BBC News with Nick Kelly
Tuareg rebels in Mali have entered Timbuktu, the last stronghold of the army in the north of the country. They say they now control the city, which is reported to be quiet. The rebels, who want an independent Tuareg homeland, are assisted by Islamist fighters and have made sweeping military gains since mutinous troops staged a coup in Mali 10 days ago. Thomas Fessy has more.
Effectively the rebels have now sort of achieved their first objective which is to take over all the centres of northern Mali, and they say they will now work into establishing their own administration. They've raised their flag everywhere that they've gone through. Now the question is how they will come about sharing their success.
As vote counting continues in Burma following by-elections, the opposition National League for Democracy has said its leader Aung San Suu Kyi has won her first ever parliamentary seat. The NLD also said it was on course to win all the seats it contested. No official results have yet been declared. The elections are being seen as a key test of the government's commitment to reform after almost 50 years of military rule. The opposition have alleged there were some irregularities during the campaign and during the voting itself.
Gulf Arab states have agreed to pay the salaries and other costs of the Free Syrian Army through a multi-million dollar fund to be operated by the opposition Syrian National Council, the SNC. The decision was announced at a meeting in Istanbul of 83 countries backing political change in Syria. Jonathan Head reports.
There were no dramatic new promises at this conference, but then none was expected. Instead, the growing Friends of Syria group hopes that sheer weight of numbers - it now comprises close to half the membership of the United Nations - will keep the diplomatic pressure on President Assad and eventually persuade his allies, Russia and Iran, to abandon him. Some Gulf states now believe the time has come to supply weapons to the insurgents of the Free Syrian Army. Other members of the group fear this would fuel a full-scale civil war. So a compromise was reached where a fund will be established to pay for salaries and non-lethal equipment for the fighters.
The British government is drawing up controversial plans to monitor the emails, phone calls, text messages and Internet searches of everyone in the country. It says such powers are vital to investigate serious crimes and terrorism. A member of parliament for the main governing Conservative Party, David Davis, voiced strong opposition to the plans.
"This is a major intrusion on our privacy, and it's a major intrusion on privacy without asking a magistrate or a judge. It should be subject to the law. When they tried to do this in Germany a couple of years ago, the Supreme Court in Germany struck it down. They can do everything necessary to catch terrorists and to catch criminals if they use the law. They don't need to be able to intrude on your and my privacy to do so."
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A Palestinian woman who's been on hunger strike for more than 40 days has been released by the Israeli authorities and sent to Gaza. Hana Shalabi, deemed by Israel to be a security risk, had been detained without charge since mid-February. She said she had agreed to end her hunger strike in return for being transported to Gaza for three years. Afterwards she would return to her home in the West Bank city of Jenin. Arriving in Gaza via the Erez crossing, she was greeted by dozens of Islamic jihad and Hamas supporters.
The authorities in Nigeria say at least 10 people have been killed during a raid on a suspected bomb-making factory in the state of Kogi. A local official said nine of the dead were members of the Islamist group Boko Haram, which has been carrying out violent attacks in Nigeria. A soldier is also said to have died. Boko Haram militants are fighting to overthrow the Nigerian government and set up an Islamic state.
Thousands of people have staged a noisy rally in Hong Kong in protest against the recent selection process for a new chief executive in the Chinese territory. Reports said as many as 15,000 people marched through the centre of the city, holding up banners and chanting slogans to denounce alleged Chinese interference. One of the protest organisers, Eric Lai, said the demonstrators wanted Beijing to respect Hong Kong's semi-autonomous status.
"They try to intervene [in] the press freedom and academic freedom in Hong Kong. We think to defend our civil liberties, people should come (coming口误) out to tell the liaison office that we need to defend the Hong Kong people within Hong Kong principle, not ruling by Beijing, by the liaison office."
And finally, the former Mexican President Miguel de la Madrid has died after a long illness. He was 77. Miguel de la Madrid led Mexico for six years from 1982. He introduced liberal economic reforms in response to a severe crisis. But his administration was criticised for its slow response to the huge earthquake that struck Mexico City in 1985.
BBC News with Nick Kelly Tuareg rebels in Mali have entered Timbuktu, the last stronghold of the army in the north of the country. They say they now control the city, which is reported to be quiet. Th
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