ABUJA, Nigeria -- Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan declared emergency rule in three northeastern states, giving sweeping powers to security forces against Islamist insurgents he said were taking over parts of the region.
More troops will be deployed to Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states with authority to arrest and detain suspects, take over buildings and search areas suspected to be used by militants of the Boko Haram Islamist group, Mr. Jonathan said Tuesday in a national broadcast in the capital, Abuja..
Boko Haram, whose name means "western education is a sin" in the local Hausa language, started its violent campaign to impose Shariah law on Nigeria after police in 2009 killed its founder, Mohammed Yusuf. Since then the group has carried out gun and bomb attacks across the north and Abuja that have killed more than 1,500 people, according to Human Rights Watch.
Reactor astride fault line
TOKYO -- Seismologists said Wednesday that a nuclear reactor in Tsuruga, in western Japan, stands above an active seismic fault, a finding that could lead to the first permanent shutdown of a reactor since the Fukushima crisis two years ago.
Japan's newly installed Nuclear Regulation Authority also said Wednesday that it would issue an order that would effectively keep a separate unit, the Monju experimental fast-breeder reactor, closed until its operator overhauled safety measures at the site.
North Korea focus of talks
BEIJING -- Glyn B. Davies, the U.S. State Department's senior envoy on North Korea, said Wednesday that he had discussed "all aspects of the North Korea issue" with Chinese officials, including U.N. Security Council sanctions on the North, during a one-day visit to Beijing.
His trip to China appeared to be part of a U.S. effort to work closely with Beijing to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula after North Korea's third nuclear test in February.
Gay rights gain in Brazil
RIO DE JANEIRO -- The council overseeing Brazil's judiciary ruled Tuesday that notary publics cannot refuse to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies, a decision that opens the way for gay couples across Latin America's largest country to marry.
The move by the National Council of Justice, a 15-member panel led by Joaquim Barbosa, the chief justice of the nation's high court, effectively legalizes gay marriage throughout Brazil, legal scholars in Rio de Janeiro said.
Still, there is some room for judicial appeals of the Brazilian decision, and resistance may emerge in Congress.
Arctic group expands
KIRUNA, Sweden -- The Arctic Council agreed Wednesday to expand to include six new nations, including China, as observer states, as a changing climate opens the Arctic to increasing economic and political competition.
The council is made up of the eight Arctic nations: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the United States.
Also in the world ...
Taiwan announced Wednesday the withdrawal of its representative in Manila and said it had stopped accepting applications for Filipino workers on the island, a retaliatory step for the killing of a Taiwanese fisherman by the Philippine coast guard last week. ... Eighteen people were killed Wednesday in explosions that hit the Iraqi capital Baghdad and the northern city of Kirkuk.