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A Venezuelan journalist takes part in a protest against aggressions against the media.
A Venezuelan journalist takes part in a protest against aggressions against the media.
Fernando Llano, Associated Press

Venezuela: Law protested

CARACAS — Hundreds gathered in Venezuela on Friday to demand justice after a group of journalists protesting media regulations were kicked, punched and beaten with sticks.

Attackers injured 12 of the journalists Thursday as they passed out leaflets warning against a new education law that critics fear could lead to indoctrination in schools. Their fliers warning against a provision for sanctions against reports that "produce terror" among children or incite hate.

England: Jewels sought

LONDON — British police say a reward of 1 million pounds ($1.65 million) is being offered for information leading to the capture of thieves who pulled off one of the country's biggest jewel heists.

The Metropolitan Police said Friday the reward is for information leading to the arrest and prosecution of the thieves and the recovery of jewels with a retail value of 40 million pounds, or $65 million, taken from Graff Diamonds in London last week. The reward is being offered by professional services firm Tyler and Co. on behalf of insurers.

Honduras: Crackdown

TEGUCIGALPA — Two dozen supporters of Honduras' ousted president were charged with sedition Friday in an intensifying crackdown on protests against the coup-installed government.

Protests to demand the return of ousted President Manuel Zelaya turned violent in the Honduran capital this week, with police firing tear gas and demonstrators fighting back with sticks and stones. Some protesters attacked the vice president of Congress, although he wasn't injured.

Iraq: Journalists protest

BAGHDAD — Scores of Iraqi journalists and political figures rallied Friday to protest what they say is a political effort to censor media that follows steps to crack down on Internet sites.

The demonstration on a Baghdad street known for its book market was held under tight security, as anger builds over government initiatives that critics say are aimed at preventing a strong independent press.

Myanmar: U.S. talks

YANGON — U.S. Senator Jim Webb will meet Myanmar's top military leader today — the first senior American official to hold talks with the reclusive junta chief, officials said.

Webb arrived in Myanmar's capital Friday days after the world condemned the ruling generals over the sentencing of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to more house arrest.

Sri Lanka: Blockade lifted

MADHU — Sri Lanka has lifted a blockade on the island's holiest Roman Catholic shrine and will allow pilgrims to hold their annual feast there today as a sign that the north was returning to normal after the defeat of the Tamil Tiger rebels.

But while thousands gathered in northwestern Sri Lanka for the annual feast of Our Lady of Madhu, the nearby villages stood empty, their residents stuck in displacement camps along with nearly 300,000 other Tamil civilians who escaped from the war zone.

Venezuela: Birthday visit

CARACAS — President Hugo Chavez says he visited Cuba to celebrate the 83rd birthday of his close ally and mentor Fidel Castro.

Chavez says they shared a cake. Castro turned 83 on Thursday.