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At least five dead from Monday's chemical plant blast in China - Xinhua
| Reuters
World

At least five dead from Monday's chemical plant blast in China - Xinhua | Reuters

SHANGHAI The death toll from an explosion at a chemical plant in China's Shandong province late on Monday has risen to five, state news agency Xinhua reported, as China still seeks answers to a far larger blast in the port city of Tianjin earlier last month. The latest blast happened close to midnight in a county roughly 275 km (170 miles) south of Tianjin, where explosions at a warehouse storing dangerous chemicals devastated an industrial park on Aug.

Greece's Syriza party only one point ahead in election race - poll 
| Reuters
World

Greece's Syriza party only one point ahead in election race - poll | Reuters

ATHENS Greece's Syriza party is on course to win 26 percent of votes in a snap election in September, just one point ahead of the conservative New Democracy party, a poll published by the Pulse for Action 24 television channel said on Tuesday. Former premier Alexis Tsipras resigned in August to seek a new mandate for a bailout deal he clinched with the country's international creditors. But opinion polls show his Syriza party's lead is slipping, suggesting his decision to call a snap election could backfire.

N.Irish Unionists want parliament suspended for crisis talks 
| Reuters
World

N.Irish Unionists want parliament suspended for crisis talks | Reuters

DUBLIN Northern Ireland's first minister will ask Britain's Prime Minister to suspend the Northern Irish Assembly for four weeks to facilitate talks to save the power-sharing executive threatened by a crisis over an IRA-linked murder. Peter Robinson's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) sought the permission of a parliamentary committee to extend the summer recess by a month earlier on Tuesday but their motion was voted down by the nationalist Sinn Fein, whom they share power with. The DUP last week said it wanted Sinn Fein, the one-time political wing of the IRA, thrown out of government after police said a rump of the militant group that formally disbanded in 2005 may have been involved the recent killing of a former member

New EU migrant plans ready next week: Avramopoulos
| Reuters
World

New EU migrant plans ready next week: Avramopoulos | Reuters

BRUSSELS The EU executive will outline new plans next week to share out refugees across European states as well as to speed deportations of unwanted migrants, the 28-nation bloc's migration commissioner said on Tuesday. Dimitris Avramopoulos told Reuters that new EU systems for processing asylum claims in Italy, Greece and possibly Hungary could involve detaining those rejected until they return home, as European governments strain to balance obligations to provide refuge with hostility among the public to mass immigration

Beirut protesters occupy ministry and call anti-government rally 
| Reuters
World

Beirut protesters occupy ministry and call anti-government rally | Reuters

BEIRUT Dozens of protesters occupied the environment ministry in the Lebanese capital Beirut on Tuesday calling on minister Mohamad Al Machnouk to resign over a rubbish disposal crisis, the latest in a wave of protests against the paralysed political system. Hundreds of other protesters gathered outside the building as riot police took up positions in surrounding streets and the "You Stink" anti-government campaign called for a new rally in a nearby square in the afternoon. Interior Minister Nohad Machnouk said protesters had 30 minutes to leave the building, al-Jadeed and al-Manar television stations said, without saying what would happen if they did not

Rebekah Brooks returning to News Corp as UK chief - FT
| Reuters
World

Rebekah Brooks returning to News Corp as UK chief - FT | Reuters

Rebekah Brooks will return to Rupert Murdoch-controlled News Corp as chief executive of its UK division, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

Lorry of migrant corpses, new boat sinking intensify Europe's crisis
| Reuters
World

Lorry of migrant corpses, new boat sinking intensify Europe's crisis | Reuters

PARNDORF, Austria As many as 50 refugees were found dead in a parked lorry in Austria on Thursday, and another migrant ship sank off Libya, deepening a crisis that is overwhelming Europe and throwing up new tragedies by the day. The abandoned refrigerated lorry was found by an Austrian motorway patrol near the Hungarian border, with fluids from the decomposing bodies seeping from its back door

Turkey's Erdogan calls parliamentary election, to meet PM Davutoglu
| Reuters
World

Turkey's Erdogan calls parliamentary election, to meet PM Davutoglu | Reuters

ANKARA Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has called for fresh parliamentary elections, his office said on Monday, in a widely anticipated move after two months of coalition talks failed to produce a coalition government ahead of a deadline.

