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Navy SEAL killed in combat in Iraq, U.S. officials say
Tue, 3 May 2016 17:29:00 PDT

An Islamic State offensive in northern Iraq repeatedly broke through Kurdish lines with truck bombs and mortar fire early Tuesday, killing a Navy SEAL two or three miles behind the front lines, U.S. officials said.

As the militants attacked several towns, the U.S. Air Force scrambled F-15 fighter...

100 million Brazilians lose WhatsApp after a judge orders a 72-hour shutdown
Mon, 2 May 2016 18:32:00 PDT

A judge in Brazil has ordered mobile phone providers to block the wildly popular WhatsApp messaging application for 72 hours, a decision apparently aimed at forcing the service to turn over user data.

Roughly half of Brazil's 200 million people use WhatsApp, which is owned by Facebook.

The judge,...

Israeli justice minister proposes controversial West Bank settlement legislation
Mon, 2 May 2016 15:18:00 PDT

The Israeli justice minister has said she wants to extend civil laws to Jewish settlements in the West Bank, a move that critics say would put the country at odds with the international community.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked told a forum of right-wing lawyers she's pushing a policy that would...

Trapped for decades in a byzantine border dispute, these Indians are voting for the first time
Mon, 2 May 2016 11:50:00 PDT

At age 65, Tahalu Raiburman is preparing to vote for the first time. "I feel I am worth something," the stooped, bare-bodied man said with a grin, deepening his wrinkles.

Until last year, Tahalu was in an unusual position: He lived in one of 51 enclaves that belonged to India but were located just...

It's getting more and more dangerous to criticize the Turkish government
Mon, 2 May 2016 07:23:00 PDT

Turkish journalist Erdem Gul was locked up in a high-security prison for 92 days, nearly half of those in solitary confinement. But looking back on it, he allowed himself a wry smile, eyes crinkling at the corners. "For the sake of journalism, it was actually quite beneficial," he says. There was...

For Hindus far from home, online religious services can be a valued connection
Mon, 2 May 2016 03:00:00 PDT

Four Hindu priests sat cross-legged on the floor in front of silver trays of rice, flowers and vermillion powder, chanting in low baritones that reverberated off the bare walls of the old brick temple.

An iPhone propped on a chair captured the service — known as a puja — and beamed it via Skype...

As Russian planes bombard Syrian rebels, debate over anti-aircraft missiles returns
Sun, 1 May 2016 14:32:00 PDT

It has been a difficult month for the Syrian air force and its Russian allies. In April alone, rebel forces claimed to bring down three aircraft: two Syrian jets and one Russian helicopter. Each incident sparked a frenzy of speculation  about whether the opposition had obtained anti-aircraft missiles...

China's bold gambit to cement trade with Europe--along the ancient Silk Road
Sun, 1 May 2016 04:00:00 PDT

From his office on a bend of the Rhine River, freight terminal boss Bernd Putens can see — and hear — the early stirrings of what China calls the New Silk Road.

The clang-clang of forklifts echoes through his building as 42 containers of cargo are unloaded at the Duisburg Intermodal Terminal, part...

New shipwreck off Taiwan is a must-see for many tourists
Sun, 1 May 2016 03:30:00 PDT

It was a terrifying scene: Last month, a massive container ship lost power in a storm shortly after leaving port in Taiwan and ran into a reef, splitting the ship in half.

After helicopters rescued the 21 crew members, the ship's fuel began leaking into a national scenic area, raising the specter...

Clinton insists she hasn't changed her position on 2009 Honduras coup
Sun, 1 May 2016 03:00:00 PDT

Seven years ago, in the middle of the night, soldiers burst into the bedroom of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya. Still in his pajamas, the president was forced at gunpoint onto a waiting jet and flown to exile.Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was among many officials around the world who...

The Donald Trump of Asia? Brash, unrepentant mayor leads Philippine presidential race
Sun, 1 May 2016 00:00:00 PDT

Gina Lopez is hardly the kind of person you'd expect to support a presidential candidate who has endorsed vigilante death squads, made disturbing comments about rape, and vowed to kill his own kids if they ever took drugs.

As head of a prominent nonprofit focused on child welfare, education and...

Despite Syrian truce, Aleppo residents live in 'state of terror'
Sat, 30 Apr 2016 19:43:00 PDT

How much fighting has to take place before a shaky truce in Syria is declared to have broken down?

A "system of calm" announced by the Syrian military may have restored a semblance of normality in some parts of the country Saturday, but in the divided city of Aleppo, residents described a "state...

