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Afghan Politicians in Munich Issue Resolutions

Kabul - Afghan politicians gathered in Munich, Germany, to discuss the future of the Afghan political system came to a series of resolutions that involve a change in the structure of government in Afghanistan, candidates for the upcoming presidential election and the peace negotiation process with the Taliban. The meeting, called "Afghanistan, A Path to Success," was organized by numerous Afghan political p ...

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Afghanistan Celebrated 94th Independence Day

Kabul - On Monday, August 19, Afghanistan celebrates the 94th anniversary of its Independence Day. On this national holiday, Afghans gather with family members, friends and neighbors to honor Shah Amanullah Khan's defeat of the British Empire in 1919 and celebrate the founding of their nation. The day offers the chance for Afghans to enjoy celebrations with their loved ones and fellow countrymen, but also a ...

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British Navy Arrives in Gibraltar amid Tension With Spain

Gibraltar - British warships arrived in Gibraltar on Monday for scheduled exercises amid tensions withSpain over fishing around the British Mediterranean enclave. Although British, Spanish and Gibraltarian authorities have said the navy's arrival at the British overseas territory is long-scheduled, some in Spain see it as provocative. At about 0800 GMT (4:00 a.m. EDT) the frigate HMS Westminster sailed into ...

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New Zealand Announces Plans for Fonterra Tainted Dairy Inquiry

Wellington - New Zealand on Monday announced plans for a government inquiry into how ingredients made by dairy giant Fonterra became contaminated with a botulism-causing bacteria, as the country tries to salvage its reputation as an exporter of safe agricultural products. The inquiry, to be held alongside two internal Fonterra investigations and another by the country's agricultural regulator, will examine ...

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Merkel Cancels Election Rally after Hostage Taking

Munich - German Chancellor Angela Merkel was forced to cancel an election rally in the southern German city of Ingolstadt on Monday after a man took several people hostage in the town hall hours before she was due to speak. Police said they were in contact by telephone with the man who described himself as armed but had not made any demands. There was no sign of a connection with Merkel's visit, they added. ...

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South Korea Targets Growing Asian Defense Market with Fighter Jets

Sacheon - South Korea, renowned for making hi-tech consumer devices, cars and ships, now has its sights on exporting fighter jets amid a projected sharp increase in demand for military weapons in Asia over the next decade. South Korea's first home-built light fighter, the FA-50, will roll out on Tuesday from the Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd (KAI) assembly plant in the southern city of Sacheon. KAI officia ...

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Kurdish Militants in War of Words with Turkey over Withdrawal

Istanbul - A Kurdish militant group said on Monday it was keeping its side of the bargain in a peace process with Turkey to end a 29-year-old insurgency, rejecting Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's accusation it had failed to withdraw most of its fighters. In the latest salvo in a war of words highlighting distrust between the two sides, the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) said Ankara had failed to take steps b ...

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Italian Priest Missing in Syria May be Alive: Monitoring Group

Beirut - An Italian Jesuit priest who disappeared last month in eastern Syria may still be alive, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Monday, almost a week after it said he had been killed by al Qaeda-linked rebels. The British-based monitoring group cited sources close to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) disputing assertions by local activists - and reported by the observatory - ...

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Egypt’s Mubarak Will be Freed Soon, Lawyer Says

Cairo - Hosni Mubarak, the former Egyptian president overthrown in an uprising in 2011, will be released from jail soon after a prosecutor cleared him in a corruption case, his lawyer and a judicial source said on Monday. Mubarak, 85, was arrested after he was ousted. In scenes that mesmerized Arabs, the former leader appeared in a court-room cage during his trial on charges that ranged from corruption to c ...

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72 Insurgents, 11 PPF Officers Killed in Highway Clash

Kabul - At least 72 Taliban insurgents and 11 Public Protection Forces (PPF) personnel were reportedly killed during in a gunfight on the Kandahar-Herat highway on Sunday. No civilian casualties have been reported. PPF officials of Herat province confirmed the incident and said that the clash took place in the Chakab area of Gulistan district in Farah province. According to the officials, five PPF vehicles ...

