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TOP STORIES

Houthis accept 5-day truce in Yemen proposed by Saudi Arabia

CAIRO/ADEN - Iranian-allied Houthi fighters in Yemen accept a five-day humanitarian ceasefire proposed by their adversary Saudi Arabia but say they will respond to any violations. (YEMEN-SECURITY/ (WRAPUP 3, PIX, TV), by Mohammed Ghobari and Mohammed Mukhashaf, moved, 600 words)

Raul Castro meets pope, says he might return to the Church

VATICAN CITY - Cuban President Raul Castro thanks Pope Francis for brokering the thaw between Havana and Washington and says the pope has so impressed him that he might return to the Church, despite being a communist. (POPE-CUBA/CASTRO (UPDATE 3, PICTURES, TV), moved, by Philip Pullella, 460 words)

China cuts interest rates as economy sputters

BEIJING - China cuts interest rates for the third time in six months in a bid to lower companies' borrowing costs and stoke a sputtering economy that is headed for its worst year in a quarter of a century. (CHINA-ECONOMY/RATES (UPDATE 4), by Michael Martina, moved, 600 words)

Super typhoon nears Philippines, residents evacuate area

MANILA - Typhoon Noul crashes ashore on the northeastern tip of the Philippines, as officials warn of landslides and call on residents along the coast to evacuate to safer ground.(PHILIPPINES-TYPHOON/ (UPDATE 2), moved, by Manuel Mogato, 400 words)

UNITED STATES

Man, woman charged with murdering two Mississippi policemen

Police in Mississippi arrest a man and woman and charged them with murder after two police officers were fatally gunned down a day earlier as they conducted a routine traffic stop in Hattiesburg, a state official said. (USA-POLICE/MISSISSIPPI (UPDATE 2), moved, by Therese Apel, 400 words)

Tropical Storm Ana weakens after landfall along Carolina coast

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Tropical Storm Ana, the first named storm of the 2015 Atlantic hurricane season, weakens after making landfall near Myrtle Beach, South Carolina but high surf and flooding still threaten the coast. (WEATHER-STORM/ANA (UPDATE 2), moved, by Harriet McLeod, 400 words)

EUROPE

Russia's Putin says Ukraine peace process moving forward

MOSCOW - Russian President Vladimir Putin says after talks with Germany's Angela Merkel that a peace deal over the separatist conflict in east Ukraine is moving forward despite problems and that it is the only way to put an end to fighting. (UKRAINE-CRISIS/PUTIN-MERKEL (UPDATE 1), moved, 350 words)

SPECIAL REPORT-Russian soldiers quit over Ukraine

MOSCOW/DONETSK - Moscow says it has not sent troops to Ukraine. But some soldiers say they have quit rather than be sent there. (UKRAINE-CRISIS/SOLDIERS (SPECIAL REPORT, PICTURES, GRAPHIC), moved, by Maria Tsevtkova, 1,800 words)

Deadly gun battle deepens Macedonian crisis; 22 killed

KUMANOVO, Macedonia - Macedonia says its police wiped out a group of ethnic Albanian "terrorists" in a day-long gun battle that left at least 22 people dead at a moment of deep political crisis in the former Yugoslav republic (MACEDONIA-POLICE/ (UPDATE 3, PIX, TV), expect by 1900 GMT/3 PM ET, by Matt Robinson and Fatos Bytyci, 600 words)

Merkel's party suffers another state loss as Eurosceptics roll on

BERLIN - The Eurosceptic Alternative for Germany (AfD) party looked set to win seats in a fifth straight regional parliament after an election in the city-state of Bremen where Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives are badly beaten. (GERMANY-ELECTION/BREMEN (UPDATE 2), expect by 2030 GMT/4.30 PM ET, by Michael Nienaber and Erik Kirschbaum, 400 words)

'Winner takes all' vote system exaggerates Britain's divisions

LONDON - David Cameron can thank Britain's winner-takes-all voting system for handing him an outright majority in parliament on just 37 percent of the vote. But by boosting the power of Scottish nationalists, it has also intensified one of his biggest headaches. (BRITAIN-ELECTION/REFORM (GRAPHIC), moved, by Mark Trevelyan, 700 words)

Polish president front-runner in election

WARSAW - Poland votes in the first round of a presidential election that opinion polls indicate will send front-runner and incumbent Bronislaw Komorowski into a runoff against a conservative opposition challenger. (POLAND-ELECTION/PRESIDENT (UPDATE 1), expect by 2000 GMT/4 PM ET, by Marcin Goclowski and Pawel Florkiewicz, 400 words)

Eyeing greater power, Erdogan rallies Turks in Europe ahead of vote

KARLSRUHE/ISTANBUL - Defying opposition calls to stay out of campaigning, President Tayyip Erdogan rallies Turks in Europe, urging them to vote in a June general election he hopes will help bring him greater powers (TURKEY-ELECTION/ERDOGAN-DIASPORA (UPDATE 1, TV, PIX), expect by 2030 GMT/4.40 PM ET, by Frank Simon and Nick Tattersall, 500 words)

Turkish PM crosses into Syria to visit historic Ottoman tomb

ANKARA - Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu briefly crosses into Syria to visit the tomb of a revered Ottoman figure and vows Turkey's flag will fly there forever, prompting Damascus to accuse him of aggression. (MIDEAST-CRISIS/SYRIA-TURKEY-DAVUTOGLU (UPDATE 3, PIX), moved, by Ercan Gurses and Tuvan Gumrukcu, 400 words)

AFRICA

East African leaders seek to break political deadlock in Burundi

DAR ES SALAAM - East African leaders will hold a summit in Tanzania on May 13 aimed at breaking the political deadlock in Burundi and ensuring the country holds peaceful elections, Tanzania's presidency says. (BURUNDI-POLITICS/, moved, by Fumbuka Ng'wanakilala and Patrick Nduwimana, 400 words)

First black leader heads South Africa's opposition party

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa's main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), said it voted Mmusi Maimane as leader, making him the first black person to head the traditionally white party. (SAFRICA-POLITICS/, moved, by Helen Nyambura-Mwaura, 300 words)

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