Balad Ruz, Samarra Attacked in Iraq

by VOA News on February 28, 2015

Car bombs in Iraq have targeted a market and a checkpoint north of Baghdad, killing more than a dozen people, as Iraq's prime minister vowed to punish the Islamic State militants who smashed ancient artifacts in their stronghold, the northern city of Mosul. A car bomb exploded Saturday near the market in the town of Balad Ruz, northeast of Baghdad, killing at least five people and wounding at least 15 more. There were two blasts; the source of the second one is not clear. Later,...

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Zimbabwe’s President Celebrates 91st Birthday

by Sebastian Mhofu on February 28, 2015

Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe has celebrated his 91st birthday by hinting the government might seize some of the remaining white-owned land in his country. Those are members of Zimbabwe's police band singing Happy Birthday for President Robert Mugabe’s 91st birthday party in the resort town of Victoria Falls, more than 900 kilometers southwest of the capital, Harare. The lavish affair, attended by thousands of ruling party supporters, was held on the golf course of a luxury...

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India Focuses on Infrastructure, Investment to Propel Economy

February 28, 2015

In India, the government says it will focus on infrastructure development and on boosting investment as it proposes a slew of measures to propel the economy on a high growth path.

Saying that the government last year inherited an economy dominated by …

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Turkey, Kurdish Leaders Call for Conference

February 28, 2015

The imprisoned leader of the Kurdish rebel group the PKK has called on it to attend a conference on disarmament in Turkey. The announcement was made in a joint statement by government ministers and pro-Kurdish deputies. Disarmament has become a major s…

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Rebels Withdraw Heavy Arms in Eastern Ukraine

February 28, 2015

Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine continued withdrawing tanks and other military vehicles Saturday from the front lines, obeying a cease-fire reached in mid-February.

Ukraine said there was a decrease in violence Friday night into Saturday.

Uk…

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Egyptian Court Rules Hamas a Terrorist Organization

February 28, 2015

An Egyptian court declared Gaza’s ruling Hamas faction a terrorist group Saturday, one month after a similar ruling against its military wing. Another court also condemned Egypt’s top Muslim Brotherhood leaders to life in prison, over bloodshed during …

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Oil Smuggling Highlights Challenges in Shutting Down IS Finances

February 28, 2015

In the span of one year, Islamic State militants made more than half a billion dollars by seizing government banks, illegal oil sales, kidnapping and extortion, making them one of the wealthiest terrorist organizations in the world.

The United States,…

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Nigeria Opposition Senators Warn Against Plot to Sack Electoral Chief

February 28, 2015

Senators from Nigeria’s main opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) have expressed concern about reports suggesting that the government plans to force Attahiru Jega, chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) to go on vacation in a b…

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Nemtsov to RFE/RL: ‘We Must Free Russia From Putin’

February 28, 2015

Opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was looking ahead to a planned opposition rally Sunday that he anticipated would be an important step in a long struggle, though in an interview with RFE/RL’s Russian Service earlier this month, he portrayed the demons…

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Could Nemtsov Threaten Putin in Death as in Life?

February 28, 2015

With the murder of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, gunned down on a Moscow street, the fiercest critic of President Vladimir Putin has been removed from the political stage.  But it remains to be seen whether, in death as in life, Nemtsov wil…

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