News in Brief

Food Aid Arrives in N. Korea

SEOUL, South Korea -- A shipment of Russian food aid arrived this week in North Korea, the country's official news agency reported Wednesday.

The North's official Korean Central News Agency said the aid arrived Monday via train to the northwestern city of Sinuiju. There were no details on the amount of food sent, which KCNA said was to be delivered through the World Food Program.

The food "is a token of the friendly relations between the peoples of the two countries and an encouragement to the Korean people," KCNA aid.

Russia is one of the North's allies and a member of six-nation disarmament talks that aim to persuade Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear weapons programs. (AP)

Turkmens Free Reporter

ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- Turkmenistan's authorities have released a reporter working for U.S.-backed Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty after two weeks of detention, the U.S. Embassy in Turkmenistan said.

The radio network said that last month Sazak Durdymuradov, a contributing reporter on its Turkmen service, was detained and tortured after he refused to stop working for the Prague-based broadcaster.

"We welcome the release and return to his family of Sazak Durdymuradov," the embassy said in a statement Tuesday.

In an earlier statement, the network said Durdymuradov, a history teacher who contributed commentary on educational and constitutional reform, returned home to Bakharden, 200 kilometers west of the capital, Ashgabat, on July 4. (Reuters)