KABUL/WASHINGTON - Revived Afghan peace talks hit their first roadblock on Wednesday, a day after they were announced, as Afghan President Hamid Karzai said his government would not join U.S. talks with the Taliban and would halt negotiations with Washington on a post-2014 troop pact.
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BEIJING - Courts in China's far western region of Xinjiang have sentenced 19 ethnic Uighurs to up to six years in jail for promoting racial hatred and religious extremism online, in the latest crackdown on what China sees as violent separatists.
WASHINGTON - A U.S. congressman who has been blind Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng's main champion in Washington said people working for New York University have tried to keep him from meeting Chen, barging into a meeting on Capitol Hill and pulling Chen out on one occasion.
YANGON - Her adoring compatriots believe democracy champion Aung San Suu Kyi is destined to become Myanmar's next president. But don't bet on it.
TOKYO - Days after Kaoru Shimada and other Japanese mothers rallied in Tokyo this year to press for more public daycare, she was shocked to read a local politician's blog blasting their "shameless" demands and asserting kids should be raised at home.
GAZA - Hamas said on Wednesday its relations with financial backer Iran have suffered as a result of the Islamist group's support of rebels battling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a long-time Iranian ally. | Video
* Nikkei down 1.7 pct, Topix off 1.3 pct as Fed comments hurt mood * China's weak flash PMI drags down China-related manufacturers * Real estate shares battered * Weak yen lends some support to currency-sensitive stocks By Tomo Uetake TOKYO, June 20 - Japan's Nikkei share average fell on Thursday as weak China data further unsettled markets coming to grips with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's confirmation that the U.S. central bank could trim its bond-buyin