World

Syria accidentally downs Russian plane, Moscow blames Israel

Syria accidentally downed a Russian military aircraft with a crew of 15 onboard when its air defences went into action against an alleged Israeli missile strike, the Russian army said on Tuesday. The incident, which happened late Monday, was the worst case of friendly fire between the two allies since Russia's game-changing military intervention in September 2015. The Russian Ilyushin...

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Trump administration reimposes unilateral, tough sanctions against Iran

WASHINGTON: The United States re-imposed a wave of tough, unilateral sanctions against Iran on Tuesday, bringing back into effect harsh penalties that had been lifted under a historic, multi-party nuclear agreement that President Donald Trump abandoned in May. The first of two rounds of US sanctions kicked in at 12:01 am (0431 GMT), targeting Iran´s access to US banknotes and...

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Saudi state media reports Iran diplomat granted entry

Saudi Arabia has granted a visa to an Iranian diplomat to work in a consular office in Jeddah, state media reported on Sunday, in a rare sign of a thaw between the rival powers. Foreign ministry official Mohammad Alibak has been permitted to serve as head of Iran's Interests Section in the consulate, state news agency IRNA reported. There was...

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1,200 tourists being evacuated from Indonesia quake islands: disaster agency

More than one thousand tourists were being evacuated from Indonesia's tiny Gili islands on Monday after a powerful quake struck neighbouring Lombok, killing 91 people and injuring hundreds. The Gilis are three coral-fringed tropical islands popular with backpackers and divers, a few kilometres off the northwest coast of the larger Lombok island. Footage posted online by rescue officials showed hundreds...

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Saudi authorities expels Canadian envoy, recalls its own over ‘interference’ in internal matters

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia said Monday it was expelling the Canadian ambassador and had recalled its envoy while freezing all new trade, in protest at Ottawa’s vigorous calls for the release of jailed activists. The kingdom gave the Canadian ambassador 24 hours to leave the country, in an abrupt rupture of relations over what it slammed as "interference" in its internal...

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3 Czech soldiers killed in suicide blast, Afghan Taliban claim responsibility

KABUL: A suicide bombing claimed by the Taliban killed three Czech soldiers on patrol in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday, the deadliest assault on NATO troops for many months. "Three Resolute Support service members were killed by a suicide bomber during a combined, dismounted patrol with Afghan forces in eastern Afghanistan," NATO´s Resolute Support mission said in a statement. In Prague,...

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Muslim woman fined $156 for wearing face veil in Denmark

HELSINKI — A 28-year-old woman wearing a face veil has become the first person in Denmark to be fined for violating a new law banning such garments in public places. Danish news agency Ritzau reported that police were called Friday to a shopping center in Horsholm, a city of 46,000 close to Copenhagen, to confront a woman wearing a niqab...

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Feeling sidelined, Israel’s Druze protest Jewish nation bill

TEL AVIV, Israel — Tens of thousands of members of Israel’s Druze minority and their Jewish supporters, some chanting “equality,” packed a central Tel Aviv square Saturday night to rally against a contentious new law that critics say sidelines Israel’s non-Jewish citizens. It marked the first time in recent memory that the Druze — followers of a secretive offshoot of...

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Brown asks Trump for wildfire aid as state battles 17 blazes

SAN FRANCISCO— Gov. Jerry Brown on Saturday called on President Donald Trump to help California fight and recover from another devastating wildfire season. Brown, who inspected neighborhoods wiped out by a wildfire in the Northern California city of Redding, said he was confident the president he has clashed with over immigration and pollution policies would send aid, which Trump did...

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Venezuela’s Maduro unharmed as assassination bid fails, blames Colombia

CARACAS: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said Saturday he escaped an "assassination" attempt using an explosive-laden drone after a live broadcast showed him looking confused when a bang went off during a Caracas military parade and dozens of soldiers scuttling for safety. His government said seven soldiers were wounded in the incident. "It was an attack to kill me, they tried to...

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115 students injured in clashes as Bangladesh teen protests turn violent

DHAKA: More than 100 people were injured in Bangladesh Saturday after police fired rubber bullets at students protesters, a doctor and witnesses said, a major escalation in a stand-off between the government and demonstrators. For the last week students have brought parts of the capital Dhaka to a standstill with a protest against poor road safety after two teenagers were...

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North Korea, US spar over nuclear deal at Singapore forum

SINGAPORE: North Korea and the United States on Saturday sparred over an agreement reached at a landmark summit in June for the Asian country to end its nuclear program, as Washington called for maintaining sanctions pressure against Pyongyang, which in turn said it was alarmed by US intentions. The discord at a regional forum in Singapore was the latest reminder...

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Russia tasks Hollywood actor Seagal with improving US ties

MOSCOW: Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Saturday it had made US actor Steven Seagal its special representative for Russian-US humanitarian ties, a role it said was meant to deepen cultural, art and youth ties between the two countries. President Vladimir Putin presented a Russian passport to US actor Steven Seagal in 2016, saying he hoped it would serve as a...

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Several die after small plane crashes in Swiss forest

ZURICH: Several people died after a small plane crashed in a Swiss forest on Saturday morning, causing a forest fire that completely destroyed the plane, police said. The plane crashed in an inaccessible area of forest in the Rengg mountain pass in the canton of Nidwalden. “Before rescuers could make their way to the scene, a fire which spread out...

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Erdogan sanctions US officials in tit-for-tat row over pastor

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday said Turkey would impose sanctions on two US officials in retaliation for a similar move by Washington in a row over the detention of an American pastor. Turkey's holding of pastor Andrew Brunson on terror-related charges for almost two years has sparked one of the most intense crises between the NATO allies in years....

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More than 1,500 migrant deaths in Mediterranean this year: UNHCR

GENEVA: More than 1,500 refugees and migrants have died trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe in the first seven months of this year, over half of them in June and July, the UN refugee agency said Friday. The rate of deaths is increasing despite a decline in the total number of migrants arriving on European shores compared with...

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Greece: Police arrest eight suspects in murder of Pakistani migrant

The Greek police have arrested eight migrants on suspicion of murdering a Pakistani migrant who had been trying to leave the country illegally. According to the Associated Press, police said on Friday that the eight were suspected of involvement in the July 23 stabbing death of a 29-year-old Pakistani man who had been with three compatriots heading toward Greece's northern...

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