Middle East
Latest stories
Haaretz: Merkel Berates Netanyahu in 'Tense' Call

German Chancellor Angela Merkel berated Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for failing to advance peace talks during a "tense" phone call, Israeli daily Haaretz reported on Friday.

Citing German sources, the newspaper said Merkel responded furiously when Netanyahu criticized Germany for supporting a Palestinian-drafted United Nations Security Council resolution against Israeli settlement construction.

W140 Full Story
Sarkozy Says Gadhafi Must Go, State Violence Can't Go Unpunished

Loyalists of Moammar Gadhafi killed several people in shooting that was spreading through Tripoli on Friday as French President Nicolas Sarkozy said the embattled Libyan leader "must go."

And as protesters against Gadhafi's iron-fisted four-decade rule braved deadly gunfire in several parts of the capital, opponents braced for a fightback by a regime that has suffered yet more defections.

W140 Full Story
Oil Climbs as Supply Fears Persist

World oil prices rose further on Friday as supply worries persisted due to escalating unrest in the oil-rich Middle East and North Africa, traders said.

Brent North Sea crude for delivery in April rose 76 cents to $112.12 per barrel, having rocketed the previous day to $119.79 -- the highest level since August 22, 2008 -- before sliding lower as many traders took profits.

W140 Full Story
Seven People Killed in Iraqi 'Day of Rage' Demonstrations

Protesters took to the streets across Iraq on Friday to mark a "Day of Rage,” with thousands flooding Baghdad's Tahrir Square as seven protesters died in clashes with police in two northern cities.

Protesters in the capital were forced to walk to the rally site as security forces imposed a vehicle ban, a day after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki claimed the demonstrations were being organized by al-Qaida insurgents and loyalists of deposed dictator Saddam Hussein.

W140 Full Story
Qaida No. 2 Accuses Copts of Inciting Interfaith Tensions

The deputy to Osama bin Laden issued al-Qaida's second message since the Egyptian uprising, accusing the nation's Christian leadership of inciting interfaith tensions and denying that the terror network was behind last month's bombing of a Coptic church in Alexandria that killed 21 and sparked protests.

The message Friday from Ayman al-Zawahri, the No. 2 leader of the terror network, comes amid renewed Muslim-Christian tension over the slaying of a Coptic priest and a dispute involving a monastery.

W140 Full Story
Israel: Images Show Syria Wanted Nuclear Weapons

New satellite images released by a U.S. research institute show Syria "tried to become a nuclear power," a senior Israeli defense official said on Friday.

Amos Gilad, director of political military affairs at the defense ministry, told army radio that the new images released by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) proved Syria was seeking nuclear weapons.

W140 Full Story
Iran Warships Dock in Syria, Israel Navy on High Alert

Two Iranian warships, the first to enter the Mediterranean from the Suez Canal since 1979, docked at the Syrian port of Latakia on Thursday, an Iranian diplomatic source told Agence France Presse in Damascus.

Israel has put its navy on high alert, denounced the ships' arrival in the region as an Iranian power play and branded their voyage "a provocation."

W140 Full Story
Gadhafi Accuses Protesters of Bin Laden Links, Says U.S. May Use 'Qaida Alibi' to Intervene

Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi on Thursday accused residents of Az-Zawiyah, a town west of the capital hit by fierce fighting between his forces and rebels, of being linked to Osama bin Laden, warning that the U.S. might intervene in Libya "under the alibi of combating al-Qaida."

In what was said to be a live audio feed on state television, Gadhafi also accused the protesters of being on drugs.

W140 Full Story
U.S. Think Tank Publishes Alleged Photos of Syrian Nuclear Site

Satellite photos published by a Washington think tank on Wednesday appear to show Syrian efforts to conceal a second suspected nuclear site allegedly linked to a reactor bombed by Israel in 2007.

The photos acquired by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) indicate Syria tried to cover up its nuclear activities after the air raid, and could lead the U.N. nuclear watchdog to step up demands for inspections.

W140 Full Story
49 Somalis Drown off Yemen Coast

Forty-nine Somali migrants drowned when their boat capsized during heavy winds in the Gulf of Aden off Yemen's southern coast, the Yemeni interior ministry said Thursday.

The migrants who were attempting to reach Yemen, "drowned off the coast of Bir Ali in the south ... when their boat capsized four nautical miles offshore" during a wind storm on Tuesday, a ministry statement said.

W140 Full Story