• Gaza militants say 1 killed in training accident

    Updated: Mon, May 2, 2016

    GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Islamic Jihad militant group says one of its members has been killed in an explosion. The group says Monday's explosion took place at a training site in the northern Gaza Strip. It identified the dead man as Mazen Lulu, 30, saying he was killed in a "Jihadi mission," a term typically used to describe work accidents. Local media reported that two other fighters were also wounded. No other information was provided. Since the beginning of this year, 14 members of Hamas, the militant Islamic group that rules Gaza, have been killed in tunnel collapses that have also been referred to as work accidents. Hamas is trying to rebuild a vast underground tunnel network that was damaged by Israel in

  • Killing of 5 Egyptians deepens mystery over Italian's death

    Updated: Mon, May 2, 2016

    CAIRO (AP) — It was a brutal killing that became an international incident: An Italian graduate student disappeared from the streets of the Egyptian capital in January, his body discovered days later dumped by a roadside, tortured to death. The death of Guilio Regeni quickly poisoned ties between Egypt and Italy, where suspicions were high that Egyptian police — who have long been accused of using torture and secret detentions — snatched the 28-year-old and killed him. Egyptian officials — as high up as the president, Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, in a national address — have denied any police role, but in the months since the slayings, the Italian government has hiked the pressure for answers. Then last month came a surpr

  • Car bomb in southern Turkey kills 2 police officers

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A car bomb struck the entrance of a Turkish police station Sunday in the southern city of Gaziantep, killing two police officers and wounding 22 other people in a day marred by violence and May Day protests. Four civilians were among those wounded in the explosion, according to Gov. Ali Yerlikaya of Gaziantep province. The blast shattered the windows of nearby buildings. The police station is close to offices for the governor and mayor. Gaziantep is also home to the offices of international aid organizations focused on the conflict in neighboring Syria. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

  • Egypt police block labor day assembly, workers urge freedoms

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian police prevented hundreds of workers from holding a meeting in Cairo to commemorate International Workers' Day on Sunday, while independent trade union leaders urged the government to allow them freedom of assembly. Kamal Abbas, of the Center for Trade Unions and Workers' Services, said some 650 workers came to the city center and initially sought an alternate location to hold a news conference after police prevented them from entering the journalists' syndicate building. The area was under lockdown by dozens of uniformed and plainclothes security forces, some wearing facemasks and carrying automatic weapons.

  • US once again forced to turn to Russia for help on Syria

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    GENEVA (AP) — Scrambling to resuscitate a nearly dead truce in Syria, the Obama administration has again been forced to turn to Russia for help, with little hope for the desired U.S. outcome. At stake are thousands of lives and the fate of a feeble peace process essential to the fight against the Islamic State group, and Secretary of State John Kerry has appealed once more to his Russian counterpart for assistance in containing and reducing the violence, particularly around city of Aleppo. "We are talking directly to the Russians, even now," Kerry said on his arrival in Geneva as he began talks with Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh.

  • Protests disband after IS group carries out 2nd Iraq bombing

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Anti-government protesters disbanded at least temporarily Sunday from the heavily fortified Green Zone they had stormed a day earlier after the Islamic State group carried out its second major attack in Iraq in as many days — a pair of car bombs that killed more than 30 people. The country's political crisis intensified Saturday when hundreds of supporters of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr tore down walls and poured into the zone that is home to the seat of the Iraqi government and most foreign embassies. Loudspeaker announcements on Sunday evening urged protesters to leave peacefully. When the call came, hundreds calmly packed up and left, carrying flags and overnight bags away with them.

