Middle East

  • West pushes U.N. Syria vote, despite Russian criticism
    2012-04-13 19:09:59 UTC

    UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Western powers brushed aside Russian criticism of a U.S.-drafted Security Council resolution authorizing an advance team of U.N. observers to monitor Syria's fragile ceasefire and said they hoped to put it to a vote on Friday. The U.N. missions of Britain, France and Germany said on their Twitter feeds tha...
  • UN team ready for Syria deployment
    2012-04-13 17:32:55 UTC

    A United Nations team of 30 unarmed military observers is ready to deploy to Syria to begin a monitoring mission as soon as the Security Council approves its mission, which may be as soon as Friday, a spokesman for special envoy Kofi Annan has said. The team is "standing by" to begin overseeing a tenuous but apparently stable ceasef...
  • Yemen army clashes with Islamists, 34 killed
    2012-04-13 16:30:56 UTC

    ADEN (Reuters) - At least 34 people, mostly Islamist militants, were killed near the southern Yemeni city of Lawdar on Friday in clashes between government forces and an al-Qaeda linked group, official and tribal sources said. Yemen's military launched an offensive five days ago against Islamic insurgents who attacked a military cam...
  • Iran, powers set for high-stakes nuclear talks
    2012-04-13 19:19:28 UTC

    ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Iran and six world powers prepared on Friday for rare talks aimed at easing fears that a deepening dispute over the Islamic Republic's nuclear program could plunge the Middle East into a new war. Senior officials from Iran and the big powers arrived in Istanbul ahead of Saturday's talks which are aimed at restar...
  • U.N. could approve Syria monitors Friday, envoys say
    2012-04-12 17:41:02 UTC

    UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The U.N. Security Council could approve on Friday a resolution to send unarmed U.N. observers to Syria to monitor a fragile ceasefire in the 13-month conflict that has brought the country to the brink of civil war, diplomats said. U.N. Arab League peace envoy Kofi Annan has called for 200 to 250 unarmed U....
  • Nuclear talks aim to ease fears of Iran war
    2012-04-12 17:17:51 UTC

    ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Major powers will hold their first talks with Iran this week in more than a year, hoping Tehran will give enough ground on its nuclear program to extend negotiations and avert the threat of a Middle East war. Israel has hinted at military action against Iran, arguing time is running out to stop it developing ato...
  • Syria truce takes shaky hold, Annan presses Syria
    2012-04-12 16:47:01 UTC

    BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian troops held their fire on Thursday after a U.N.-backed ceasefire deadline passed, giving respite to rebellious towns that have suffered heavy bombardments, but international envoy Kofi Annan pressed Damascus to pull its forces back entirely. "Syria is apparently experiencing a rare moment of calm on the gro...
  • Afghanistan's Karzai considers change in election timetable
    2012-04-12 16:32:03 UTC

    KABUL (Reuters) - Afghan President Hamid Karzai said on Thursday he was considering changes to either the 2014 timetable for a presidential election or the transition of security to Afghan forces that year to avoid overburdening the country. Fear is mounting among Afghans and foreign governments alike that the planned pullout of mos...
  • Iran offers Asia oil buyers easier credit terms: FT
    2012-04-12 04:35:03 UTC

    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Iran is offering Asian oil buyers, including India, easier credit terms to lure more business and counteract tough Western sanctions aimed at restricting the OPEC member's principal export, the Financial Times reported on Thursday. Tehran has been offering a handful of potential customers in Asia 180 days of fr...
  • Syria truce deadline passes, no reported violence
    2012-04-12 04:30:12 UTC

    BEIRUT (Reuters) - The deadline for a U.N.-backed ceasefire aimed at halting more than a year of violence in Syria passed on Thursday with no immediate reports of fighting, activists said. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported the sound of explosions in the town of Zabadani, close to the border with Lebanon, shortly after...
  • U.S. dismisses credibility of Syria ceasefire pledge
    2012-04-11 21:56:14 UTC

    UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United States dismissed Syria's new pledge to halt all fighting by dawn on Thursday, saying it holds "little if any credibility" and that caveats placed by President Bashar al-Assad's government on the ceasefire are worrying. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said the commitment - made b...
  • Analysis: Egypt's Brotherhood raises stakes by excluding IMF
    2012-04-11 19:12:29 UTC

    CAIRO (Reuters) - In all but ruling out an early agreement on an IMF loan, Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has dramatically raised the stakes in its struggle with the army-led administration for control of a country still reeling from a year of political turmoil. The Brotherhood's candidate for president, Khairat al-Shater, said this wee...
  • Afghan elite raiders say they are U.S. equals
    2012-04-11 16:32:46 UTC

