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A demonstrator hold a tire during a protest targeting the government over an economic crisis, in Nabatiyeh, southern Lebanon. Photo credit - Reuters

World

The latest unrest erupted out of anger over the rising cost of living and new tax plans, including a fee on WhatsApp calls.

Security forces fired tear gas and chased down protesters in Beirut on Friday after tens of thousands of people across Lebanon marched to demand the demise of a political elite they accuse of looting the economy to the point of collapse.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence (L) with Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan. Image credit - Newswires

World

But if implemented it would achieve all the main objectives Turkey announced when it launched its assault on Oct. 9: control of a strip of Syria more than 30 km (20 miles) deep, with the Kurdish militia, once U.S. allies, obliged to pull out.

Turkey agreed on Thursday to pause its offensive in Syria for five days to let Kurdish forces withdraw from a “safe zone” Ankara had sought to capture, in a deal hailed by the Trump administration and cast by Turkey as a complete victory.

File image - US President Donald Trump (L) and president of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (R).

World

Turkey’s Foreign Ministry said late on Friday that Turkey would retaliate against any steps aimed at countering its efforts to fight terrorism, in response to the announcement of possible U.S. sanctions against Turkey.

President Donald Trump’s administration is set to impose economic sanctions on Ankara, potentially as early as this week, for its incursion into northern Syria, one of the few levers the United States still has over NATO-ally Turkey.

File image: Russian President Vladimir Putin

World

Putin said the “internal political agenda” was not allowing Trump to take steps aimed at a drastic improvement of bilateral relations, adding Moscow would in any case work with any U.S. administration to ...

Moscow is not blaming U.S. President Donald Trump for failing to improve U.S.-Russian relations, a pledge he had made during his election campaign, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview with Arab broadcasters.

File image - Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

World

“Today the Guards have a powerful presence inside and outside Iran...America’s hostile approach has increased the Guards’ greatness,” Khamenei said.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards on Sunday to develop more advanced and modern weapons, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported, amid rising regional tensions.

File photo: Chinese President Xi Jinping attends the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations in Beijing, China May 15, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

World

China sent troops into remote, mountainous Tibet in 1950 in what it officially terms a peaceful liberation and has ruled there with an iron fist ever since.

Chinese President Xi Jinping warned on Sunday that any attempt to divide China will be crushed, as Beijing faces political challenges in months-long protests in Hong Kong and U.S. criticism over its treatment of Muslim minority groups.

Smoke rises from the Syrian border town of Ras al-Ain as it is pictured from the Turkish town of Ceylanpinar in Sanliurfa province, Turkey, October 9, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer

World

Turkish media reported troops entering Syria at four points, two of them close to the Syrian town of Tel Abyad and two close to Ras al Ain further east.

Turkish troops and their Syrian rebel allies attacked Kurdish militia in northeast Syria on Wednesday, pounding them with air strikes and artillery before starting a cross-border ground operation that could transform an eight-year-old war.

Turkish and American soldiers stand near a former YPG military point during a joint U.S.-Turkey patrol, near Tel Abyad, Syria, on Sept. 8, 2019.

World

The news came late Sunday after President Donald Trump spoke to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan by phone earlier in the day.

Turkey is set to invade Syria, as the country had been threatening in recent months, with the U.S. saying it will remove all of its forces from the "immediate area," according to the White House.

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskiy speaks as he and U.S. President Donald Trump hold a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York City, New York, U.S., September 25, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

World

For Zelenskiy, it was a far-reaching diplomatic disaster.

For U.S. President Donald Trump, White House publication on Wednesday of a memo summarizing his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy fueled a domestic political crisis.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during the United Against Nuclear Iran Summit on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, U.S. September 25, 2019. REUTERS/Darren Ornitz

World

The U.S. Treasury Department announced that it placing sanctions on five Chinese nationals and six entities, including ....

The United States is imposing new sanctions on certain Chinese entities and people who it accuses of knowingly transferring oil from Iran in violation of Washington’s curbs on Tehran, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday.

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani addresses the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York City, New York, U.S., September 25, 2019. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

World

“We shall respond decisively and strongly to any sort of transgression to and violation of our security and territorial integrity,” Rouhani said in his speech.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani demanded on Wednesday that the United States “pay more” for any agreement that goes beyond the 2015 Iran nuclear deal that Washington abandoned.

Netanyahu (L) tapped by Israel's president to form new government

World

As prime minister, Netanyahu would be under no legal obligation to resign if formal charges were filed. But any other cabinet post might not offer him that protection.

Israel’s president tasked Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday with assembling a new government after power-sharing talks with his strongest rival, Benny Gantz, failed following an inconclusive election.