  • Kurdish group claims attack in Turkish city of Bursa

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    ISTANBUL (AP) — A Kurdish militant group claimed responsibility Sunday for a suicide attack in the Turkish city of Bursa that wounded 13 people last month. The Kurdistan Freedom Falcons, also known as TAK, issued a statement identifying the bomber as Eser Cali. The female attacker blew herself up near an Ottoman-era mosque in Bursa's historic district on Wednesday. The 23-year-old Cali was from Igdir in eastern Turkey. TAK, which is considered by authorities as an offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, said she blew herself up before reaching the intended target. TAK has also claimed responsible for two other suicide bombings, one in February and the other in March, which killed a total of 66 people in the

  • Saudi police capture man wanted for bombing, assassination

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Saudi Arabia's Interior Ministry says police have arrested a man wanted in connection with a number of terrorist acts, including a suicide bombing that targeted a mosque inside a special forces compound, killing 15 people last year. Interior Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Turki said in a statement Sunday that Oqab al-Otaibi was captured after a manhunt that lasted more than 24 hours in the southwestern town of Bisha. Police say two other militants were killed in a shootout in Bisha on Friday. They say the two militants had set off a car bomb while fleeing from police. The three were wanted in connection with the assassination of Col. Kitab al-Otaibi, who headed intelligence in a sm

  • Labour Party denies anti-Semitism in its ranks as vote nears

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    LONDON (AP) — Senior Labour Party figures including leader Jeremy Corbyn are fighting back against charges there is anti-Semitism in the party's ranks before Thursday's vote for a new mayor of London and other posts. Corbyn used a May Day rally to say the party "is absolutely against anti-Semitism in any form" after a tumultuous week that focused attention on the party's attitude toward Jews instead of its campaigning efforts. Labour legislator Diane Abbott said Sunday the party is being unfairly attacked by its political enemies. "It is a smear to say that the Labour Party has a problem with anti-Semitism. It is not fair on ordinary Labour Party members," Abbott said. "Two hundred thousand people have joined the Lab

  • Yemen security chief in Aden survives suicide attack, 5 dead

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Yemen's security directorate in Aden says a suicide bomber attacked the security chief's motorcade in the southern port city, killing five of his bodyguards. In a statement, it says Shallal Shayei was unharmed in Sunday's attack, as was Aden governor Aidroos al-Zubaidi, who was travelling with him. A similar attack on the two was foiled on Monday, and on Thursday a suicide car bomber in women's clothes detonated explosives near Shayei's home, the third attack on his house since December. Soldiers deployed to the area after the car bombing, which sent a cloud of black smoke rising into the air. Yemen has been mired in a conflict pitting Shiite Houthi rebels against the internationally-backed governm

  • Qatar bank says some leaked customer data may be accurate

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Qatar's largest bank acknowledged Sunday that some personal customer data that was leaked online may be authentic, and said it has hired an outside expert to review potential vulnerabilities to its computer systems. Files dumped online last week appeared to contain sensitive information involving thousands of Qatar National Bank customers, including bank logins, passwords, security questions and answers, credit card numbers, national identification numbers, phone numbers and email addresses. The bank previously said only that it was investigating an alleged breach.

  • The Latest: Iraqis announce disbanding of Green Zone protest

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    BAGHDAD (AP) — The Latest on Iraq's political crisis (all times local): 7:00 p.m. Anti-government protesters in Iraq have temporarily ended their mass demonstration and are withdrawing from Baghdad's Green Zone. Followers of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr tore down walls and poured into the heavily guarded area on Saturday, storming parliament in the culmination of months of sit-ins and demonstrations calling for political reform. But on Sunday loudspeakers manned by al-Sadr's followers announced the disbanding of the protests, and the demonstrators began filing out of the Green Zone in an orderly manner. Al-Sadr's movement has demanded an overhaul of Iraq's political system, which is widely seen as corrupt

  • Calm returns to much of Syria as government extends truce

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    BEIRUT (AP) — Syria's military extended a unilateral cease-fire around the capital for another 24 hours on Sunday, as relative calm set in across much of the country after days of heavy fighting concentrated in the northern city of Aleppo. Aleppo, the country's largest city and a key battleground in the civil war, was not covered by the cease-fire but saw less fighting on Sunday. More than 250 people have died in shelling and airstrikes in the northern city over the last nine days, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The government declared its own cease-fire around Damascus and the coastal Latakia region Friday following two weeks of escalating unrest.

