PARIS (AP) - An official at France's Defense Ministry says the country will "gradually deploy" a total of 2,500 troops to Mali, and the French president says the military operation will last until security has been restored and African forces are ready to take charge.
The world's largest platinum producer says it will close some South African mines and sell another, cutting 14,000 jobs only months after South Africa suffered massive labor unrest in the mining sector.
Despite intensive aerial bombardments by French warplanes, Islamist insurgents grabbed more territory in Mali on Monday, including a strategic military camp, bringing them much closer to the capital, French and Malian military officials said.
A Somali intelligence official says that the French intelligence agent held hostage for more than three years by Islamic militants in Somalia was likely killed by his captors during the failed rescue attempt by French commandos.
France's foreign minister says the United States is providing communications and transport help for an international military intervention aimed at wresting Mali's north out of the hands of Islamist extremists.
Syrian troops have made advances in a strategic suburb of Damascus and been bombarding other areas around the capital today in a push to secure President Bashar Assad's seat of power as rebels make gains in the north.
The French president says the country will raise its domestic terror threat level after military action in Mali and Somalia, promising to increase protection at public buildings and transportation networks.
Venezuelan opposition politicians say they're preparing to present a case before a regional human rights court to challenge a Supreme Court decision that permits the indefinite postponement of President Hugo Chavez's inauguration.