Hamid Karzai visits India, seek military support before NATO pullout from Afghanistan

New Delhi, Dec 13 (ANI): President of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, arrived in India’s capital New Delhi on a four-day official visit, during which he is expected to seek the nation’s nod for greater military and civil support after the withdrawal of the NATO forces from his country. Karzai was received by MoS for Home Affairs, RPN Singh, and other protocol officials at the airport. Afghanistan is pressing India to supply military helicopters, tanks and artillery as it tries to shore up security through regional alliances before the withdrawal of most NATO-led foreign troops by the end of 2014. Dec 13, 2013

Bangladesh hails death penalty against Jamaat leader

Dhaka, Dec 13 (ANI): Bangladesh activists rallied in Dhaka to hail the country’s apex court verdict of hanging to death an Islamist war criminal. Abdul Quader Mollah, found guilty of war crimes committed during the 1971 liberation war, was due to be hanged at Dhaka Central Jail on Tuesday, but his lawyers earned a last-minute reprieve. After two days of legal argument following the reprieve, the Supreme Court finally rejected his application for a review of the death penalty. Activists of People's Resurgence Platform or Gonojagoron Mancha shouted slogans on the streets and later took out a huge rally, in which they marched with burning torches. Dec 13, 2013

Rahul Gandhi disapproves SCs ban on gay sex, says its matters of personal freedom

New Delhi/ Bangalore, Dec 13 (ANI): Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi dismissed Supreme Court’s decision to reinstate a ban on gay sex and said that these were ‘matters of personal freedom.’ The ruling Congress party took an unexpectedly bold stance ahead of elections in the religiously conservative nation when it slammed the SC’s verdict on gay sex. Human Rights Activist, Anjali Gopalan, praised Gandhi’s support to basic human rights and said now the matter would gain weight as Gandhi’s voice was symbolic of the views of Indian youth. Dec 13, 2013

Pakistan's 'ghost schools' threaten the next generation

Pakistan's 7,000 so-called 'ghost' schools are part of a growing education crisis in the country where over five million children do not attend primary school, according to the United Nations. Duration: 02:32 Dec 13, 2013

Catalonia sets November 9, 2014, for independence poll

Leaders in debt-laden Catalonia promised Thursday to hold a vote on November 9 on breaking away from Spain, but the national government branded their independence bid a "historic error" and vowed to block it. Duration: 0:41 Dec 13, 2013

Kenya marks 50 years of freedom with challenges ahead

Kenyans marked half a century of independence from Britain on Thursday, celebrating progress of the regional economic powerhouse but also struggling to shake off a legacy of corruption, inequality and ethnic violence. Duration: 0:48 Dec 13, 2013

Desperate Syrians continue to flood Jordan border

They fled air strikes and shelling, but many of Syria's three million refugees have found little comfort elsewhere, suffering in squalid camps and risking death to reach safety. Duration: 0:50 Dec 13, 2013

Thousands queue to bid farewell to Mandela

Up to 14,000 people viewed Nelson Mandela's body on the first day of his lying in state, the government said Thursday, announcing that shuttle services for the second day had reached capacity. Dec 13, 2013

Winter storm pummels Mideast, blankets Jerusalem

A bruising winter storm brought severe weather to the Middle East Thursday. The weather sent temperatures plunging and brought heavy snow at higher elevations, including in Jerusalem, where schools were closed and conditions were expected to worsen. Dec 13, 2013

Ethiopia's colossal human airlift from Saudi Arabia

When Ethiopia started repatriating its citizens living illegally in Saudi Arabia last month, 30,000 people were expected to return. Today, four times that amount have been repatriated -- with numbers still swelling daily. Dec 13, 2013