International

Khan claims win in Pakistan with

vows on poverty, US ties

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Former cricket star Imran Khan declared victory Thursday in Pakistan’s parliamentary election and vowed to run the country “as it has never before been run” by fighting corruption, seeking regional cooperation and forging a new relationship with the U.S. that was not “one-sided.”

TV stations reported Khan and his Tehreek-e-Insaf party, or PTI, maintained a commanding lead from Wednesday’s balloting. But his leading rival, Shahbaz Sharif, rejected the outcome, citing allegations of vote-rigging.

Pakistan’s election commission struggled with technical problems and had to revert to a manual count, delaying the announcement of final results until Friday. That left unclear whether the PTI will have a simple majority in the National Assembly or have to form a coalition government.

But that didn’t stop the 65-year-old Khan from proclaiming his triumph in an address to the nation, in which he pledged to create an Islamic welfare state to provide education and employment for the poor to fulfill a campaign promise to create 10 million jobs.

Arson linked to deaths in

Greek town built like ‘fire trap’

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek authorities said Thursday there were serious indications that a deadly wildfire that gutted a vacation resort near Athens was started deliberately, while experts warned that the devastated coastal town had been built like a “fire trap,” with poor safety standards and few escape routes.

The death toll from Monday’s blaze east of the Greek capital rose to 82 as rescuers and divers continued to search for more bodies in burnt-out homes and at sea, where hundreds fled to try to escape the inferno.

Public Order Minister Nikos Toskas said satellite image analysis of the deadly fire and a second blaze that broke out Monday on the other side of the city indicated both had been set in multiple places within a short time frame.

“We have serious indications and significant findings of criminal activity concerning arson,” Toskas said.

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