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International News  

Fear, shame preserve silence of abuse by clerics in Pakistan
(AP Photo - K.M. Chaudary)
By KATHY GANNON
From Associated Press
December 16, 2017 1:24 AM EST

It began with sweets and pocket money when he was 10 years old — special attention from the religious cleric who ran the Pakistani madrassa, or Islamic school, the boy attended.

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Lawmakers in Peru launched proceedings Friday to oust President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, who refuses to resign after being accused of failing to disclose decade-old payments from a Brazilian company embroiled in Latin America's biggest corruption scandal.

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — A strong earthquake shook Indonesia's densely populated Java island on Friday night, killing two people and severely damaging dozens of homes near the epicenter.

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — North Korea's friends and enemies joined forces Friday in opposing its determination to be recognized as a nuclear weapons state and calling on leader Kim Jong Un to negotiate the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula — but the North gave no sign of budging on its nuclear ambitions.

WASHINGTON (AP) — North Korea's latest missile test, which U.S. experts say indicated an increasing technological sophistication, did not demonstrate an imminent threat of nuclear attack on the United States, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Friday.

NEW YORK (AP) — The news alerts gushed in: An attack on a concert, a church, an ice cream parlor ; an assailant wielding a gun or hammer or acid .

BERLIN (AP) — Conservative and nationalist parties in Austria reached a deal on Friday to form a new coalition government that will shift the country to the right and make 31-year-old Sebastian Kurz Europe's youngest leader.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senior Trump administration officials outlined their view Friday that Jerusalem's Western Wall ultimately will be declared a part of Israel, in another declaration sure to enflame passions among Palestinians and others in the Middle East.

BOSTON (AP) — A man who survived two terror attacks has a message for the assailants: I forgive you. Mason Wells was a short distance from one of the two bombs that exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon in 2013, killing three spectators and wounding 260 others.

PARIS (AP) — French authorities said one more student died Friday after a regional train sliced open a school bus in southern France, raising the overall death toll to five children.

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's presidential election campaign formally lasts only three months, and President Vladimir Putin wants to make it as short as possible.

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian inquiry into child abuse recommended Friday that the Catholic Church lift its demand of celibacy from clergy and that priests be prosecuted for failing to report evidence of pedophilia heard in the confessional.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House is embarking on a major campaign to turn public opinion against the nation's largely family-based immigration system ahead of an all-out push next year to move toward a more merit-based structure.

BERLIN (AP) — Leaders of Germany's center-left Social Democrats agreed Friday to enter exploratory talks on joining or supporting a new government under Chancellor Angela Merkel, moving unprecedentedly long efforts to form a new administration a small step forward.

ROME (AP) — A playwright who says Dustin Hoffman exposed himself to her and had her massage his feet in a hotel room when she was 16 said Friday that she spent years in guilty silence and took pains to not dress suggestively in professional contexts because she assumed the incident was her fault.

BRUSSELS (AP) — With British Prime Minister Theresa May already back home, European Union leaders stood united Friday in saluting the outcome of the first phase of Brexit negotiations, but warned London it will be "dramatically difficult" to get a full departure deal by the March 2019 deadline.

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — Breaking into cheers and song, Zimbabwe's ruling party on Friday sealed the fate of Robert Mugabe, a man they had revered for decades but removed from power in dramatic scenes last month.

BRUSSELS (AP) — NATO said Friday that it is concerned about a Russian missile system that could carry nuclear warheads, and which it says could violate a landmark Cold War arms treaty.

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia and Egypt signed a deal on Friday to resume flights between Moscow and the Egyptian capital of Cairo starting from February, after more than a two-year break, officials announced.

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia's former economics minister was handed an eight-year prison sentence Friday after being convicted of accepting a $2 million bribe from one of President Vladimir Putin's top associates.

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is offering his "good offices" so that North Korea's "alarming" and accelerating nuclear and missile program does not accidentally escalate into conflict.

LONDON (AP) — Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will marry in St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on May 19 — the same day as one of the biggest English sports events of the year, the FA Cup final.

LONDON (AP) — Oxford Dictionaries recognized the power of the millennial generation Friday with its 2017 word of the year : youthquake.

MADRID (AP) — Spanish authorities on Friday arrested a homicide suspect wanted for months by Italy after three people were killed a day earlier in Spain, including two Civil Guards.

BRUSSELS (AP) — Leaders of 27 European Union nations gave British Prime Minister Theresa May an early Christmas present on Friday, declaring that Brexit talks can move on to their next phase: transition and future relations.