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Islamic State seen as potent force a year after caliphate declaration: Pentagon
News ImageBy David Alexander WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A year after Islamic State declared a caliphate on territory seized in Iraq and Syria, the al Qaeda splinter group faces military pressure from a U.S.-led coalition but remains a potent force holding key cities, the Pentagon said on Monday. Army Colonel Steve Warren, a Defense Department spokesman, said the militant group has lost a quarter of the land it controlled at the height of its expansion and has broken and run on several occasions in northern Syria in the face of an offensive by Kurdish-led forces.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 15:33:06 -0400
Car bomb in Yemeni capital hits mourners, dozens wounded
A car bomb claimed by Islamic State exploded in the Yemeni capital Sanaa overnight, medics said, wounding at least 28 people gathered to mourn another attack earlier this month. In a new sign that three months of war in Yemen was ratcheting up, the country's military spokesman said its forces had launched a Scud missile at a Saudi military base on Tuesday. A Saudi-led military alliance has been bombing Yemen's dominant Houthi group and its allies in the army to dislodge them from the capital and restore the exiled president. Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:30:54 -0400
Car bomb attack kills Egypt's top public prosecutor
News ImageBy Ahmed Hassan and Omar Fahmy CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's top public prosecutor was killed by a car bomb attack on his convoy on Monday, the most senior state official to die at the hands of militants since the toppling of an Islamist president two years ago. Security sources said a bomb in a parked car was remotely detonated as Hisham Barakat's motorcade left his home, after saying earlier a car bomber had rammed into the convoy. Judges and other senior officials have increasingly been targeted by radical Islamists opposed to President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and angered by hefty prison sentences imposed on members of the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 13:46:47 -0400
French beheading suspect denies jihad motivation
The man being held in France under suspicion of beheading his boss and trying to blow up a chemicals plant has told investigators there was no religious motivation behind the attack, a source close to the inquiry said on Monday. The source said Yassin Salhi, 35, told investigators he was not a jihadist and repeated earlier statements that he committed the act outside the southeast city of Lyon on Friday after a row with his wife the day before and his boss a few days earlier. The severed head of his boss was found hanging on the fence of a site belonging to U.S-based gas and chemicals company Air Products, next to flags bearing professions of the Muslim faith. Mon, 29 Jun 2015 12:53:02 -0400
U.S. says absurd to suggest that it will cave in Iran talks
News ImageBy Louis Charbonneau, John Irish and Arshad Mohammed VIENNA (Reuters) - The United States on Monday rejected criticism that world powers negotiating a nuclear agreement with Iran have been making too many compromises, saying it hoped to get a good deal but was not certain that was achievable. A senior U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Vienna talks would continue past Tuesday's deadline for a comprehensive agreement intended to open the door to ending sanctions in exchange for limits on Iran's most sensitive nuclear activities for at least a decade. The West suspects Iran may be secretly developing technology that would allow it to build nuclear weapons, but Tehran says its program is for peaceful purposes only.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 14:44:01 -0400
NSA wiretapped two French finance ministers: Wikileaks
News ImageThe U.S. National Security Agency wiretapped the communications of two successive French finance ministers and collected information on French export contracts, trade and budget talks, according to a report by WikiLeaks. The transparency website said the ministers targeted were Francois Baroin and Pierre Moscovici, who between them headed the finance ministry from 2011 to 2014. The allegations, published jointly with newspaper Liberation and online outlet Mediapart, came a week after Wikileaks reported that the NSA had spied on three French presidents from at least 2006 to May 2012, prompting the government to protest to Washington that such behavior between allies was unacceptable.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:32:32 -0400
Tsipras defiant as banks shut, markets rocked
News ImageATHENS, Greece (AP) Anxious pensioners swarmed closed bank branches Monday and long lines snaked outside ATMs as Greeks endured the first day of serious controls on their daily economic lives ahead of a referendum that could determine whether the country has to ditch the euro currency and return to the drachma.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 19:02:56 -0400
Spanish royals make first state visit to Americas
News ImageSpain's King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia began a three-day trip to Mexico on Monday, making their first state visit to the Americas since their coronation. President Enrique Pena Nieto welcomed the royal couple at the Campo Marte military field in Mexico City, where they were treated to a cannon salute and a military parade. The state visit went ahead as planned even though Pena Nieto underwent emergency surgery on Friday to remove his gall bladder after a sudden inflammation.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 19:02:05 -0400
Obama, Rousseff try to put spy scandal behind them
News ImageWASHINGTON (AP) President Barack Obama and Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff will aim to show they have smoothed over tensions sparked by a spying scandal, as they open two days of talks at the White House Monday.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:56:31 -0400
Obama speaks to Cameron, Tunisian leader in attack aftermath
WASHINGTON (AP) President Barack Obama is offering U.S. assistance to the investigation into the attack in Tunisia that killed 38 people at a beach resort. Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:48:27 -0400
NBC to Donald Trump: You're fired
News ImageNEW YORK (AP) NBC said Monday that it is ending its business relationship with mogul and GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump because of comments he made about Mexican immigrants during the announcement of his campaign.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:47:15 -0400
Developer of $3.5B Bahamas megaresort files for bankruptcy
KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) The developer of a $3.5 billion hotel-and-casino project under construction in the Bahamas announced Monday that it has filed for U.S. Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:46:23 -0400
Union sues US over hack, says agency had ample warning
WASHINGTON (AP) The largest federal employee union filed a class action lawsuit Monday against the federal personnel office, its leaders and one of its contractors, arguing that negligence contributed to what government officials are calling one of the most damaging cyberthefts in U.S. history. Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:43:50 -0400
U.S. top court rules against Obama administration over air pollution rule
News ImageBy Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled the Obama administration should have considered compliance cost when it decided to limit emissions of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants mainly from coal-fired power plants, a setback for the government that leaves the legal status of the regulation in limbo. The court ruled in a 5-4 decision, with its five conservative justices in the majority, against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The rule stays in effect for the time being, with the case returning to an appeals court, which will decide whether or not it should be thrown out. "EPA is disappointed that the court did not uphold the rule, but this rule was issued more than three years ago, investments have been made and most plants are already well on their way to compliance," the agency said in a statement.
Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:35:17 -0400
Factbox: Questions remain on U.S. mercury rule after high court ruling
By Valerie Volcovici WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court said on Monday that the Environmental Protection Agency should have weighed the potential financial costs of compliance before imposing limits on emissions of mercury and other toxins from coal-fired power plants. The EPA and some academics said the outcome was not their worst case scenario. Richard Revesz, director of the Institute for Policy Integrity and dean emeritus of NYU Law School, said the court did not dispute the EPA argument that there are direct and ancillary benefits of the mercury restrictions, which the EPA said in projections after it issued its rule. Mon, 29 Jun 2015 18:34:25 -0400
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