Afghan army raises the age limit for recruits

KABUL, Afghanistan — The Afghan army, struggling to defeat a resilient Taliban, has begun enlisting men as old as 40 to replenish a force thinned by casualties, defections and attrition.

The decision to raise the age limit for recruits to 40 from 35 came in response to pressure from the U.S.-led coalition, Afghan officials said..

Many analysts think the Afghan army suffered a record number of casualties last year. It has not released specific figures.

The Washington Post

Italian student died 'slow death,' Egyptian says

CAIRO — The body of an Italian graduate student who disappeared last month has been found with multiple stab wounds, cigarette burns and other signs of torture and a "slow death" on a roadside on the outskirts of Cairo, an Egyptian prosecutor said Thursday.

Giulio Regeni, 28, a Cambridge University doctoral candidate who had been researching labor rights in Egypt, went missing on Jan. 25. His body was found Wednesday.

Italy called for a full investigation with participation by Italian experts. —

Explosive residue found in probe of damaged plane

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The head of the airline whose jetliner was damaged in an explosion shortly after takeoff from Somalia this week said Thursday that investigators have found what appears to be residue from explosives.

He cautioned that the findings were inconclusive. — AP

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