Middle East News

  • Cultural heritage a casualty of war

    Islamic State militants have destroyed two of the most important temples in the UNESCO-listed Syrian city of Palmyra, as they press their campaign to wipe out some of the Middle East's most important heritage sites. The United Nations released satellite images Monday confirming the ancient city's…

    AFP
  • Migrant trains arrive in Austria as crisis deepens

    Trains packed with migrants arrived in Austria's capital where 20,000 people turned out to show their support for the new arrivals, as Europe struggled to cope with the biggest movement of people since World War II. Police looked on as hundreds of migrants -- many of them without visas -- pulled…

    AFP
  • Palmyra's most famed temple destroyed: UN

    The most famed temple in Syria's Palmyra has been blown up, the United Nations said, showing satellite images of the damage as the Islamic State group presses a campaign to tear down the treasured heritage site. A powerful blast in the ancient city had raised fears the militant jihadists had…

    AFP
  • Europe's migrant crisis: key questions

    Europe's refugee and migrant crisis has escalated over the summer, leaving the continent divided over how to deal with a flood of people led by Syrians fleeing war in their homeland. A record surge in numbers, and the opening up of new routes over the Balkans in addition to the Mediterranean sea…

    AFP
  • Austria orders migrants from trains at Hungarian border

    Austrian security forces stopped two trains with several hundred migrants near the border with Hungary on Monday, a police spokesman said, hours after authorities in Budapest let them leave despite many not having EU visas. The trains were halted near the Hungarian border town of Hegeshalom, where…

    AFP
  • Syrian official: Extent of damage at Palmyra temple unclear

    DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — The extent of damage from a massive explosion near the ancient Temple of Bel in Syria's Palmyra is unclear, but it appears the structure is still standing despite an attempt by the Islamic State group to blow it up, a Syrian official said Monday.

    Associated Press
  • A look at the latest developments in Europe's migrant crisis

    Record numbers of migrants fleeing violence and poverty in countries such as Syria, Afghanistan and Eritrea are trying to reach Europe this year, despite the risks of perilous sea crossings and little humanitarian assistance. Here are the latest developments Monday:

    Associated Press
  • Greek coast guard picks up nearly 2,500 migrants in 3 days

    ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece's coast guard picked up nearly 2,500 migrants from the sea in dozens of search and rescue operations, part of a relentless flow of people seeking the safety of Europe after facing war and poverty in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

    Associated Press
  • Austria toughens border controls in trafficking clampdown

    By Karin Strohecker and Krisztina Than VIENNA/BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Austrian authorities toughened controls along the country's eastern borders on Monday, stopping hundreds of refugees and arresting five traffickers in a clampdown that followed last week's gruesome discovery of 71 dead migrants in…

    Reuters
  • Afghan airfields built for war seen as economic hubs

    KANDAHAR AIR FIELD, Afghanistan (AP) — It is a striking vision for a country torn to pieces by war and jihadi insurrection: a series of airports, built by NATO to fight the Taliban, are being handed over to the Afghan government in a civil aviation upgrade that optimists hope will fuel not only…

    Associated Press
  • Najib vows not to quit as Malaysia marks National Day

    KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia's prime minister vowed he would not quit over a $700-million financial scandal, and accused protesters of showing "poor national spirit" by holding a massive rally to demand his resignation on the eve of the country's National Day on Monday.

    Associated Press
  • Calls for action on migrant crisis after Austrian tragedy

    Röszke (Hungary) (AFP) - Calls multiplied Sunday for Europe to finally get to grips with its ever-deadlier migrant crisis after Austria's horrific truck tragedy, as people continued to pour into Hungary from Serbia despite a newly completed razor-wire barrier. The truck tragedy, plus yet another…

    AFP
  • Unprecedented migrant crisis forces EU to seek answers

    By Foo Yun Chee BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union ministers were summoned on Sunday to meet in two weeks' time to seek urgent solutions to a migration crisis unprecedented in the bloc's history, as the mounting death toll on land and sea forced governments to respond. Luxembourg, which holds…

    Reuters
  • Egypt sets Oct election date, after three years without parliament

    By Ahmed Aboulenein CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt will hold a long-awaited parliamentary election, starting on Oct. 18-19, the election commission said on Sunday, the final step in a process to bring back democracy that critics say has been tainted by widespread repression. Egypt has been without a…

    Reuters
  • Merkel, facing refugee influx, presses EU peers to take more

    By Paul Carrel and Andreas Rinke BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on other European Union countries on Sunday to take a greater share of the refugees fleeing to the bloc, as her government struggles to cope with a record number of arrivals. Germany expects the number of…

    Reuters
  • Migrants in Hungary seek traffickers on trip 'from death to death'

    By Krisztina Than BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Ahmed, a Syrian man, and his wife wait with hundreds of other migrants at a railway station in central Budapest hoping to find a smuggler to take them to Germany, the final destination in an exhausting and dangerous journey. More than 140,000 migrants were…

    Reuters
  • Sudan's Bashir to visit China despite international arrest warrant

    Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir is expected to travel to China on Monday for a four-day visit, the foreign ministry said, defying an international warrant for his arrest. The Hague-based International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants for Bashir in 2009 and 2010, accusing him of…

    Reuters