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Troops on Washington Streets to Begin Carrying Arms

National Guard troops deployed on the streets of Washington began carry weapons late Tuesday in a major change of posture ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration as US president, according to an AFP photographer.

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U.S. Tells Sudan to 'Step Up' as It Weighs Cuts to Darfur Force

The United States has told Sudan that it would support a drawdown of the huge peacekeeping mission in Darfur if Khartoum shows that it can protect citizens in the war-scarred region.

The United Nations and the African Union have ordered a review of the joint peace mission in Darfur, known as UNAMID, which was deployed 10 years ago and costs $1 billion a year.

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Venezuela, U.S. Clash over Political Prisoners

Venezuela and the United States locked horns again over political prisoners held by Caracas, including a jailed opposition leader whose supporters took to the streets of the capital Saturday to demand his release.

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Putin for 'Restoring Dialogue' between Russia, US Intel

President Vladimir Putin on Thursday called for Russian intelligence agencies to bolster ties with their US counterparts in the fight against terrorism.

"Restoring dialogue with the special services of the United States and other NATO members is in our mutual interest," Putin told the country's FSB intelligence agency in a televised speech. 

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Iran Warns US Not to 'Create New Tensions' over Missiles

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Tuesday warned the United States against "creating new tensions" with Tehran over ballistic missiles tests.

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Iraq Calls on U.S. to Review 'Wrong' Travel Ban as Parliament Urges Tit-for-Tat Move

Baghdad called Monday for the United States to review its "wrong decision" to prevent Iraqis from entering the country as parliament backed reciprocal restrictions if Washington does not change course.

The responses from Baghdad are part of a growing backlash against President Donald Trump's executive order barring citizens of Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen from entering the U.S. for at least 90 days, a decision he billed as an effort to make America safe from "radical Islamic terrorists."

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U.S. Cancels Weapons Transfers to Saudi over Yemen Campaign

The White House has blocked the transfer of precision munitions to ally Saudi Arabia, amid anger about the civilian death toll from the kingdom's bombing campaign in Yemen.

"We have made clear that US security cooperation is not a blank check," a senior administration official told AFP, voicing concerns about how Riyadh is prosecuting its war against Iranian-backed Huthi rebels.

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US Slams Israeli Bill to Legalize Wildcat Settlements

The United States on Monday condemned Israel's "unprecedented and troubling" step toward legalizing unauthorized Jewish settlements on occupied Palestinian land.

Israeli ministers on Sunday approved draft legislation that would retroactively grant legal status to wildcat settlements across the West Bank in defiance of international law.

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Erdogan Proposes Syria 'No-Fly Zone' to U.S., Russia

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Monday he proposed, to the U.S. and Russia, the setting up of a no-fly zone in northern Syria, after Ankara-backed fighters pushed the Islamic State group from the border area. 

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Failed Turkey Coup Attempt Poisons Relations with U.S.

The failed coup attempt in Turkey and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's firm crackdown on the alleged plotters have aggravated ties between Washington and Ankara, already poisoned by the war in Syria and human rights issues.

Although they are NATO allies and officially partners in the fight against the Islamic State group, the United States and Turkey have seen their relations take an icy turn in recent months.

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