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Somali Special Forces Breaks Into Hotel Compound, Battle Militants

Somali police hold their weapons as they walk outside the Maka Al-Mukarama hotel during an Islamist group al Shabaab attack in the capital Mogadishu

Somali special forces reportedly broke through the compound wall of a hotel seized by militants in the capital Mogadishu on Friday and exchanged fire with fighters inside the building, police said. According to Reuters, Islamist group al Shabaab said its followers had taken control of the popular Maka Al Mukaram ... Read More »

Saudi-led Campaign Strikes Yemen’s Sanaa, Morocco Joins Alliance

People watch a vehicle which belonged to Shi'ite Muslim rebels burn during clashes in Aden

Yemen’s government has said that Saudi-led airstrikes against its Houthi militia opponents would not last long on the second day of a Gulf Arab-led campaign against the Iranian-allied militia that could escalate a proxy conflict spreading through the region. Reuters have more: Warplanes targeted Houthi forces controlling Yemen’s capital and ... Read More »

Ebola Outbreak: Sierra Leone In Total Lockdown To Stop Ebola Spread

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The authorities in Sierra Leone are enforcing a three-day lockdown in order to curb the spread of Ebola, with the entire population ordered to stay at home. BBC has more: There is a two-hour exemption on Friday to allow Muslim prayers and a five-hour window for Christians on Sunday. Volunteers are ... Read More »

Kelly And Kornienko Set For One Year In Space Experience

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US astronaut Scott Kelly and Russian cosmonaut who is also his counterpart, Mikhail Kornienko are about to undertake a 12-month tour of duty on the International Space Station. BBC reports: It will be the longest continuous stay anyone has had aboard the 400km-high orbiting platform. Scientists hope to get a keener ... Read More »

Germanwings Crash: Co-pilot Lubitz ‘Hid illness’

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The co-pilot suspected to have deliberately crashed the Germanwings airliner into the French Alps allegedly hid details of an illness, German prosecutors say. BBC has  more: Torn-up sick notes were found in the homes of Andreas Lubitz, they say, including one for the day of the crash, which killed 150 ... Read More »

Kenya Police Officer Shot Dead In Possible Islamist Revenge Attack

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A senior officer with Kenya’s counter-terrorism police unit got shot dead by gunmen on Thursday in the port city of Mombasa, in what police said could be a revenge for a crackdown on attempts by the Somali al Shabaab militant group to recruit young men. Reuters report: Kenya is contributing troops ... Read More »

Burundi Ruling Party Officials Ask President To Drop Third Term Quest

Burundi's President Pierre Nkurunziza attends the opening of a coffee conference in the capital Bujumbura February 13, 2014.

Dozens of senior officials in Burundi’s ruling party have urged the President Pierre Nkurunziza to abandon a quest for a third term this June in order to avoid renewed violence in the landlocked central African nation. Reuters report: Some 79 members of the CNDD-FDD Party wrote to Nkurunziza on Monday, ... Read More »

Co-pilot Crashed Germanwings Plane On Purpose, Prosecutor Says

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A young German co-pilot reportedly locked himself alone in the cockpit of a Germanwings airliner and flew it into a mountain in what appears to have been the intent to destroy it, a French prosecutor said on Thursday. Reuters was there: Investigators and grieving relatives were left struggling to explain what ... Read More »

Deadly Tornado Rips Through Tulsa, Oklahoma

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Not less than one person has been killed and several others injured after a tornado roared through Tulsa, in Oklahoma. BBC reports: Tulsa police said the death occurred inside a mobile home park near suburban Sand Springs on Wednesday. The park was nearly destroyed in the storm. “It could have been much ... Read More »

Saudi Arabia Leads Air Strikes Against Yemen’s Houthi Rebels

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A coalition led by the Saudi Arabia government has launched air strikes against the Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen, saying it is “defending the legitimate government” of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi. BBC was there: Saudi jets targeted Houthi positions in the capital Sanaa overnight, along with missile batteries and warplanes. Mr ... Read More »

New Ford Cars Will Be Able To Slow Down When They See Speed-limit Signs

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Ford is to sell a car that can read road signs and adjust its speed accordingly to ensure the vehicle is not driving too fast. BBC reports: The speed-limiting tech can be activated via the steering wheel and briefly overridden by pressing firmly on the accelerator. The car company suggests the ... Read More »

India Navy Plane Crashes Off Goa, Two Missing

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Two crew members are missing after an Indian navy plane reportedly crashed into the sea off the western state of Goa. BBC reports: The navy said the plane, a Dornier surveillance aircraft, was on a routine flight when it went down late on Tuesday. The cause is not known. One crew ... Read More »

Two-Year-Old Indian Girl Sets New National Archery Record

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A two-year-old Indian girl has set a new national record in archery, according to the India Book of Records. BBC was there: Dolly Shivani Cherukuri from Vijaywada in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh – who turns three next week – became the youngest Indian to score more than 200 ... Read More »

China Reject Calls To Free Women’s Rights Activists

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China has rejected calls from several foreign governments for it to free five women’s rights activists who have spent nearly three weeks in detention. BBC has more: Foreign ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said that nobody had the right to ask China to release the group. The activists were planning public campaigns ... Read More »

Yemen Crisis: President Hadi Flees As Houthi Rebels Advance

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The President of Yemen, Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi has fled his palace in Aden as Houthi rebels advance towards the city. BBC has more: Gunfire could be heard around the city centre, and security forces allied to the Houthis are reported to have taken over the international airport. On Wednesday morning, the ... Read More »

Iran Expands Regional ‘Empire’ Ahead Of Nuclear Deal

Iranian Revolutionary Guard Commander Soleimani walks near an armoured vehicle at the frontline during offensive operations against Islamic State militants in the town of Tal Ksaiba

With Iran moving closer to a deal with world powers to constrain its nuclear program in return for an end to sanctions, Arab analysts and leaders are now focused more on how Tehran is working unconstrained to tighten its grip on Arab states, from Iraq to Lebanon, and Syria to ... Read More »

Yemen Foes Square Off As Fear Of War Heightens, Saudi-Iran Rivalry Grow

Anti-Houthi protesters run as pro-Houthi police troopers open fire in the air to disperse them in Yemen's southwestern city of Taiz

Yemen’s top factions are squaring off for a showdown after months of skirmishes, turning respectively to neighboring Saudi Arabia and its regional rival Iran for help in what may become all-out war. Reuters report: With President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi seeking a comeback from the port city of Aden while the Shi’ite ... Read More »

Ebola Outbreak ‘Over By August’, UN Suggests

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The Ebola outbreak in West Africa will be over by August, the head of the United Nations Ebola mission has told the BBC. Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed admitted the UN had made mistakes in handling the crisis early on, sometimes acting “arrogantly”. A year after the outbreak was officially declared, the ... Read More »

SA Convicts Ex-tennis Doubles Star, Bob Hewitt Of r*pe

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Former tennis Grand Slam champion, Bob Hewitt has been found guilty of defiling underage girls by a South African court . Hewitt, 75, had denied two charges of r*pe and a third charge of s*xual assault. BBC reports: The attacks took place in the 1980s and 1990s, when the Australian-born former ... Read More »

Singapore Begins National Mourning For Founding Father, Lee Kuan Yew

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Singapore has begun a seven day national mourning following the death of its founding father, Lee Kuan Yew. Mr Lee, who died at 91, led Singapore’s transformation from a small port city to one of the wealthiest nations in the world. BBC has more: World leaders have paid tribute to Mr ... Read More »