World

At least 63 killed, 182 wounded in Kabul wedding blast

KABUL: At least 63 people were killed and 182 wounded in a blast at a Kabul wedding late Saturday. The explosion came just as the US and the Taliban are widely expected to sign off on a deal that would see American troops begin to depart Afghanistan in return for various security assurances from the insurgents. "#Kabul #Afghanistan explosion in...

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Civilians killed and police wounded in Cairo bomb blast

CAIRO: A midday bomb blast in one of the busiest boulevards in Cairo's business district has killed two civilians, according to the health ministry. Nine others, including policemen, were injured in Monday's explosion outside the Egyptian High Court, the ministry said. Shortly after the blast, a little-known group claimed responsibility for the attack. The bomb was hidden under a car...

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IS allegedly threatens Twitter executive, staff

WASHINGTON: Twitter Inc and U.S. authorities are investigating alleged threats made by Islamic State militants against the social media network's co-founder and other employees, according to media reports. Islamic State supporters, in online posts on Sunday, called for attacks against Twitter and its “interests,” including death threats, according to the online news media company. “Our security team is investigating the...

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Iraq Deploys 30,000 Troops to Retake Tikrit From IS

KIRKUK: Some 30,000 Iraqi troops and militia backed by aircraft pounded IS positions in and around Tikrit on Monday in the biggest offensive yet to retake one of the group´s main strongholds. "Security forces are advancing on three main fronts towards Tikrit, Ad-Dawr (to the south) and Al-Alam (to the north)," an army lieutenant colonel on the ground told AFP...

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CCTV shows Syria-bound UK girls at Istanbul bus station

ISTANBUL: Security footage appears to show three British girls, believed to be heading for Syria to join the self-styled Islamic State (IS) group’s militants, waiting at a bus station in Istanbul before traveling to a Turkish town on the Syrian border. According to media rep­orts, close friends Kadiza Sultana, 16, and 15-year-old Shamima Begum and Amira Abase boarded a flight...

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North Korea Fires Missiles in Anger at South-US Military Drills

SEOUL: North Korea fired two missiles into the sea and vowed "merciless" retaliation on Monday as the US and South Korea kicked off joint military drills denounced by Pyongyang as recklessly confrontational. The annual exercises always trigger a surge in military tensions and warlike rhetoric on the divided peninsula, and analysts saw the North's missile tests as a prelude to...

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ISIS releases 19 Syrian Christians as ransom paid

BEIRUT: Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) jihadists on Sunday frees 19 of the 220 Assyrian Christians they took hostage in Syria last week, after a ransom was paid for their release, activists said. “Nineteen Assyrian hostages arrived on Sunday at the Church of Our Lady in Hasakeh after they were released by IS,” said Osama Edward, the director...

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Afghan avalanches, flooding death toll rises to near 250

KABUL: An Afghan provincial official says that the death toll from a massive avalanche in a mountainous valley near the capital Kabul rose to 198 as bulldozers and other machinery began clearing roads and rescue teams were able to reach remote villages that have been cut off for almost a week. Najimudin Khan, deputy provincial police chief of Panjshir province,...

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Obama to veto bill letting Congress weigh in on Iran deal

President Obama would veto a bill recently introduced in the US Senate allowing Congress to discuss the deal United States and other negotiating countries reach with Iran on its nuclear capabilities. A spokeswoman for White House's National Security Council said the President has been clear that now is not the time for Congress to pass additional legislation on Iran. She...

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BJP forms coalition government in Occupied Kashmir

OCCUPIED SRI NAGAR: India´s ruling Hindu nationalist party was Sunday sworn into government for the first time in occupied Kashmir after a power-sharing deal with a regional rival. Prime Minister Narendra Modi´s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have forged a coalition government after inconclusive elections two months ago for the IoK. Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, the...

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Former Mossad chief appeals Israelis not to vote Netanyahu

JERUSALEM: Former chief of Mossad appealed Israelis not to vote Benjamin Netanyahu in upcoming election whose policies were disastrous for the country. Former Mossad head Meir Dagan urged Israelis not to vote Benjamin Netanyahu in the election to be held on March 17, 2015. While being interviewed by Israeli newspaper, Dagan said that Israel has not good reputation across the...

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Russians react to Boris Nemtsov shooting

MOSCOW: People have gathered to pay tribute to opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, who was shot dead on Friday just meters from the Kremlin. It is not yet clear who was behind the attack but investigators suggested it had been meticulously planned. There was a mixed reaction as people on the streets of Moscow gave their views on the killing.

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Military operations force Boko Haram back to urban warfare

LAGOS: Bomb attacks in Nigerian towns and cities look likely to increase in the run-up to forthcoming elections, despite the military claiming increasing successes against Boko Haram in captured territory. At least 86 people were killed in explosions blamed on Boko Haram this week alone, all of them at crowded bus stations in the northeast, wider north and also in...

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Obama to host new Afghan leaders in March

WASHINGTON: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah are to visit the White House next month. Ghani has accepted an invitation to speak to a joint meeting of Congress at a time when the Obama administration is weighing whether to slow the pace of U.S. troop withdrawals from the country. The White House said Friday that Ghani and...

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Nine dead after shooting spree in Missouri

WASHINGTON: Nine people are dead following a mass murder in rural Missouri in which the suspected gunman took his own life, police in the Midwestern state said Friday. With an investigation still underway, it appeared that seven people were shot and killed in four different residences in the small Bible Belt town of Tyrone. An eighth person, described as an...

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N Korea steps up verbal threats ahead of US-S Korea military drills

SEOUL: North Korea vowed to wage a "merciless, sacred war" against the United States on Thursday, days before the launch of annual joint South Korea-US military exercises that have incensed Pyongyang. "Nuclear weapons are not a monopoly of the US," Rodong Sinmun, warned in an editorial. "The US is seriously mistaken if it thinks its mainland is safe," the editorial...

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Kurdish forces ‘capture strategic IS Syria bastion’

BEIRUT: Kurdish fighters seized a strategic Islamic State stronghold in Syria Friday in a move that could impede jihadist movements near the border with Iraq, where they also control large swathes of territory. Meanwhile, the United States and Turkey are to begin training and equipping moderate Syrian rebels for the fight against President Bashar al-Assad and IS. The main Kurdish...

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