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Afghan intelligence: Taliban leader Mullah Omar dead 2 years

By The Associated Press
KABUL, Afghanistan — Afghanistan’s main intelligence agency said Wednesday that the reclusive Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar has been dead for more than two years. The one-eyed, secretive head of the Taliban hosted Osama Bin Laden’s al-Qaida in the years leading ...

Buildings in West Bank settlement torn down by order of Israel’s Supreme Court

By The Los Angeles Times
JERUSALEM — Settlers scuffled with police Wednesday in the West Bank settlement of Beit El, where bulldozers tore down two contested buildings shortly after a final Supreme Court ruling marked the end of a yearslong legal saga. The court decision forced ...

2013 death of Taliban leader Mullah Omar confirmed

By The Associated Press
KABUL — Afghanistan asserted Wednesday that the Taliban’s reclusive leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar, died more than two years ago in a Pakistani hospital — an announcement that injects new uncertainty into the country’s fragile peace process. If confirmed, the surprising news ...

Exiled Yemen leader orders anti-rebel fighters to merge with army to battle Houthis

By The Associated Press
SANAA, Yemen — From his exile in Saudi Arabia, Yemen’s president Wednesday ordered that militias battling Shiite rebels in Yemen be merged with his national army units, a move made in an apparent attempt to unify forces fighting on the ...

Debris on French island possibly that of missing Malaysia Airlines flight

By USA Today
A U.S. official says air safety investigators have a “high degree of confidence” that a photo of aircraft debris found in the Indian Ocean is of a wing component unique to the Boeing 777, the same model as the Malaysia ...

U.N. projects world’s population to reach 9.7 billion by 2050, 11.2 billion by end of century

By The Associated Press
UNITED NATIONS — The world’s population is expected to reach 8.5 billion by 2030 and 9.7 billion in 2050, a United Nations report says. And there should be 11.2 billion people on Earth by the end of this century. Meanwhile, India’s ...

Chinese man who admitted role in test fraud leaving United States

By Brian Bowling
College entrance exam fraud is widespread as a record number of international students attends American colleges and universities, a federal prosecutor said Wednesday. “Mr. Li is representative of an epidemic,” Assistant U.S. Attorney James Kitchen said during the sentencing of Biyuan ...

French students unearth 560,000-year-old tooth, oldest body part found in country

By The Associated Press
PARIS — Two students have found a  human tooth from about 560,000 years ago in a famous prehistoric cave in southwestern France, a discovery praised by archaeologists as the oldest human body part discovered in the country and being rare ...

Scientists warn about killer robots

By The Associated Press
LONDON — Scientists and tech experts — including professor Stephen Hawking and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak — warned Tuesday of a global arms race with weapons using artificial intelligence. In an open letter with hundreds of signatories, the experts argued ...

Libyans on death sentences for Gadhafi’s son, others: ‘Who cares?’

By The Los Angeles Times
A court in Libya’s capital Tuesday sentenced a son of the late strongman Moammar Gadhafi and members of his regime to death by firing squad for crimes committed during the 2011 war that toppled his father. It was a ruling sought ...

Obama celebrates gains, notes stalemates on visit to East Africa

By The Washington Post
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — In the end, President Obama may have gotten closer to the bones of ancient mankind than he did to ordinary Africans ...

Turks, Kurdish rebels deepen hostility

By The Associated Press
ISTANBUL — Fighting  between the Turkish military and Kurdish rebels escalated Tuesday amid signs of unease from NATO allies attending an emergency meeting about Turkey’s conflicts with the Islamic State group and the Kurds. On a violent day, Turkish fighter jets ...

U.S., Turkey plan for ‘safe zone’ free of ISIS in northern Syria

By The Associated Press
Turkey and the United States have agreed on the outlines of a plan to rout the Islamic State from a strip of Syrian territory along the Turkish border — a plan that opens the possibility of a safe haven for ...

Gunbattle kills 21 at Afghan wedding party

By The Washington Post
KABUL — A gunbattle between supporters of two rival warlords killed 21 people at a wedding party in Afghanistan’s northern Baghlan province, police said Monday. The violence occurred overnight in a village in the rugged Andarab district, where warlords hold ...

Chinese woman crushed to death in escalator

By The Los Angeles Times
BEIJING — The scene can only be described as horrific: On an otherwise unremarkable morning, a woman is riding up a shopping center escalator in central China with her son. When she reaches the top and begins to disembark, ...

Saudis’ deadly airstrikes resume in Yemen

By The Associated Press
SANAA — The Saudi-led coalition renewed airstrikes in at least two Yemeni provinces Monday, piercing a humanitarian pause that started at midnight the previous day, security officials said. The U.S.-backed coalition of mainly Persian Gulf Arab countries has been waging an ...

Obama knocks Huckabee, Trump for slide in Republican rhetoric

Wire Reports
ADDIS ABABA — President Obama criticized Republican presidential candidates Mike Huckabee and Donald Trump on Monday for their blunt rhetoric about the Iran nuclear agreement ...

Humanitarian cease-fire halts airstrikes in Yemen

By The Associated Press
SANAA, Yemen — A five-day humanitarian truce went into effect early Monday and Saudi-led coalition airstrikes came to a halt in Yemen, witnesses and security officials said. However, they said random shelling by Shiite Houthi rebels in three neighborhoods led ground ...

Suicide truck bomb kills 9, damages luxury hotel in Somali capital

By The Associated Press
MOGADISHU, Somalia — A suicide bomber rammed a truck rigged with explosives into the blast walls around one of Mogadishu’s most secure hotels, severely damaging the building and killing nine people, including a Chinese diplomat, Somalia’s foreign minister said Sunday. Abdisalam ...

Turkey to stick with air offensive in ISIS battle

By Reuters
ISTANBUL — Turkey has no plans to send ground troops into Syria but has agreed with the United States that air cover should be provided for moderate rebels fighting Islamic State forces there, Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was quoted Monday ...