Hindu tailor hacked to death in Bangladesh
Sat, 30 Apr 2016 16:16:00 PDT

A Hindu tailor was hacked to death Saturday in central Bangladesh, police said, an attack that was similar to other recent slayings in the Muslim-majority nation.

Police suspect that Nikhil Joardar, 50, may have been targeted because of a 2012 complaint that he had made derogatory comments about...

Japan doesn't want the U.S. to apologize for bombing Hiroshima. Here's why
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 13:59:00 PDT

For years, the question has lingered: Should the U.S. apologize for dropping the atomic bomb on Hiroshima?

The opportunity could present itself if President Obama visits the city while attending the G7 Summit in Japan next month. No sitting U.S. president has visited the city since it was largely...

Pentagon modifies training and targeting after deadly U.S. attack on hospital
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 13:36:00 PDT

A Pentagon investigation into a deadly U.S. airstrike at a Doctors Without Borders hospital in northern Afghanistan last fall has led to modifications in training and targeting procedures, officials said Friday.

Gen. Joseph Votel, head of U.S. Central Command, told a Pentagon news conference that...

An islet the size of your bedroom has Japan and Taiwan fighting
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 10:03:00 PDT

Normally close allies Japan and Taiwan are locked in a dispute over fishing rights off a small rocky outcropping in the Pacific Ocean, a rare disagreement that is being cast as a final foreign policy test for Taiwan's outgoing president.

The Foreign Ministry in Taipei says Japan had no reason to...

Joe Biden is spending his last year in office trying to help cure the disease that killed his son
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 07:10:00 PDT

A few months after Vice President Joe Biden's eldest son died of an aggressive form of brain cancer, he traveled to Philadelphia to see off Pope Francis after his first U.S. visit.

Before he took off, the pope privately met, and mourned,  with Biden and his extended family.

"I wish every grieving...

A growing political force in Hong Kong: the localists
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 03:00:00 PDT

Hong Kong has been rocked by a new generation of activists who stake their future in the former British colony turned semiautonomous Chinese territory.

Known as the localists, the activists bristle at Beijing's meddling and what they see as their government prioritizing Communist Chinese Party...

Urban population growth and demand for food could spark global unrest, study shows
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 03:00:00 PDT

A population explosion in urban centers around the world is expected to fuel an unprecedented demand for food that — if not met  — could trigger economic upheaval and civil unrest on a global scale, according to a study published by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

"Growing Food for Growing...

North Korea sentences American to 10 years of hard labor on spying charges
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 02:13:00 PDT

North Korea's Supreme Court on Friday sentenced a 62-year-old Korean American, Tong Chul Kim, to 10 years of hard labor after finding him guilty of trying to overthrow the government and spying for South Korea, the North's  state-run news agency said.

Kim "confessed to all crimes he had committed,"...

Senate finally confirms new U.S. ambassador to Mexico
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 18:10:00 PDT

Ending a long standoff mired in presidential campaign politics, the Senate moved Thursday to   confirm veteran diplomat Roberta Jacobson as U.S. ambassador to Mexico, filling a crucial diplomatic post that has been vacant for nine months.

Jacobson, assistant secretary of State for Western Hemispheric...

Pentagon disciplines 16 for deadly attack on Doctors Without Borders hospital in Afghanistan
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 15:10:00 PDT

The Pentagon has disciplined 16 service members for mistakes that led to the deadly airstrike on a Doctors Without Borders hospital in northern Afghanistan last fall, but no one will face criminal charges, The Times has learned.

One officer was suspended from command and ordered out of Afghanistan....

Biden makes unannounced visit to Iraq to help shore up wobbly government
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 14:19:00 PDT

Vice President Joe Biden used a surprise visit to Iraq on Thursday to try to hasten efforts to quell a  political rebellion that threatens to undercut the Obama administration's counterterrorism efforts here.

On his first visit to the country in five years and perhaps his last while in office, Biden...

Airstrike on Aleppo hospital kills last pediatrician in Syria's largest city
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 13:29:00 PDT

An airstrike killed at least 14 people at a hospital in Aleppo on Wednesday night, including the last pediatric physician in Syria's  largest city, according to the medical charitable organization Doctors Without Borders.

The al-Quds hospital, which Doctors Without Borders supports,  was reduced...

Why the world's biggest exporter of crude is trying to wean itself off oil
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 12:54:00 PDT

It would be hard to exaggerate the importance of oil in Saudi Arabia. So when an influential young prince started talking this year about selling shares in the state-owned oil company and weaning the economy off its dependence on petrodollars, many were skeptical both inside and outside the conservative...

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