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News In Brief

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42 killed in Israeli strikes in Syria this week
AP, Beirut
A Syrian war monitor says a wave of Israeli strikes on suspected military positions in Syria this week killed 42 people.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Saturday the new death toll from attacks early Thursday was 27, including at least 11 Iranians and six Syrian soldiers. In strikes near the capital on Wednesday, the Observatory said at least 15 were killed, including eight Iranians. That brings to 42, including 19 Iranians, the total killed during the two days of strikes.

UN's top nuclear inspector resigns
AP, Berlin
The U.N.'s nuclear watchdog says its top inspector has quit with immediate effect, just as the agency's work in Iran is once again in focus.
The International Atomic Energy Agency didn't give a reason for the sudden resignation of Tero Varjoranta, stating Saturday that it doesn't comment on confidential personnel matters.

Iran cleric threatens destruction of Israeli cities
AP, Tehran
A prominent Iranian cleric on Friday threatened two Israeli cities with destruction if the Jewish state "acts foolishly" and attacks its interests again, while thousands of protesters demonstrated against President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear deal with world powers.
The comments by Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami followed a week of escalating tensions that threaten to spill over into a wider conflict between the two bitter enemies, who have long fought each other through proxies in Syria and Lebanon.

NASA plans to send mini-copter to Mars
AFP, Tampa
The US space agency said Friday it plans to launch the first-ever helicopter to Mars in 2020, a miniature, unmanned drone-like chopper that could boost our understanding of the Red Planet.
Known simply as "The Mars Helicopter," the device weighs less than four pounds (1.8 kilograms), and its main body section, or fuselage, is about the size of a softball.

California boy shoots high school student
Reuters, Palmdale
A 14-year-old boy shot and wounded a student at a Southern California high school on Friday before fleeing the scene and being arrested at a supermarket by an off-duty police officer, law enforcement officials said.
The victim, a 15-year-old student at Highland High School in Palmdale, about 60 miles (96 km) north of Los Angeles, was listed in stable condition at a nearby hospital with a gunshot wound to the arm and shoulder area, Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell told a news conference.

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Cleric Sadr meets Iraq PM Abadi, hinting at coalition

Cleric Sadr meets Iraq PM Abadi, hinting at coalition

Reuters, Baghdad  :Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi met with Moqtada al-Sadr on Saturday, less than 24 hours after the Shi'ite cleric's bloc was declared winner of Iraq's parliamentary election,

Melania back in the White House after kidney procedure

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Reuters, Washington :President Donald Trump's wife, Melania Trump, returned to the White House on Saturday after undergoing a surgical procedure this week to treat a benign kidney condition, her

Maduro favoured as Venezuelans vote amid crisis

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AP, Caracas :Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is expected to win a second six-year term in Sunday's election, despite a deepening crisis that's made food scarce and inflation soar as

News In Brief

6 cops killed in Naxal attack in IndiaAP, PatnaAt least six police officials were killed and another was critically injured on Sunday when Maoist rebels targeted their vehicle with

Trump, Moon discuss N Korea's threat to scrap summit

Trump, Moon discuss N Korea's threat to scrap summit

AFP, Seoul :US President Donald Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Sunday discussed North Korea's recent threats to cancel its unprecedented summit with Washington, Seoul's presidential office

Putin, Merkel defend Nord Stream pipeline

Putin, Merkel defend Nord Stream pipeline

AFP, Sochi (Russia)  :Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel put on a rare show of unity Friday defending the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, criticised by Ukraine

Chinese bombers make debut landing on disputed South China Sea runway

Chinese bombers make debut landing on disputed South China Sea runway

AFP Beijing :China has for the first time landed several bombers on an island in the disputed South China Sea, a move that could provoke renewed tensions between countries

Detained Saudi women driving campaigners branded traitors

Detained Saudi women driving campaigners branded traitors

AP, Dubai :Just weeks before Saudi Arabia is set to lift its ban on women driving, the kingdom's state security said Saturday it had detained seven people who are

Cleric Sadr wins Iraq election but forming govt far off

Cleric Sadr wins Iraq election but forming govt far off

AFP, Baghdad  :The final results of Iraq's elections confirmed Saturday a breakthrough for nationalist cleric Moqtada Sadr, who was in the lead, ahead of internationally favoured prime minister Haider

White House pushes ahead with Mideast peace plan

White House pushes ahead with Mideast peace plan

AP, Washington  :The Trump administration is aiming to roll out its much-hyped but long-delayed Middle East peace plan next month amid signs it may further alienate the Palestinians by