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Philippines says it won’t be embroiled in US-China sea spat

The Philippines says it won’t get embroiled in a fresh spat between the US and China involving Beijing’s protest of an American warship passing near a Chinese-controlled shoal also claimed by the Philippines. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque Jr. said Sunday that “the United States can take care of its own interest” and added “we do not wish to be part ...

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Honduran security forces battle protesters as election chaos lingers

Honduran soldiers and police clashed with protesters blocking roads across the Central American country on Saturday, as discontent continues to fester nearly two months after a disputed presidential election. At least one person died as security forces launched tear gas against rock-throwing supporters of the center-left Opposition Alliance Against the Dictatorship and tried to clear impromptu roadblocks of burning tires ...

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Turkey says ground forces push into Syria, Kurdish militia says attack repulsed

Turkish ground forces pushed into northern Syria’s Afrin province on Sunday, media cited the prime minister as saying, as Ankara stepped up artillery attacks on a US-backed Kurdish militia it aims to sweep from its border. NATO’s second-largest army entered northern Syria shortly after 11am local time (0800 GMT), broadcaster HaberTurk cited Prime Minister Binali Yildirim as saying. The Syrian-Kurdish ...

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Kabul: Gunmen shot Intercontinental Hotel diners – eyewitness

An eyewitness has told the BBC of the terrifying moment gunmen burst into Kabul’s Intercontinental Hotel restaurant on Saturday. The man, who is not being named for security reasons, said he was spared after saying he was an Afghan. “Where are the foreigners?” they shouted. Fourteen foreigners are confirmed to have died, along with four Afghans. The interior minister said ...

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Syria: Turkey war planes launch strikes on Afrin

Turkish war planes have launched air strikes on Kurdish positions in northern Syria, in a move likely to cause tensions with the US. Turkey wants to oust these Kurdish fighters from Syria’s Afrin region, which lies near its southern border. It considers them a terrorist group. But some were US allies in the battle against the Islamic State group. Turkey ...

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China says US warship ‘violated’ its sovereignty

Beijing on Saturday said it had dispatched a warship to drive away a US missile destroyer which had “violated” its sovereignty by sailing close to a shoal in the disputed South China Sea. The USS Hopper sailed within 12 nautical miles of Huangyan Island on the night of January 17 without alerting Beijing, the foreign ministry said, referring to the ...

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US and Pakistan clash at UN over Afghanistan

The United States urged Pakistan on Friday not to give sanctuary to “terrorist organizations” — and Pakistan demanded that the Trump administration address safe havens inside Afghanistan and its income from the narcotics trade. The exchange took place Friday at a Security Council meeting on the issue of Afghanistan’s relations with its Central Asia neighbors and the link between peace ...

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Female Sherpa from Nepal scales new heights

When Dawa Yangzum Sherpa first set her sights on being a mountain guide, she was told it was no job for a girl. Now she has proved her doubters wrong, becoming Nepal’s first woman to earn a prestigious international qualification. Last month, the 27-year-old completed a rigorous course run by the Swiss- based International Federation of Mountain Guides, often described ...

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US government shuts down; Dems, GOP blame each other 

The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight Friday, halting all but the most essential operations and marring the one-year anniversary of President Donald Trump’s inauguration in a striking display of Washington dysfunction. Last-minute negotiations crumbled as Senate Democrats blocked a four-week stopgap extension in a late-night vote, causing the fourth government shutdown in a quarter century. Behind the scenes, ...

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South Korea asks North to explain canceled visit 

South Korea on Saturday requested North Korea to explain why it abruptly canceled plans to send a delegation over the weekend to prepare for a visit by an art troupe during next month’s Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. South Korean Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon said that the countries could hopefully reschedule a visit soon. North Korea also hasn’t responded to the South ...

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