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MIDDLE EAST

Iran accuses US of 'hostage-taking' after expert's arrest

Tehran on Wednesday (January 20) accused Washington "hostage-taking" after the United States arrested an Iranian academic on charges of acting as an agent of the Islamic republic, ISNA news agency rep


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Egypt says agreed with Qatar to restore diplomatic ties

Egypt and Qatar agreed Wednesday to restore diplomatic relations, Egypt's foreign ministry said, after a three-year-long Saudi led freeze on ties with Doha ended this month.


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Iran's Rouhani hails departure of 'tyrant' Trump

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday (January 20) hailed the departure of "tyrant" US counterpart Donald Trump, who is due to leave office later in the day making way for President-elect Joe B


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Beyond the oil wells, Syrians rummage in trash to survive

Plastic bottles, aluminum cans, clothes, sometimes spaghetti. When a tractor tows in fresh rubbish at a dump in northeast Syria, men, women and children rush to find the best pickings.


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Qatar calls for Gulf talks with Iran

Qatar has called for Gulf Arab countries to hold talks with Iran, the foreign minister said in an interview aired Tuesday (January 19), after Doha reconciled with its neighbors following a rift.


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Mideast mothers count days to Biden, visas to see children

Syrian mother Dahouk Idriss says she can't wait for US President-elect Joe Biden to be inaugurated Wednesday, so she can finally visit her son for the first time in four years.


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Yemen clashes near Hodeida kill 150 in a week: military sources

Some 150 Yemeni pro-government soldiers and Huthi rebels have been killed in a week of fighting south of the strategic port city of Hodeida, military sources said Monday (January 18).


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Three Syrian soldiers killed near Golan Heights: monitor

Three Syrian soldiers were killed Sunday (January 17) when gunmen attacked their outpost close to the demarcation line with the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights


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European powers warn Iran over uranium metal plans

European powers on Saturday (January 16) voiced deep concern over Iran's plans to produce uranium metal, warning that Tehran has "no credible civilian use" for the element.


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Facing Biden, Erdogan extends olive branch to EU

Facing a potentially hostile US administration, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is trying to break his isolation by mending EU relations, torn by what the bloc views as his bellicose foreign po


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Saudi embassy to reopen in Qatar within days: FM

Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan said (January 16) Riyadh will reopen its embassy in Qatar as part of a deal to normalize ties with its neighbor and end a three-year rift.


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Iran test-fires ballistic missiles on targets at sea

Iran's Revolutionary Guards test-fired ballistic missiles against targets in the Indian Ocean as they wrapped up a two-day exercise, their official website reported Saturday (January 16).


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EU puts new Syria foreign minister on sanctions blacklist

The European Union on Friday (January 15) added recently appointed Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad to its sanctions blacklist targeting the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.


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Greece wants EU pressure on Turkey to take back migrants

Greece called Thursday (January 14) on European Union authorities to better enforce a landmark 2016 migrant deal and ensure that Turkey take back nearly 1,500 people whose asylum requests were rejecte


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Iran Guards deny losses in Israel Syria strikes

An Iranian Revolutionary Guards official denied Thursday (January 14) that recent Israeli strikes on eastern Syria led to any deaths, the Fars news agency reported.


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Jordan jails 11 for joining ISIS, planning attacks

A Jordanian court on Wednesday (January 14) handed heavy prison terms to 11 people convicted of joining the Islamic State (ISIS) group and of planning attacks against churches and security personnel i


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Turkey urges dialogue with US after missile sanctions

Turkey's defence minister has called on the United States to reopen talks about Ankara's controversial purchase of a Russian air defence system, urging Washington to move past sanctions and threats.


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France repatriates seven jihadists' children from Syria

France said on Wednesday (January 13) it had brought home seven children of French jihadists from northeast Syria, continuing a repatriation process begun after the toppling of the Islamic State's (IS


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40 killed in deadliest Israeli strikes on Syria since 2018: monitor

Israeli night raids targeting arms depots and military positions in eastern Syria killed at least nine Syrian soldiers and 31 allied fighters, in the deadliest raids since 2018, a war monitor said Wed


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Iran wants 'snapback' erased from nuclear deal: Khamenei advisor

Iran wants to remove a clause from a 2015 nuclear deal that allows for UN sanctions against it to be reinstated, a senior official has said, hinting Tehran would be open to negotiations on the issue.


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