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Iran Abducted California Man while in Dubai

A California-based member of an Iranian militant opposition group in exile was abducted by Iran while staying in Dubai, his family said Tuesday.

The suspected cross-border abduction of Jamshid Sharmahd appears corroborated by mobile phone location data, shared by his family with The Associated Press, that suggests he was taken to neighboring Oman before heading to Iran.

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Record Temperatures, Pending Deals Inflame Lebanon, Iraq's Power Woes

In Iraq's oil-rich south, the scorching summer months pose painful new choices in the age of the coronavirus: stay at home in the sweltering heat with electricity cut off for hours, or go out and risk the virus.

This is Zain al-Abidin's predicament. A resident of al-Hartha district, in Basra province, al-Abidin lost his job due to pandemic-related restrictions. During the day he listens helplessly to his four-month old daughter cry in the unbearable heat, too poor to afford private generators to offset up to eight-hour power cuts.

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Report: Hitti’s Resignation ‘Exposes’ Government

The resignation of Foreign Minister Nasif Hitti has deepened “distrust” in the government of PM Hassan Diab, aggravating the state of “diplomatic isolation” surrounding the “ruling authority as government and presidential term,” An Nahar daily reported on Tuesday.

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Often on Brink, Lebanon Headed toward 'Collapse'

Power cuts that last up to 20 hours a day. Mountains of trash spilling into streets. Long lines at gas stations.

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Foreign Minister Resigns in Protest at Govt. Mishandling of Crisis

Foreign Minister Nasif Hitti announced on Monday his resignation from office in protest at the performance of the government, warning a lack of vision and a will to make changes risked turning the country into a “failed state.”

Hitti submitted his resignation to the prime minister and left the government house without making any comments. He later issued a strongly worded statement explaining his resignation, saying the government had failed to manage the crisis and implement the required reforms to save the country.

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Iraq: Since October, 560 Protesters, Police Died in Rallies

Iraq's government said Thursday that since last October when anti-government protests erupted in the country, a total of 560 protesters and members of the security forces have been killed in the violence.

The figure was reported by Hisham Daoud, an advisor to Iraq's prime minister, at a press conference in Baghdad. He said a fact-finding committee would investigate the killings further.

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Final Days of Hajj and Eid Festival Impacted by Coronavirus

Small groups of pilgrims performed one of the final rites of the Islamic hajj on Friday as Muslims worldwide marked the start of the Eid al-Adha holiday amid a global pandemic that has impacted nearly every aspect of this year's pilgrimage and celebrations.

The last days of the annual pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia coincide with the four-day Eid al-Adha, or "Feast of Sacrifice," in which Muslims slaughter livestock and distribute the meat to the poor.

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Isaias Causes Floods, Slides, then Grows into Hurricane

Tropical Storm Isaias knocked out power and caused flooding and small landslides across Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic on Thursday, then strengthened into a hurricane late in the night while moving toward the Bahamas and U.S. East Coast.

The storm's rain turned several streets into fast-flowing rivers and toppled trees and some telephone and electrical cables in Puerto Rico, which is still recovering from previous hurricanes and earthquakes. The National Guard rescued at least 35 people, including two newborns. Authorities in the northwest town of Rincon reported a woman missing after floodwaters swept her away when she tried to drive across a bridge.

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US Frowns upon Iranian Supermarket in Venezuela's Capital

U.S. officials frowned upon the opening of an Iranian supermarket in Venezuela's capital, saying Thursday that any presence of Iran in the Western Hemisphere is "not something we look very favorably on."

Acting Assistant Secretary for U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs Michael Kozak told journalists in a call that the opening of the market shows this is like an alliance of "pariah" states.

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Saudi Royal Court Says King Salman Discharged from Hospital

Saudi Arabia's King Salman was discharged from a hospital in the capital Riyadh after more than a week following surgery to remove his gall bladder, the Royal Court said.

The court said in a statement late Thursday the monarch, 84, left the King Faisal Specialist Hospital after a recovery.

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