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Iraq

Archaeologists Discover 'Massive' Ancient Building in Egypt

Voice of America - 10 hours 38 min ago
Egypt says archaeologists have discovered a “massive” ancient building in the town of Mit Rahina, 20 kilometers, or 12 miles, south of Cairo. The Antiquities Ministry says Tuesday archaeologists also uncovered an attached building that includes a large Roman bath and a chamber likely for religious rituals. Mostafa Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, says the building is likely part of the residential block of the area, which was the ancient Egyptian capital...
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Watchdog Accuses Yemen Rebels of Taking Hostages, Torture

Voice of America - 12 hours 49 min ago
An international watchdog is accusing Yemen's Shiite rebels, known as Houthis, of committing "serious abuses" — including "taking hostages, torture and enforced disappearances" — against people they hold in detention.   Human Rights Watch said Tuesday it documented "16 cases in which Houthi authorities held people unlawfully, in large part to extort money from relatives or to exchange them for people held by opposing forces."   It...
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European Union Sets Up Payment System with Iran to Maintain Trade

Voice of America - 17 hours 27 min ago
The five remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal have agreed to establish a special payment system to allow companies to continue doing business with the regime, bypassing new sanctions imposed by the United States. Envoys from Britain, France, Germany, Russia, China and Iran issued a statement late Monday from the United Nations announcing the creation of a "Special Purpose Vehicle" that will be established in the European Union. The parties said the new mechanism was...
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Syrian Jihadists to State Position on Idlib Deal ‘in Coming Days'

Voice of America - Tue, 09/25/2018 - 04:10
The main jihadist group in northwest Syria will announce its position on a Turkish-Russian deal over Idlib in the next few days, it said on Monday, with its acceptance or rejection vital to the success of efforts to contain the war. Tahrir al-Sham's stance will be critical to last week's deal which has, for now, averted a full-scale Syrian government offensive in Idlib, which along with adjacent areas of the northwest is the rebels' last major foothold. The agreement...
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UNRWA: Palestinian Schools, Health Centers at Risk if Funding Gap Not Plugged

Voice of America - Tue, 09/25/2018 - 03:20
A U.N. agency that supports Palestinian refugees said schools and health centers are at risk if it is unable to plug a $185 million funding gap needed to keep operating until the end of the year, the agency's head said on Monday. "Currently we have money in the bank ... will last I presume somewhere into ... mid October," said Pierre Krahenbuhl, Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in New York, where world leaders are attending the...
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Iran's Currency Hits Another Record Low, With Six Weeks to US Sanctions

Voice of America - Tue, 09/25/2018 - 03:10
Iran's currency has hit another record low against the dollar, six weeks before the United States is due to reimpose sanctions on Iranian oil exports that are Tehran's main revenue source. The Bonbast.com website, which tracks Iran's unofficial exchange rates, showed a new low of 16,000 tomans, or 160,000 rials, to the dollar Monday. The rial has weakened to a series of record lows against the U.S. currency in recent weeks. Bonbast.com displayed the rial at a record low...
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Those Who Can’t Forget: Share Your Connection to Arlington’s Section 60

NY Times Iraq - Tue, 09/25/2018 - 01:46
We want to hear from readers about your connections to Arlington National Cemetery’s Section 60. Share your story with us for a future article.
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Erdogan US Visit Seen as Opportunity to Reset Ties

Voice of America - Tue, 09/25/2018 - 01:30
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is in New York for the U.N. General Assembly at a time of high tensions with Washington. But Erdogan's four-day visit could offer an opportunity to reset ties. In a possible move to prepare the ground for a soothing of tensions with Washington, a Turkish official was quoted Monday in the Wall Street Journal, indicating the American pastor Andrew Brunson could soon be allowed to return home. Brunson's trial in Turkey on terrorism...
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Egyptian Court Confirms 20 Death Sentences Over Killing of Policemen

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 22:59
Egypt's highest court upheld the death sentences Monday given to 20 people convicted over a deadly attack on a police station in 2013, judicial sources and the state-run MENA news agency said. The Court of Cassation, whose rulings are final and cannot be appealed, also confirmed the life sentences handed out to 80 defendants and 15-year prison terms for 34 others. A police station in the pro-Muslim Brotherhood neighborhood of Kerdasa near Cairo was attacked in August 2013, just...
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Iran Vows to Avenge Terror Attack as Confusion Mounts

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 19:55
A deadly terrorist attack Saturday on a military parade in Ahvaz, Iran, ratcheted up tensions between the country and its Arab neighbors, leading for calls of retribution even as confusion grew over responsibility for the violence. The attack by four gunmen left 29 people dead and over 60 injured.  Among those killed were soldiers, bystanders and children. Thousands attended a funeral Monday for members of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard killed in the assault, leading to chants...
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Pompeo to Meet Russia's Lavrov Amid US Concern on Missile Sale to Syria

