Middle East News

  • Islamic State leader in charge of foreign attacks killed in Syria

    BEIRUT/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Islamic State group announced on Tuesday that one of its longest-serving and most prominent leaders, responsible for attacks overseas, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, had been killed in Aleppo province in Syria. Adnani had been one of the last living senior members, along…

    Reuters
  • Chinese embassy in Kyrgyzstan hit by suspected suicide car bomb

    By Olga Dzyubenko BISHKEK (Reuters) - A suspected suicide car bomber rammed the gates of the Chinese embassy in the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek on Tuesday, killing the attacker and wounding at least three other people, officials said. China condemned the attack and urged Kyrgyz authorities to "quickly…

    Reuters
  • US commander slams Iran for provocative moves in Gulf

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The top commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East sharply criticized Iran on Tuesday for recent high-speed maneuvers by Iranian patrol boats in the Persian Gulf that in one case prompted a U.S. Navy ship to fire warning shots.

    Associated Press
  • Egyptian parliament approves long-awaited church building law

    By Ahmed Aboulenein and Mohamed Abdellah CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's parliament approved on Tuesday a long-awaited law that governs building and renovating churches, an issue that has led in the past to attacks on members the country's Christian minority by Muslim militants. Egyptian Christians…

    Reuters
  • Turkey's operation in Syria fraught with risk: analysts

    Turkey's week-old cross-border operation in Syria could become a drawn-out affair that stokes tensions with Washington if Ankara continues to take the fight to US-backed Kurdish fighters, analysts say. Turkey says its unprecedented offensive aims to rid the border of both the Islamic State group…

    AFP
  • Iraq's Mosul can be retaken from IS this year: US general

    Coalition-backed Iraqi forces can retake the key northern city of Mosul from the Islamic State group by the end of the year, the commander of US forces in the Middle East said Tuesday. "It's the prime minister's objective to have that done by the end of the year," General Joe Votel, head of the US…

    AFP
  • UK, France stick to Calais migrant deal 'now and when' Britain leaves EU

    British and French interior ministers agreed on Tuesday to develop cooperation "now and when the United Kingdom leaves the EU" to address challenges posed by flows of migrants to the European Union. Britain's new interior minister, Amber Rudd, came to Paris to meet her French counterpart, seeking…

    Reuters
  • Austria takes another baby step toward tougher asylum rules

    Austria has taken its next step, albeit small, toward introducing tougher rules on immigration that will allow it to turn away asylum seekers at its borders within an hour and also to cap the number of asylum requests it accepts. The government said on Tuesday it would start next week to collect…

    Reuters
  • Serbian border patrol arrests three for smuggling 64 Afghans

    The Serbian authorities have detained three men on suspicion of the attempted smuggling of 64 Afghan migrants, including women and infants, in the south east of the country near the border with Bulgaria, the Defence Ministry said on Tuesday. In July, Serbia deployed joint military and police…

    Reuters
  • Zimbabwe rights body criticizes 'violent' police crackdown

    By MacDonald Dzirutwe HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwe's Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) has accused the police of brutality and violating the rights of protesters when clamping down on anti-government demonstrations in the last two months. Zimbabwe's police have a history of violence against President…

    Reuters
  • Israel calls UN criticism of settlement building 'absurd'

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office on Tuesday called criticism of Israeli settlement building "absurd" after a UN envoy strongly hit out at his government over the issue. "The claim that it is illegal for Jews to build in Jerusalem is as absurd as saying Americans can't build in Washington…

    AFP
  • Some 6,500 migrants rescued off Libya: Italian coastguard

    Around 6,500 migrants were rescued off the coast of Libya, the Italian coastguard said, in one of its busiest days of life-saving in recent years. A five-day-old baby was among those rescued along with other infants and was airlifted to an Italian hospital, according to Doctors Without Borders…

    AFP
  • Uganda offers safety and prospects to S.Sudan's refugees

    Kneeling on the floor of a large, dimly-lit communal tent Filippo Grandi, the UN's most senior official for refugees, listens intently as Richard Lagu describes his difficult living conditions. The 22-year-old fled a recent outbreak of fighting in South Sudan, escaping to Uganda on July 24 with…

    AFP
  • Driverless taxi firm eyes operations in 10 cities by 2020

    A US software firm which chose Singapore for the world's first public trial of driverless taxis hopes to be operating in 10 Asian and US cities by 2020, an executive said Monday. Doug Parker, nuTonomy's chief operating officer, said the firm is eyeing tests by early next year in three other Asian…

    AFP
  • Exclusive: Yemen council head hails peace push, wants Saudis to 'feel pain'

    By Mohammed Ghobari SANAA (Reuters) - The head of a Houthi-backed ruling council pledged readiness on Monday to resume negotiations on ending Yemen's war but reserved the right to resist attacks by a Saudi-backed exiled government seeking to unseat it. "We have not closed the door for peace or…

    Reuters
  • UN sees surge in Israeli settlements after Quartet report

    Israeli settlement expansion has surged in the two months since the diplomatic Quartet called for a halt to the construction of Jewish outposts on Palestinian land, the UN envoy said Monday. In a much-awaited report, the Quartet -- the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United…

    AFP
  • Egypt seeks tougher punishment for female genital mutilation

    By Menna Zaki CAIRO (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Women's rights activists hailed the Egyptian government on Monday for advocating increased prison sentences for perpetrators of female genital mutilation (FGM) but warned that a new law could shroud the practice in greater secrecy. Egypt's…

    Reuters