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Updated: 1 hour 49 min ago

Anti-Jihadist Raids Net 5 in France, 3 in Belgium

3 hours 10 min ago
Police in France and Belgium arrested eight suspected militant Islamists on Tuesday in dawn raids three weeks after jihadists killed 17 people in Paris. “A particularly dangerous and organized network was broken up today,” said French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve, whose government has deployed thousands of soldiers and extra police since the January 7-9 attacks on satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish supermarket. Elite police troops, many of them hooded and heavily...

Battles Continue Outside Syria's Kobani after Kurds Claim Victory

3 hours 12 min ago
Kurdish forces battled Islamic State fighters outside Kobani on Tuesday, a monitoring group said, a day after Kurds said they had taken full control of the northern Syrian town following a four-month battle. Known as Ayn al-Arab in Arabic, the mainly Kurdish town close to the Turkish border has become a focal point in the international fight against Islamic State, an al-Qaida offshoot that has spread across Syria and Iraq. There were clashes to the southeast and southwest of Kobani,...

Thailand Plans Major Infrastructure Upgrade

3 hours 47 min ago
Thailand’s military-backed government is looking to boost the country's ailing economy with a more than $100-billion infrastructure spending program that includes upgrading the national rail network and opening links to Southern China. The Thai government's plans to upgrade the national railway system follow years of financial neglect. The goal is to revive Thailand’s place in a trans-Asian railway network running south to north, from Singapore to Kunming in southern China, and...

Somalia Aims to Improve Lives of Children

4 hours 14 min ago
Somalia's president signed into law the Convention on the Rights of the Child on January 20. Somalia’s children continue to face daily challenges posed by conflict, displacement, malnutrition and disease. One in seven die before reaching the age of five and fewer than half of the children attend school. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu on what, if anything, this new law will do to help improve the lives of the youngest Somalis.

Ebola Numbers May Be Higher Than Reported in Guinea

4 hours 17 min ago
The world breathed a sigh of relief after the release of the World Health Organization’s latest findings on Ebola. It said the number of new cases over the past five months showed its first decline since the start of the epidemic a year ago in the three hardest hit countries: Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. However, the international emergency response organization, International Rescue Committee, IRC, warns caution should be used when interpreting what the declining numbers really...

Witnesses: UN Troops in Mali Kill at Least 3 Protesters

4 hours 31 min ago
United Nations peacekeepers in the northern Malian town of Gao killed at least three people on Tuesday when they used live rounds to disperse protesters there, witnesses said, but a U.N. spokesman said only warning shots were fired. Violence erupted as peacekeepers were meeting local leaders angry over a plan to create a buffer zone in the north that would force pro-Bamako militia in the area to disarm while Tuareg separatist rebels to the north would be less affected. A witness at the...

Egypt Confirms Jail Terms for Leading Liberal Activists

5 hours 4 min ago
n Egyptian court upheld three-year jail sentences on Tuesday for three prominent liberal activists, judicial sources said, after days of violence around the anniversary of the 2011 uprising that toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak. In 2013, a court handed down the sentences against Ahmed Maher, Ahmed Douma and Mohamed Adel -- leading figures of the pro-democracy revolt -- for protesting without permission and assaulting police, under a new law suppressing demonstrations. But despite...

Tsipras Names Austerity Critic as Greek Finance Chief

5 hours 18 min ago
An economist who has been an outspoken critic of Greece's bailout deal with international lenders was named Tuesday as the country's finance minister in the new leftist government. Anti-austerity Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras picked Yanis Varoufakis for the key economic portfolio as he named other political supporters to his Cabinet after his Syriza party swept to victory in Sunday's election. Varoufakis, who holds dual Greek and Australian citizenship, will now play...

Millions of Displaced Nigerians Struggle with Daily Existence

5 hours 59 min ago
More than three million people have been displaced in Nigeria - many of them fleeing the violent 5-year Boko Haram insurgency. Some have taken refuge in the capital Abuja. But many say they receive little to no assistance from the government. It’s Friday morning at the busy car park in the Garki neighborhood in Nigeria’s capital Abuja. On the roadside - next to the small shops that sell biscuits, sweetened drinks and phone recharge cards - passengers wait for taxis to take them to...

US Storm Falls Short of Severe Predictions, Yet Affects Millions

6 hours 31 min ago
Tens of millions of people along the U.S. East Coast stayed home from work and school, had flights canceled and were told to stay off roads for a snowstorm that, for most, failed to live up to predictions that it would be one of the worst they had ever seen. While the blizzard dropped about 30 centimeters (a foot) of snow across Massachusetts and Connecticut overnight, but it had a lesser impact on New York. By early Tuesday, the governors of New York and New Jersey lifted travel bans...

