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EU Official Says he Pressed Lebanese Politicians on Elections

A top European Union official said he informed Lebanese officials during his visit to Beirut that the presidential and parliamentary elections should be held to have a healthy democracy

Hugues Mingarelli, who is the Managing Director for North Africa, Middle East, the Arabian Peninsula, Iran and Iraq at the European External Action Service, said: “You have a democracy and there are routine elections and a multi-party system.”

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Derbas Says Lebanon and Jordan United at Berlin Conference

Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas said the stance of Lebanon and Jordan at the upcoming Berlin conference on the Syrian refugees will be united.

In remarks to An Nahar daily published Friday, Derbas said that both countries are suffering from the same repercussions of the Syrians crisis that resulted in millions of refugees.

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Jordan King Says World Faces Fight against Extremism

Jordan's King Abdullah said Tuesday the world was engaged in a battle against extremism as his country takes part in U.S.-led air strikes on Islamic State jihadists in Syria.

"All countries in the world are witnessing a war between moderation and extremism, and today Islam is plagued by a civil war," Abdullah told a meeting of Jordanian lawmakers.

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Report: Deaths among Drivers of Bekaa Trucks at Syria-Jordan Border

Several drivers of refrigerated trucks transporting goods from Lebanon's eastern Bekaa Valley were killed and injured after they came under fire during battles between the Syrian army and rebels at the Syrian-Jordanian border.

The head of the Bekaa Farmers Gathering, Ibrahim Tarshishi, told Voice of Lebanon radio (93.3) on Tuesday that there were deaths and injuries among the drivers of trucks at the Nasib crossing.

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Jordan Begins Trial of 8 on Charges of 'Joining' Hizbullah, Acts of 'Terrorism'

A Jordanian military court began on Monday the trial of eight suspects on charges of joining Hizbullah and trying to commit "terrorist acts" in the kingdom.

According to Jordan's Petra News Agency, the military commission at the State Security court held a session to begin the trial of eight people accused of belonging to Hizbullah.

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Jordan Charges 26 with 'Terrorism' after Market Unrest

A Jordanian court charged 26 people on Monday with "terrorist acts" following unrest that wounded four people, including two police, when security forces shut a market in central Amman.

They were arrested during clashes Friday evening that flared again on Saturday after stalls at Abdali second-hand clothing market were dismantled, a judicial source told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.

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UAE Suprised at Biden Suggestion it Backed Jihadists

The United Arab Emirates has expressed surprise after U.S. Vice President Joe Biden suggested the Gulf state had armed and financed jihadists in Syria, along with other regional powers.

Biden's remarks were "amazing and ignore the role of the Emirates in the fight against extremism and terrorism," the UAE minister of state for foreign affairs, Anwar Mohammad Gargash, said in a statement carried late Saturday by the official WAM news agency.

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Official: In Air War in Iraq and Syria, 4,100 U.S. Flights

U.S. aircraft have flown roughly 4,100 sorties in the air war against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria since August, including surveillance flights, refueling runs and bombing raids, a military officer said Monday.

The number of flights reflects the widening U.S.-led air campaign that began with a more narrowly-defined objective when it was launched by Washington on August 8. 

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Balkans Launch Fight against Jihadist Recruitment

With the world on high alert over foreign fighters joining jihadist ranks in Syria and Iraq, Balkan states are launching efforts to clamp down on recruiting in their region, considered fertile ground by Islamists.

Of the more than 20 million people in southeast Europe, more than five million are Muslims, and an economic slump in weak states battered by past wars has fired up some of the disenfranchised.

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Jordan Says Safe Despite Role in Anti-IS Coalition

Jordan, which has joined a U.S.-led coalition waging air strikes on the Islamic State group, said Sunday it has secured the country's borders against "any threat".

The government's statement follows warnings from analysts that Jordan was taking a risk by joining the U.S.-led coalition.

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