UK court rules Johnson suspended parliament unlawfully, PM defiant

World

In his comments in New York, Johnson sought to portray the court ruling as the latest attempt by Brexit opponents to thwart the will of the people as expressed in the 2016 referendum.

The UK Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that Boris Johnson’s decision to shut down parliament in the run-up to Brexit was unlawful, but a defiant prime minister said he disagreed and vowed that Britain would leave the EU by Oct. 31, come what may.

Israeli president begins talks to form new government

World

Complicating matters is Blue and White's refusal to sit with Netanyahu because he faces a likely indictment on corruption charges.

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin began two days of crucial talks Sunday with representatives of all parliamentary factions before selecting his candidate for prime minister, after a deadlocked repeat election was set to make forming any new government a daunting task.

FILE PHOTO: Workers are seen at the damaged site of Saudi Aramco oil facility in Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, September 20, 2019. REUTERS/Hamad l Mohammed/File Photo

World

Ahead of the U.N. General Assembly, Riyadh says it wants a peaceful resolution, but if the probe proved the strike came from Iran then “this would be considered an act of war”.

Saudi Arabia will seek to make a case at a global gathering in New York this week for concerted action to punish and deter arch-foe Iran after strikes on Saudi oil plants rattled global markets and exposed the kingdom’s vulnerability to attack.

United States wants to avoid war with Iran: Mike Pompeo

World

Pompeo says U.S. mission is to avoid war with Iran but measures in place to deter

The United States aims to avoid war with Iran and the additional troops ordered to be deployed in the Gulf region are for “deterrence and defense,” U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday.

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologizes for wearing brownface makeup in 2001, to reporters on the Liberal party leaderÕs election campaign jet in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada in a still image from video September 18, 2019. CBC via REUTERS

World

“I dressed up in an Aladdin costume and put make-up on. I shouldn’t have done it,” a grim-faced Trudeau said in comments carried live on Canadian television.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologized on Wednesday for wearing brown face make-up in 2001 after an embarrassing picture emerged less than five weeks before an election in which he faces a tough fight.

File image - President Trump

World

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday there were many options short of war with Iran after U.S. ally Saudi Arabia displayed remnants of drones and missiles it said were used in a crippling attack on its oil sites that was “unquestionably sponsored” by Tehran.

File image - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves after a meeting with Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel in Luxembourg, September 16, 2019.

World

File image - British Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves after a meeting with Luxembourg's Prime Minister Xavier Bettel in Luxembourg, September 16, 2019.

Britain’s Supreme Court will hear a third and final day of legal arguments on Thursday over whether Prime Minister Boris Johnson acted unlawfully when he suspended parliament in the run-up to Brexit.

File image - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

World

The ballot’s wildcard, former Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, emerged as a likely kingmaker as head of the far-right Yisrael Beitenu party.

Israel’s election remained too close to call Wednesday morning, with television stations carrying unofficial results showing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tied with his main rival, former military chief Benny Gantz.

Smoke is seen following a fire at Aramco facility in the eastern city of Abqaiq, Saudi Arabia, September 14, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer

World

State-run oil company Saudi Aramco said the strikes would cut output by 5.7 million barrels per day, or more than 5% of global crude supply, at a time when Aramco is gearing up for a stock market listing.

Iran dismissed accusations by the United States that it was behind attacks on Saudi oil plants that disrupted world oil production and warned on Sunday that U.S. bases and aircraft carriers in the region were in range of its missiles.

Farmer Mario Giustocio looks at soy plants in a field near Norberto de la Riestra, Argentina, January 8, 2019. REUTERS/Marcos Brindicci. File iamge

World

The U.S.-China trade war, however, strengthened Argentina’s hand, prompting China to expand its soymeal import options, market sources say.

China will allow the import of soymeal livestock feed from Argentina for the first time under a deal announced by Buenos Aires on Tuesday, an agreement that will link the world’s top exporter of the feed with the top global consumer.

File image - US President Donald Trump

World

Unbeknownst to almost everyone, the major Taliban leaders and, separately, the President of Afghanistan, were going to secretly meet with me at Camp David on Sunday. They were ...

U.S. President Donald Trump says he has called off secret talks that were to be held Sunday at Camp David with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani and “major Taliban leaders.”

Hurricane Dorian is viewed from the International Space Station September 1, 2019 in a still image obtained from a video. NASA/Handout via REUTERS

World

Dorian is the strongest hurricane on record to hit the northwestern Bahamas as a life-threatening Category 5 storm on the five-step Saffir-Simpson Wind Scale.

Hurricane Dorian battered the Bahamas early on Monday, peeling off roofs, toppling cars and snapping power lines as rising floodwater threatened to engulf houses.

China, U.S. kick off new round of tariffs in trade war

World

A new round of tariffs took effect from 0401 GMT (12:01 a.m. EDT), with Beijing’s levy of 5% on U.S. crude marking the first time the fuel had been targeted since the world’s two largest economies started their trade war more than a year ago.

