One of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's last audio messages was an appeal for his followers to do everything in their power to free Islamic State detainees and the women being held in jails and camps in northeastern Syria.
With news of the extremist group's leader's death, Kurdish security forces worried about the possibility of attacks or rioting have been tightening security at these facilities, which hold more than 80,000 members and supporters of the militant group, including women and children.Full Story
Federal prosecutors say two brothers charged with conspiring to export drone parts and technology from the U.S. to Hizbullah in Lebanon are "dangerous" and should remain in custody while they await trial, according to a court document filed Monday.
Usama and Issam Hamade are charged with conspiracy to violate U.S. export laws. Usama Hamade is also charged with smuggling. Prosecutors say that from 2009 to 2013, the Lebanese brothers repeatedly acquired sophisticated technology for drones then illegally exported them to Hizbullah, which the U.S. considers a terrorist organization.Full Story
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin pledged Monday to increase sanctions against Iran, saying the Trump administration's "maximum pressure campaign" is halting alleged Iranian aggression in the Middle East.
Mnuchin met Monday in Jerusalem with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who called on Washington to impose additional sanctions to halt what he called Iran's "plunge for everything" in the region.Full Story
On a main thoroughfare in Beirut on Monday, Lebanese protesters set up a living room with an area rug, a couch and a refrigerator. On another, they held a morning yoga class. And on a third road, a band with an accordion player sang one of the newest slogans of Lebanon's anti-government protests.
"Hela, hela, hela ho, the road is closed, sweetie," the song went — a reflection of how the protesters have grown more creative as they have blocked roads as part of massive anti-government demonstrations underway for the last 12 days.Full Story
The security forces reportedly postponed until Monday a plan set to reopen major roads and highways blocked by protesters “due to last minute complications,” al-Joumhouria daily reported on Monday.Full Story
In Hong Kong, it was a complicated extradition dispute involving a murder suspect. In Beirut, it was a proposed tax on the popular WhatsApp messenger service. In Chile, it was a 4-cent hike in subway fares.
Recent weeks have seen mass protests and clashes erupt in far-flung places triggered by seemingly minor actions that each came to be seen as the final straw. The demonstrations are fueled by local grievances, but reflect worldwide frustration at growing inequality, corrupt elites and broken promises.Full Story
Lebanon's army on Saturday removed roadblocks set up by protesters in at least one critical juncture linking Beirut to the suburbs and the country's east amid a nationwide wave of protests, including a campaign of civil disobedience.
The protesters had set up several roadblocks around Beirut and on major roads to enforce their calls for the government to step down.Full Story
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on protesters around the world Friday to follow champions of nonviolent change like Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., and urged world leaders "to listen to the real problems of real people."
The U.N. chief told reporters that "disquiet in peoples' lives" has sparked demonstrations around the world from the Middle East to Europe, Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.Full Story
Tens of thousands of people, many of them young and unemployed men, thronged public squares and blocked main streets Friday in the capitals of Iraq and Lebanon in unprecedented, spontaneous anti-government revolts in two countries scarred by long conflicts.
Demonstrators in Iraq were beaten back by police firing live ammunition and tear gas, and officials said 30 people were killed in a fresh wave of unrest that has left 179 civilians dead this month. In Lebanon, scuffles between rival political groups broke out at a protest camp, threatening to undermine an otherwise united civil disobedience campaign now in its ninth day.Full Story
Iraqi police fired live shots into the air as well as rubber bullets and dozens of tear gas canisters Friday to disperse thousands of anti-government protesters, sending young demonstrators running for cover and enveloping a main bridge in the capital Baghdad with thick white smoke. Twenty-three protesters were killed and dozens were injured, security officials said.Full Story