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Israeli airlines start direct flights to Morocco after improved ties

JERUSALEM: Two Israeli carriers on Sunday launched nonstop commercial flights to Marrakesh from Tel Aviv following the upgrading of diplomatic relations last year between Morocco and Israel. Israel and Morocco agreed last December to upgrade diplomatic ties and relaunch direct

At least 125 dead as heavy rain in India triggers floods, landslides

MUMBAI: Rescue teams in India struggled through thick sludge and debris on Saturday to reach dozens of submerged homes as the death toll from landslides and accidents caused by torrential monsoon rain rose to 125. Maharashtra state is being hit

China imposes sanctions on former US commerce secretary

BEIJING: China has imposed counter-sanctions on US individuals including former US commerce secretary Wilbur Ross in response to recent sanctions on Chinese officials in Hong Kong. The sanctions are the first imposed by China under its new anti-foreign sanction law

Biden approves $100 million emergency funds for Afghan refugees

WASHINGTON: US President Joe Biden has authorised up to $100 million from an emergency fund to meet “unexpected urgent” refugee needs arising from the situation in Afghanistan, including for Afghan special immigration visa applicants, the White House said. Biden also

Chinese Xi Jinping visits Tibet for first time as president

BEIJING (Reuters): China’s President Xi Jinping visited the Tibet Autonomous Region, according to the official Xinhua news agency, in his first recorded visit as leader of the nation. Xi flew into the city of Nyingchi on Wednesday and took a

China rejects WHO plan for second phase of COVID-19 origins study

BEIJING: China today (Thursday) rejected a World Health Organization (WHO) plan for a second phase of an investigation into the origin of the coronavirus, a top health official announced, after the possibility of the virus leaking from a Wuhan lab

France makes ‘controversial’ health pass compulsory for all events

PARIS: People in France wishing to go to the cinemas, museums, sporting events or other cultural venues will have to certify that they’ve either tested negative for COVID, or have been fully vaccinated against it, by producing a so-called health

Afghanistan’s end game not yet written: Top US General

WASHINGTON: Taliban are propagating “inevitable victory” in Afghanistan with control over early 212 district centres, said a top US general, adding that the “end game” is yet to be written in the war-torn country. Addressing at a press briefing at

Twelve dead in flooded subway as severe rainstorms lash Central China

BEIJING: Twelve people died after torrential rains flooded a subway in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou, as shocking images showed passengers struggling against chest-high water inside a train carriage. As dams burst and river embankments were breached in record

BJP-led govt involved in spying on Indian opposition leaders, ministers

NEW DELHI: The Indian BJP-led government is involved in spying on opposition leaders, ministers, and Supreme Court judges, prompting voices from the Indian Parliament. According to details, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi lost the trust of the people, politicians, opposition

Eid al-Azha being celebrated in different countries across world

RIYADH: Pilgrims have reached Mina valley after spending the night in Muzdalifah while Eid-ul-Azha is being celebrated in other countries including Saudi Arabia today. According to the details, the pilgrims spent last night in Muzdalifah to perform Hajj and reached

Taliban should end ‘occupation’ in Afghanistan: Turkish President

ISTANBUL: Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has warned the Taliban and urged that they should end the occupation of their brothers’ soil. The Turkish president played down a warning from the Taliban of consequences if Turkish troops remain in Afghanistan to

Hajj Sermon: Prophet (SAWW) asked people not to visit plague-affected areas, says Saudi Imam

ARAFAT: Imam-e-Kaaba Sheikh Bandar Bin Abdulaziz Balila in the Hajj sermon urged people to follow Prophet’s (SAWW) teachings regarding pandemics, saying that Prophet (SAWW) had asked people not to visit plague-affected areas. “The Holy Prophet (SAWW) said people should not

Holy Kaaba receives new Kiswa to commemorate Eid al-Azha

SAUDI ARABIA: In the holiest city of Makkah, under the orders of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, about 200 Saudi craftsmen were engaged in producing the black curtain at King Abdulaziz Complex for Holy Kaaba Kiswa. According to

Taliban leader ‘favours political settlement’ in Afghanistan

KABUL: The Taliban’s supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada on Sunday said he “strenuously favours” a political settlement to the conflict in Afghanistan even though the hardline movement has launched a sweeping offensive across the nation. The announcement comes as representatives of

Hajj rituals begin with arrival of pilgrims amid restrictions

MAKKAH: The annual five-day-long hajj rituals have commenced in Saudi Arabia with only a few thousand people gathered there. Pilgrims began arriving in Makkah on Saturday morning. The rituals will begin today (Sunday) with the arrival of pilgrims in Mina. 

