The world in brief

Posted: December 7, 2017 at 3:33 a.m.

British Prime Minister Theresa May leaves 10 Downing St. in London on Wednesday under police guard to attend the weekly Prime Minister’s Questions in Parliament.

Assassination suspect arraigned in U.K.

LONDON -- A man was ordered held Wednesday after being accused in a plot to assassinate Prime Minister Theresa May.

Naa'imur Zakariyah Rahman, 20, has been remanded in custody at Westminster Magistrates' Court.

The plan allegedly involved planting a bomb near the entrance of Downing Street and then continuing the attack with a knife and suicide vest in a bid to kill the U.K. leader in the ensuing chaos.

He is charged with preparing acts of terrorism and appeared alongside another man, Mohammed Aqib Imran, who is accused of trying to join the Islamic State extremist group but wasn't charged in connection with the assassination plot. Rahman is also accused of assisting Imran in terror planning.

The two were arrested in London and Birmingham on Nov. 28 by the Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Command.

Open office for peace talks, Taliban told

KABUL -- An Afghan government-mandated peace council on Wednesday urged the Taliban to open an office in the capital Kabul and join peace talks to end the country's 16-year war.

The council said in a statement that it wouldn't set any preconditions for negotiations and will let the insurgent group choose its own preferred methods for paving the way to talks.

The latest push for peace with the Taliban, which now controls or contests more than 40 percent of Afghanistan, comes after President Donald Trump in August revealed his new strategy for the nation in a bid to resolve America's longest war that has cost thousands of lives and about $120 billion.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed did not respond to multiple calls for comment, but the group has repeatedly rejected all calls for peace talks until their top condition is met: the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Afghanistan.

Hungarian charged with spying on EU

BUDAPEST, Hungary -- A Hungarian member of the European Parliament has been indicted for allegedly spying on the European Union, Hungarian prosecutors said Wednesday.

Prosecutors didn't identify which country Bela Kovacs was purportedly spying for but earlier said that Hungary's counterintelligence service had been alarmed by his regular contacts with Russian diplomats and monthly visits to Moscow.

According to the indictment, "the parliamentary representative carried out his spying activities in the interests of a foreign state and on behalf of the secret services."

Charges filed by the Chief Investigative Prosecutor's Office against Kovacs, from the far-right Jobbik party, also include fraud totaling $24,900 stemming from the fictitious employment of interns in the EU parliament in 2012 to 2013.

Kovacs, who has been a member of the EU parliament since 2010, worked and studied in Russia for many years.

Kovacs denied the charges, saying he welcomed the opportunity to clear his name in court. He said he was immediately leaving his party.

Bolivia loosening abortion restrictions

LA PAZ, Bolivia -- Bolivian lawmakers voted Wednesday to ease the country's tight restrictions on abortions, shrugging aside opposition from religious groups.

The Legislative Assembly vote will allow "students, adolescents or girls" to have abortions up to the eighth week of pregnancy. Abortion in Bolivia currently is allowed only when the woman's life is in danger, in the case of a malformed fetus or in cases of rape or incest. Illegal abortion carries a prison term of up to three years.

President Evo Morales has said he'll sign the measure, despite opposition from Catholic and Evangelical churches in the country.

Health Minister Ariana Campero said abortion is the third-leading cause of maternal death in Bolivia, and the government has estimated that more than 80,000 clandestine abortions occur each year in the country.

A Section on 12/07/2017