Official: Palestinian operatives helped free Syria hostages
Middle East / National / Politics

Official: Palestinian operatives helped free Syria hostages

JERUSALEM (AP) — A top Palestinian intelligence official provided first details Sunday of the release of two Swedish hostages held in Syria for 17 months, saying the captors drove them to a pre-arranged drop-off point, pushed them out of the car and sped off. The abductors from the militant, al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front in Syria were … Continue reading

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Report: Journalists face deadliest time ‘in recent history’
Middle East

Report: Journalists face deadliest time ‘in recent history’

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Extremist groups and the governments that restrict liberties to combat those militants have created “the most deadly and dangerous period for journalists in recent history,” according to a new report released Monday. The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists’ annual report on press freedom is a collection of essays that spotlight … Continue reading

Sudan’s al-Bashir re-elected with 94 percent of vote
Middle East

Sudan’s al-Bashir re-elected with 94 percent of vote

  KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) — Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir won re-election with 94 percent of the vote, according to official results announced Monday, extending his 25-year rule despite international war crimes charges and multiple insurgencies. The head of the Election Commission, Mokhtar al-Assam, announced the results to reporters. He said turnout was 46.4 percent, insisting … Continue reading

Amnesty says Bahrain reforms don’t end rights violations
Middle East

Amnesty says Bahrain reforms don’t end rights violations

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Government reforms put in place by Bahraini authorities in the wake of widespread anti-government protests four years ago have failed to end serious violations of human rights in the strategically important Gulf nation, Amnesty International said in a report released Thursday. The 79-page report documents what the London-based group … Continue reading

Obama’s quest for Iran deal set to collide with Capitol Hill
Middle East

Obama’s quest for Iran deal set to collide with Capitol Hill

WASHINGTON (AP) — After securing a surprisingly broad and detailed framework for a nuclear agreement with Iran, President Barack Obama must now subject his signature foreign policy pursuit to the gauntlet of partisan American politics. A blueprint finalized Thursday after marathon negotiations in Switzerland did little to ease the standoff between Obama and some lawmakers … Continue reading