Three killed near base
A suicide bomber killed three Afghans on Wednesday in an unsuccessful attempt to enter an American military base near Khost, U.S. and Afghan officials said. Gen. Abdul Qayum Baqizoi, the police chief in Khost province, said the attacker drove a minivan packed with explosives toward the front gate of Forward Operating Base Chapman as civilian workers gathered to enter at the start of the day, but was stopped by an Afghan guard. The attacker detonated his explosives and killed the guard, as well as two civilians, Baqizoi said.
Constitution is enacted
Egypt’s Islamist president proclaimed the country’s newly adopted constitution as the dawning of a “new republic” in an address Wednesday, calling on the opposition to join a dialogue with him. Mohammed Morsi sought to present the constitution as the turning of a historic page, but his speech did little to ease the suspicions of those who fear he and his Muslim Brotherhood are entrenching their power. He offered no concrete gestures to an opposition that has vowed to fight the constitution.
Mandela leaves hospital
Former President Nelson Mandela was released Wednesday from the hospital after being treated for a lung infection and having gallstones removed, a government spokesman said. The 94-year-old anti-apartheid icon will continue to receive medical care at home. Mandela had been in the hospital since Dec. 8. Officials have said he was improving, but doctors have taken extraordinary care because of his age.
Bullet train starts up
China on Wednesday opened the world’s longest high-speed rail line that more than halves the time required to travel from the capital in the north to an economic hub in the south. The opening of the 1,428-mile line was commemorated by the 9 a.m. departure of a train from Beijing for Guangzhou. Another train left Guangzhou for Beijing an hour later. Trains will initially run at 186 mph with a total travel time of about eight hours. Before, the fastest time between the two cities was more than 20 hours.
Compiled from wire reports.