Middle East News

  • Australian boy in Syria creates quandary for government

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — A 7-year-old Australian boy who horrified the world a year ago when he was photographed holding the severed head of a Syrian soldier by the hair has created a quandary for the government, which wants to make scores of Australian fighters in the Middle East someone else's…

    Associated Press21 mins ago
  • Yemen war will end up harming Riyadh, Iran minister says

    Iran's foreign minister urged rival Saudi Arabia to end its military campaign in Yemen, saying the war would "bring harm" to the kingdom, Iran's official IRNA news agency reported on Wednesday. Iran has repeatedly condemned a Saudi-led air offensive against Yemen's Houthi movement, launched in…

    Reuters24 mins ago
  • Hamas executed Palestinians during Israel war: Amnesty

    Amnesty International accused the Islamist movement Hamas Wednesday of committing war crimes against fellow Palestinians to "settle scores" during last year's Gaza war with Israel, executing at least 23 people. A report by the London-based rights group detailed the "brutal campaign of abductions,…

  • Australia warns children of foreign fighters risk charges

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian boy who was photographed holding the severed head of a Syrian soldier could reportedly return to Australia with his mother and siblings, prompting the prime minister to warn Wednesday that children as well as adults who break terrorism laws face prosecution.

    Associated Press
  • Gunmen try to kill Libya's recognized prime minister

    BENGHAZI, Libya (AP) — Gunmen tried to assassinate Libya's internationally recognized prime minister on his way to the airport in the eastern city of Tobruk on Tuesday, a spokesman for his government said.

    Associated Press
  • Pentagon chief's take on Iraqis undercuts Obama's strategy

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Ash Carter's blunt assessment that Iraqi forces lack the "will to fight" undermines a central premise of President Barack Obama's strategy for defeating the Islamic State: that Iraq's military can effectively handle ground operations so Americans don't have to.

    Associated Press
  • Facing closure of refugee camp, Christmas Island grasps for economic future

    By Byron Kaye SYDNEY (Reuters) - If the remote Australian outpost of Christmas Island had its way, it would have reopened a local casino that once raked in billions of dollars instead of renting hotel rooms at an ageing resort to refugee camp workers. The tiny island in the Indian Ocean is often…

  • 14-year-old planned to blow up Austrian train station

    VIENNA (AP) — An Austrian court has found a 14-year-old boy guilty of planning to blow up Vienna's main railway station after being radicalized by Islamic extremists.

    Associated Press
  • Nuclear Iran 1,000 times worse than IS: Netanyahu

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on Tuesday that a nuclear-armed Iran would be "a thousand times more dangerous and more destructive" than the Islamic State group, his office said. "As horrific as ISIS is, once Iran, the preeminent terrorist state of our time, acquires nuclear…

  • Obama: US must examine how assets are being used in IS fight

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama said the U.S. and its allies need to examine whether they are deploying military assets effectively against Islamic State militants as Iraq mounts a new offensive to recapture critical territory west of Baghdad.

    Associated Press
  • Erdogan opens 'Saladin' airport in Turkey's restive southeast

    President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday opened a new airport in a restive eastern province dogged by a Kurdish separatist insurgency, naming the facility for a celebrated Muslim medieval leader of Kurdish origin. Erdogan inaugurated the airport in Yuksekova in Hakkari province, close to the…

  • Only new refugees to benefit from EU quotas in migrant crisis: draft

    By Robin Emmott BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Union will consider new refugees reaching Italy and Greece in its migrant quotas, not those already in camps, according to a proposal seen by Reuters to be presented on Wednesday, a concession to EU governments against the plan. Seeking to share…

  • Warring parties trap civilians in Libya's Benghazi: HRW

    Militias in Benghazi are trapping civilians in the strife-torn eastern Libyan city, leaving them in dire conditions without food, medical care and electricity, Human Rights Watch said Tuesday. The New York-based watchdog appealed to warring factions in Benghazi to give residents safe passage out…

  • Ford expands presence in Morocco

    RABAT, Morocco (AP) — Ford Motor Company is expanding its presence in North Africa with a new Moroccan sales office and plans to double the amount of car parts purchased in the country, it announced Tuesday.

    Associated Press
  • Palestinians dismiss reported Netanyahu initiative

    Palestinians on Tuesday angrily dismissed reported remarks by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he would like to negotiate the future annexation of Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. Haaretz newspaper on Tuesday quoted "an Israeli source" briefed on last week's meeting with EU…

  • Teenager in Austrian 'Playstation' terrorism case gets two years

    A 14-year-old boy from Austria who downloaded bomb-making plans onto his Playstation games console was sentenced to a two-year jail term on Tuesday after pleading guilty to terrorism charges, a court spokeswoman said. As well as researching how to build a bomb, the boy made contact with militants…

  • Erdogan's ambition heralds turbulence after Turks vote

    By Nick Tattersall and Orhan Coskun ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkey's general election looks likely to push Tayyip Erdogan's dream of an all-powerful presidency further from his reach, and usher in a period of turbulence as its most divisive modern leader jockeys to maintain his dominance. Barred by…

  • Australia rejects Vietnamese refugee claims in 40 minutes

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia secretly held a group of 46 Vietnamese asylum seekers on a warship at sea for almost a month and rejected their refugee claims during interviews that took as little as 40 minutes before returning them all to Vietnam last month, officials said.

    Associated Press
  • IT chief at Bangladesh Coca-Cola unit arrested as Islamic State suspect

    By Ruma Paul and Serajul Quadir DHAKA (Reuters) - An IT manager at a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Co was one of two men arrested in Bangladesh on suspicion of planning to fight for Islamic State in Syria, police and company sources said on Monday. The pair were detained during a raid in the capital,…

  • Islamic State faces battle in Iraq, U.S. reassures Abadi

    BAGHDAD/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Islamic State poured more fighters into Ramadi as security forces and Shi'ite paramilitaries prepared to try to retake the Iraqi city, while Washington scrambled on Monday to reassure Baghdad after a U.S. official's sharp criticism of Iraqi forces. U.S. Vice…