Main headlines

January 10, 2014

Sigrid Kaag, pictured right and who is the head of the joint disarmament mission in Syria between the United Nations and OPCW, says the Syrian government can meet its March deadline if it maintains its current efforts (File Archive/AFP)
13:10 GMT

The United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) told reporters Friday that the Syrian government will be able to meet its March deadline to destroy Priority 1 chemical weapons. material if it maintains its current efforts.

Erekat said Friday that Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is "determined to destroy the two-state solution" (File Archive/AFP)
12:49 GMT

Palestine's top negotiator for the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian peace talks said that Israel's settlement announcement Friday is a message to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to not come back to the region to push for peace.

Militias throughout Libya have clashed with government forces to control territory in the north African country (File Archive/AFP)
11:22 GMT

The United States' top military commander to Africa told reporters Friday that the Pentagon is planning to commence training for Libyan soldiers by midyear to help "boost the [north African country's] security."

Israeli settlement construction in the Palestinian territory is illegal under international law (File Archive/AFP)
11:00 GMT

Israel announced Friday that it is planning to build over 1,000 new settler homes in East Jerusalem and 800 in the West Bank.

The U.S. has expressed serious concern over the inmates who are set to be released, as most of them are believed to be members of the Taliban or similar militant groups. Afghan President Hamid Karzai has ignored the U.S.' doubts. (AFP/File)
09:15 GMT

72 prisoners are to freed from Afghanistan's notorious Bagram prison, despite the U.S. voicing its concerns over their lack of proper trial and many of the prisoners' links to terrorist-related charged.

The U.S. is reconsidering sending nonlethal aid to the Syrian opposition, now that some Islamist rebels are proving to be more moderate, according to a recent New York Times article. (AFP/File)
08:55 GMT

Despite the risk that any aid may end up in the hands of militant extremists, top Washington officials said Thursday that the U.S. is considering resuming its nonlethal aid to the Syrian opposition.

Regime forces have enforced a siege in Homs' Old City for over a year and much of the city has been destroyed in clashes between loyalist troops and rebels. Reports of energy and food shortages in the central Syrian city are rife. (AFP/File)
07:11 GMT

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported late Thursday that Syrian regime forces killed at least 45 rebels during an offensive on the regime-stronghold of Homs.

Fatah and Hamas are making attempts to reconcile ahead of the elections. (AFP/File)
06:49 GMT

The head of Fatah's reconciliation team has confirmed that he will visit the Gaza Strip to meet with Gazan Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh in the upcoming days, as Hamas and Fatah look to reconcile.

Will the U.S. train elite Iraqi forces in Jordan? (AFP/File)
06:42 GMT

According to U.S. defense officials, Washington is mulling over the idea of training elite Iraqi forces in Jordan to help quell Al Qaeda in the restive country.

Tunisia's Islamist premier Ali Larayedh arrives at Kasbah Palace in Tunis to submit his resignation to Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki on January 9, 2014.  [AFP]
04:00 GMT

Tunisia's Islamist Prime Minister Ali Larayedh resigned on Thursday to make way for a caretaker government as part of a deal with his opponents to finish a transitional period.

January 9, 2014

he poll conducted in late December showed that 76 percent of the participants are expected to take part in the upcoming referendum on Jan. 14 and 15. [Getty Images]
20:59 GMT

Egyptian will approve the constitution despite the fact that over half the population have not read the draft of the document, a new poll revealed according to the Egyptian Daily news website al-Ahram.

Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says the negotiations reveal U.S. “enmity.” [AFP]
20:21 GMT

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei admitted on Thursday pursuing the religious deception tactic known as a “taqiyya” in talks with the United States over his country’s nuclear program.

Supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi block a street during clashes with Egyptian security forces in Nasr City, Cairo on January 8, 2014. 63 Brotherhood supporters were sentenced to three years in prison on Thursday in a Cairo court. (AFP)
14:04 GMT

63 Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood supporters were sentenced to three years in jail on charges such as rioting, thuggery and weapons possession on Thursday.

At least 700 people have been killed in Aleppo since Dec. 15 under government airstrikes (Medo Halab/AFP)
13:19 GMT

Syrian opposition groups, including Islamist rebels, met for the first time in Spain's Cordoba in order to "seek common ground" before peace talks scheduled for later this month in Switzerland, and a car bomb killed 18 in Syria's central Hama province in the village of Kafat.

Despite concerns over the slew of violence that has engulfed Egypt, the U.S. has said it is committed to building a longstanding diplomatic relationship with Cairo. (AFP/File)
12:42 GMT

The U.S. said Wednesday that despite the violence and troubles that have engulfed Cairo since Mohamed Morsi's ouster in July, Washington is looking to work on its relationship with Cairo.