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Iraq Kurds: Army claims full control of Kirkuk province

Iraq Kurds: Army claims full control of Kirkuk province

Media captionKurdish fighters are moving into the area Iraqi forces say they have now wrested control of all areas of Kirkuk province from Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, following fierce fighting. They say they have retaken Alton Kupri, the last Kurdish-held area. There has been no Kurdish confirmation. A BBC correspondent at the scene witnessed rocket, artillery […]

Hamas must disarm to join Palestinian unity government – US

Hamas must disarm to join Palestinian unity government – US

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Hamas and Fatah signed the reconciliation deal in Cairo after talks brokered by Egypt The United States says the militant Islamist movement Hamas must lay down its weapons if it is to play a part in a new Palestinian government. Hamas, which dominates the Gaza Strip, and the rival Fatah […]

Court in Iraq orders arrest of Kurdistan VP Kosrat Rasul

Court in Iraq orders arrest of Kurdistan VP Kosrat Rasul

Image copyright AFP Image caption Kosrat Rasul (L) is close to Kurdistan Regional President Massoud Barzani (R) An Iraqi court has ordered the arrest of the vice-president of the Kurdistan Region for calling troops sent to Kirkuk this week “occupying forces”. A Supreme Judicial Council spokesman said the court believed Kosrat Rasul’s remarks were an […]

‘Stolen Salvador Dali’ painting recovered in Lebanon

‘Stolen Salvador Dali’ painting recovered in Lebanon

Image copyright EPA A painting thought to be the stolen work of renowned Spanish artist Salvador Dali has been recovered by the Lebanese authorities. Four people were arrested for allegedly trying to sell on the picture, known as Portrait of Mrs Reeves. Police confiscated it last Friday after an investigation in the Cola neighbourhood of […]

Syria war: UN says it is ready to go into Raqqa

Syria war: UN says it is ready to go into Raqqa

Media captionThe BBC’s Feras Kilani was in Raqqa with anti-IS troops The United Nations is ready to get into the Syrian city of Raqqa after so-called Islamic State (IS) was driven out after three years. A UN official in Damascus told the BBC access to the area was the main priority while warning that some […]

Iraq takes disputed areas as Kurds ‘withdraw to 2014 lines’

Iraq takes disputed areas as Kurds ‘withdraw to 2014 lines’

Media captionIraqi federal police advance towards disputed city of Kirkuk Iraq’s military says it has completed an operation to retake disputed areas held by Kurdish forces since 2014. On Monday and Tuesday troops retook the multi-ethnic city of Kirkuk and its oilfields, as well as parts of Nineveh and Diyala provinces. Peshmerga fighters had seized […]

Inside Raqqa after IS pushed out

The BBC’s Feras Kilani was with Syrian Democratic Forces as they took control of the centre of Raqqa, Syria. The city has been the strong-hold of so-called Islamic State since 2014. Inside Raqqa after IS pushed out}

Iran nuclear deal: Khamenei denounces Trump’s ‘rants and whoppers’

Iran nuclear deal: Khamenei denounces Trump’s ‘rants and whoppers’

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said European powers should “avoid intruding into our defensive affairs” The supreme leader of Iran has defended the 2015 nuclear deal and used strong language to accuse US President Donald Trump of ranting and lying. “I don’t want to waste time on answering the rants and whoppers […]

Iraqi forces retake Kurdish-held areas in Nineveh province

Iraqi forces retake Kurdish-held areas in Nineveh province

Media captionIraqi federal police advance towards disputed city of Kirkuk Iraqi government forces say they have taken control of more disputed areas previously held by Kurdish forces. The positions in Nineveh province, including the Mosul Dam, had been captured by Kurdish Peshmerga fighters over the past three years during fighting with so-called Islamic State. Earlier […]

Raqqa: IS ‘capital’ falls to US-backed Syrian forces

Raqqa: IS ‘capital’ falls to US-backed Syrian forces

Media captionSyrian fighters celebrate at Raqqa’s infamous al-Naim square A US-backed alliance of Syrian fighters says it has taken full control of Raqqa, ending three years of rule in the city by so-called Islamic State. Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) spokesman Talal Sello said the fighting was over after a four-month assault. Clearing operations were now […]

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