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Britain Launches First Anti-IS Strikes in Iraq as U.S. Wages '20 Raids in 24 Hours'

British fighter jets on Tuesday bombed an artillery post and an armed truck used by the Islamic State group in Iraq in the Royal Air Force's first strikes in the U.S.-led air campaign.

The defense ministry said two Tornado jets hit the post with a Brimstone missile used against tanks and the vehicle with a 500-pound (230 kilogram) Paveway IV laser-guided bomb.

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IS Frees 70 Abducted Kurdish Children in Syria

The Islamic State jihadist group on Tuesday freed more than 70 Kurdish school children its fighters kidnapped in northern Syria in May, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

The Britain-based group said parents had reported the release of the children, who are believed to be aged between 13 and 15.

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U.N. Food Aid Running Out for Syria

Food aid to millions of Syrians will be cut within the next two months unless fresh funding is received for the humanitarian effort, the top U.N. aid official warned Tuesday.

Last month, the U.N. World Food Program provided food to 4.1 million Syrians but rations have been reduced to reach as many people as possible, U.N. humanitarian aid chef Valerie Amos told the U.N. Security Council.

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Assad Says 'Terror Backers' Can't Defeat Jihadists

Extremists cannot be defeated by countries that have "spread terrorism," Syria's President Bashar Assad said Tuesday in an apparent jab at members of the U.S.-led anti-jihadist coalition.

Speaking during a meeting with a senior Iranian official in Damascus, the Syrian leader took aim at countries he said backed "terrorists," a term his regime uses for all those seeking his ouster.

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Israeli Settlers Take over 25 Homes in E.Jerusalem

Israeli settlers forcefully took over 25 apartments in Arab east Jerusalem Tuesday, residents and Palestinian leaders said, with the new occupants claiming they had legitimately bought the properties.

The incident led to clashes between Arab residents and Jewish settlers in the Silwan neighborhood, which is right outside Jerusalem's Old City, near the flashpoint al-Aqsa mosque compound.

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Palestinian Official Likens Netanyahu to IS Leader

A senior Palestinian official on Tuesday likened Benjamin Netanyahu to the leader of the Islamic State group, after the Israeli prime minister compared Hamas to the jihadist organization.

"Netanyahu is trying to disseminate fear of the Islamic State led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, but Netanyahu forgets that he himself leads the Jewish state," said Saeb Erakat, the Palestinians' chief negotiator in peace talks with Israel.

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Egypt Court Jails 68 Pro-Morsi Protesters

An Egyptian court sentenced 68 people to up to 15 years in prison Tuesday over protest clashes, in the latest mass sentencing of supporters of ousted Islamist president Mohammed Morsi.

They were accused of taking part in street violence in October 2013 in which more than 50 demonstrators were shot dead in Cairo during clashes with police.

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Saudi Policeman Shot in Shiite Village

Gunmen have opened fire on a Saudi checkpoint in a Shiite village in the Gulf state's oil-rich Eastern Province, wounding a policeman, police said on Tuesday.

The attack in Awamiya came at around midnight on Monday, state news agency SPA cited the province's police spokesman as saying.

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Ben Ali Stalwarts among Tunisia Presidential Hopefuls

Twenty-seven candidates including officials who served under former dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali have signed up as candidates for Tunisia's November 23 presidential election, the organizing body said Tuesday.

No fewer than 70 people originally filed applications to the Isie, which is organizing the first presidential election since the January 2011 revolt forced Ben Ali to flee.

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Workers Dig out Dead after Syria Regime Strike on Aleppo

At least eight people were killed on Tuesday, among them four children, when Syrian regime helicopters dropped explosives-packed barrel bombs on a district of northern Aleppo, a monitoring group said.

The attack between the neighborhoods of Sakhur and Sheikh Khodr caused widespread damage, leveling several buildings and shearing the facades off others.

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