Thais ignore martial law

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BANGKOK -- Thousands of anti-government protesters ignored the declaration of martial law in Thailand on Tuesday, dancing and singing in the oppressive Bangkok heat as questions intensified about the intentions of the military, which imposed the emergency decree without giving civilian officials any advance notice.

It was at least the 12th time the military has intervened in Thailand since the country converted from an absolute monarchy to a democracy eight decades ago. It was the first military intervention in Thailand's latest political convulsions, which began six months ago and have paralyzed the government.

In the first few hours, nobody knew exactly what to make of the declaration, which gives the military broad powers to disperse and arrest protesters, censor the press and control many government functions.

Pakistan invites Modi

NEW DELHI -- Pakistan has invited incoming India leader Narendra Modi for peace talks to overcome mistrust from decades of border disputes and terrorist attacks that have hampered economic ties between the neighbors.

Mr. Modi, set to be sworn in as India's prime minister on Monday after his party won elections last week, received an invitation to visit Islamabad in a telephone call with his counterpart Nawaz Sharif, according to a Pakistani embassy official in New Delhi, who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to publicly discuss the matters.

Killings heighten tensions

CAIRO -- Three riot police officers trying to break up a student protest against Egypt's military-backed government were killed in a drive-by shooting in Cairo on Tuesday as early overseas results confirmed that the military's former leader, Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, was headed for a big victory in next week's presidential voting.

The riot police were dispersing a demonstration by hundreds of students of Al-Azhar University that began late Monday when someone in a passing vehicle opened fire, state media reported. Several other soldiers were injured.

The shooting revived fears of violence around the presidential voting, scheduled for Monday and Tuesday next week.

Serbia appeals for aid

BELGRADE, Serbia --Rainfall in Serbia abated, helping emergency workers Tuesday begin the muddy cleanup from deadly floods that inundated whole towns and farms and prompted the country to seek worldwide aid in food, medicine and building materials.

Kristalina Georgieva, the European commissioner for humanitarian aid, arrives in Belgrade today to discuss post-disaster assistance and help prepare a request for aid of as much as 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) a year.

Serbia declared a state of emergency on May 15 after the worst rainfall since records began to be kept 127 years ago triggered floods leaving 19 dead in the largest former Yugoslav republic, 17 in neighboring Bosnia and two in Croatia.

Pistorius to be evaluated

PRETORIA, South Africa -- Oscar Pistorius will start a period of psychiatric evaluation at a government institution next week, a judge ruled on Tuesday as she postponed the star athlete's murder trial until June 30.

A panel of mental health experts is now to decide if the double-amputee runner can be held criminally responsible for killing his girlfriend.

Mr. Pistorius will be treated as an outpatient.

-- Compiled from news services


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