Top Asian News 1:10 p.m. GMT

TOKYO (AP) — North Korea is preparing to hold a once-in-a-generation congress of its ruling party that is intended to rally the nation behind leader Kim Jong Un and could provide an important glimpse into Kim’s plans for the country’s economy and military. The congress, set to begin on Friday, is the first in 36 years and follows a 70-day “loyalty drive” in which everyone from coal miners to restaurant workers were called upon to put in extra hours to increase productivity as a show of their devotion to Kim and the Workers’ Party of Korea, which he leads. The congress comes as North Korea is facing international pressure over a nuclear test in January and a series of rocket and missile launches that have led many outside experts to believe Pyongyang is much closer to having a viable nuclear deterrent than previously thought.

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Abu Sayyaf militants have freed 10 Indonesian crewmen who were seized at sea in March in the first of three attacks on tugboats that have sparked a regional maritime security alarm, officials said Sunday. The Indonesians appeared to be in good health when they were dropped off Sunday afternoon in front of the house of Sulu province’s governor in the town of Jolo, said the town’s police chief, Junpikar Sitin. The 10 men were then brought to a Philippine military camp and arrangements were underway to turn them over to Indonesian officials. A photo seen by The Associated Press shows the sunburned men in fresh shirts eating rice and chicken with Sulu’s governor on a veranda beside a Japanese-style garden in his house.

BEIJING (AP) — Taiwanese officials have protested Malaysia’s deportation of 32 of the self-ruled island’s nationals to China this weekend to face wire fraud charges, the latest in a series of disputes that has raised new friction between China and Taiwan. The deportation follows the sending of nearly four dozen Taiwanese from Kenya to China last month, a case some experts and observers see as an attempt by Beijing to bully the island that it claims as its own territory. Chinese authorities have said they need to crack down on perpetrators of phone scams that have resulted in an estimated 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) of losses each year.

Trade unions and other groups are staging rallies around the world to mark International Workers Day. A look at some May Day events: RUSSIA Tens of thousands of people marched across Moscow’s Red Square on a sunny Sunday morning in a pro-Kremlin workers’ rally. The protesters were carrying the Russian tricolor and balloons. As is typical for rallies organized by the ruling United Russia party, the May Day rally steered clear of criticizing President Vladimir Putin or his government for falling living standards. The slogans focused on wages and jobs for young professionals. Left-wing Russian groups held their own rallies. This year the May Day coincided with the Orthodox Easter in Russia.

NEW DELHI (AP) — Police in Bangladesh detained three men Sunday, including the head of an Islamic school, in connection with the stabbing death of a Hindu tailor in an attack claimed by the Islamic State group. Police officer Saleh Muhammed Tanvir said the school principal had sued Nikhil Joarder, the slain tailor, four years ago for allegedly making derogatory comments against Prophet Muhammad. Joarder was killed Saturday in his shop in the central district of Tangail by two men on motorcycles. The Islamic State group-affiliated Aamaq news agency issued a statement later Saturday saying “elements of the Islamic State stabbed to death by knife a Hindu in Tangail in Bangladesh who was known for insulting Prophet Muhammad.” It did not give further details.

NEW YORK (AP) — His defiant protests helped shape Americans’ opposition to the Vietnam War. And they landed The Rev. Daniel Berrigan behind bars. The Roman Catholic priest, writer and poet, who became a household name in the U.S. in the 1960s after being imprisoned for burning draft files in a protest against the war, died Saturday. He was 94. Berrigan died after a “long illness” at Murray-Weigel Hall, a Jesuit health care community in New York City according to Michael Benigno, a spokesman for the Jesuits USA Northeast Province. “He died peacefully,” Benigno said. Berrigan and his younger brother, the Rev.

BEIJING (AP) — China laid out firm conditions Saturday for improved ties with Japan, telling Tokyo’s visiting foreign minister that there could be “no ambiguity or vacillation” in meeting Beijing’s demands over historical interpretation, relations with Taiwan and other key matters. Beijing portrayed the visit by Fumio Kishida as an act of outreach to an angry China, as the two sides try to repair relations bedeviled by disputes over territory, history and competition for influence in East Asia. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told Kishida that the ties must be based on “respect for history, adherence to commitment, and on cooperation rather than confrontation.” Relations have gone through “twists and turns in recent years due to reasons best known by Japan,” Wang said, adding that China desires “healthy and stable relations” with its neighbor and key economic partner.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The American-led U.N. command on Saturday dismissed as unsubstantiated accusations from North Korea that U.S. troops at a border village tried to provoke its frontline troops with “disgusting acts.” A North Korean military statement Friday warned U.S. soldiers to stop what it called “hooliganism” at the inter-Korean border village of Panmunjom or they’ll meet a “dog’s death any time and any place.” It said U.S. troops pointed their fingers at North Korean soldiers and made strange noises and unspecified “disgusting” facial expressions. It also said that American troops encouraged South Korean soldiers to aim their guns at the North.

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — South Korea’s president has arrived in Tehran in the first such high-level visit since the two nations established diplomatic ties in 1962. President Park Geun-hye’s office said she would visit Iran for three days beginning Sunday and hold talks with her Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani on the Korean Peninsula and ways to promote bilateral ties. Iran’s state news agency IRNA says Rouhani will hold a welcoming ceremony Monday. IRNA says over 230 business executives are accompanying Park. Iran has been seeking to integrate into the global financial system and improve ties with other countries since nuclear-related sanctions were lifted in January under a landmark deal with world powers.

MOSCOW (AP) — The Kremlin has announced that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will visit Russia next week to meet with President Vladimir Putin, a step toward deepening relations overshadowed by a World War II territorial dispute. Saturday’s announcement said Putin would host Abe next Friday in Sochi, the Black Sea city where the 2014 Winter Olympics were held. The foreign ministers of both countries met two weeks ago and agreed to schedule a meeting of their leaders this year, but no date had been officially announced. Abe has been pushing to make progress in the dispute over Russian-held islands, called the Northern Territories in Japan and the southern Kurils in Russia, which has kept the two countries from signing a peace treaty formally ending their World War II hostilities.