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Taliban Praise Continued U.S. Troop Withdrawal from Afghanistan

The Taliban welcomed the latest withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan with the insurgents' spokesman Saturday calling the continued reduction of American forces a "good advancement" even as fighting raged across the war-weary country. 

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Pompeo Pushes New Claim of China Covering Up Covid Origin

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo alleged Friday there were Covid-like illnesses among staff at a Chinese virology institute in autumn 2019, casting further blame on Beijing as health experts arrived in the country to probe the pandemic's origins.

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Trump to Leave Town Early Wednesday before Biden Inauguration

By the time Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th US president Wednesday, his scandal-tainted predecessor Donald Trump will already be far away, having helicoptered out of the White House a last time earlier that morning, an official said Friday.

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U.S. Carries Out Last Federal Execution of Trump Era

US authorities carried out the 13th and final federal execution of Donald Trump's presidency Saturday, media reports said, less than a week before the White House is taken over by Democrat Joe Biden, who opposes the death penalty.

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Bomb Kills Two Policemen in Afghan Capital

A roadside bomb targeting a police vehicle in the Afghan capital killed two policemen Saturday, officials said, as violence continues unabated in Afghanistan despite peace talks between the Taliban and government.

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Merkel Pushes for Centrist as Party Picks New Leader

Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative CDU party will elect a new leader on Saturday, in a key vote kicking off the race for Germany's top job as a deadly pandemic roils Europe's biggest economy.

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46 Pygmies Killed in Militia Attack in Eastern DR Congo

Forty-six Pygmies have been massacred in eastern DR Congo's Ituri province by the notorious Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) militia, local sources said on Friday.

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North Korea Shows Off New Submarine-launched Missile at Parade

Nuclear-armed North Korea unveiled a new submarine-launched ballistic missile at a military parade in Pyongyang, state media reported Friday, in a show of strength days before Joe Biden's inauguration as US president.

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Powerful Indonesia Quake Kills at Least 34, Topples Buildings

A powerful earthquake rocked Indonesia's Sulawesi island early Friday, killing at least 34 people, levelling a hospital and severely damaging other buildings, authorities said.

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U.S. Executes Drug Trafficker in Trump's Final Days in Office

US federal authorities executed a former drug trafficker who had contracted Covid-19 late Thursday, and a final execution of Donald Trump's administration was scheduled for Friday with just five days left of his presidency.

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