BBC News with John Jason
The fate of a jailed Bahraini dissident said to be close to death has brought thousands of protesters out on the kingdom's streets. Abdulhadi al-Khawaja has been starving himself for nearly two months and is now said to be close to death. This report from Farhana Dawood.
There are grave concerns for the health of Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, who has gone without food for 58 days. His plight has become a powerful rallying point for the tiny nation's Shia-led uprising against the Sunni monarchy. He's appealing against a life sentence he received for his part in anti-government protests last year. His daughter has also been imprisoned after leading a demonstration calling for her father's release on Thursday night.
Turkey has told the United Nations that it needs help to cope with an increasing number of refugees arriving from Syria. The flow has doubled since the Syrian government agreed to accept a peace plan calling for an end to military operations by next Tuesday. Many of the refugees have reported intense bombardment by government forces.
A US navy fighter plane has crashed in the centre of a town in the American state of Virginia, demolishing an apartment building and setting it ablaze. The two-man crew ejected before it came down. More details from Paul Adams in Washington.
This was a navy F-18 two-seater jet from the nearby Oceana naval air station. We think that probably within 30 or 40 seconds of take-off, something catastrophic happened on board, and moments later, the plane crashed into this apartment complex. Amazingly, the pilots both managed to eject safely. One of them was found apologising profusely to the local people for having crashed into their neighbourhood. Both of those pilots and, we think, about four or five other people taken to hospital, no, apparently no life-threatening injury.
There's been international condemnation of a declaration of independence by Tuareg rebels in northern Mali where they seized control two weeks after a coup threw the country into turmoil. African leaders, the European Union and the United States rejected the move by National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad. France, Mali's former colonial power, had a similar response. Its foreign ministry spokesman is Bernard Valero.
"We consider that the unilateral declaration of independence by the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad is null and void. We call on the MNLA to bring its action within the framework of a political dialogue, respectful of the rules of the Mali constitution and the country's unity."
Meanwhile, the leader of the coup, Captain Amadou Haya Sanogo, has said the process is underway to make the speaker of parliament the next head of state.
There's still been no official announcement in Malawi following the death of President Bingu wa Mutharika, who suffered a heart attack on Thursday. Correspondents say there's thought to be disagreement among senior members of the government over who should take charge.
World News from the BBC
The Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who's suffering from cancer, has pleaded for his life to be spared in a prayer during Easter Mass. Speaking through tears in his home town of Barinas, Mr Chavez asked Jesus to give him more time because he said he had things left to do.
Mr Chavez returned to Venezuela earlier this week after undergoing his latest session of treatment in Cuba. In February, he had surgery to remove a second tumour from his pelvic area.
Two players for the Argentine football club River Plate have been threatened and robbed on their way to a training session. Keko Villalva and Juan Cazares were stopped in their car while leaving a highway in the capital Buenos Aires. Two men forced them to drive to a nearby neighbourhood where they threatened to shoot the footballers in the legs unless they handed over their cash, car and valuables.
Cuba is marking Good Friday with a public holiday for the first time in decades. Recognition of religious holidays was stopped after the 1959 revolution when Cuba was officially declared atheist. Sarah Rainsford reports from Havana.
The last papal visit in the 1990s brought Christmas back to Cuba. Now Good Friday has been made a holiday too thanks to Pope Benedict. It's a sign of the changing place of the Catholic Church in a country that was officially atheist for three decades. The Pope requested the move when he visited Cuba last week and met its communist President Raul Castro. His wish was granted as a mark of respect and a memory of what a statement called the "transcendental nature" of his visit.
The French authorities say they fear a serial killer may be behind a series of unexplained shootings in a suburb of Paris. Prosecutors say the same weapon has been used in four murders in the Essone area since November. The latest victim was a 47-year-old woman who was shot dead in her apartment building on Thursday. Police say there's no apparent link between the four victims apart from the fact that the first two were neighbours.
That's the latest BBC News.
BBC News with John Jason The fate of a jailed Bahraini dissident said to be close to death has brought thousands of protesters out on the kingdoms streets. Abdulhadi al-Khawaja has been starving himse
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