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  • Egypt's el-Sissi to AP: Brotherhood backers can return to politics if they renounce violence

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's el-Sissi to AP: Brotherhood backers can return to politics if they renounce violence.

  • Egypt el-Sissi to AP: I warned of regional terror threat a year ago, now broad strategy needed

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — Egypt el-Sissi to AP: I warned of regional terror threat a year ago, now broad strategy needed.

  • Egypt's el-Sissi tells AP he will give any support needed for fight against IS group militants

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's el-Sissi tells AP he will give any support needed for fight against IS group militants.

  • Potential push for Obama to expand military effort

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama's military campaign against the Islamic State group already has extended beyond the limits he first outlined. But military experts inside and outside the administration argue that an even greater expansion may be needed for the mission to succeed, including positioning U.S. ground troops with front-line Iraqi security forces. Doing that could put Obama close to violating his pledge to keep Americans out of combat. For Obama, re-engaging in combat in Iraq would mean going back on promises about the current mission and undercutting a pillar of his presidency — ending long wars and avoid new ones. If commanders request ground troops and he turns them down, Obama could be a

  • Afghan presidential vote result to come Sunday

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Afghanistan's drawn-out presidential election may finally be coming to an end. Nearly six months after Afghans cast ballots in a first-round vote, the country's election commission on Saturday said it would announce final, audited results on Sunday from a two-man runoff held in June. U.N. and Afghan election officials spent weeks auditing the runoff results after allegations of vote fraud, a common occurrence over Afghanistan's last two presidential elections. The announcement that vote results are coming would appear to override one of the negotiating stances of candidate Abdullah Abdullah: that vote results are not released because, he contends, undetectable fraud invalidates the results.

  • Scottish teens proud, passionate about voting

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    EDINBURGH, Scotland (AP) — They arrived before polling stations even opened, dressed for the school day in striped ties and blazers, dress slacks and tartan skirts, book bags over their shoulders — and for the first time in British history, ballot cards in hand. Scotland's experiment of allowing more than 100,000 teens aged 16 to 17 to take part in this week's independence referendum has demonstrated how the youngest voters can be some of the most enthusiastic in a mature democracy. More than 90 percent of the previously disenfranchised teens registered to vote — and, to the surprise of many analysts, proved not so ready to rebel against their parents as might be expected.

  • Pope Albania visit showcases Muslim-Christian ties

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    DERVEN, Albania (AP) — The one-room, stone church of St. Nicholas has sat on the top of a hill here since the 16th century, destroyed three times and rebuilt in a testament to the Catholic presence in this region that dates to St. Paul. Its latest incarnation, however, is particularly poignant: 15 Muslim families chipped in to help rebuild it in a sign of the remarkable coexistence that exists in Albania between Christians and Muslims. Pope Francis will highlight this interfaith harmony when he makes a one-day trip to the Balkan nation on Sunday, holding it up as a model for the Middle East and other parts of the world where Christians are being targeted by Islamic militants.

  • Munich expects 6 million visitors at Oktoberfest

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    MUNICH (AP) — Four taps on the keg and the beer started to flow. Munich mayor Dieter Reiter opened the city's annual Oktoberfest with the traditional call of "Ozapft is" to the delight of thousands who had managed to get a place in the main beer tent Saturday. Some 6 million people are expected to visit what is billed as the world's biggest beer party that runs through Oct. 5.

  • Brown credited with turning Scot independence tide

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    KIRKCALDY, Scotland (AP) — Dour. Grim. Downright uninspiring. When Gordon Brown ended a disappointing three years as British prime minister in 2010, few would have credited him as the man most likely to swing a popular vote ever again. Yet, the former Labour Party leader and 63-year-old Scot has emerged as the oratorical star of Scotland's Better Together campaign, the man most responsible for persuading wavering voters to stick with Great Britain by emphasizing why they should be proud to be British. The issue at stake - the defense of his homeland within the United Kingdom - brought back the passion that his years of government struggle in London had seemed to sap.

  • Jihadi ideologue calls for freeing British hostage

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    CAIRO (AP) — A renowned jihadi ideologue has urged the Islamic State group to release British aid worker Alan Henning, saying Islam forbids harming non-Muslims who work with relief agencies. Abu Mohammed al-Maqdisi, who was released by Jordan in June after serving a five-year sentence on terror charges, said in a statement posted on his website and by a militant forum Saturday that non-Muslims who help weak and poor Muslims should be respected and protected. Al-Maqdisi, also known as Essam al-Barqawi, was the mentor of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al-Qaida in Iraq who was killed in a U.S. airstrike in 2006. The Islamic State group, which has beheaded two American journalists and a British aid worker, has threa

  • Alibaba stock soars in jubilant trading debut

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    NEW YORK (AP) — Alibaba debuted as a publicly traded company Friday and swiftly climbed nearly 40 percent in a mammoth IPO that offered eager investors seemingly unlimited growth potential and a way to tap into the burgeoning Chinese middle class. The sharp demand for shares sent the market value of the e-commerce giant soaring well beyond that of Amazon, eBay and even Facebook. The initial public offering was on track to be the world's largest, with the possibility of raising as much as $25 billion. Jubilant CEO Jack Ma stood on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange as eight Alibaba customers, including an American cherry farmer and a Chinese Olympian, rang the opening bell. "We want to be bigger than Wal-Mart," M

  • UN urges global support for Iraq to fight terror

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council urged the international community Friday to expand support for the Iraqi government as it fights the Islamic State group and its allies, and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said there is a role for nearly every country in the world — including Iran. The presidential statement approved by all 15 council members at a meeting chaired by Kerry expressed "deep outrage" at the killing, kidnapping, rape and torture carried out by the Islamic State group. Some of those acts might constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity, it said.

