April 23, 2014 |
GAZA CITY - Rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas on Wednesday announced a reconciliation deal to end their seven-year schism, in a further blow to U.S.-led efforts to broker a peace agreement between the Palestinians and Israelis. Leaders of the groups said they will form a unity government within five weeks, solicit a vote of confidence from the Palestinian parliament, then schedule elections in six months. "This is good news to tell our people: The era of division is over," Ismail Haniyeh, prime minister of Hamas, declared at a news conference here.
April 13, 2014 |
TRIPOLI, Libya - Dragging deeply on a cigarette and swirling his espresso dregs, the curly-haired young militiaman offered up a vivid account of the battles he and fellow rebels waged to bring down dictator Moammar Kadafi - days of blazing bombardment, thirsty desert nights. Then he voiced his dismay at the chokehold those same armed groups now maintain on Libya. "We fought so hard to make a new country," said the 28-year-old of Libyan extraction who left Britain to join the revolution that swept this North African nation in 2011.
February 27, 2014 |
The sacking last week of the commander of the Free Syrian Army appears to be driving a wedge among factions of the loosely organized Western-backed network of rebel forces at a crucial moment in the three-year civil war to oust Syrian President Bashar Assad. The rift, analysts and rebels say, could undermine efforts to redirect Western support to rebels in southern Syria as part of a strategy to bolster the opposition there to counter the growing power of Islamist and Al Qaeda affiliates in the north.
February 4, 2014 |
BEIRUT - He loves sushi, AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades. He could be killed at any moment but vows to marry "a beautiful, righteous Muslim girl" as soon as he finds one. He proclaims a "love for justice" but defends beheadings, battlefield executions and sectarian killing. He scorns democracy and extols a fundamentalist interpretation of sharia, or Islamic law. Welcome to the virtual world of Chechclearr, the Internet handle of a self-described Islamic militant who says he is fighting as an Islamist rebel in Syria but also has time to post a copious amount of pictures and comments on the Internet.
January 9, 2014 |
BEIRUT - A car bomb detonated Thursday near a school in the central Syrian province of Hama, killing 18 people, according to the Syrian government and opposition sources. The bomb exploded outside the town of Salmiya, killing mostly women and children, the reports said. The state-run news agency SANA said the attack left dozens wounded and caused "very significant" property damage. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based pro-opposition group, said the casualty toll was likely to rise.
January 7, 2014 |
BEIRUT - The initial consignment of Syria's most toxic chemical weapons material was shipped out of the country Tuesday, international officials said, advancing a cleanup effort widely seen as a success in the midst of a long civil war that has cost more than 100,000 lives. The announcement came as the leader of an Al Qaeda-linked rebel group tried to broker a cease-fire among Syrian opposition factions that have been battling one another. A "first quantity" of so-called priority chemical materials was moved from two sites to the Syrian port of Latakia and loaded onto a Danish commercial vessel, Sigrid Kaag, who heads the international effort to rid the country of its chemical arsenal, said in a statement.