(Associated Press: 0825 PT, May 11, 2011) The Chinese middle class is enjoying bounty at the dinner table, but the urban poor are seeing lean times. Observers warn the gap could create problems for China's communist rulers.
Two contrasting reports from Afghanistan on attempts to create local police and military forces capable of controlling the troubled country when the US and NATO leaves.
Afghan Special Ops Units May Be Key to US Exit
(Associated Press: 0851 PT, May 10, 2011) US personnel have been training and fighting alongside Afghan special operations forces. The development of such commandos may be key if Americans are to reduce their presence in the country.
Politics Dominate Afghan Police Force
(Al Jazeera English: 0238 PT, May 10, 2011) The Afghan Local Police (ALP) has been expanding fast across the country over the past year. Community-based units, they are seen as a pet project of NATO commander General David Petraeus, who has described the ALP as having a significant impact. But the police force has also faced allegations of theft, abduction and intimidation. Al Jazeera's James Bays reports from Maidan Wardak province.
(Associated Press: 0458 PT, May 9, 2011) Syrian authorities were conducting fresh raids, detaining hundreds of people as part of a widening crackdown on protests, one activist said Monday. Video about the situation in Syria is coming from state television and activists.
(Associated Press: 1040 PT, May 5, 2011) Pakistan's army has admitted to shortcomings in its efforts to find Osama bin Laden, and insists that no Pakistani officials knew his whereabouts. They have also warned the US not to launch similar operations without Pakistani involvement.
(Associated Press: 0904 PT, May 2, 2011) Chris Brummitt, AP bureau chief in Islamabad, Pakistan, talks about how the killing of Osama bin Laden happened so close to several Pakistani military installations, and what his death could mean for US-Pakistan relations