MINSK Belarussian President Aleksander Lukashenko has pardoned six jailed opposition figures, including Nikolai Statkevich who was imprisoned after running against him for the presidency in 2010, his administration said on Saturday. Lukashenko, who has been in power in the ex-Soviet republic since 1994 and is running for a fifth consecutive term in an election in October, had been motivated by humane principles, his press service said. Statkevich, 59, is the last to be released of about 10 politicians who were rounded up and detained after running against Lukashenko in an election in 2010 dubbed fraudulent by the West
MINSK Belarussian President Aleksander Lukashenko has pardoned six jailed opposition figures, including Nikolai Statkevich who was imprisoned after running against him for the presidency in 2010, his administration said on Saturday. Lukashenko, who has been in power in the ex-Soviet republic since 1994 and is running for a fifth consecutive term in an election in October, had been motivated by humane principles, his press service said
TEHRAN Britain reopened its embassy in Tehran on Sunday, a historic step in the thawing of relations between the Islamic state and Western powers, a Reuters witness said. British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond declared the embassy open and raised the Union Jack flag in the garden of the nineteenth-century residence in the Iranian capital that was stormed by protesters nearly four years ago. (Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; Writing by Paul Sandle; Editing by Andrew Heavens)
SAN SALVADOR Fourteen members of one of El Salvador's most powerful street gangs were killed in a prison on Saturday in what appeared to be an internal gang purge, authorities said. El Salvador has been racked by rising violence over the past year, with murders surging since the breakdown of a gang truce between the Barrio 18 group and their rivals, the Mara Salvatrucha
KABUL Three U.S. civilian contractors were among those killed by a car bomb that targeted their NATO convoy, the U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan said, making the attack that killed 12 people one of the most lethal to target U.S. citizens in recent years
JERUSALEM Israel's political leaders pushed to attack Iran at least three times in the past few years but had to back down on the advice of the military and due to concerns about its ally the United States, former defence minister Ehud Barak said. In interviews to his biographers aired late on Friday by Israel's Channel Two, Barak said he and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had wanted military operations against Iranian nuclear facilities in 2010, 2011 and 2012
GUATEMALA CITY Prosecutors sought to impeach Guatemalan President Otto Perez on Friday over a corruption scandal that led to the arrest of his former vice president, deepening a government crisis ahead of presidential elections next month.
BRASILIA Brazilian Vice President Michel Temer, a key ally of embattled President Dilma Rousseff, might end his role managing her unwieldy coalition in Congress but he is not planning to leave her government, members of his party said on Friday. "The vice president has not taken any decision on quitting the political liaison role," a spokesman for Temer told Reuters. Valor Econômico newspaper reported on Friday that the Brazilian Democratic Movement Party, or PMDB, which is Brazil's largest party and controls both houses of Congress, is preparing to leave Rousseff's government due to disagreements over handling an ongoing political crisis
PARIS Shots were fired on a Thalys high-speed train between Amsterdam and Paris and three people were injured, the Voix du Nord regional newspaper said on Friday. "The situation is under control, the travellers are safe. The train stopped and the emergency services are on site," the Thalys official Twitter account tweeted in response to several online requests for comments
ATLANTA Former U.S.
SYDNEY Australian authorities have detained seven young nationals as they were attempting to fly to the Middle East, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said on Thursday, over suspicions they wanted to join Islamist militant groups. "We have stopped at the airport, seven young Australians who were planning to travel to the Middle East it seems to join terrorist groups over there," Abbott told reporters in Canberra.
St. Louis police fatally shot a black teenager they say pointed a gun at them on Wednesday, drawing angry protesters and recalling the racial tensions sparked by the killing of an unarmed African-American teen in nearby Ferguson, Missouri, a year ago.
BERLIN A total of 60 lawmakers in German Chancellor Angela Merkel's 311-member conservative bloc voted against or abstained in a test ballot on Tuesday over a third bailout plan for Greece before the vote in parliament, participants told Reuters. In what was nevertheless an important endorsement for Merkel, the test ballot showed there may be far fewer rebels in Wednesday's vote from her bloc over the 86 billion-euro ($95 billion) package than feared.
BERLIN A total of 60 lawmakers in Chancellor Angela Merkel's 311-member conservative bloc voted against or abstained in a test ballot on Tuesday evening over a third bailout plan for Greece ahead of the vote in parliament on Wednesday, participants told Reuters. That indicated there were far fewer rebels from her conservative ranks opposing the 86-billion-euro ($95 billion) package than had been feared. The mass circulation Bild newspaper had reported that up to 120 conservative members of parliament might vote against the bailout package Greece agreed with its creditors, or abstain
BRUSSELS More than three times as many migrants were tracked entering the European Union by irregular means last month than a year ago, official data showed on Tuesday, many of them landing on Greek islands after fleeing conflict in Syria. While the increase recorded by the European Union's border control agency Frontex may be partly due to better monitoring, it highlighted the scale of a crisis that has led to more than 2,000 deaths this year as desperate migrants take to rickety boats. Italian police said they had arrested eight suspected human traffickers that they said had reportedly forced migrants to stay in the hold of a fishing boat in the Mediterranean as 49 of them suffocated on engine fumes.
WASHINGTON Hillary Clinton's private email server should be examined by the U.S. intelligence watchdog after the FBI finishes reviewing any classified information on it, a Republican lawmaker said on Sunday.
JAKARTA An aircraft with 54 people on board crashed in Indonesia's remote and mountainous region of Papua on Sunday, a government official said, the latest in a string of aviation disasters in the Southeast Asian nation. "The latest information is that the Trigana aircraft that lost contact has been found at Camp 3, Ok Bape district in the Bintang Mountains regency," Air Transportation Director General Suprasetyo told reporters. "Residents provided information that the aircraft crashed into Tangok mountain." There was no immediate word on whether anyone survived.
JAKARTA An Indonesian twin-turboprop aircraft carrying 54 people lost contact with air traffic control on Sunday in the remote, forested eastern Papua region, the National Search and Rescue Agency (BASARNAS) said, with search efforts hampered by failing light as night falls. "We can't confirm it has crashed. We can say contact has been lost with the plane," BASARNAS chief Bambang Soelystyo told Reuters by telephone.
BAGHDAD A spate of bombings across Baghdad killed at least 24 people on Saturday, two days after the deadliest attack in the Iraqi capital since Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi took office one year ago. The deadliest attack took place in the Shi'ite district of Habibiya, where 15 people were killed when a car bomb exploded near an open area where cars are displayed for sale. "The investigation, based on footage from a surveillance camera, showed a man parking a white car and sneaking into a nearby tea kiosk.
BEIRUT Lebanese authorities detained a hardline Sunni Islamist cleric wanted for attacks on the Lebanese army as he tried to flee the country on Saturday, security officials said. Sheikh Ahmed al-Assir, a Lebanese citizen, was arrested at Beirut airport as he tried to depart using a forged passport, the officials said. The National News Agency said he wanted to travel to Egypt