Kyrgyz leaders say U.S. can keep air base

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan — Consolidating their victory after a bloody uprising, opposition leaders declared Thursday they would hold power in Kyrgyzstan for six months and assured the U.S. it can keep a strategic air base here — at least for now.

There were signs of instability, though, as deposed President Kurmanbek Bakiyev refused to relinquish power after the revolt, which left at least 75 people dead and hundreds wounded. As he spoke, gunfire broke out in Bishkek, the capital.

With darkness descending, bands of armed marauders prowled the streets of the capital, despite warnings from the opposition leadership that looters would be shot.

Thai government tries to quash opposition

BANGKOK — Thailand blocked an opposition TV station and dozens of Web sites, trying to control escalating anti-government rallies with censorship instead of violence. Outraged protesters vowed to defy a state of emergency with an "unforgettable" demonstration today.

Defiant leaders of the "Red Shirt" movement called for a Friday march to 10 undisclosed locations in Bangkok, pledging to make it the biggest rally yet in a monthlong campaign to drive Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva from office and force new elections.

Six nations meet to discuss Iran sanctions

UNITED NATIONS — Ambassadors from China and five major powers met for the first time Thursday to discuss possible new sanctions against Iran, which is refusing to suspend uranium enrichment and start negotiations on its suspect nuclear program.

After nearly three hours of talks, Russia U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told reporters "we all agreed that it was a good discussion."

Churkin cautioned, however, that there were difficult negotiations on the three previous resolutions imposing sanctions against Iran and said he expects difficult negotiations on a fourth sanctions resolution as well.