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Bangladesh police say plan to move soon to end hostage crisis

DHAKA/NEW DELHI Bangladesh security forces were preparing to try to free around 20 hostages, including several foreigners, from a restaurant in an upmarket area of the capital Dhaka early on Saturday, after gunmen stormed the building killing at least two policemen.

Murders in El Salvador drop by half in June

SAN SALVADOR Murders in El Salvador plunged 51 percent in June compared with the same month last year, police said on Friday, attributing the drop to new government security measures even as gangs pointed to a recent truce to explain the decline.


Australia votes in dead-heat polls as PM seeks reform mandate

SYDNEY Australians have begun casting their ballots in a tightly contested general election, with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull warning of economic chaos if his gamble on an early poll backfires and leaves him without the outright majority he needs to enact major reforms.


Venezuela's Maduro ends power rationing as drought eases

CARACAS Venezuela as of Monday will end an electricity rationing programme launched in April in response to a severe drought that crimped the operations of the OPEC nation's hydroelectric generators, President Nicolas Maduro on Friday.

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