Russia offered US use of Central Asia bases for Afghan operations: Report

MOSCOW: President Vladimir Putin in June offered US counterpart Joe Biden the use of Russian military bases in Central Asia for information gathering from Afghanistan, a Russian newspaper reported as American troops leave the country. Taliban fighters have made major

‘Hollywood Ripper’ sentenced to death for murdering two women in California

LOS ANGELES: A California judge sentenced a man nicknamed the “Hollywood Ripper” to death for the home-invasion murders of two women in the early 2000s, one of whom was preparing to go on a date with actor Ashton Kutcher. Los

UK health minister Sajid Javid tests positive for COVID-19

LONDON: British health minister Sajid Javid said he had tested positive for COVID-19, but added that his symptoms were mild and he was thankful to have had two doses of vaccine against the disease. Javid, who has been health secretary

Death toll rises to 170 in Germany and Belgium floods

MUNICH: The death toll in devastating flooding in western Germany and Belgium rose to at least 170 on Saturday after burst rivers and flash floods this week collapsed houses and ripped up roads and power lines. Some 143 people died

Afghan leaders meet Taliban negotiators in Qatar as fighting rages

DOHA: Representatives of the Afghan government and the Taliban met in Doha for high-stakes negotiations today (Saturday), as violence rages in the country with foreign forces almost entirely withdrawn. Several high-ranking officials, including former president Hamid Karzai and former chief

At least 120 dead and dozens missing in Europe floods

(REUTERS): At least 120 people have died in Germany and dozens have gone missing after “catastrophic” floods swept through western regions. Record rainfall caused rivers to burst their banks, devastating the region. In Germany, where the death toll now stands

Hajj rituals to start from today

MECCA: Hajj rituals in Saudi Arabia will start from today the pilgrims from all over the world will start performing rites. Pilgrims will begin to arrive in the Muslim holy city of Mecca on Saturday for the second downsized hajj

Saudi Arabia allows shops to remain open during prayer times

RIYADH: Shops in Saudi Arabia may now stay open during prayer times, a leading government-linked newspaper said, relaxing the strict rules on closing shops and businesses for prayer five times a day. It is the latest in a series of

Afghan leaders leave for Doha to revive stalled peace talks

KABUL: A delegation of Afghan political leaders led by top peace official Abdullah Abdullah left for Qatar on Friday to attempt to breathe life into stalled talks with the Taliban as violence escalates around the country. Abdullah, head of the

Eiffel Tower reopens after eight months closure

PARIS: The Eiffel Tower reopened on Friday after an eight-month shutdown because of the COVID-19 pandemic, its longest closure since World War Two. As a countdown clock at the foot of the tower turned to zero, there were cheers and

Pakistan, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and US create new diplomatic platform

WASHINGTON: The United States, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Uzbekistan have formed a new diplomatic platform to support peace and stability in Afghanistan and foster regional trade and business ties. “The parties consider long-term peace and stability in Afghanistan critical to regional

Pulitzer winning journalist killed in Afghanistan’s Spin Boldak

SPIN BOLDAK: Reuters journalist Danish Siddiqui, a Pulitzer Prize winner, was killed today (Friday) while covering a clash between Afghan security forces and Taliban in Kandahar province. Siddiqui had been embedded as a journalist since earlier this week with Afghan

At least 44 dead, dozens missing in Western Europe floods

(REUTERS): At least 42 people have died in Germany and dozens were missing as swollen rivers caused by record rainfall across western Europe swept through towns and villages, leaving cars upended and houses destroyed. According to details, eighteen people died

Hijab can be banned at work under certain conditions, top EU court rules

(REUTERS): Private employers in the EU can ban people from wearing religious symbols, including headscarves, the bloc’s highest court said in a ruling on two cases brought by women in Germany who were suspended from their jobs for wearing one.