International

At least 14 dead in IS truck bomb at Baghdad checkpoint

BAGHDAD (AFP) - At least 14 people were killed when a suicide bomber detonated an explosives-rigged vehicle at an entrance to Baghdad, in an attack claimed by the Daesh group, officials said Thursday. The blast, which hit the checkpoint at the main southern entrance to the city on Wednesday night, also wounded at least 36 people, the officials said. Daesh issued a statement claiming the attack, saying it was carried out by a suicide bomber driving a truck "carrying several tonnes of explosive material." The militant group overran large areas north and west of Baghdad in 2014, but Iraqi forces…
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International

Number of Syrian refugees passes five million: UN

GENEVA (AFP) - The tally of refugees who have fled the war in Syria now exceeds five million, the United Nations said Thursday. "As the number of men, women and children fleeing six years of war in Syria passes the five million mark, the international community needs to do more to help them," the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said in a statement. The total of Syrian refugees abroad stood at million at the end of 2015 and rose to million by the end of last year, according to the agency’s data. The first three months of 2017 saw more than…
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International

India’s tallest flag at Wagah border fails to withstand wind

(Web Desk) – BBC reported on Wednesday that India’s tallest flag had become a disappointment for the country. The flag at India-Pakistan border was hoisted for the fourth time in one month as it couldn’t withstand the weather high up in the sky. The Indian tricolour flag was torn by the strong wind four times in the last month. A waving flag which is taken as the source of national pride had brought disappointment to the Indian authorities and the idea of having the tallest flag at archrival’s border didn’t bring any good. There was some criticism as well from…
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International

Meat removed from menu of India’s Aligarh Muslim University

– Hindu hardliners in India Uttar Pradesh state has found a new way to prevent Muslims from eating meat. After banning the slaughter houses, meat has been removed from the hostel menu of Aligarh Muslim University. Student union wrote a letter to the vice chancellor and complained that they are being served only vegetables and lentils from the past one week whereas meat has been removed from the list. The university administration has said that the ban is temporary due to the increase in prices of meat. BJP’s newly appointed UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath has initiated a crackdown against…
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International

Russia develops ‘unstoppable’ hypersonic cruise missile

MOSCOW (Web Desk) – Russia has developed the world’s dangerous hypersonic cruise missile which can destroy any aircraft with a single impact. The missile travels between 3,800mph and 4,600mph - five to six times the speed of sound. According to experts, the deadly Zircon missile is unstoppable and is capable of destroying the Royal navy’s most sophisticated fleet.
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International

Occupied Kashmir shuts down after Indian troops martyr four youth

SRINAGAR (Web Desk) - Complete shutdown is being observed in occupied Kashmir on Wednesday in Chadoora area of Budgam district. The troops had shot dead three youth Zahid Rashid, Saqib Ahmad and Ashfaq Ahmad on Tuesday after opening fire on demonstrators who had gathered at Chadoora to rescue some youth besieged by the troops. Over 30 people had sustained injuries in the troops’ firing on the protesters. Another youth was killed when Indian forces’ personnel blasted a house in the area. Call for the shutdown has been given by the joint resistance leadership comprising Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq…
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International

The Smuggling Game: Playing with life and death to reach Europe

BELGRADE, Serbia (Reuters) - In the dead of night, as wild animals howled nearby, Syrian migrant Aras Mahmoud clung to his children as they slept on damp grass in the Bulgarian mountains en route to Serbia, praying that his family would live another day. "In those mountains, you are not sure if something will eat you or attack you," said Mahmoud, 38, in Arabic through an interpreter at a migrant center in the Serbian capital Belgrade.
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International

Afghans plan to double special forces from 17,000 as threats grow

KABUL (Reuters) - Afghanistan plans to double the number of elite special forces from 17,000 troops, officials said, part of a long-term strategy to bolster units stretched and exhausted by persistent attacks from Taliban insurgents and other militants. Special forces, who represent a small fraction of the 300,000-strong armed forces, have been carrying out nearly 70 percent of the army’s offensive operations across the country, underlining Afghanistan’s heavy reliance on them. While regular forces, including police, are deployed largely to defend positions, special forces are taking the battle to militants from Kunduz in the north to Helmand in the south,…
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International

Bangladesh Bank heist was ‘state-sponsored’: U.S. official

DHAKA (Reuters)  -The heist of $81 million from the Bangladesh central bank’s account at the New York Federal Reserve last year was "state-sponsored," an FBI officer in the Philippines, who has been involved in the investigations, said on Wednesday. Lamont Siller, the legal attache at the embassy, did not elaborate but his comments in a speech in Manila are a strong signal that authorities in the United States are close to naming who carried out one of the world’s biggest cyber heists. Last week, officials in Washington, speaking on condition of anonymity, blamed North Korea. "We all know the Bangladesh…
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