2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

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  • Kuwait urges Gulf reforms as oil prices fall
    Kuwait urges Gulf reforms as oil prices fall

    Kuwait's finance minister on Saturday called for economic reforms by energy-dependent Gulf states to cope with a drop in oil prices that has hurt their public finances. Saleh said the Gulf states must diversify their economies and "reduce dependence on oil". "Implementing these policies has become inevitable," Saleh told the meeting, which International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde was also attending. Forecasts indicate a healthy economic growth for the six nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) averaging 4.5 percent in 2014-2015, Saleh said.

  • ISIS Plants Flag On Hill Near Kobane, Coalition Airstrike Takes It Out
    ISIS Plants Flag On Hill Near Kobane, Coalition Airstrike Takes It Out

    A coalition airstrike has taken out an ISIS flag recently planted on a hill near Kobane, Syria, where Islamic extremist forces have seized a strategically valuable position from Kurdish forces close to the Turkish border.

  • U.S., allies stage 22 air strikes in Iraq: U.S. Central Command
    U.S., allies stage 22 air strikes in Iraq: U.S. Central Command

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States and its allies conducted 22 air strikes against Islamic State forces in Iraq on Friday and Saturday, the U.S. Central Command said. U.S. warplanes also destroyed an Islamic State artillery piece near Kobani, Syria, officials said Saturday. The 22 strikes in Iraq included attacks in the frequently targeted areas near the vital Mosul dam, the city of Fallujah and the northern city of Bayji, home of an oil refinery. The Iraq strikes hit large and small Islamic State units, buildings, vehicles and fighting positions, Central Command said. ...

  • Iraqi security forces and Kurds gain ground against Islamic State

    By Ahmed Rasheed and Isabel Coles BAGHDAD/ARBIL Iraq (Reuters) - Iraqi government forces and Shi'ite militias seized control of the strategic town of Jurf al-Sakhar near Baghdad from Islamic State on Saturday and Kurdish fighters made gains in the north after heavy coalition air strikes against the Sunni militants. Iraqi troops and their Shi'ite allies broke the grip of Islamic State in Jurf al-Sakhar after months of fighting against insurgents determined to march on the capital. ...

  • Brazil presidential campaign ends in slugfest over corruption

    By Anthony Boadle BRASILIA (Reuters) - Presidential candidates traded accusations over political corruption on Friday night in a last ditch attempt to sway undecided voters before Sunday's election runoff in Brazil's closest race in decades. In the final television debate of a bitter campaign, leftist President Dilma Rousseff and pro-business opposition candidate Aecio Neves sparred over who was best suited to restore growth to a stagnant economy, fight inflation, bring down rents and deal with open sewers in Brazilian cities. ...

  • U.S. nurse quarantined over Ebola criticizes her treatment
    U.S. nurse quarantined over Ebola criticizes her treatment

    The first person quarantined under strict new rules in the New York City area for people with a high risk of Ebola tested negative, New Jersey officials said on Saturday, as President Barack Obama said the response to domestic cases of the deadly disease needs to be based on "facts, not fear." Under the new policy, anyone arriving at the two international airports serving New York City after having contact with Ebola patients in Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea must submit to a mandatory 21-day quarantine. The requirement exceeds current federal ...

  • Teacher tried to stop Washington state shooting
    Teacher tried to stop Washington state shooting

    TULALIP, Wash. (AP) — A newly hired teacher confronted a gunman and was being hailed as a hero on Saturday after a deadly shooting rampage in the cafeteria of a Washington state high school.

  • Hawaii officials warn of possible lava evacuation
    Hawaii officials warn of possible lava evacuation

    HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii authorities on Saturday told several dozen residents near an active lava flow to prepare for a possible evacuation in the next three to five days as molten rock oozed across a country road and edged closer to homes.

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