Heavy rains receded on Monday in the Himalayan region of Kashmir, giving hope that efforts could resume to bring aid to the millions of homeless survivors of a monster earthquake that killed an estimated 54Â 000 people. Two strong aftershocks struck the region in the early morning, including one with a magnitude of 4,5, but there was no immediate report of damage.
Torrential downpours delayed quake relief efforts on Sunday in the Himalayan region of Kashmir, and the Pakistani military said one of its helicopters flying an aid mission crashed, killing all six people aboard. Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz made it clear that shelter is now the priority.
Fierce battles between insurgents and United States and Iraqi forces killed at least nine people Monday in Baqouba -- the latest in a wave of clashes that has swept Iraq's Sunni Muslim heartland even as US forces move against the last remaining pockets of resistance in Fallujah.
A Thai health official warned on Monday that authorities must prepare for an expected second onslaught of bird flu, as Vietnam reported the region's 19th fatality from the virus that has ravaged poultry farms across Asia. The World Health Organisation, meanwhile, said China may already have human cases of bird flu.