Russia orders Wikipedia page blocked over cannabis link
| Reuters
World

Russia orders Wikipedia page blocked over cannabis link | Reuters

MOSCOW A Russian government agency on Monday ordered Internet providers block access to a page on the Russian-language version of Wikipedia for containing banned information on a type of cannabis. The move could lead to the Russian-language version of Wikipedia becoming totally inaccessible, the organisation that supports the website warned, since Wikipedia uses a protected protocol which means providers cannot block separate pages on the same site. Since President Vladimir Putin returned to the Kremlin in 2012, Russia has passed legislation banning sites that contain child pornography, drug-related or militant material, or which advocate suicide.

Train gunman wanted to rob people, looked malnourished: lawyer
| Reuters
World

Train gunman wanted to rob people, looked malnourished: lawyer | Reuters

PARIS The gunman who was disarmed by passengers on a train in France two days ago looked weak and malnourished and said he had only meant to rob people, a lawyer who interviewed him after the attack said on Sunday. "(I saw) somebody who was very sick, somebody very weakened physically, as if he suffered from malnutrition, very, very thin and very haggard," the lawyer, Sophie David, told BFMTV. David said the 26 year-old Moroccan expressed surprise when he was told that European authorities suspected him of being an Islamist militant

Pilot killed in light plane crash at Swiss air show
| Reuters
World

Pilot killed in light plane crash at Swiss air show | Reuters

ZURICH Two light planes collided in flight at an air show in Dittingen, Switzerland, on Sunday, killing one of the pilots, police said. The aircraft, in a German flying group of three planes, crashed at around 0915 GMT, Basel-Landschaft police said in a statement.

Ukraine leader urges unity to bring change, combat Russian aggressor
| Reuters
World

Ukraine leader urges unity to bring change, combat Russian aggressor | Reuters

KIEV Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko called on all political forces in the country on Sunday to rally behind his plans for constitutional change aimed at ending a separatist conflict in the east and defeating what he termed the "Russian aggressor". Poroshenko used a flag-raising ceremony in Kiev on the eve of Independence Day to make a clear pitch to his coalition allies to overcome their doubts and vote in favour of amendments to the constitution that will allot special status to separatist-minded parts of eastern Ukraine

Belarus leader pardons six jailed opposition figures
| Reuters
World

Belarus leader pardons six jailed opposition figures | Reuters

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

Belarus leader pardons six jailed opposition figures
| Reuters
World

Belarus leader pardons six jailed opposition figures | Reuters

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

Britain reopens embassy in Tehran - Reuters witness
| Reuters
World

Britain reopens embassy in Tehran - Reuters witness | Reuters

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)

North, South Korea on alert as talks resume in bid to end standoff
| Reuters
World

North, South Korea on alert as talks resume in bid to end standoff | Reuters

SEOUL Top aides to the leaders of North and South Korea resumed talks on Sunday after negotiating through the night in a bid to ease tensions involving an exchange of artillery fire that brought the peninsula to the brink of armed conflict. The meeting at the Panmunjom truce village inside the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) began on Saturday evening, with both sides on military alert, shortly after North Korea's deadline for Seoul to halt anti-Pyongyang propaganda broadcasts or face military action.

Fourteen killed in El Salvador prison, gang violence blamed
| Reuters
World

Fourteen killed in El Salvador prison, gang violence blamed | Reuters

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

NATO contractors killed by Kabul car bomb identified as U.S. citizens
| Reuters
World

NATO contractors killed by Kabul car bomb identified as U.S. citizens | Reuters

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

Netanyahu pressed for Iran attacks, but was denied - ex-defence chief
| Reuters
World

Netanyahu pressed for Iran attacks, but was denied - ex-defence chief | Reuters

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

Brazil's largest party not bolting Rousseff government
| Reuters
World

Brazil's largest party not bolting Rousseff government | Reuters

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