madhesi -- living in Nepal's border districts. By Post Bahadur Basnet and Muneeza Naqvi. SENT: 1,060 words, photos.
CHINA-REFUSING TO CONFESS -- Journalist Liu Hu says that once he was detained by police the pressure for him to confess was unrelenting. They told him that, unless he confessed, he would stay behind bars longer and his wife would abandon him. They cajoled him, deprived him of sleep, and kept him away from lawyers and relatives. They even recruited fellow inmates to persuade him to admit his guilt in accusations that he had deliberately spread falsehoods and stirred up trouble online. By Didi Tang. SENT: 950 words, photos.
CHINA-EXPLOSIONS -- An explosion damages a six-story building in southern China, less than a day after more than a dozen blasts triggered by explosive devices delivered in mail packages killed at least seven people and injured over 50 in the same county in southern China. SENT: 330 words, photos.
PHILIPPINES-BOMBING -- A powerful bomb hidden in a parked motorcycle taxi explodes and hits the passing convoy of a vice mayor in the southern Philippines, killing four people and wounding at least six others. The blast happened about an hour after a bomb blew up on a crowded passenger bus some 300 kilometers (190 miles) to the west, injuring at least 18 people. By Jim Gomez. SENT: 460 words.
PAKISTAN -- Pakistan's military says its air force has carried out "precise" airstrikes targeting the Taliban in a restive tribal area near the Afghan border, killing 25 militants. SENT: 130 words.
THAILAND-INTERNET CONTROL -- Protesters block access to several Thai government websites over a plan to route all Internet traffic though a single gateway, which would make it easier for the military junta to monitor and censor communications. SENT: 130 words.
JAPAN-US MILITARY -- The American nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan docks at its new home in Japan's Yokosuka naval port just as Tokyo tries to deepen defense ties with the U.S. under new security laws that expand the role of Japan's military. By Koji Ueda. SENT: 400 words, photos.
NEW ZEALAND-BRAZIL FUGITIVE -- A convicted murderer and child molester was able to flee to Brazil while on temporary release from prison because staff didn't contact the man he was supposed to stay with and border officials didn't have a comprehensive system to identify criminals, according to a government report. By Nick Perry. SENT: 460 words, photos.
SKOREA-FILM-BUSAN FESTIVAL -- Asia's largest film festival opens its doors for 10 days of screenings that will highlight the region's young talent and its rich heritage. By Youkyung Lee. SENT: 380 words, photos.
INDIA-GOOGLE-FILM PROJECT -- Google has invited India's amateur filmmakers to a help create a full-length user-generated movie about daily life in the country. In the project, called "India in a Day," anyone can grab a camera or a phone to capture scenes from ordinary life. SENT: 200 words.
BUSINESS AND FINANCE:
CHINA-MANUFACTURING -- Chinese manufacturing activity improved slightly in September while growth in service industries slowed due to disruptions from a massive military parade, surveys show. SENT: 310 words.
JAPAN-ECONOMY -- Sentiment among big Japanese manufacturers slipped in the most recent quarter, the central bank says, underlining the shaky footing for growth in the world's third largest economy. By Yuri Kageyama. SENT: 260 words, photos.
SKOREA-LG ELECTRONICS-NEW PHONE -- South Korean smartphone maker LG Electronics Inc. unveils a new smartphone with an additional screen and a camera that can capture a wider scene when taking a selfie, hoping to arrest a slide in its market share. By Youkyung Lee. SENT: 260 words, photos.
HOW TO REACH US: The editor in charge at the AP Asia-Pacific Desk in Bangkok is David Thurber. Questions and story requests are welcome.
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