Bangladesh hit by new factory death blaze
DHAKA - Fire raced through a small garment factory in the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, killing at least six employees and injuring 10, firefighters and witnesses said. It came two months after the country's worst factory blaze killed 112 workers. Fire service officials said the fire appeared to start in a tyre repair and welding shop downstairs. But the exact cause was still to be determined. Working conditions at Bangladeshi factories are notoriously poor, with little enforcement of safety laws. Overcrowding and locked fire doors are common. AFP
300 Taliban attack militia in Pakistan
PESHAWAR - At least 31 people were killed when Pakistani Taliban attacked a pro-government militia, according to reports from the two sides, but the Taliban were beaten back after hours of fierce fighting. About 300 Taliban armed with mortars and rocket-propelled grenades launched the overnight assault in the Maiden area of Tirah, a pro-government fighter said. The militia beat the Taliban back, killing 15 and capturing 8, while three villagers were killed in crossfire, he said. A Taliban fighter said they killed 13 members of the militia. Reuters
N Korea 'may be on brink of nuclear test'
WASHINGTON - North Korea could be almost ready to carry out its threat to conduct a nuclear test, a US research institute said, pointing to recent satellite photos. The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies provided images of the Punggye-ri site, where nuclear tests were conducted in 2006 and 2009. They reveal that over the past month, roads have been kept clear of snow and workers may have been sealing the tunnel into a mountain where a nuclear device would be detonated. AP