Briefs, October 8, 2012

PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 October, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 08 October, 2012, 3:21am

Pakistan turns back drone strike protest

ISLAMABAD - Pakistani authorities stopped a protest over US drone strikes led by cricketer turned politician Imran Khan from entering the troubled region of South Waziristan, prompting allegations the government was ambivalent about US actions. Pakistan's military and the civilian government publicly complain that the strikes infringe the country's sovereignty and cause civilian casualties, but little concrete action has been taken against the strikes. Khan had planned to lead the protest into South Waziristan but after several delays the army told protesters it was unsafe to be on the road after dark and they turned back. Reuters


Sri Lankan judge attacked in 'cold war'

COLOMBO - Unidentified attackers stabbed and badly wounded a senior Sri Lankan judge amid heightened tension between the government and the judiciary. Four men assaulted Manjula Tilakaratne, secretary of the independent Judicial Service Commission (JSC), in Colombo. The attack came as the local Sunday Times newspaper said the government was locked in a "cold war" with judges over a JSC announcement it was being subjected to "threats and intimidation". AFP


South Korean tourists killed in lightning strike

COLOMBO - Two foreign tourists killed by lightning in Sri Lanka's central region have been identified as South Koreans, police said, correcting earlier reports the man and the woman were Chinese. Three other South Korean women were injured by the strike in Haputale, 200 kilometres east of Colombo. The group were at Lipton's Seat, one of the highest look-out points in central Sri Lanka, during a sudden thunderstorm. AFP


Noda visits stricken nuclear power plant

TOKYO - Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda toured Japan's crippled Fukushima power plant to demonstrate his resolve to end the nuclear disaster there, amid public scepticism about his energy policy. Noda encouraged the crews in their dangerous work to contain its molten reactors. The plant is still releasing radiation after last year's quake and tsunami. AFP