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Syria: Everyone Else's Battleground, in Both War and Peace

As world leaders talk peace at the U.N. this week, the people of Idlib cling to fragile hope that diplomacy will avert a blowout battle over Syria's last rebel stronghold.

Yet diplomacy hasn't served Syria well so far. Those same world powers trying to negotiate a peaceful outcome in Idlib have been using Syria as a proxy battleground for years.

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The Maldives, a Tourist Haven in Peril

The Indian Ocean island nation of the Maldives is famed as an upmarket tourist destination of white beaches and turquoise waters but is threatened by rising sea levels and endured stifling political control.

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Mandela: A Life of Soaring Symbolism, Now Harnessed by UN

Nelson Mandela's South African journey from anti-apartheid leader to prisoner to president to global statesman — the "Long Walk to Freedom" of his autobiography title — is one of the 20th century's great stories of struggle, sacrifice and reconciliation. Now the United Nations is seeking to harness its soaring symbolism.

The unveiling of a statue of Mandela, born 100 years ago, with arms outstretched at the U.N. building in New York on Monday opens a peace summit at the General Assembly, where world leaders will once again address the planet's pressing problems: war, poverty, disease, migration and climate change. They'll do so amid a massive security operation in a city where Mandela was welcomed by exultant crowds in 1990, a few months after he walked out of a South African jail, ending 27 years of imprisonment under the country's white minority government.

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Shinzo Abe: Shrewd Diplomat in For the Long Haul

Shinzo Abe comes from a long line of politicians but the hawkish nationalist is now poised to write his name into the record books as Japan's longest-serving premier.

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Six Key Points from the Pyongyang Summit

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and the South's President Moon Jae-in agreed a series of proposals Wednesday as they sought to deepen the ties between the two halves of the divided peninsula.

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Syria's Idlib: In Regime Sights for Months

A regime assault on the last rebel Syrian stronghold of Idlib has been expected for months, with forces massing in the area and volleys of Russian-backed strikes.

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Five Things about the North-South Summit in Pyongyang

Summits between North and South Korea are closely watched for both spectacular symbolism -- on grand display at the Panmunjom summit in April -- and smaller hints of meaning.

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Obama's Return: Good or Bad for Democrats?

Nearly two years out of the White House, former President Barack Obama is facing another political test.

To the delight of many Democrats, he's stepped back into the fray that former presidents often try to avoid, campaigning for Democratic candidates ahead of the midterms and blasting the political culture of the Trump era. He attracted a large, adoring crowd this past week in Ohio and will be in Pennsylvania on Friday campaigning for Democratic Sen. Bob Casey.

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Afghan Conflict Could Be Deadlier than Syria in 2018, Analysts Say

The Afghan conflict could overtake Syria as the deadliest conflict in the world this year, analysts say, as violence surges 17 years after the US-led invasion.

The grim assessment contrasts sharply with the consistently upbeat public view of the conflict from NATO's Resolute Support mission in Kabul, and underscores the growing sense of hopelessness in the war-torn country.

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Iran's Options to Face Down US Oil Sanctions

Iran faces a potentially crushing loss of oil exports when US sanctions return in November, but the impact could be blunted by its experience of working around embargoes.

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