5 Foreigners Among Dead in Libya Hotel Attack

6 hours 41 min ago
Libyan authorities say five foreigners and three guards were killed Tuesday in an attack on a Tripoli hotel popular with politicians and international workers. Security officials at the Corinthia Hotel said assailants stormed the building after blowing up their vehicle and shooting staff members.   It was not immediately clear who carried out the attack, but a group identifying itself as the Tripoli Province of the Islamic State claimed responsibility in an online...

Malawi Receives Flood Aid After Government Appeal

7 hours 15 min ago
Local and international organizations are responding to the Malawi government’s call for relief aid to help hundreds of thousands of people displaced by flooding and facing a growing threat of waterborne diseases. “I appeal for humanitarian assistance from the international donor community, the relevant United Nations agencies, the non-governmental organizations, the local private sector as well as all fellow citizens of goodwill, so that, together, we can contribute in alleviating...

IS Renews Threats Against Japanese, Jordanian Hostages

7 hours 18 min ago
Islamic State militants have threatened to kill a Japanese and Jordanian hostage within 24 hours, according to an online message attributed to the group. In the video featuring a photograph of Japanese hostage Kenji Goto, the speaker, whose voice resembles Goto's, said that he has “24 hours left to live.” The speaker on the video said a Jordanian pilot, also believed to be held by the militant Islamic State group, “has even less” time to live. Pilot Mu'ath al-Kaseasebeh is...

As African Supermarkets Spread, Study Finds Traditional Markets Just as Safe

7 hours 54 min ago
Most Africans still buy their food at teeming, chaotic open-air food markets that would make many hygiene-conscious Westerners squirm. But a new study from the International Livestock Research Institute released on January 27 has yielded a surprising finding: that the milk and meat from these informal markets is often fresher -- and safer -- than what is found in the Western-style African supermarkets that are spreading across the continent. Delia Grace, who leads the food safety program...

Indonesia's Military Halts AirAsia Jet Recovery Effort

8 hours 32 min ago
Indonesia scaled down search and recovery efforts January 27 for the bodies and wreckage of an AirAsia passenger jet that crashed last month as the military pulled out from the operation, navy officials said. Indonesia AirAsia flight QZ8501 vanished from radar screens on December 28, less than half way into a two-hour flight from Indonesia's second largest city Surabaya to Singapore. All 162 people on board were killed. “Obviously it has been 30 days so the joint team will pull...

Facebook: Internal Error to Blame for Outages

8 hours 58 min ago
Facebook, the world's largest social network, and its Instagram photo-sharing site, suffered temporary outages around the world for up to an hour on Tuesday and the company said later that an internal software networking error was to blame. The outage at Facebook appeared to spill over and temporarily slow or block traffic to other major Internet sites, according to web and mobile user reports from around the globe. “This was not the result of a third-party attack but instead...

Ukraine Labels Russia ‘Aggressor State’

9 hours 40 min ago
Amid a renewed surge of fighting in eastern Ukraine, the country's parliament on Tuesday approved a statement identifying Russia as an "aggressor state" and European Union leaders weighed the possiblity of new sanctions against it, Reuters reported. The actions come in the wake of Saturday's shelling of the government-held port city of Mariupol, which killed 30 civilians and wounded around 100, and continued combat with pro-Russian rebels. Ukraine's...

Elite Police Unit Chief Sidelined Over Deadly Clash in Philippines

10 hours 29 min ago
The chief of the Philippines' elite police force has been recalled over his handling of an operation at the weekend to arrest two wanted Islamic militants that left over 40 members of the security force dead, the interior minister said on Tuesday. Manuel Roxas also said he had ordered an investigation into the operation that turned into a deadly 12-hour clash with Muslim rebels. The head of the Philippine National Police said the operation had not been cleared by top police...

Obama Seeks to Bolster Ties With Saudi Arabia

11 hours 57 min ago
U.S. President Barack Obama arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday, leading an array of current and former American statesmen in paying respects following the death of King Abdullah. Underscoring the importance of a U.S.-Saudi alliance that extends beyond oil interests to regional security, Obama cut short the final day of his trip to India to make a four-hour stop in the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom. Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes told reporters traveling with Obama...

Obama: America Can Be India’s Best Partner

12 hours 23 min ago
President Barack Obama said India and the United States are not just natural partners, but that America can be India’s best partner. Obama capped his historic trip to India with a speech calling on both nations to come together to fight poverty, climate change and intolerance. After nearly three days of wooing Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and business leaders, Obama took his message of a new chapter in U.S.-India relations directly to the Indian people on Tuesday. “I’m here...

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