HEADLINES:

MIDDLE EAST

Blast injures South African tourists near Egypt's Giza pyramids: security sources

An explosion targeting a tourist bus injured at least 12 people on Sunday, mostly South African tourists, near a new museum being built close to the Giza pyramids in Egypt, two security sources said.


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Israeli host expecting Eurovision 'punishment' for Iceland's Palestinian flag display

The Israeli broadcaster of the Eurovision Song Contest said on Sunday that an unauthorized display of Palestinian flags by Iceland’s band could draw “punishment” from the event’s organizers.


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Iran is not pursuing war: Revolutionary Guards chief

Iran is not pursuing war, the head of the elite Revolutionary Guards said on Sunday (may 19), according to the Fars news agency.


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Saudi minister denies activist Baghdadi faced any Saudi threat

A senior Saudi official denied the authorities posed any threat to prominent Palestinian human rights campaigner Iyad al-Baghdadi, who has said the Norwegian security services warned him of a threat a


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Iran court upholds Iranian's death sentence for killing US woman

Iran’s Supreme Court has upheld the death sentence of an Iranian man for killing an American woman seven years ago to steal her car, the state-run daily Iran reported on Saturday (May 18).


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Trump may pardon military men accused or convicted of war crimes: NYT

US President Donald Trump has asked for files to be prepared on pardoning several US military members accused of or convicted of war crimes, including one slated to stand trial on charges of shooting


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Erdogan says will jointly produce S-500s with Russia after purchase of S-400s

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday (May 18) that the purchase of S-400 defense systems from Russia was a done deal, adding that Ankara would also jointly produce S-500 defense systems w


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Saudi Arabia says it seeks to avert war, ball in Iran's court

Saudi Arabia wants to avert war in the region but stands ready to respond with “all strength and determination” following last week’s attacks on Saudi oil assets, a senior official said on Sunday (May


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China's top diplomat calls for US restraint on trade, Iran

China’s senior diplomat Wang Yi told US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday that recent US words and actions had harmed the interests of China and its enterprises, and that Washington should sh


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Iran changes tactics, destinations on oil exports, maritime official says

Iran has adopted new tactics and new destinations in shipping its oil exports following the re-imposition of US sanctions, a senior Iranian maritime official was quoted as saying on Saturday by the se


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Elite Iranian force raids modeling agencies for 'promoting vulgarity'

Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards force has raided three underground modeling agencies, accusing the companies and their aspiring models of flouting strict Islamic dress codes for women, Iranian news


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Amid lull in air strikes, rebels reinforce NW Syria frontlines

Air strikes stopped in northwest Syria over the past 12 hours, rescuers said on Saturday, as Turkey-backed rebels arrived at the fronts to help fight the army and its Russian ally.


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Two guards killed in suspected Islamic State attack outside Libyan oilfield

Two guards were killed and four others were kidnapped early on Saturday (May 18) in a suspected Islamic State attack targeting Libya’s Zella oilfield, a security source said.


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Eye on lira, Turkey abandons plan to tap central bank reserves

Turkey took more unorthodox steps on Friday (May 17) to protect its beleaguered lira, including scrapping a recently-hatched plan to tap the central bank’s legal reserves to boost its budget and urgin


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Western powers clash at UN with Russia, Syria, on Syrian hospital attacks

The United Nations said on Friday (May 17) at least 18 health centers have been attacked in the past three weeks in northwestern Syria, prompting a confrontation between western powers and Russia and


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US issues warning on airspace near Gulf as Iran tensions simmer

The Federal Aviation Administration has issued an advisory to US commercial airliners flying over the waters of the Gulf and the Gulf of Oman to exercise caution as tensions between Washington and Teh


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Iran's crude exports slide to 500,000 bpd or less: sources

Iranian crude oil exports have fallen in May to 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) or lower, tanker data showed and industry sources said, after the United States tightened the screws on Tehran’s main sour


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Saudi's Falih says oil stocks still building, but OPEC to act if needed: Reuters

Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said on Saturday (May 18) that OPEC will be responsive to the oil market’s needs, but that he was not sure there is an oil shortage with data, particular


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Syrian TV says Damascus targeted 'from direction of' Israel

Loud blasts echoed across Damascus late on Friday (May 17), residents said, as Syrian state media reported “enemy targets” coming from the direction of Israel, which has previously acknowledged conduc


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Trump denies friction with top aides over Iran policy

US President Donald Trump on Friday (May 17) denied friction with his hawkish foreign policy advisers on Iran, specifically giving statements of support to White House national security adviser John B


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