8:27am

Wed November 27, 2013
Parallels

World Headlines: China Tracked U.S. Bombers Over New Zone

China, Xinhua

China says it tracked U.S. B-52 bombers that flew over its "air defense identification zone."

Defense Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng said Wednesday the U.S. aircraft flew south and north along the eastern border of the East China Sea air defense identification zone from 11 a.m. to 1:22 p.m. Tuesday, about 120 miles east of the disputed islands that Japan calls Senkaku and China Diaoyu.

"We need to stress that China will identify every aircraft flying in the air defense identification zone according to the country's announcement of aircraft identification rules for the air defense identification zone," Geng said.

China announced the zone Saturday, drawing strong opposition from the U.S. and Japan. The zone overlaps with an air zone marked by Japan and covers the disputed islands, which are controlled by Japan. Japan has called China's zone "invalid."

A Pentagon spokesman said Tuesday the U.S. bombers' flight path wasn't filed with China.

Russia, RIA Novosti

Russian police say they have detained members of a banned Islamist sect with explosives and a suicide belt.

The 14 men were arrested late Tuesday in eastern Moscow. Police said they belonged to Takfir wal-Hijra, a banned group. Homemade explosives, pistols, grenades and ammunition were recovered, along with extremist literature.

Officials said Wednesday another member of the group was separately detained in Moscow. It's unclear if the arrests are linked.

South Africa, The Mercury

There's outrage over a question in the school-leaving examination that asked students how they would stage the rape of a baby using a loaf of bread and a broomstick as props.

But a spokesman for the Department of Education defended the question in the dramatic arts examination taken by 17-year-olds.

"By the time pupils are in matric, they have begun to be faced with the realities of adulthood, often beyond the security of their homes and the school system," Elijah Mhlanga said Tuesday. "They will, through media and cinema, have been exposed to many horrific images and reports."

Drama allowed pupils to confront real matters "through the safety of story," he added.

Drama teachers, school organizations and gender rights' activists said the question was too "graphic" for high school students. They said those who had experienced sexual abuse could have been further traumatized.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.