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Suicide Bomber Kills at Least 12 in North Baghdad

A suicide bomber struck near a checkpoint in a Shiite area of northern Baghdad on Sunday, killing at least 12 people, Iraqi security and medical officials said.

The blast also wounded at least 22 people, the officials said.

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Iraq PM Seeks to Speed up Death Penalty Implementation

Iraq's prime minister is seeking to speed up the implementation of death sentences, his office said Saturday, despite persistent concerns over flaws in the judicial system that hands them down.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ordered the formation of a committee "to determine the obstacles and causes that result in the delay in the implementation of death sentences," a statement said.

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Coalition Air Strikes Hit Qaida in Yemen

Saudi-led coalition warplanes struck al-Qaida positions in southern Yemen on Saturday killing several jihadists, as government forces appeared set on a new offensive, military officials said.

Two air strikes targeted al-Qaida militants gathered on the outskirts of Jaar town in Abyan province, killing and wounding several jihadists, military officials said.

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Libya Armed Groups Urge Fight against French Troops

Armed groups including Islamists have urged Libyans to mobilize against French and other foreign troops deployed in the country, denouncing their presence as a "blatant aggression".

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Sporadic Clashes Rock Syria's Manbij as Deadline Nears

Islamic State group militants clashed Saturday with U.S.-backed fighters in Syria's Manbij as a 48-hour deadline loomed for the jihadists to leave the battleground town, a monitor said.

The ultimatum was issued Thursday by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), an Arab-Kurdish alliance that is fighting IS with support from a U.S.-led coalition.

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Doomed EgyptAir Flight Broke up Midair after Fire

An EgyptAir flight that crashed into the Mediterranean in May likely broke up in midair after a fire erupted in or near the cockpit, the New York Times reported Friday.

However it remains unclear whether the blaze was triggered by mechanical malfunction or a criminal act, Egyptian officials who spoke on condition of anonymity told the Times.

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Kerry Announces Fresh Talks with Russia on Syria

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday announced he would hold talks on the war in Syria with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on the sidelines of a regional summit next week in Laos.

"I think our next meeting will be on the side of the meeting in Asia. I'll see him in Asia (...) Laos," Kerry told reporters in Vienna.

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The West Bank Palestinian Villagers in Legal Limbo

A tiny Palestinian village in the Hebron hills could soon cease to exist after a nine-year legal battle with Israeli authorities who say its 167 residents live on an archaeological site.

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Iraq's Karbala Votes for Return of Displaced People

Authorities in Iraq's Karbala province have voted for the return of all displaced Iraqis whose home areas have been recaptured from the Islamic State group, they announced on Friday.

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Saudi Executions Exceed 100 This Year

Saudi authorities on Friday executed a national convicted of murdering a compatriot, in the 101st execution of the year in the ultra-conservative kingdom, the interior ministry said.

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