Xinhua Asia-Pacific news summary at 1600 GMT, Jan. 6

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KABUL -- At least 24 fighters from warring sides have been killed in the conflict-hit Afghanistan since Saturday, officials said Sunday.

Both government security forces and Taliban militants have stepped up operations to gain more grounds and consolidate positions ahead of any possible talks between the two sides to find negotiated settlement for Afghanistan's lingering crisis, local observers believe. (Afghanistan-Fighting)

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KUALA LUMPUR -- Malaysia's King Sultan Muhammad V resigned on Sunday, after over two years serving as the country's ceremonial supreme head of state.

The resignation was announced by the national palace, saying Muhammad V has informed this matter officially to the Malay Rulers through a letter issued to the secretary of the Conference of Rulers. (Malaysia-King-Resigns)

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DHAKA -- Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's 47-member new cabinet line-up has been announced.

Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam announced the names of the cabinet members at a press conference here Sunday. (Bangladesh-New Cabinet)

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FAIZABAD, Afghanistan -- At least 20 people were killed and seven injured as a landslide hit Kohistan district in the northern Badakhshan province on Sunday, provincial head of Natural Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Sayed Abdullah Hamayon Dehqan said.

"The tragic incident happened at around 10:30 a.m. local time in Shipo area of Kohistan district when more than 50 people were busy in illegal digging of a gold mine there and almost all of them were buried alive and so far 20 dead bodies and seven injured persons have been discovered," Dehqan told Xinhua. (Afghanistan-Landslide)

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MANILA -- The death toll in a powerful storm that triggered landslides and flash flood in the Philippines has risen to 126, a government disaster agency said on Sunday.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said in its latest report that 26 people remain missing in the regions of Bicol, Eastern Visayas, Calabarzon and Mimaropa. (Philippines-Storm-Deaths) Enditem

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