Philippine President Reelected

After Contentious Ballot Count

MANILA -- President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has won another term in office, a congressional committee announced Sunday after finishing a contentious vote count six weeks after the election.

The opposition, which claimed Arroyo's camp manipulated the May 10 vote and cheated movie star Fernando Poe Jr. out of 2 million ballots, fought the proceedings. Arroyo's victory margin was about 1 million votes.

The military and police have been put on full alert for possible trouble.

Poe's supporters have talked about a "people power" revolt like those that ousted dictator Ferdinand Marcos in 1986 and President Joseph Estrada, Poe's close friend, in 2001.

The final tally had Arroyo with 12,905,808 votes and Poe with 11,782,232. Three other candidates were well behind.


* ALGIERS -- Troops killed one of North Africa's most wanted Islamic militants, who had sought to link his bloody insurgent movement in Algeria to Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda terror network, the military said.

The death of Nabil Sahraoui, head of the Salafist Group for Call and Combat, marked a major victory for Algerian government efforts to suppress Islamic militant violence and left his armed extremist organization with no clear leader.

Sahraoui and three of his lieutenants were killed in a "vast anti-terrorist operation" that continues in the Kabylie region east of the capital, Algiers, the army general staff said in a statement.

* KHARTOUM, Sudan -- One of the two main Sudanese rebel groups in the western region of Darfur said it had gained control of more territory by filling a vacuum left by the government after a cease-fire agreement was signed in April.

The official of the rebel Sudan Liberation Movement in Khartoum who spoke on condition of anonymity said the group had armed and trained new supporters in areas previously outside its control.

The government said the April 8 cease-fire banned moving forces into new areas and that the aim of a government campaign to disarm the rebels was to restore the April status quo.

* KINSHASA, Congo -- Up to 10,000 government troops have flown to eastern Congo over the past week, raising fears of fresh fighting as the government struggles to impose its authority on the lawless border region, diplomats and military sources said.

The vast country is trying to emerge from a five-year war that, at its height, involved six neighboring nations and killed 3 million people, most of them from war-induced hunger and disease.

The troop movements near the Ugandan and Rwandan borders follow an apparent coup attempt in Kinshasa a week ago and a week-long insurgency in the strategic eastern town of Bukavu earlier this month that plunged the country back into violence.


* BEIJING -- North and South Korea, the United States, Japan, Russia and China sat down for working-level talks on Monday to lay the foundation for a third round of senior-level discussions over the North Korean nuclear crisis.

The third round is to be held in Beijing from Wednesday to Saturday, preceded by two days of working-level talks, to try to end a 20-month political standoff between Washington and Pyongyang over North Korea's nuclear ambitions.


* Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak arrived in Germany for surgery in a Munich hospital for a herniated disc, an official at the Egyptian Embassy in Berlin said.

During the procedure, which is scheduled for Monday, surgeons will insert a microscopic endoscope in Mubarak's lower back to remove displaced cartilage, doctors in Egypt said on Saturday.

The procedure usually takes about 40 minutes. But it follows persistent rumors about the health of the 76-year-old president, who has ruled the Arab world's most populous country since 1981.

* DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Administrators in the United Arab Emirates have shut down an Internet forum that carried statements by militants, Saudi dissidents and supporters of the fight against Westerners.


* BATUMI, Georgia -- Voters in Georgia's autonomous province of Ajaria voted in local parliamentary elections dominated by supporters of Georgia's president, who is trying to regain control of the territory.

The vote follows a tense standoff between President Mikheil Saakashvili and Ajaria's defiant leader, Aslan Abashidze, which ended in early May when Abashidze fled to Russia.

Saakashvili has pledged to reunite his fractured nation, and while the two parties dominating the race have sworn their allegiance to Saakashvili, one of them wants more autonomy for the Black Sea region than the president appears ready to grant.


* CARACAS, Venezuela -- President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela said he met with former president Jimmy Carter and a media magnate who Chavez has accused of involvement in a plot to kill him.

Carter hosted the meeting Friday between Chavez, who faces a recall referendum in August, and Gustavo Cisneros. Authorities on Friday searched Venevision, a television station owned by Cisneros, while investigating an alleged plot to kill Chavez.

-- From News Services