  • Saudi Binladin Group employees set fire to buses in protest

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Employees at the Saudi Binladin Group, a construction giant, have set fire to more than seven company buses in the latest protest by disgruntled staff over not being paid salaries for months and a large round of reported layoffs. Maj. Nayef al-Sharif, the spokesman for the Civil Defense in the city of Mecca, said late Saturday that firefighters put out the blaze without any injuries reported. The Binladin Group has not issued any statements about the reported layoffs or the unrest. Calls and an email request for comment to the company were not immediately returned.

  • South Korean president visits Iran to boost ties

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — South Korea's president arrived in Tehran on Sunday for the first summit between the two countries since they established diplomatic ties in 1962. President Park Geun-hye's office said ahead of the three-day visit that she would hold talks with her Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani on the Korean Peninsula and ways to promote bilateral ties. Iran's state news agency IRNA says Rouhani will hold a welcoming ceremony Monday. IRNA says over 230 business executives are accompanying Park. Iran has been seeking to integrate into the global financial system and improve ties with other countries since nuclear-related sanctions were lifted in January under a landmark deal with world powers.

  • Nationalist party declares Islam doesn't belong to Germany

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    BERLIN (AP) — Members of the nationalist Alternative for Germany party have backed a political program that says Islam doesn't belong to Germany and supports a ban against minarets, muezzin calls and headscarves for women and girls in school. The party, also known by its acronyms AfD, has been growing in popularity and political influence as it campaigns on an anti-Islam platform. It was holding a conference on Sunday. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has repeatedly said Islam does belong to Germany and religious freedom is also part of the country's constitution. An estimated 16 million people — 20 percent of Germany's population — have an immigrant background with a majority coming from Muslim countries like Turk

  • Pope decries 'desperate' situation in Syrian city of Aleppo

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis is decrying worsening violence amid the already "desperate" humanitarian situation in Syria, particularly in the northern city of Aleppo. During his traditional Sunday remarks to the faithful in St. Peter's Square, Francis referred to last week's attack on an Aleppo hospital. He laments that a "spiral of violence" is "reaping innocent victims, even among children, the sick and those who with great sacrifice are committed to helping their neighbors." Medical personnel were reported to be among the victims of that attack. Francis says he is "exhorting all sides involved in the conflict to respect the cessation of hostilities and reinforce ongoing dialogue," which he says is the only path

  • Iraq says oil exports, revenues increase in April

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq says April crude oil exports have increased by 2.3 percent from the previous month, filling cash-strapped coffers amid an acute economic crisis. Oil Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad, said Sunday that daily oil exports averaged 3.364 million barrels last month, worth $3.343 billion. March exports stood at 3.286 million barrels per day, bringing that month's revenues to $2.9 billion. Jihad added that last month's average price was $33.257 per barrel. Iraq's 2016 budget is based on an expected price of $45 per barrel. Iraq holds the world's fourth largest oil reserves, and oil revenues make up nearly 95 percent of its budget. Its economy was badly hit by the plunge in oil prices at a time when Baghdad i

  • As chemical weapons stockpiles shrink, OPCW eyes new threats

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — With about 92 percent of the world's declared chemical weapons stockpiles destroyed, the watchdog agency overseeing the elimination of poison gas and nerve agents is looking now to counter emerging threats from extremist groups while still dealing with unfinished business in Syria. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons is marking the April 29, 1997, entry into force of the Chemical Weapons Convention https://www.opcw.org/fileadmin/OPCW/CWC/CWC_en.pdf with a three-day conference starting Monday focusing on chemical safety and security. It appears, in the future, extremists and criminals seem more likely than nations to launch chemical attacks.

  • Palestinians blast Eurovision Song Contest's flag policy

    Updated: Sun, May 1, 2016

    RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — Palestinian leaders are blasting the Eurovision Song Contest for preventing their flag from being flown during the event this month. Palestinian official Saeb Erekat voiced his dismay in a letter to Jean-Paul Philippot, the head of the European Broadcasting Union which oversees the yearly contest. In the letter, obtained by The Associated Press Sunday, Erekat says the decision is "totally biased and unacceptable." The Palestinians do not compete in the contest. The EBU published a list of banned flags last week. Among them were the flags of Northern Cyprus, Kosovo, Spain's Basque region and the Islamic State group's flag. In a Facebook post , the EBU apologized and said it removed the list o




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