Main headlines

August 28, 2014

UN officials reported Thursday the capture of 43 UNDOF peacekeepers after heavy clashes between opposition fighters and Syrian government forces broke out near the Golan Heights border. (AFP/File)
17:34 GMT

The UN says 43 of its UNDOF peacekeepers were abducted Thursday by masked militants after brutal clashes between various Syrian opposition forces and government soldiers broke out.

Lebanon Education Minister Bou Saab said Thursday the country's clashes with Islamist militants has become a 'state of war.' (AFP/File)
16:31 GMT

Amid renewed Arsal violence, Education Minister Elias Bou Saab said Thursday the situation between Lebanon and thousands of Syrian militants who've crossed over from Syria is a 'state of war'.

Sinai militants released a video on Twitter detailing the execution of four Egyptian men charged with spying for Israel. (AFP/File)
15:30 GMT

Sinai militant group Ansar Bayt Al-Maqdis said Thursday it depacitated four Egyptian men on charges of 'spying for Israel.'

Two Syrians were issued arrest warrants Thursday in Lebanon on charges of belonging to a terror group and plotting the Arsal attack. (AFP/File)
15:00 GMT

In what Lebanon claims to be two separate cases, a Lebanese judge issued warrants form two Syrian nationals. The first is alleged ISIS commander Imad Ahmad Jomaa and the second is Ahmad Jomaa. Sources say the two men are not connected.

ISIS militants have made repeated attempts to take the significant Baiji oil refinery from Kurdish control, but have not yet succeeded. They set fire to the smaller Ain Zalah field Thursday before retreating a Kurdish attack. (AFP/File)
14:33 GMT

Amid a powerful Kurdish offensive, ISIS militants were driven from the Ain Zalah oil field, but not before setting fire to three of the field's wells.

Israeli forces declared the Nablus village of Madama a 'closed military zone' Thursday. (AFP/File)
13:38 GMT

After Israeli soldiers raided Burin Wednesday, the adjacent Nablus village of Madama was declared a 'closed military zone' and residents were reportedly barred from leaving or entering the village.

An IDF soldier keeps watch along the border with Gaza and Israel (File/AFP)
12:46 GMT

Israel's army fired warning shots near the Gaza Strip Thursday after a crowd of Palestinians hurled rocks at the security fence.

Lebanese army checkpoint in Arsal. [AFP]
12:11 GMT

The Lebanese Army clashed with Syrian rebels Thursday after the military shelled the militants' hideouts in the outskirts of the northeastern border region of Arsal.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin speaks with his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rowhani. [AFP]
12:05 GMT

Russia has expressed optimism about the prospects of Iran-P5+1 nuclear talks, saying the negotiations are close to fulfilling Iran's demand that all of its inalienable rights as a signatory to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) be safeguarded.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. [AFP]
11:07 GMT

Jordanian newspaper says leaders met in Amman; Prime Minister's Office does not comment on report; Netanyahu said Wednesday that Israel could potentially want Abbas and his forces in Gaza.

Ousted Morsi detained for another 15 days pending investigation. [AFP]
10:01 GMT

Ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi is accused of smuggling top secret documents to Qatar via Al-Jazeera TV channel.

Becoming the president meant relinquishing both the prime minister's office and the leadership of the Justice and Development Party. (AFP/File)
09:57 GMT

Recep Tayyip Erdogan will be sworn in Thursday as Turkey's new president.

Israeli police car [AFP]
09:40 GMT

Shin Bet says four Arab citizens known by authorities to be reputed drug dealers were arrested for business ties to narcotics traffickers in Lebanon.

Rebel fighters walk holding their weapons to a position on a front-line in a rebel-held suburb of Damascus on August 23, 2014. [AFP]
09:31 GMT

Syria is willing to help Lebanon in its fight against Islamist militants, Syrian Ambassador Ali Abdul-Karim Ali said in remarks published Thursday.

A Palestinian waves a national and a Hamas flag as fireworks light up the sky on August 26, 2014 in East Jerusalem as Palestinians celebrate in the streets the long-term truce agreed between Israel and the Palestinians. [AFP]
09:22 GMT

First UN humanitarian aid convoy arrives in Gaza Strip