Main headlines

January 23, 2014

Ayman Al Zawahiri has been leader of Sunni militant group Al Qaeda since 2009. (AFP/File)
08:03 GMT

Head of Al Qaeda Ayman Al Zawahiri on called on all jihadists fighting in the Syrian war to unite in a YouTube video posted on Wednesday evening.

A woman stands in the devastation of her town of Reyhanli, following a twin suicide bombing attack in May 2013. According to Turkish intelligence, more attacks are coming. (AFP/File)
07:39 GMT

The Turkish authorities have issued a warning to Syrians working with opposition groups in Turkey, citing intelligence reports that Al Qaeda-affiliated rebels are planning attacks on them during the Geneva II peace talks.

A member of the charity Oxfam places a rose by temporary gravestones in a demonstration against the war in Syria on the sidelines of the Geneva II peace talks in Montreux on January 22, 2014. Improving humanitarian aid to Syrians is among the topics that will be discussed by the two warring sides. (AFP)
07:23 GMT

Syria's two sides are both prepared to discuss improving access to humanitarian deliveries, prisoner swaps and local ceasefires, U.N.-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi said following the conclusion of the first day of the Geneva II conference.

The Shiite leadership in Iraq's government have blamed daily suicide bomb and related attacks on what has been described as an Al Qaeda cell in the Anbar province (File Archive/AFP)
07:22 GMT

At least 50 militants were killed in Iraq's Anbar Wednesday while U.S. President Obama met with Iraqi parliamentarians to discuss Sunni leadership integration into the government.

Attacks on Egyptian security personnel have become increasingly more common since the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi in July. (AFP/File)
06:52 GMT

Five Egyptian policemen were killed on Thursday morning as masked gunmen launched an attack whilst on their motorcycles on a security checkpoint south of Cairo.

Saad Hariri, son of slain former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri, speaks during an interview at the Hotel Des Indes in the Hague on January 16, 2014. [AFP]
05:21 GMT

Two witnesses who lost their brothers testified on Wednesday to the court about the grief and pain they felt after the attack which killed former Lebanese PM Hariri.

"Bad blood" between the Syrian opposition and regime may have a deep impact on the success of the Geneva II peace talks, U.N.-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi said. Here, Brahimi awaits peace talks in Montreux on January 22, 2014.  (AFP)
04:57 GMT

Ahead of the one-on-one talks to be held between the Syrian regime and opposition delegations on Thursday, U.N.-Arab League envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi said that the speeched made on the first day Geneva II proved the wide ideological divide between the two sides.

January 22, 2014

"Enough is enough," Ban Ki-moon told Syria's delegations on Wednesday. (AFP/File)
20:07 GMT

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told both Syrian sides on Wednesday to start the dialogue needed to end the Syrian civil war, following the Geneva II peace talks in Montreux, Switzerland.

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is widely considered to be the most dangerous branch of the Sunni militant group. (AFP/File)
19:04 GMT

Dozens of Yemen's top intelligence and military officers are being assassinated in a savage Al Qaeda campaign against key government installations.

A volunteer shares out food to the people in the Bab al-Salam refugee camp for displaced Syrians near the border with Turkey on 2 July 2013. (AFP/File)
18:44 GMT

Amnesty International Secretary General Salil Shetty on Wednesday said that Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime is blocking humanitarian aid to those in need and starving the population as a "war strategy".

Internationally, Israel's settlements on Palestinian occupied land are considered illegal. In 2013, settlement building rose by 70 percent. (AFP/File)
17:29 GMT

The Peace Now watchdog on Wednesday reported that Israel has moved forwards with its plans to build 261 new settler homes on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank.

A Syrian man holds up a copy of the Quran, Islam's holy book, at the scene of a reported airstrike by government forces on the central al-Fardous neighbourhood of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on January 21, 2014. (AFP)
16:54 GMT

As major world powers sat down in Switzerland to find a solution to the Syrian conflict, regime forces shelled and dropped barrel bombs on rebel positions across the war-torn country on Syria.

Thousands are expected to flood Egypt's streets on Saturday, in what may turn into a day of bloodshed and violence in the politically-torn country. (AFP/File)
16:21 GMT

Egyptian police have been tightening their security around police stations and government buildings in anticipation of planned protests on Saturday, the third anniversary of the Jan. 25 revolution.

The U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv was one of the Palestinians' targets, according to Shin Bet. (Image courtesy of The U.S. State Department)
16:09 GMT

Israel's intelligence agency Shin Bet said Wednesday it had arrested two Palestinian Al Qaeda members in East Jerusalem who were planning to carry out suicide attacks on Israeli targets in Jerusalem and the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv.


Egypt's Interim interior minister Mohamed Ibrahim has also called--perhaps ironically--for counter demonstrations on Friday, describing the Alliance's protest call as a "plot to spark chaos (Courtesy of Press TV)
13:50 GMT

Egypt's Islamist Anti-Coup Alliance is calling for 18 days of protests throughout the country starting Friday.