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First lady leaves out anti-drug plea in Mexico

MEXICO CITY — First lady Michelle Obama said Wednesday that reducing the demand for illegal drugs needs an approach much broader than just warning young people to stay away from them.

"If young people don't have an alternative in their lives, whatever country they're in, they're going to choose drugs, they're going to choose (the) drug trade. That's the way they make money, "Obama told reporters from six U.S. media outlets after a speech to several thousand young people during her first international trip as first lady.

But she left the issue out of her public remarks in a country racked by drug violence.

Obama said she did not mention Mexico's drug woes because she wanted to use her visit "to remind us in the U.S. and our partners in Mexico that there is more that connects us than the violence and the drugs."

Protesters battle riot police in Indonesia

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Protesters wielding machetes, sticks and petrol bombs clashed with riot police in running battles over a Muslim cleric's tomb near the Indonesian capital's main seaport, killing two people and wounding some 130 others.

Some of the injuries were severe, including an officer who had his stomach slashed and another whose hand was chopped off. Wednesday's violence was Jakarta's worst civil unrest in years.

The protesters believed city officials were trying to remove the tomb of an Arab cleric who helped spread Islam in North Jakarta in the 18th century. The tomb is on land owned by the state-run seaports operator Pelindo II, and the area is home to many squatters.

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