Middle East News

  • Top Asian News at 3:30 a.m. GMT

    NEW YORK (AP) — Alibaba debuted as a publicly traded company Friday and swiftly climbed nearly 40 percent in a mammoth IPO that offered eager investors seemingly unlimited growth potential and a way to tap into the burgeoning Chinese middle class. The sharp demand for shares sent the market value…

    Associated Press26 mins ago
  • United States says role for Iran in tackling Islamic State

    By Michelle Nichols and Louis Charbonneau UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Friday that Iran had a role to play in a global coalition to tackle Islamic State militants who have seized swaths of Iraq and Syria and proclaimed a caliphate in the heart of the Middle…

    Reuters
  • UN reaffirms support for force in Golan Heights

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council on Friday reaffirmed its unconditional support for maintaining the U.N. peacekeeping force in the Golan Heights that has been caught up in Syria's civil war.

    Associated Press
  • U.S. aims to keep Iran atomic talks separate from Islamic State conflict

    By Arshad Mohammed WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. officials hope to prevent two diplomatic challenges with Iran from colliding next week: the Iranian nuclear program and the threat posed by the Islamic State militant group. Their basic dilemma is how to keep Iran from hardening its stance in the…

    Reuters
  • Congress backs Obama on aid to Syrian rebels

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama on Friday signed into law legislation authorizing the U.S. military to arm and train moderate Syrian rebels fighting Islamic State militants in the Middle East.

    Associated Press
  • At 80, Leonard Cohen meditates on spirituality and war

    New York (AFP) - Releasing a new album near his 80th birthday, Leonard Cohen cheekily addresses his age in the very first song, intoning, "It's not because I'm old ... I always liked it slow."

    AFP
  • Kurdish leader urges world to protect Syrian town from Islamic State

    By Seyhmus Cakan DIKMETAS Turkey (Reuters) - Iraqi Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani called on Friday for international intervention to protect a Kurdish town in neighboring Syria from Islamic State fighters who have forced many Syrian Kurds to flee across the border into Turkey. Thousands of Kurds…

    Reuters
  • France carries out first air strike in Iraq: Hollande

    Paris (AFP) - French jets carried out their first air strike against Islamic State militants in Iraq Friday, successfully destroying their target, President Francois Hollande announced, vowing that more operations would follow.

    AFP
  • AP EXCLUSIVE: CIA halts spying in Europe

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The CIA has curbed spying on friendly governments in Western Europe in response to the furor over a German caught selling secrets to the United States and the Edward Snowden revelations of classified information held by the National Security Agency, according to current and former…

    Associated Press
  • Top Asian News at 11:30 a.m. GMT

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — The Islamic State plot to carry out random beheadings in Sydney alleged by police is a simple and barbaric scheme that has shaken Australians. But terrorism experts on Friday questioned whether the ruthless movement had the capacity or inclination to sustain a terror…

    Associated Press
  • Video of UK hostage shows IS 'fears isolation and attack'

    Washington (AFP) - A dramatic change of tone in the latest hostage video released by the Islamic State has convinced experts that the jihadist group is isolated and fearful of a US assault.

    AFP
  • From gangsta rapper to Islamist militant

    As war in Syria and Iraq attracts a growing number of Muslim extremists from Europe, intelligence officials in Germany believe a former gangsta rapper has joined the inner circle of Islamists fighting there.

    Yahoo News
  • Islamic State plot in Australia raises questions

    CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — The Islamic State plot to carry out random beheadings in Sydney alleged by police is a simple and barbaric scheme that has shaken Australians. But terrorism experts on Friday questioned whether the ruthless movement had the capacity or inclination to sustain a terror…

    Associated Press
  • Senate votes to support Obama on rebel aid

    WASHINGTON (AP) — In the heat of an election campaign, Congress cleared the way for the U.S. military to train and equip Syrian rebels for a war against Islamic state militants on Thursday, reluctant ratification of a new strategy that President Barack Obama outlined scarcely a week ago.

    Associated Press
  • US Congress authorizes Obama plan to train Syria rebels

    Washington (AFP) - Congress on Thursday passed US President Barack Obama's plan to train and arm moderate Syrian rebels to battle Islamic State jihadists, a key plank of his strategy to smash the militants.

    AFP
  • Militant gains illustrate plight of Syrian Kurds

    BEIRUT (AP) — Islamic State militiamen backed by tanks defiantly advanced Thursday in Syria, capturing more than 20 Kurdish villages as the international community strains to assemble a coalition that might destroy them.

    Associated Press
  • British hostage appears in new video

    BEIRUT (AP) — The Islamic State group on Thursday released a video showing a British journalist who says he is a prisoner of the extremists.

    Associated Press