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Russia, Turkey, Iran Hold Syria Summit, Welcome U.S. Pullout

The leaders of Russia, Turkey and Iran hailed the planned U.S. withdrawal from Syria as they met for talks Thursday on how to work more closely together in the country's long-running conflict.

Hosting his Turkish and Iranian counterparts in the southern city of Sochi, President Vladimir Putin said the three welcomed the expected U.S. pull-out from northeastern Syria.

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Saudi Crown Prince to Visit Indonesia Next Week

Indonesia will host Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for a state visit next week, Jakarta said Thursday, part of an Asian tour that includes stops in Pakistan, India and Malaysia.

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Minister Says Britain Will 'Do What It Takes' to Beat IS

Britain is ready to do "all that is required" to neutralize the threat from the Islamic State group, defense minister Gavin Williamson said Wednesday, after the U.S. suggested creating a new international mission in northeast Syria.

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Iran's Zarif Says Warsaw Meeting 'Dead on Arrival'

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Wednesday that a two-day conference being co-hosted by Washington in Warsaw on Iran and the Middle East was "dead on arrival."

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IS Defend Last Syria Redoubt, as Family Members Flee

Jihadist fighters made a desperate last stand in eastern Syria on Wednesday, while their wives and children fled the final, blood-soaked implosion of their "caliphate".

The Syrian Democratic Forces on Saturday launched a final push to expel IS fighters from the sole remaining morsel of the proto-state they declared in 2014 across Syria and Iraq.

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Brussels Proposes Adding Saudi Arabia to EU Money Laundering Blacklist

The European Commission on Wednesday proposed adding seven countries including Saudi Arabia to the EU's money-laundering blacklist of governments that do too little to thwart the financing of terrorism and organized crime.

The move comes as tensions between Riyadh and European capitals are heightened over the murder last year of the columnist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

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Cash Strapped Pakistan to Host Saudi Crown Prince

Pakistan is preparing to welcome Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for a state visit over the weekend, the foreign ministry confirmed Wednesday, as Islamabad hopes to sign various investment deals to prop up its slumping economy.

The two-day visit will kick off on February 16 and include a raft of high-level talks with Prime Minister Imran Khan along with Pakistan's military chief.

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U.S., Israeli Leaders in Poland to Press Iran

U.S. and Israeli leaders gathered Wednesday in Warsaw for a conference they hope will pile pressure on Iran, as Britain held out hope for progress on Yemen's humanitarian crisis.

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Israeli Leader Hopes Summit Brings Arab Ties Out in the Open

The Mideast conference in Poland starting Wednesday offers Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu an opportunity to flaunt in public what he has long boasted about happening behind the scenes — his country's improved relations with Arab nations.

Several Gulf dignitaries are expected to attend in a potential show of force against uninvited Iran. But the Palestinians are urging a boycott of the conference, and it remains to be seen whether Arab officials will make any public overtures to Netanyahu without a major concession to the Palestinian cause, which still animates the Arab public.

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Tajikistan Seeks Repatriation of 75 Children from Iraq

Tajikistan's foreign minister said on Tuesday he hoped Iraq will return at least 75 children after their mothers, jailed over links to the Islamic State group, agreed to their repatriation. 

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