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KABUL — Suspected Taliban rebels raided and set ablaze a police station in southeastern Afghanistan near the border with Pakistan, but there were no injuries, a provincial police commander said Sunday.


CANBERRA — The owner of more than 50,000 Australian sheep stranded for five weeks on a ship in the Middle East is trying to give them away for free, Australia said Sunday. Saudi Arabia refused to let the ship dock last month, claiming 6 percent of the 57,000 animals were infected with scabby mouth disease — 1 percent more than the Saudi government allows.


LONDON — To the extent there was a consensus among those watching the illusionist David Blaine's latest endurance feat, it was that Blaine did not deserve to be pelted with eggs, attacked by golf balls, harassed with laser pens or jolted awake by people banging on drums, as has happened to him since Sept. 5. But Blaine's latest stunt — living in a see-through box suspended from a crane near Tower Bridge — hasn't been winning lots of new fans among the hard-to-please Britons gathered below.


BOGOTA — Suspected rebels kidnapped eight foreign tourists who were headed to archaeological ruins in the mountains of northern Colombia, authorities said Sunday. Four Israelis, two Britons, a German and a Spaniard were seized late Friday in the snowcapped Sierra Nevada mountains, about 465 miles north of Bogota, said Gen. Luis Alfredo Rodriguez, head of Colombia's police operations.


TALLINN — Estonians voted Sunday to join a historic expansion of the European Union, fulfilling what once seemed an unattainable dream for the small Baltic state. The supporters of joining the globally powerful economic bloc had 67 percent of the vote, according to results from nearly all polling stations. The other 33 percent voted no on the referendum.


ROME — After an increase of more than 4,000 elderly deaths during Italy's scorching summer heat wave, a public-advocacy group is calling on prosecutors to consider filing manslaughter charges over failures in the health care system.


ISLAMABAD — Pakistan's president is pushing for action on a huge water reservoir that has been the source of fierce political wrangling for decades. President Pervez Musharraf wants a decision by next year on one of two dams proposed to be built on the Indus, the country's largest river.


SUBIC — About 1,500 U.S. Marines arrived aboard three ships at a former American naval base Sunday for a weeklong exercise to bolster regional security, officials said. Their arrival at Subic Bay, northwest of Manila, is part of a series of planned bilateral military drills and is not connected with President Bush's visit next month, the officials said.

Saudi Arabia

RIYADH — A Saudi drug trafficker was beheaded Sunday, a Ministry of Interior statement said. Dhaher bin Thamer al-Shimry was convicted of smuggling marijuana into the kingdom, the statement said.


BRATISLAVA — Looking drained, an increasingly frail Pope John Paul II celebrated Sunday Mass for 200,000 faithful, completing a grueling four-day pilgrimage that raised fresh doubts about his ability to keep traveling.

South Korea

SEOUL — Soldiers and rescue workers fanned out across South Korea on Sunday after the worst typhoon in a century caused widespread destruction and claimed at least 85 lives. Dozens of others were feared dead. South Korea set aside more than $1 billion for recovery from Typhoon Maemi, which roared into the country with 135 mph winds Friday night, wreaking havoc before dissipating in the Sea of Japan early Sunday.


SAN'A — A Yemen court gave a Muslim extremist the death sentence Sunday for assassinating a key politician and planning attacks against three American missionaries, who were slain last year.


HARARE — Zimbabwe's only independent daily newspaper failed to publish Saturday after armed police raided its offices and the Supreme Court declared the publication in violation of a new media law.