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British Headquarters in Afghanistan Moves to Camp Bastion

Kabul - The headquarters of the British military operation in Afghanistan has moved from Lashkar Gah to Camp Bastion, the Ministry of Defence has said. Task Force Helmand, which co-ordinates the military operations, has been based in Lashkar Gah since 2006. It was moved to Camp Bastion, the main UK base, in an early morning helicopter operation earlier this month. Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said the t ...

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Afghan Official Says Attorney General Sacked Over Secret Taliban Meeting

Kabul - Afghan President Hamid Karzai has sacked his attorney general after the chief law officer held an unsanctioned meeting with Taliban peace negotiators in the United Arab Emirates, a senior Afghan official and a legislator told Reuters on Monday. Attorney General Muhammad Isaaq Aloko met members of a Taliban peace negotiation team in Dubai despite being told by the Presidential Palace not to attend th ...

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A Major Security Overhaul Needed

In response to the adverse security condition in the country, Afghan security officials and NATO commander in Afghanistan gathered on Saturday in Kabul to discuss the security situation across the country. According to the reports, the participants were, General Joseph Dunford, the Commander of the NATO-led forces in Afghanistan, Bismillah Mohammadi, the Afghan Defense Minister and Mujtaba Patang, the actin ...

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Ferry Sinks in Philippines Killing 28, Over 200 Missing

Cebu - A ferry sank in the central Philippines on Friday killing at least 28 people after colliding with a cargo vessel owned by a company involved in the world's worst peacetime maritime disaster nearly 30 years ago. More than 200 people were still missing after the collision just outside the port of Cebu that left two huge holes in the bow of the cargo ship. Small planes and helicopters were scouring the ...

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Blast Hits Iraq’s Major Commodities Port: Workers

Basra - A blast hit Iraq's Umm Qasr commodities port, one of the country's largest, near the oil-exporting southern port city of Basra, two dockside workers said on Saturday. It was not immediately clear what the cause of the blast was, or whether it had affected port traffic. The port does not export crude oil but mainly handles commodities shipments. "A powerful blast took place at around 12:30 p.m. (0930 ...

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Gunmen Kill 11 Near Syrian Christian Villages

Damascus - Gunmen shot dead 11 people, mostly Christians, in central Syria on Saturday, state media and activists said. A witness described what appeared to be a sectarian attack indiscriminately targeting members of the minority. A resident in the area told The Associated Press that the gunmen randomly opened fire on a street as Christians were celebrating a feast day. He spoke on condition of anonymity fo ...

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China Announces End Date for Taking Prisoners’ Organs

Beijing - A senior Chinese official has said the country will phase out the practice of taking organs from executed prisoners from November. Huang Jiefu said China would now rely on using organs from voluntary donors under a new national donation system. Prisoners used to account for two-thirds of transplant organs, based on previous estimates from state media. For years, China denied that it used organs fr ...

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Yemen Flood Sweeps Away Wedding Party, 27 Dead And 41 Missing

Sana - At least 27 people died and more than 41 were missing after a wedding party was swept away while driving across a valley flooded by monsoon rains in southern Yemen, local officials said on Saturday. The victims, mostly women and children, were in three vehicles accompanying the bride to her new home across Wadi Nakhla, a valley between Taiz and Ibb provinces, the officials from Shara'ab district said ...

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Up to 100,000 Face Evacuations in Russia’s Flood-Hit Far East

Moscow - As many as 100,000 people may be evacuated from their homes near Russia's border with China if the region's biggest floods for 120 years get worse, Russian media reported on Saturday. The floods, caused by a month of unusually heavy rain, are not expected to start receding until early September, the head of Russia's hydrometeorology monitoring service told news agency Ria Novosti. Television footag ...

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Egypt Rounds up Brotherhood Supporters after Day of Carnage

Cairo - Egyptian authorities rounded up more than 1,000 Islamists as the Muslim Brotherhood leadership defiantly called a week of nationwide protests starting on Saturday after a day of carnage. After Friday's bloodshed in which more than 100 people died in clashes that pushed Egypt ever closer to anarchy, tensions were high with supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in a Cairo mosque where ...

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