Middle East News

  • Associated Press41 mins ago
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  • Al-Qaeda's Syria chief says IS caliphate 'illegitimate'

    The chief of Al-Qaeda's Syria affiliate described the rival Islamic State group's self-proclaimed caliphate as "illegitimate", in a wide-ranging television interview aired on Wednesday. In the second part of his appearance on the Qatari-owned Al-Jazeera news channel, Al-Nusra Front leader Abu…

    AFP
  • A tumultuous week ends as Blatter gets standing ovation

    ZURICH (AP) — In one tumultuous week, world soccer's governing body was plunged into a corruption scandal, top officials were arrested, new investigations were launched, and Sepp Blatter was re-elected as president, only to stun everyone by saying he was quitting.

    Associated Press
  • Jordan stranding hundreds of Syria refugees in desert: HRW

    Human Rights Watch accused Jordan Wednesday of leaving hundreds of Syrian refugees stranded in the desert along its border with little access to aid after closing informal frontier crossings. "Jordanian authorities have severely restricted" the movement since March of refugees fleeing the war in…

    AFP
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  • Bid to gain U.N. approval for EU migrant mission 'paused': diplomats

    By Michelle Nichols UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Work on a United Nations Security Council resolution authorizing a European Union naval mission to stem the deadly flow of migrants across the Mediterranean has been put on hold until Libya consents to the operation, diplomats said on Wednesday. A…

    Reuters
  • Yemen ambassador: UN-led Geneva talks to start June 14

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Yemen's ambassador to the United Nations said Wednesday that U.N.-led talks aimed at ending the conflict in the Middle East's poorest nation will begin June 14 in Geneva.

    Associated Press
  • Qatar FA hits back at English football chief Dyke

    Qatar's Football Association (QFA) hit back on Wednesday at English football boss Greg Dyke's claims that the 2022 World Cup organisers should be nervous following FIFA president Sepp Blatter's resignation. A statement on behalf of QFA president Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Bin Ahmed Al-Thani told…

    AFP
  • Conflicts hamper fight against hunger in Mideast: FAO

    Conflicts and instability are hampering the fight against hunger in the Middle East at a time when undernourishment is on the rise, the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation warned Wednesday. Presenting a report on the Near East and North Africa region's progress on Millenium Development Goals…

    AFP
  • Libyan unity talks resume as U.N. warns that time is running out

    By Patrick Markey ALGIERS (Reuters) - Libyan politicians and activists resumed talks on Wednesday, aimed at forming a unity government to end the power struggle between two rival administrations that mediators fear could turn the North African country into a failed state. Libya's neighbors and…

    Reuters
  • Christie's to sell works by Monet, Chagall, Picasso in June

    LONDON (AP) — Christie's auction house is offering works by Claude Monet, Rene Magritte, Joan Miro, Marc Chagall and Pablo Picasso this month amid a voracious global appetite for impressionist and modern art.

    Associated Press
  • Nuclear deal will reduce Iran enrichment capacity: US adviser

    A nuclear deal with Iran will significantly reduce Tehran's enrichment capacity, US Vice-President Joe Biden's national security adviser told a conference in Qatar on Monday. Dr Colin H. Kahl, speaking at the US-Islamic World Forum in Doha, said the current deal being hammered out was the best on…

    AFP
  • S. Korea president urges action as MERS outbreak closes schools

    South Korean President Park Geun-Hye urged officials to ease rising public panic Wednesday over an outbreak of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) that has infected 30 people, killed two and closed hundreds of schools. With the World Health Organisation predicting further infections and the…

    AFP
  • Obama: Netanyahu's Palestine stance erodes Israel's credibility

    By Dan Williams JERUSALEM (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's terms for diplomacy that might lead to a Palestinian state meant Israel had lost international credibility as a potential peacemaker. Obama also suggested that continued U.S.…

    Reuters
  • Top Asian News at 7:30 p.m. GMT

    JIANLI, China (AP) — As the Eastern Star cruise ship listed heavily amid pounding rain on the Yangtze River, tour guide Zhang Hui told a colleague, "Looks like we are in trouble." The vessel capsized in the storm Monday night with 458 people aboard, touching off a frantic rescue effort. At least 15…

    Associated Press
  • Dick O'Regan, longtime AP reporter and executive, dies at 95

    BERLIN (AP) — Richard A. "Dick" O'Regan, who covered some of the biggest stories of the Cold War in a 39-year career as a reporter and executive for The Associated Press, has died. He was 95.

    Associated Press
  • Palestinian gov't condemns Hamas for killing Islamist rival in Gaza

    By Nidal al-Mughrabi GAZA (Reuters) - Hamas security forces killed an activist of a rival Islamist militant group in a shoot-out at his Gaza home on Tuesday, drawing strong condemnation from the Palestinian government of President Mahmoud Abbas. Despite formally reconciling last year with the…

    Reuters
  • French arms exports in 2014 'best in 15 years'

    French arms exports rose 18 percent in 2014, according to a defence ministry report published Tuesday, the country's best export performance for 15 years. France sold 8.2 billion euros ($9.1 billion) of weapons last year, mainly due to clinching five "large" contracts (defined as more than 200…

    AFP