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Head of Taliban's Qatar Office Quits as Leadership Rift Deepens

The head of the Taliban's Qatar-based political office has stepped down, a statement said, a high-profile resignation within leadership ranks highlighting growing discord over the movement's recent power transition.

Mullah Akhtar Mansour was announced as the new Taliban chief on Friday after the insurgents confirmed the death of Mullah Omar, who led the militant movement for some 20 years.

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Report: Ferguson Cop who Killed Black Teen Speaks out

The white former Ferguson police officer who shot dead an 18-year-old unarmed black teenager has given his first published comments since the controversial shooting that reignited a discussion about race in America.

Twenty-nine-year-old Darren Wilson spoke with New Yorker magazine from St. Louis, Missouri, where he is laying low after the uproar triggered by his shooting of Michael Brown on August 9, 2014.

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Turkish Raids Raise Iraqi Kurdish Leadership Stakes

Turkey's air strikes in Iraqi Kurdistan have increased the pressure on regional president Massud Barzani, who is a key player in the U.S.-led anti-jihadist war but faces an uncertain political future.

Barzani, the 68-year-old leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), has been at the helm of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region for 10 years.

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IOM: Mediterranean Migrant Deaths in 2015 Pass 2,000

More than 2,000 people have died so far this year trying to make the perilous journey across the Mediterranean to Europe, the International Organization for Migration said Tuesday, making it the world's most dangerous migrant route.

"Unfortunately, we have now reached a milestone whereby over 2,000 migrants and refugees have died as of this past weekend," IOM spokesman Itayi Virri told reporters in Geneva.

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Japan Says Temporarily Halting Work on New U.S. Base in Okinawa

Tokyo said Tuesday it would temporarily halt work on a controversial new U.S. military base in southern Okinawa as talks continue with local officials opposed to the project.

The one-month delay comes as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is seeing his popularity plunge, largely owing to his efforts to expand the role of pacifist Japan's military.

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South China Sea Tensions Flare at Asia Security Talks

Southeast Asian diplomats said Tuesday that China's controversial island-building drive is raising regional tensions, with the Philippines slamming its "unilateral and aggressive activities".

The U.S. and some Southeast Asian states have watched with growing alarm as Beijing expands tiny reefs in the South China Sea, topping some with military posts to reinforce its disputed claims over the strategic waters and fanning fears of future conflict.

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Fires Spread as Thousands Battle Blazes across California

More than 9,000 firefighters are battling to contain nearly two dozen wildfires in California that have forced thousands to flee their homes and burned large swathes of land.

The crews are working to dampen 21 blazes, according to an update from California's forest fire department late Monday night, with new outbreaks reported since Monday.

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Three Children among Four Killed in Macedonia Storm

A storm in northwestern Macedonia left at least four people dead, including three children, and injured 16 others, government said Tuesday.

The torrential rain and strong winds that swept Tetovo town late Monday uprooted trees and caused flooding.

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Dozens Injured after Blast in German WWII Bunker

A fire and an explosion in a World War II-era bunker injured at least 38 people early Tuesday in the northern German port city of Hamburg.

Firefighters said they would try to douse the blaze with foam to prevent the ignition of about 100 tons of essential oils stored in the bunker which also houses a carpentry workshop.

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At Least 180 Dead, a Million Displaced in India Floods

Floods from days of torrential rain have now claimed at least 180 lives in India with one million people sheltering in relief camps after fleeing surging waters, officials said Tuesday.

Rivers have burst their banks, hitting thousands of villages in parts of West Bengal as well as northeastern Manipur state, where roads and bridges have been cut and communications were patchy.

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