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 19:55
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Monday he expected to meet with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in New York as Washington expressed concern at Moscow’s plans to supply the S-300 surface-to-air missile system to Syria. “I’m sure Sergei and I will have our time together,” Pompeo said of plans to meet Lavrov on the sidelines of the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations. “We are trying to find every place we can where there is common ground, where we can...
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As Tripoli Violence Rises, France Wants Sanctions on Militias

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 19:11
France said on Monday it wanted the U.N. Security Council to implement sanctions on militias involved in month-long clashes between rival factions in Libya's capital Tripoli, which has undermined U.N. efforts to hold elections by year-end. At least 115 people have been killed and 383 injured in fighting that has pitted the Seventh Brigade, or Kaniyat, from Tarhouna, a town 65 km (45 miles) southeast of Tripoli, against the Tripoli Revolutionaries' Brigades (TRB) and the Nawasi,...
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Russia to Supply New Missile Defense System to Syria

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 18:26
Russia says it will supply Syria with a more modern S-300 missile defense system in the coming weeks, over the objections of Israel. Russian defense minister Sergei Shoigu said President Vladimir Putin ordered the upgrade after Syrian air defenses mistook a Russian plane for an Israeli aircraft last week, killing all 15 Russians on board. Russia has blamed Israel, whose military was conducting airstrikes on Syria at the time, for the incident. Moscow said Syria's older S-200...
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Poll: Optimism About the Future Greater in Youths from Lower-Income Countries

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 09:01
Out of 15 countries polled, young people in China, India, Nigeria, Kenya, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Mexico were found to be more optimistic about the future than youths in the other countries, according to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.  Young people in these countries are more likely to believe they can affect the way their countries are governed and that their generation will have a more positive impact on the world than their parents' generation, according to the...
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Pompeo and Haley: Trump Willing to Meet with Iranian Leaders at UNGA

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 05:07
As world leaders converge on the United Nations General Assembly in New York, top U.S. officials say President Donald Trump would be open to meeting there this week with Iranian leaders -- if Iran is willing to change its behavior and engage in constructive dialogue. The remarks come as Iran blamed the U.S. and its allies for an attack on an Iranian military parade Saturday that left at least 25 people dead. VOA's Diplomatic Correspondent Cindy Saine reports from Washington.
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International Organizations Join Tech Powerhouses to Fight Famine

Voice of America - Mon, 09/24/2018 - 01:08
The United Nations, the World Bank and the International Committee of the Red Cross are partnering with technology powerhouses to launch a global initiative aimed at preventing famines. "The fact that millions of people -- many of them children -- still suffer from severe malnutrition and famine  in the 21st century is a global tragedy," World Bank President Jim Young Kim said announcing the initiative. The global organization will work with Microsoft, Google and Amazon...
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Iran’s President Blames US After Attack on Military Parade

Voice of America - Sun, 09/23/2018 - 22:43
Iran’s president on Sunday accused an unnamed U.S.-allied country in the Persian Gulf of being behind a terror attack on a military parade that killed 25 people and wounded 60, further raising regional tensions. Hassan Rouhani’s comments came as Iran’s Foreign Ministry also summoned Western diplomats over them allegedly providing havens for the Arab separatists who claimed Saturday’s attacks in the southwestern city of Ahvaz. The Iranian moves, as well as promises of revenge by Iran’s...
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OPEC, Allies End Meeting with No Pledge to Boost Supply

Voice of America - Sun, 09/23/2018 - 15:59
OPEC and allied oil producers including Russia ended their meeting on Sunday with no formal recommendation for any additional supply boost. Oman's Oil Minister Mohammed bin Hamad Al-Rumhy and Kuwaiti counterpart Bakhit al-Rashidi told reporters that producers had agreed they needed to focus on reaching 100 percent compliance with production cuts agreed at an OPEC meeting in June. That effectively means compensating for falling Iranian production. Al-Rumhy said the exact mechanism...
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Russia Blames Israel for Downing of Plane by Syrian Forces

Voice of America - Sun, 09/23/2018 - 14:57
The Russian Defense Ministry on Sunday again blamed Israel for the downing of a Russian plane by Syrian government forces and said Israel appeared "ungrateful" for Moscow's efforts to rein in Iran-backed fighters in Syria. Syrian government forces mistook the Russian Il-20 reconnaissance plane for an Israeli jet and shot it down Monday, killing all 15 people aboard. While the Russian military initially blamed the plane's loss on Israel, President Vladimir Putin later...
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Israel Gives Palestinian Villagers Deadline to Demolish Their Homes

Voice of America - Sun, 09/23/2018 - 14:20
Israel has put the residents of a West Bank village on notice that they must demolish their homes by October 1. A statement from the Israeli defense ministry Sunday said "...residents of Khan al-Ahmar received a notice today requiring them to demolish all the structures on the site by October 1st, 2018." It was not immediately clear what would happen if the Palestinians do not dismantle their homes. Eid Abu Khamis, a village spokesman said, "No one will leave. We will...
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