Middle East
Latest stories
Fighting Rages in Yemen Capital despite U.N. Talk of Deal

Fighting raged in the Yemeni capital on Sunday despite an announcement by the U.N. envoy that pro-government forces and Shiite rebels were poised to sign a deal.

The shelling and gunfire in the north of Sanaa was heard across the capital, as Sunni Islamist militiamen battled the rebels prompting an exodus of terrified residents, an Agence France Presse correspondent reported.

W140 Full Story
Israel Says to Join Cairo Truce Talks Tuesday

Israel said on Sunday it would send a delegation to attend indirect Gaza truce talks with Hamas in Cairo next week, although a minister said they would likely achieve nothing. 

Confirmation that Israel would return to the Egyptian capital on Tuesday to resume negotiations on cementing an August 26 ceasefire agreement which halted 50 days of bloodshed in Gaza, came from a senior Israeli official, who refused to give further details. 

W140 Full Story
U.N. Rushes Aid to 70,000 Syrian Kurds Fleeing into Turkey

As many as 70,000 Syrian Kurds have poured into Turkey since Friday fleeing an offensive by Islamic State jihadists in northeastern Syria, the U.N.'s refugee agency said Sunday.

The UNHCR "is stepping up its response to help Turkey come to the aid of an estimated 70,000 Syrians crossing into Turkey", most in the past 24 hours, the agency said in a statement.

W140 Full Story
IS Jihadists Close in on Syria Kurdish Town

Islamic State jihadists were closing in on Syria's third largest Kurdish town Sunday after their capture of surrounding villages sent tens of thousands of refugees streaming into Turkey, a monitoring group said.

IS fighters were within just 10 kilometers (six miles) of the strategic border town known as Ain al-Arab in Arabic and Kobane in Kurdish, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

W140 Full Story
Wife of British IS Hostage Pleads for his Release

The wife of a British taxi driver being held hostage by Islamic State jihadists implored his captors to release him, saying Saturday she could not see how his death could assist any cause.

Alan Henning, a Briton who volunteered to drive a humanitarian aid convoy to Syria for a Muslim charity, was captured 10 months ago and is in the hands of the IS group.

W140 Full Story
Black Prevails in Syria Jihadist Stronghold

In the Syrian stronghold of the Islamic State jihadist group, everything is black, activists say, from men's turbans to women's veils. Even the passports.

"Black IS flags are everywhere. Women are covered from head to toe in black burqas, and can only leave the house in the company of their fathers, brothers or husbands," said Abu Yusef, an activist from Raqa province, which IS considers its headquarters.

W140 Full Story
U.N. Announces Accord to 'Resolve Crisis' in Yemen

The U.N. envoy to Yemen announced Saturday that an accord had been reached to "resolve the current crisis" in Yemen, after a week of deadly fighting between Shiite rebels and pro-government forces.

Jamal Benomar said in a statement that the deal came after "intense consultations with all the political parties, including (rebels) Ansarullah, to resolve the current crisis based on the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference".

W140 Full Story
Qaeda Tunisia Offshoot Offers Backing to IS

An Al-Qaeda-linked Tunisian group has offered backing to the Islamic State organisation that has overrun chunks of Iraq and Syria, becoming the third jihadist group to do so this week, a U.S.-based monitor says.

Okba Ibn Nafaa, whose militants Tunisian armed forces have been hunting in mountains near the Algerian border for two years, has identified itself with Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, the international jihadist network's North African branch.

W140 Full Story
Yemen Flights Halted as Truce Talks End without Result

Flights to the Yemeni capital were suspended for a second day straight Saturday as the toll mounted from clashes between pro-government forces and rebels after U.N. efforts to reach a ceasefire ended.

Forces allied to the government have been battling to halt Shiite rebels who have swept into Sanaa from their stronghold in the rugged northwestern mountains.

W140 Full Story
Deadly Shipwreck Fails to Deter Migrants in Egypt

A twist of fate stopped Abu Fahd boarding a doomed migrant boat that sank off Malta with hundreds aboard, but the Syrian and his family are already plotting another perilous voyage.

Abu Fahd, his wife and five children were supposed to take a vessel from a beach on the outskirts of Egypt's Mediterranean city of Damietta but they missed it and were arrested by the military.

W140 Full Story