The United States began imposing 15% tariffs on a variety of Chinese goods on Sunday - including footwear, smart watches and flat-panel televisions - as China began imposing new duties on U.S. crude, the latest escalation in a bruising trade war.

Iran says it will take 'stronger step' away from nuclear deal if Europe doesn't act

World

Iran has said it will breach the deal’s limits on its nuclear activities one by one, ratcheting up pressure on the countries who still hope to save it. Tehran has threatened to take further steps by Sept. 6, such as enriching to 20% or restarting mothballed centrifuges, machines that enrich uranium.

Iran is prepared to take a “stronger step” in reducing its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers if European countries don’t take action to save the pact, its foreign ministry’s spokesman said on Monday.

North Korea launches more short-range missiles, clouding prospects for talks

World

Trump said earlier this month Kim told him he was ready to resume talks on North Korea’s nuclear and missile programmes and would stop missile testing as soon as U.S.-South Korea military exercises ended.

North Korea fired what appeared to be two short-range ballistic missiles into the sea off its east coast on Saturday, the South Korean military said, the latest in a series of launches in recent weeks amid stalled denuclearisation talks.

Trump heaps another 5% tariff on Chinese goods in latest tit-for-tat escalation

World

He said the United States would raise its existing tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports to 30% from the current 25% beginning on Oct. 1, the 70th anniversary of the founding of the communist People’s Republic of China.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday lashed back at a new round of Chinese tariffs by heaping an additional 5% duty on some $550 billion in targeted Chinese goods in the latest tit-for-tat trade war escalation by the world’s two largest economies.

File image - President Hassan Rouhani

World

"Now that our enemies do not accept logic, we cannot respond with logic," Rouhani said in the televised speech.

Iran's president struck a muscular tone on dealings with the U.S., saying Thursday that "talks are useless" as Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers crumbles further.

Iran moves to strike 4 zeroes from its battered currency. Image credit: AW

World

On Wednesday, the rial traded 116,500 to $1. At the time of the 2015 nuclear deal, the rial traded 32,000 to the dollar.

Iran's president sent a bill to parliament Wednesday that would cut four zeroes from the value of the Islamic Republic's sanctions-battered currency, the rial, as tensions remain high between Tehran and Washington.

Trump cancels Denmark trip after PM says Greenland isn't for sale

World

Trump mused about acquiring Greenland from Denmark on Sunday, telling reporters that “it's something we talked about."

 President Donald Trump is calling off an upcoming trip to Denmark after its prime minister rebuffed his interest in buying Greenland, a Danish territory, the White House announced on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: Chinese paramilitary vehicles are parked at the Shenzhen Bay Sports Center in Shenzhen near the border with Hong Kong, China August 18, 2019. REUTERS/Martin Pollard

World

China’s State Council has called for greater development of the southern city of Shenzhen and the integration of its culture and economy with neighboring Hong Kong and Macau.

Danish PM: Trump's idea of buying Greenland is 'absurd'

World

Frederiksen said Sunday that the Arctic, with resources that Russia and others could exploit for commercial gain, "is becoming increasingly ...

Denmark's prime minister says U.S. President Donald Trump's idea of buying Greenland from Denmark is "an absurd discussion," reiterating that the semi-autonomous Danish territory in the Arctic is not for sale.

President Donald Trump meets with China's President Xi Jinping at the start of their bilateral meeting at the G20 leaders summit in Osaka, Japan, June 29, 2019.

World

"Just in case it might have an impact on people, what we’ve done is delayed it, so they won't be relevant for the Christmas shopping season,"

The United States announced Tuesday that a 10% tariff set to be slapped on $300 billion of Chinese imports starting next month would be delayed until later this year for certain products, including "cell phones, laptop computers, video game consoles, certain toys, computer monitors and certain items of footwear and clothing."

U.S. farmers suffer 'body blow' as China slams door on farm purchases

World

Tariffs imposed by China on U.S. soybeans have slashed exports of the most valuable U.S. crop and forced Trump’s administration to compensate farmers for two years with combined spending of as much as $28 billion.

Chinese companies have stopped buying U.S. agricultural products, China’s Commerce Ministry said on Tuesday, a blow to U.S. farmers who have already seen their exports slashed by the more than year-old trade war.

China's yuan steadies, but stocks slump as trade war engulfs currency

World

China’s commerce ministry also announced overnight that its companies had stopped buying U.S. agricultural products in retaliation against Washington’s latest tariff threat.

China’s tumbling yuan steadied on Tuesday as authorities took steps to contain its slide, while stocks tanked after Washington labeled Beijing a currency manipulator in a sharp escalation of Sino-U.S. trade tensions.

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