    KABUL (Reuters) - It's a special-forces entry like no other and guaranteed to spoil the element of surprise, but Afghanistan's new elite soldiers insist they will be no less effective in countering insurgents than controversial night raids by U.S. forces. Under cover of darkness, Afghan soldiers will surround the homes of suspected ...
  • Syrian army moves into Hama, shells Rastan - activists
    2012-04-11 16:09:13 UTC

    BEIRUT (Reuters) - The Syrian army moved tanks into the centre of the city of Hama on Wednesday and also began shelling the town of Rastan, activists in Hama and Rastan said. "At least 20 tanks are moving into the neighborhoods of Dabagha and Mugayly in the centre of Hama city," an activist in Hama told Reuters. From Rastan, on t...
  • Syria pledges truce, if rebels hold fire
    2012-04-11 16:01:59 UTC

    BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syria promised to observe a U.N.-backed ceasefire starting on Thursday, but its forces kept up fierce attacks on opposition neighborhoods in the hours before the deadline. A Syrian defense ministry source quoted on state television on Wednesday said the army would halt operations on Thursday morning, but would con...
  • Annan says Syria promises to respect ceasefire
    2012-04-11 07:30:31 UTC

    DUBAI (Reuters) - United Nations-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan said on Wednesday the Syrian government had assured him it will respect a ceasefire with rebel forces, less than 24 hours before a deadline to suspend hostilities. "I have received government assurances they will respect the ceasefire. If everyone respects it I think by 6...
  • Annan urges U.N. council to push for Syria truce by Thursday
    2012-04-11 06:10:34 UTC

    UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan appealed to the U.N. Security Council on Tuesday to help prevent the collapse of his efforts to end Syria's year-long conflict, after Damascus ignored a deadline to withdraw troops and stop shelling Syrian towns. Several Western diplomats complained privately that Damascus...
  • US and Iran join fight against Islamist in Iraq
    2014-06-14 00:56:23 UTC

    The United States and Iran are moving rapidly to defend Iraq from rampaging Sunni Islamist insurgents, with Washington urgently considering air strikes on the jihadi militants and Tehran dispatching its foremost powerbroker to help arrange the defence of Baghdad. Senior US officials told the Guardian that an air campaign was under s...
  • Sanctions may cut Iran's oil output by 15 percent: U.S.
    2012-04-10 20:37:15 UTC

    (Reuters) - Iran's oil production could fall almost 15 percent this year due to reduced foreign investment, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Tuesday in a report highlighting the growing strain on Tehran's oil sector even before factoring in the effect of new sanctions. Iran's production could fall about 500,0...
  • Iran joins Brazil, Russia in 2018 World Cup
    2017-06-12 20:24:49 UTC

    <blockquote>TEHRAN — It's celebration time for Iranian football fans worldwide! Team Melli secure qualification to Russia 2018 with a 2-0 victory over Uzbekistan. Sardar Azmoun and Mehdi Taremi with the goals for Carlos Queiroz's side at the Azadi Stadium in Tehran. <hr> <img alt="Full-time-_iran_2-0_uzbekistan" src="/system/images/2...
  • Iran cuts oil to Spain ahead of nuclear talks
    2012-04-10 20:34:28 UTC

    DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran has cut oil exports to Spain and may halt sales to Germany and Italy, Iran's English-language state television reported on Tuesday, in an apparent move to strengthen its position ahead of crucial talks with world powers later this week. Iran has played a tit-for-tat game over crude shipments since the European...
  • Islamists fight army in central, south Yemen, 21 killed
    2012-04-10 18:39:33 UTC

    SANAA (Reuters) - At least 21 people were killed in Yemen on Tuesday in renewed fighting between troops and al Qaeda-linked militants in the southern city of Lawdar and a militant attack on a checkpoint in central Maarib province, officials and residents said. Eight soldiers and five militants were killed and four soldiers wounded w...
  • Syrian troops on offensive on deadline day
    2012-04-10 01:15:40 UTC

    BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian troops shelled villages, fired across frontiers and were accused of massacres in the hours before a deadline on Tuesday that many doubt can usher in a U.N.-brokered ceasefire and halt a 13-month slide into all-out civil war. Diplomats trying to contain a crisis that has inflamed the Middle East and pitched ...
  • Iraqi government demands Kurdistan to hand over control of airports
    2017-09-26 17:52:59 UTC

    BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The Iraqi government gave the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) until Friday 3:00 p.m (1200 GMT) to hand over control of its airports in order to avoid an international air embargo, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said, according to state TV. The measure is meant as a retaliation against the independence referen...
  • U.S. dismisses Syrian demand for written guarantees
    2012-04-09 19:19:26 UTC

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States on Monday dismissed Syrian demands for written guarantees that rebels would lay down arms as a stalling tactic and voiced outrage at reports Syria attacked refugees inside Turkey. Syria was to have started pulling troops out of towns and cities by Tuesday, paving the way for a ceasefire under...