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U.S.-backed forces in final push against Islamic State Raqqa

RAQQA, Syria (Reuters) – U.S.-backed militias battled foreign fighters defending the last pocket of Islamic State’s one-time Syrian capital of Raqqa on Monday, bringing their four-month offensive for the city to the brink of victory. A Reuters correspondent saw smoke rising above the city and heard mortar fire, but did not see air strikes while in Raqqa. A field commander ...

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After Somalia's deadliest bombing, a brother's desperate search

MOGADISHU (Reuters) – When Somalia’s deadliest truck bomb exploded on Saturday, Abdi Ali Ibrahim raced to the smoking crater just meters from where his beloved sister Asha had a small business selling fuel. The truck had detonated next to a fuel tanker causing a huge fireball and the road was strewn with body parts. Hopeful that Asha, a pregnant mother-of-two, ...

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North Korea warns states: Don't join any U.S. action and you're safe

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – North Korea warned countries at the United Nations on Monday in a statement: don’t join the United States in military action against the Asian state and you will be safe from retaliation. The caution was contained in a copy of North Korean Deputy U.N. Ambassador Kim In Ryong’s prepared remarks for a discussion on nuclear weapons ...

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Dispute over Venezuela vote could spark more unrest, sanctions

CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuela’s opposition refused on Monday to recognize a surprise win for the ruling socialists in weekend gubernatorial elections, raising the prospect of new protests and foreign sanctions against President Nicolas Maduro’s government. Maduro’s candidates took 17 governorships, versus five for the opposition, in Sunday’s nationwide poll, according to the pro-government electoral board. The socialists’ strong showing came ...

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Trump says he believes Cuba responsible for attacks that hurt U.S. diplomats

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump said on Monday that he believes Havana is responsible for a series of incidents that Washington thinks hurt at least 22 U.S. diplomats over a period of months in Cuba, prompting Washington to scale back its presence there. “I do believe Cuba is responsible,” Trump told reporters at an impromptu news conference in the ...

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Iraqi forces seize oil city Kirkuk from Kurds in bold advance

0SHARESShare BAGHDAD/KIRKUK, Iraq (Reuters) – Iraqi government forces captured the major Kurdish-held oil city of Kirkuk on Monday, responding to a Kurdish referendum on independence with a bold lightning strike that transforms the balance of power in the country. A convoy of armored vehicles from Iraq’s elite U.S.-trained Counter-Terrorism Force seized Kirkuk’s provincial government headquarters on Monday afternoon, less than ...

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Big drop in asylum seekers illegally crossing into Canada in September

0SHARESShare TORONTO (Reuters) – The number of asylum seekers walking across the U.S. border into Canada illegally dropped by more than two-thirds in September from August, government data showed on Monday, as officials seek to dispel myths around the country’s refugee system. The decline, to 1,881 from 5,712, brings the total number of border-crossers so far this year to 15,102 ...

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May, Juncker call for faster Brexit talks

0SHARESShare BRUSSELS (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Theresa May and European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker agreed over dinner in Brussels on Monday that the pace of negotiations over Britain’s departure from the European Union should be stepped up. A joint statement described a “constructive and friendly” two-hour meeting, during which they “reviewed the progress made in the Article 50 negotiations ...

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Trump Will ‘Decertify’ The Iran Deal, Punt The Issue To Congress

0SHARESShare WASHINGTON ― President Donald Trump will announce on Friday afternoon that he is decertifying the Iran nuclear agreement while simultaneously urging Congress not to kill the deal. Instead, he’ll call on Congress to revise a related law to alter U.S. commitments under the international agreement ― a move that could itself kill the accord. Trump’s plan follows a lengthy ...

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Puerto Rico Plans To Have The Lights Back On By December ― At The Earliest

0SHARESShare It’s been almost a month since Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico , knocking the island’s power grid entirely offline. And it will be at least another two months until most of the U.S. territory sees electric service restored. That’s according to Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló, who said Saturday the government hopes repairs will bring back electricity ...

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