World briefs: Crowds honor 3 slain Kurds

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HATAY, Turkey -- Tens of thousands of people gathered Thursday in the southern city of Diyarbakir to mourn the death of three Kurdish activists murdered in Paris last week, an outpouring that some said amounted to the largest political gathering the Turkish authorities had ever allowed the Kurds to stage.

With fragile peace talks to end three decades of armed insurgency just beginning, top Turkish and Kurdish officials called for calm, and none of the national television networks carried the event live. But a few Web portals provided real-time coverage as crowds accompanying three funeral trucks for the murdered women poured into Batikent Square in Diyarbakir, the hub of Kurdish political and cultural life.

The most prominent of the slain women, Sakine Cansiz, was a founding member of the insurgent group the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK. Experts said she had been raising funds for the group in Europe.

U.S. urges calm in spat

TOKYO -- An Obama administration official on Thursday called on Japan and China to resolve a territorial dispute over islands claimed by both, saying regional stability is at stake.

"We've made very clear our desire to see cooler heads prevail and the maintenance of peace and stability overall," Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell said in Tokyo after meeting with Foreign Ministry officials, adding that the United States wants Japan to settle a similar feud with South Korea.

Mr. Campbell's visit precedes a trip today by Japan's new foreign minister to the United States to strengthen ties with its primary ally. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took office last month pledging to boost defense spending in response to China's increasingly assertive claims to the East China Sea islands.

Russia's adoption program

MOSCOW -- Russia's ombudsman for children's rights sought on Thursday to reassure American would-be adoptive parents that they will be allowed to take their children back to the United States. But some Americans with court rulings in their favor say they're still in legal limbo.

A Russian law banning adoptions by U.S. citizens was rushed through parliament in December, and sped to President Vladimir Putin's desk in less than 10 days in retaliation over a U.S. law calling for sanctions on Russians identified as human-rights violators.

Tens of thousands of people rallied in central Moscow on Sunday to protest the law, which the demonstrators said victimizes children to make a political point.

Surgical errors alleged

BERLIN -- A lawyer in Germany claims surgeons left up to 16 objects in her client's body after an operation for prostate cancer.

Annette Corinth says doctors removed a needle, compresses and surgical strips from banker Helmut Brecht after his wounds failed to heal properly following surgery in 2009.

The 77-year-old ex-banker died last year and his family is seeking (euro) 80,000 ($106,216) damages for his suffering, plus costs, from the Henriettenstift hospital in Hannover.

Operators of the hospital rejected the claims.

BP may land work in Iraq

BAGHDAD -- Iraq is considering a proposal for British oil giant BP PLC to begin work on a major oil field that lies in territory contested by Baghdad and the country's Kurdish minority, officials said Thursday.

If the project moves ahead, it could help reverse years of production declines at the Kirkuk oil field and strengthen BP's relationship with Iraq as the OPEC nation works to sharply boost crude output in the years ahead.

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