LONDON -- Britain is preparing for hurricane-force winds and flooding caused by torrential rain after forecasters warned the worst storm in five years will sweep across much of England and Wales from the Atlantic.
The country's Met Office warned of wind gusts in some places exceeding 80 mph late Sunday and early today, while the Environment Agency posted flood alerts across western areas. The storm is set to disrupt transportation as the work week begins. In France, Belgium and the Netherlands, weather services also warned of high winds, especially along Channel coasts.
Air, road and rail travel are expected to be affected, with London's Heathrow Airport, Europe's biggest aviation hub, expecting an impact on flights from this morning.
The storm, which has been named St. Jude after the patron saint of lost causes, whose feast day is today, has been developing over the Atlantic. A strong jet stream and warm air close to the U.K. are contributing to its development and strength.
Georgia presidency vote
TBILISI, Georgia -- The candidate backed by Georgia's billionaire prime minister easily won Sunday's presidential election in this U.S.-aligned former Soviet republic, exit polls indicated. His closest rival quickly conceded defeat.
With the convincing victory by former university rector Giorgi Margvelashvili in what for Georgia was an unusually calm and predictable election, Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili has cemented his control.
Although he may now make more progress in decreasing tensions with Russia, Mr. Ivanishvili has maintained the pro-Western course set by the outgoing president, Mikhail Saakashvili.
Deadly Afghan bombing
KABUL, Afghanistan -- A roadside bomb killed 18 civilians Sunday, mostly women and children, after it struck a small bus coming from a wedding in the lawless Andar district of eastern Afghanistan's Ghazni province, police said.
Andar is one of the few districts in Ghazni where the Taliban retain some measure of control and often attack security forces, mostly by laying bombs along roads.
There has been a spike in violence around Afghanistan in recent months as the insurgents try to take advantage of a security hand-over from foreign forces to the Afghans.
Israel to release prisoners
JERUSALEM -- Israel agreed Sunday to release 26 long-serving Palestinian prisoners as part of a U.S.-brokered deal that led to the resumption of Mideast peace talks.
The Cabinet vote set into motion the second leg of prisoner releases agreed upon before Israel and the Palestinians renewed long-frozen peace negotiations in August. At the same time, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is planning on approving new settlement construction to appease hard-liners who oppose the release.
UAE's newest airport
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) -- A flight carrying a little more than 100 passengers from Budapest touched down Sunday at the new Al Maktoum International Airport in the United Arab Emirates' most flashy city-state, a modest first arrival for a terminal designers hope will be the world's largest in just 10 years.
The airport's construction and development is forecast to cost more than $32 billion. When complete, it will have five runways capable of handling 160 million passengers a year.
-- Compiled from news services