Tokyo and Seoul
TOKYO -- Japan's Emperor Akihito Tuesday asked for the release of three Japanese hostages in Iraq, according to the Kyodo News agency.
Kyodo also said that the armed group that took the hostages last week might use them as a bargaining tool for a ceasefire between U.S. troops and Iraqi fighters in Fallujah.
S. Korean cabinet resigns
SEOUL -- South Korea's Prime Minister Goh Kun and his entire cabinet resigned Friday, the official Yonhap News Agency reported.
The news came after President Roh Moo-hyun indicated he seek a measure of the public's confidence in him possibly in the form of a referendum before next April's general elections.
The announcement was made at an unexpected press conference at Cheong Wa Dae. Roh said he decided to seek public confidence after a series of corruption scandals that have rocked his administration.
The latest news came as the president attended the four-day ASEAN summit in Bali, Indonesia. His aide Choi Do-sul is under investigation for allegedly taking 1.1 billion won (US$957,521) in bribes from the SK Group conglomorate.
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