JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — A tsunami apparently caused by the eruption of an island volcano killed at least 62 people around Indonesia's Sunda Strait, sending a wall of water crashing some 65 feet (20 meters) inland and sweeping away hundreds of houses including hotels, the government and witnesses said. Some 600 people have been reported injured when the tsunami hit 9:27 p.m. Saturday, the Disaster Management Agency said. At least 20 others are unaccounted for. Scientists from Indonesia's Meteorology and Geophysics agency said it could have been caused by undersea landslides from the eruption of Anak Krakatau, a volcanic island formed over years from the nearby Krakatau volcano.
Australia and New Zealand say they have no information their citizens were among victims of a tsunami that killed at least 62 people around Indonesia's Sunda Strait. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters on Sunday, "We understand that at present there are no foreigners, let alone Australians, who have been impacted by this." A spokesperson for Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade says the Australian Embassy in Jakarta is continuing to make "urgent inquiries" to determine whether any Australians were affected. New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade says 299 New Zealanders are registered as being in Indonesia.
TOKYO (AP) — A Japanese court says it has approved prosecutors' request to keep Nissan's former chairman Carlos Ghosn in detention for another 10 days. The Tokyo District Court said Sunday that the approval is for prosecutors to investigate further his third allegation of breach of trust for causing Nissan a loss of 1.8 billion yen in 2008. Sunday's extension will keep Ghosn at the Tokyo detention house until New Year's Day. Ghosn and another executive Greg Kelly were arrested Nov. 19 and charged with underreporting Ghosn's income for 2011-2015. The fresh allegations were filed Friday, a day after a court rejected prosecutors' request for a longer detention of Ghosn and Kelly.
TOKYO (AP) — Since his arrest on suspicion of falsifying financial reports, Nissan's former Chairman Carlos Ghosn has been sitting in a humble cell for more than a month, interrogated day in and day out, without a lawyer present. His case is drawing attention to the criminal justice system in Japan, where there is no presumption of innocence and the accused can be held for months before trial. The system, sometimes called "hostage justice," has come under fire from human rights advocates. When a court denied Tokyo prosecutors' request to detain Ghosn another 10 days on Dec. 20, it was so unusual that the Japanese media reported he might be released.
TOKYO (AP) — Japan's Emperor Akihito, marking his 85th birthday — his last before his upcoming abdication — said he feels relieved that his reign is coming to an end without having seen his country at war and that it is important to keep telling younger people about his nation's wartime history. "It gives my deep comfort that the Heisei era is coming to an end, free of war in Japan," Akihito, his voice trembling with emotion, said at a news conference at the palace that was recorded this past week and released Sunday. "It is important not to forget that countless lives were lost in World War II and that the peace and prosperity of postwar Japan was built upon the numerous sacrifices and tireless efforts made by the Japanese people, and to pass on this history accurately to those born after the war."
SYDNEY (AP) — Human rights groups along with current and former soccer players on Saturday called on FIFA and the Australian government to intervene to stop a Melbourne-based refugee and semi-professional soccer player being extradited from Thailand to Bahrain. Hakeem al-Araibi, a 25-year-old former representative of Bahrain's national team, was granted refugee status in Australia last year after fleeing his homeland, where he said he was persecuted and tortured. He was arrested while on holiday in Thailand last month due to an Interpol notice in which Bahrain sought his custody after he had been sentenced in absentia in 2014 to 10 years in prison for allegedly vandalizing a police station — a charge he denies.
ISLAMABAD (AP) — The Taliban welcomed news of the U.S. plan to withdraw half its troops in Afghanistan by the summer, as Afghan generals warned it would be a blow to the morale of the country's beleaguered security forces who come under daily attacks from the insurgent fighters. The announcement seems certain to complicate efforts to reach a peace deal, mostly because it gives the Taliban leverage by allowing them to hold off until a total U.S. withdrawal, or step up their demands over a weakened Afghan government. "I believe the Taliban will see this as a reason to stall, and therefore it disincentivizes the Taliban to actually talk to the Afghan government, which it has refused to do," said Bill Roggio, an Afghanistan analyst with the Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies.
SRINAGAR, India (AP) — A gunbattle between Indian troops and Kashmiri rebels early Saturday left six militants dead and triggered a new round of anti-India protests in the disputed Himalayan region. The fighting began after government forces came under fire during a raid on a militant hideout in the southern Tral area, according to police. Troops retaliated and six militants were killed in the brief exchange of fire, police said. As the news of the killings spread, hundreds of civilians took to the streets in Tral town, clashing with government forces at several places. No injuries were immediately reported. In a separate incident, India's army accused rival Pakistan of opening fire in the Keran sector of Kashmir and killing two Indian army officers on Friday.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Chinese billionaire Richard Liu will not face charges over a rape accusation by a Chinese woman studying in Minnesota because prosecutors said Friday they could not prove his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Liu, founder of the Beijing-based e-commerce site JD.com, was arrested Aug. 31 in Minneapolis on suspicion of felony rape and released within hours. He returned to China. Prosecutors said that "profound evidentiary problems" would have made it "highly unlikely" that any charge could have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt. In a statement, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said that as prosecutors reviewed surveillance video, text messages, police body camera video and witness statements, "it became clear that we could not meet our burden of proof and, therefore, we could not bring charges." After the prosecutor's decision was announced, Liu issued a statement on his Chinese social media account saying, "This proves I broke no law." "My interactions with this woman, however, have hurt my family greatly, especially my wife.
TULSA, Okla. (AP) — Federal prosecutors said Friday that a Chinese national employed by an Oklahoma petroleum company has been charged with stealing trade secrets. Authorities said Hongjin Tan, 35, is accused of stealing trade secrets from his unnamed U.S.-based employer that operates a research facility in the Tulsa area. An affidavit filed by the FBI alleges that Tan stole trade secrets about an unidentified product worth between $1.4 and $1.8 billion to his employer to benefit a Chinese company where Tan had been offered work. Authorities say Tan allegedly downloaded hundreds of computer files, including research reports, regarding the manufacture of a "research and development downstream energy market product." The reports described not only how to make the product, which the company says "is a complicated and technically difficult process," but also the company's plans to market the product in China and in cellphone and lithium-based battery systems, according to the affidavit.