Indonesia, Nov 30 (AP/UNB) — More than 100 inmates escaped from a prison in western Indonesia after overpowering a guard during prayer time, police said Friday.
The break occurred late Thursday at the Lambaro penitentiary when all 720 inmates were let out of their cells to take part in evening prayers, said Trisno Riyanto, police chief in Banda Aceh, the capital of Aceh province.
He said that the inmates, who were mostly convicted of drug charges and apparently had planned their escape in advance, cut through the wire and iron bars using barbells and crowbars in the reception room and made a dash through rice fields in front of the prison.
The guard's injuries were not serious, police said.
At least 26 prisoners have been recaptured and police set up roadblocks across Banda Aceh to search for the others.
Aceh provincial police chief Rio Septianda Djambak called on the escaped prisoners to surrender within three days and urged their relatives to support authorities in bringing them back.
"We will not hesitate to take firm action to force them to obey the law," Djambak said.
Jailbreaks are common in Indonesia, where overcrowding has become a problem in prisons that are struggling to cope with poor funding and an influx of people arrested in a war on drugs. Most prisoners have been convicted of drug charges.
Last year, more than 440 prisoners escaped from a penitentiary in neighboring Riau province when they also took advantage of Friday Muslim prayers. In July 2013, about 240 prisoners, including several convicted terrorists, escaped during a deadly riot at a prison in Medan, the capital of North Sumatra province.
Hong Kong, Nov 30 (AP/UNB) — Police say a bus ferrying workers to Hong Kong International Airport slammed into a taxi, killing five people and injuring more than 30.
The bus driver and two passengers were tossed from the coach in the early Friday morning crash and pronounced dead at the scene. The taxi driver and another bus passenger also died.
Police say the taxi was stopped in the left lane of a highway with its emergency lights on about 19 kilometers (12 miles) from the airport.
The injured include a German tourist who was in the taxi.
Buenos Aires, Nov 29 (AP/UNB) — Argentine legal authorities took initial action Wednesday to consider a request from Human Rights Watch to prosecute Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for alleged crimes against humanity.
The rights group's move is apparently aimed at embarrassing the crown prince as he attends the G-20 summit in Buenos Aires this week.
Federal Judge Ariel Lijo agreed to a request by prosecutor Ramiro Gonzalez to determine if other entities are investigating the prince for possible crimes against humanity before deciding whether to open an investigation in Argentina.
Argentina's legal system allows cases to be brought against crimes against humanity allegedly committed elsewhere. But it is unlikely anything will happen soon, given the time it will take the judge to make a decision after the request for information from Yemen, Turkey and the International Criminal Court is filed by the Argentine foreign ministry.
The judge has also asked rights groups to provide details supporting allegations against the prince.
Human Rights Watch accuses the prince of war crimes in Yemen and responsibility for the gruesome slaying of newspaper columnist Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul last month.
"The Argentine judiciary, by taking steps toward a formal investigation, is sending a clear message that even powerful officials like Mohammed bin Salman are not above the law and will be scrutinized if implicated in grave international crimes," the group said in a statement.
"A cloud of suspicion will loom over him as he tries to rebuild his shattered reputation at the G20, and world leaders would do well to think twice before posing for pictures next to someone who may come under investigation for war crimes and torture."
The prince, who stopped in several Arab countries along the way, arrived in Buenos Aires early Wednesday and was taken to the Saudi Embassy, which is being guarded by dozens of police officers.
Argentina has cooperation agreements with Saudi Arabia in tourism and other areas.
New Delhi, Nov 28 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Voting begins in India's north-eastern state of Mizoram and central state of Madhya Pradesh for assembly elections on Wednesday.
There are 230 assembly constituencies in Madhya Pradesh, and Mizoram has 40 assembly seats.
Madhya Pradesh is ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), while the country's main opposition party the Indian National Congress (INC) is ruling Mizoram.
Election results in the two states will be announced on Dec. 11, along with three other states -- Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Telangana. While Chhattisgarh has already held elections earlier this month, Rajasthan and Telangana will go to votes on Dec. 7.
Tokyo, Nov 28 (Xinhua/UNB) -- An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 5.9 struck off the east coast of Japan's northern Aomori Prefecture, the weather agency said here on Wednesday.
According to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), the temblor's epicenter was located at the latitude of 41.3 degrees north and longitude of 143.3 degrees east and occurred at a depth the agency described as "very shallow."
The quake, which struck at 11:23 a.m. local time (0223 GMT), logged 3 on the Japanese seismic intensity scale which peaks at 7 in the prefectures of Aomori and Hokkaido as well as surrounding areas.
There have been no reports of major damage or injuries as the result of the offshore quake so far, although the JMA said "there may be slight sea-level changes in coastal regions."
Japan's nuclear watchdog has not, thus far, reported any abnormalities at any of its nuclear plants in the affected areas.