Thursday, February 23, 2017

World News Briefs -- February 23, 2017 (Evening Edition)

Reuters: Syria's warring sides face off as U.N. tells them: end the nightmare

Opposing sides in the Syrian war came face-to-face in U.N. peace talks for the first time in three years on Thursday, to hear mediator Staffan de Mistura implore them to cooperate to find a way out of almost six years of war.

"I ask you to work together. I know it's not going to be easy to end this horrible conflict and lay the foundation for a country at peace with itself, sovereign and unified," Mistura told the delegates sitting opposite each other on the stage of the U.N. assembly hall in Geneva.

Mistura will hold meetings with the delegations on Friday to establish a procedure for the talks, he told reporters after the opening session, adding it would be his "dream" to bring them back together for direct talks, but there was work to be done before that could happen.

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Iraqi forces push up to Mosul’s key military base by airport. Iraqi forces storm Mosul airport in effort to seize city from Isis. Iraqi forces take control of Mosul Airport. Mosul offensive: Iraqi forces recapture airport in bid to retake city.

Top US general readies 'full range' of Syria options for Trump.

U.S. imposes sanctions on alleged Syria militant leaders.

UN likely to vote next week on Syria sanctions.

Syria rebels announce capture of Al-Bab from IS. Turkey-backed rebels in 'near full control' of Al Bab.

Syria's warring sides brought together for Geneva talks. UN envoy doubts 'breakthrough' at Syria peace talks.

McCain makes secret trip to Syria as US debates new plans to fight Islamic State.

Tension rising between regional rivals Turkey and Iran.

Yemen loyalists push back rebels on Red Sea coast.

Netanyahu backs pardon for Israel soldier who shot Palestinian.

Israel shoots down Hamas drone from Gaza Strip: military.


Three soldiers, civilian killed in militant attack in Indian Kashmir.

Malaysia requests Interpol alert on four North Koreans over airport murder.

Indonesia to raise prospect of joint patrols with Australia in South China Sea: report.

Deadly blast rocks upscale market in Pakistani city of Lahore. Blast hits Lahore Defence area market. Pakistan blast: At least six dead in Lahore.

Pakistan army launches nationwide anti-terror operation.

Asean unsettled by China action in disputed waters

Pyongyang blames Malaysia for death of Kim Jong Un's half-brother. Kim Jong-nam murder: North Korea blames Malaysia for death of 'DPRK Citizen'.

South Korea resumes loudspeaker operations after Kim Jong Nam assassination.

Philippine court orders arrest of President Duterte's leading critic.

Japan's next emperor announces readiness for Akihito to abdicate.


16 killed in three days of DR Congo clashes.

Uganda holds dozens of fleeing M23 rebels after Congo clashes.

Extremists attack Niger military patrol, kill 15 soldiers. 'Terrorist attack' kills 15 soldiers in Niger: army.

South Sudan accused of blocking aid, despite famine.

Somalia's new President appoints Prime Minister.

Two Christians killed by militants in Egypt’s north Sinai amid growing attacks on Copts.

S.Africa struggles to quell anti-immigrant violence.

Libya's eastern authority freezes women's travel ban.

New claims over scale of ex-Gambian leader's theft from state coffers.

Gunmen kidnap two Germans in northern Nigeria: police.


Italy says 2,500 boat migrants rescued at sea in three days.

Cyprus talks falter over nationalist commemoration row.

French green candidate Jadot withdraws from presidential race.

French elections: Emmanuel Macron and Fran├žois Bayrou form alliance.

IMF chief Lagarde meets Merkel over Greek debt forgiveness.

Germany's migration agency taking longer to process asylum requests.

Romania: 1,300 officials prosecuted for graft last year.

Paris protests: Students tear-gassed by police.

Russian military admits significant cyber-war effort.


Trudeau and Trump talk about border, softwood lumber and next summits.

'No mass roundups' of migrants in US Homeland Security chief says.

Trump says Republican border tax could boost U.S. jobs.

US Treasury's Mnuchin promises 3% growth by end-2018.

Trump expected to submit budget blueprint March 13.

Mexico will not accept Trump's immigration plans, says foreign minister. Outrage in Mexico over immigration policies ahead of Rex Tillerson talks. Mexico's foreign minister rejects Trump deportation policy.

Number of refugees who are fleeing America and traveling to Canada nearly doubles in the wake of Trump's immigration crackdown.

Trump administration revokes Obama-era transgender bathroom guidance for schools.

Ecuador will hold run-off poll to choose new president.

Venezuelan vice president slams drug sanctions in full-page NYT ad.

San Jose drowns: 50,000 people are told to leave their homes as entire neighborhoods sink under water after worst floods for 100 years. California on track to have wettest year on record following five-year drought.

Arrests among dwindling demonstrators as Dakota pipeline camp cleared.


Al Qaeda-linked Uzbek groups advertise operations in Afghanistan.

Columbia man charged with plotting Islamic State terror attack on Kansas City.

German police arrest 26 year-old over terror plot.


Exclusive: Trump calls Chinese 'grand champions' of currency manipulation.

US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin says he won’t label China a currency manipulator...yet.

Google launches robo-tool to flag hate speech online.

Military plane cost hits Airbus profits.

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