  • UN reaffirms support for force in Golan Heights

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council on Friday reaffirmed its unconditional support for maintaining the U.N. peacekeeping force in the Golan Heights that has been caught up in Syria's civil war. Questions about the future of the 12,000-strong force had been raised after the abduction of 45 Fijian peacekeepers by al-Qaida-linked rebels who later freed them. The U.N. then withdrew soldiers from many positions on the Golan Heights last weekend because of escalating fighting in Syria. A presidential statement approved Friday by the 15-member council made clear that the force will not be withdrawn or disbanded. The Security Council called the mission vital "to peace and security in the Middle East.

  • France joins US against Islamic State over Iraq

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    PARIS (AP) — France is back at America's side in conducting military strikes in Iraq. More than a decade after spurning President George W. Bush's war against Saddam Hussein, France on Friday became the first country to join U.S. forces pounding targets inside Iraq from the air in recent weeks — this time in pursuit of militants of the Islamic State group. Flying from the United Arab Emirates, two French Rafale jets fired four laser-guided bombs to destroy a weapons and fuel depot outside the northern city of Mosul, part of the territory the militants have overrun in Iraq and neighboring Syria, officials said. An Iraqi military spokesman said dozens of extremist fighters were killed in the strikes.

  • Iran, 6 powers seek to unblock nuclear talks

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    UNITED NATIONS (AP) — With little more than two months to deadline, Iran and six world powers on Friday launched a fresh effort at narrowing stubborn differences on what nuclear concessions Tehran must agree to in exchange for full sanctions relief. The talks once again bring Iran to the negotiating table with the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany. But this time they are taking place on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly. That means U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and his counterparts will likely join in, adding their diplomatic muscle to the meeting.

  • Investors breathe sigh of relief at Scottish vote

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    LONDON (AP) — Scotland's decision to reject independence from the United Kingdom gave British markets a short-term lift Friday but worries over future constitutional changes kept a lid on the relief rally. The No campaign won 55.3 percent of the votes cast in Thursday's referendum against 44.7 percent who backed independence. The margin was wider than expected — most opinion polls on the eve of the vote were predicting a narrower 4-point victory for proponents of the union with England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Investors breathed a sigh of relief that a host of thorny economic issues were not triggered by a Yes vote. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares ended up 0.3 percent at 6,837.92 but had been higher earli

  • After vote to stay in UK, Scots must heal divide

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    EDINBURGH, Scotland (AP) — Following a long night that brought floods of relief for some and bitter disappointment for others, Scotland awoke with a hangover Friday after voting to reject independence. Now, the task was to heal the divide — and use the energy the referendum unleashed to hold London politicians to promises of more powers for Scotland. The result — 55 percent to 45 percent — was more decisive than pollsters had foreseen and prompted Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond, who led the unsuccessful Yes campaign, to resign. But it meant almost half of Scotland's more than 5 million people woke up in a country, the United Kingdom, that they wished to leave.

  • 2 Iranians arrested in Kenya with forged passports

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A Kenyan official says two Iranians carrying forged Israeli passports have been arrested in Nairobi. The man and woman were taken into custody Friday as they were about to board a flight out of the country, a senior police officer said on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak with the press. The officer says a preliminary investigation indicates the two Iranians — who were not identified — bought the forged passports in Armenia before arriving in Kenya on Sept 9. The officer said the suspects claim they are refugees and were seeking to go to Belgium, but authorities believe their final destination would have been Israel.

  • Syrian Kurds fleeing IS group cross into Turkey

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    BEIRUT (AP) — Several thousand Syrians, most of them Kurds, crossed into Turkey on Friday to find refuge from Islamic State militants who have barreled through dozens of Kurdish villages in northern Syria in the past 48 hours. The extremists' offensive on the Kobani area near the border with Turkey prompted the leader of Iraq's Kurdish region to urge the international community to intervene to save Syria's Kurds from the militant onslaught. Together, the exodus to Turkey and appeal for help by an Iraqi leader show how the growing muscle of the Islamic State group has transcended borders to become a regional problem. The United States began conducting airstrikes against Islamic State positions in Iraq last month to protect U

  • Bahrain: Protesters dismiss government plans

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) — Thousands of opposition supporters rallied in the tiny island nation of Bahrain on Friday to protest a proposal by the country's leadership for legislative, security and judicial reforms. The rally by members of the Shiite opposition came a day after the crown prince, Sheik Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, issued a statement summarizing proposed changes that included redefining electoral districts, promises of judicial reform and new codes of conduct for security forces. The statement follows on-and-off again talks between opposition members and the government aimed at bringing about a political solution to more than three years of unrest. Bahrain is a strategically important Western ally, which hos