Kerry plans Egypt visit
CAIRO -- Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Egypt on Sunday in his first visit since the military deposed President Mohammed Morsi four months ago, state news media reported. The trip, which is supposed to last a few hours, was an unpublicized addition to Mr. Kerry's official itinerary as he begins a nine-day trip that includes a fence-mending visit to Saudi Arabia.
Relations between the United States and Egypt, once close allies, have grown increasingly strained, and Mr. Kerry is scheduled to arrive at a particularly fraught moment: the day before Mr. Morsi, detained incommunicado since his July 3 ouster, is to make his first court appearance on murder charges.
Israeli strikes kill 4
JERUSALEM -- Israeli military strikes killed four Palestinian militants from the military wing of Hamas, the Islamic group that controls Gaza, late Thursday and early Friday after five Israeli soldiers were wounded in an explosion near the Israel-Gaza border.
It was the deadliest confrontation in the area since November 2012, when an Israeli offensive set off eight days of fierce cross-border fighting, which ended with a fragile, Egyptian-brokered cease-fire.
Aussie explanation sought
CANBERRA, Australia -- Indonesia is demanding an explanation from Australia after a newspaper reported that its neighbor was using embassies in locations such as Jakarta to conduct electronic spying on Asian governments.
Australian embassies are secretly helping intercept phone calls and data across Asia as part of a U.S.-led global spying network, the Sydney Morning Herald reported Thursday.
China blames separatists
BEIJING -- China's top security official has concluded that the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, a separatist group, was responsible for the deadly attack Monday in which a car mowed down pedestrians at Beijing's Tiananmen Square before bursting into flames.
The network CCTV reported that the group drove to Beijing in early October and scouted out the location in Tiananmen Square three times before the attack.
Marine reserve talks end
PARIS -- International negotiations aimed at creating one of the world's largest marine reserves in the waters off Antarctica ended in failure this week in the face of resistance from Russia, China and Ukraine, delegates to the talks said Friday.
In the talks, held in Hobart, Tasmania, the United States and New Zealand had proposed to create a 500,000 square mile ocean reserve in the Southern Ocean and the Ross Sea around Antarctica.