** Japan's Ambassador Returns to S.Korea **
Japan's ambassador is back to South Korea, one week after recalling him in the wake of an intensifying island dispute between the two Asian neighbors.
Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba said Wednesday the ambassador, Masatoshi Muto, will return to Seoul to help manage the dispute over the islands, known as Takeshima in Japan and Dokdo in Korea.
Tokyo recalled the ambassador last week to protest South Korean President Lee Myung-bak's visit to the strategic islands, which are thought to be surrounded by energy deposits.
On Tuesday, South Korea dismissed a proposal by Japan to take the decades-old dispute to the International Court of Justice.
** Republicans Approve Anti-Abortion Campaign Platform**
Republicans preparing for the party convention, next week, have adopted a platform, or statement of beliefs, that includes a call for a constitutional amendment outlawing abortion.
The party's anti-abortion pledge does not include exceptions in cases of rape or incest, putting it at odds with the views of likely Republican nominee Mitt Romney. The platform also calls for a constitutional amendment that would grant an unborn child a fundamental right to life that cannot be infringed. Candidates are not required to support their party's statement of beliefs
The platform was approved on Tuesday, the same day that Republican Congressman Todd Akin announced he would remain in the race for a Senate seat in (the midwestern state of) Missouri. Akin had come under harsh criticism for his remarks earlier this week that "legitimate rape" does not lead to an unwanted pregnancy.
Many Republican leaders, including Romney himself, demanded that Akin withdraw from the race, fearing the controversy would endanger the party's chances of taking control of the Senate.