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Jihadis destroy ancient mosque

BAGHDAD (AP) — Residents of the Iraqi city of Mosul say Islamic extremist militants have blown up a revered Muslim shrine traditionally said to be the burial place of the Prophet Jonah.

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Israeli fire hits UN facility in Gaza, killing 15

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israeli tank shells hit a compound housing a U.N. school in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, killing at least 15 people and wounding dozens who were seeking shelter from fierce clashes on the streets outside, Palestinian officials said, as Israel pressed forward with its 17-day war against the territory's Hamas rulers.

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Israeli soldier missing as Gaza fighting rages on

JERUSALEM — An Israeli soldier is missing following a deadly battle in the Gaza Strip, a defense official said Tuesday, as Israeli airstrikes pummeled a wide range of locations along the coastal area and diplomatic efforts intensified to end the two week war that has killed more than 600 Palestinians and 29 Israelis.

Unease in Congress, region over Obama Afghan plan

WASHINGTON — Afghanistan’s disputed election and Iraq’s unraveling are giving members of Congress and U.S. allies in the region reason to think President Barack should rethink his decision to withdraw virtually all Americans troops from Afghanistan by the close of 2016.

Ukraine says Russia helping destroy crash evidence

HRABOVE, Ukraine — Ukraine accused Russia on Saturday of helping separatist rebels destroy evidence at the crash site of a Malaysia Airlines plane shot down in rebel-held territory — a charge the rebels denied.

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Who is to blame? Crash investigators face struggle

LONDON (AP) — To figure out why a Malaysian jetliner fell from the sky, investigators will use the wreckage of any missile found to determine where it came from and who fired it, experts said Friday. That may be easier said than done in the middle of a war zone.

Separatist rebels deny shooting down airliner

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Separatist rebels in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk have denied that they are responsible for shooting down a Malaysia Airlines passenger plane.

Putin: US sanctions hurt bilateral ties, US firms

MOSCOW (AP) — President Vladimir Putin on Thursday lamented the latest round of U.S. sanctions against Russia, saying they will stalemate bilateral relations and hurt not only Russian but also American businesses.

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Families tell of horrors at raided Mexican shelter

ZAMORA, Mexico— Relatives of youths rescued by police from a refuse-strewn group home where employees allegedly beat and raped residents are telling of how they tried to remove their loved ones, only to be met with demands for thousands of dollars for their release.

Noisy Gypsy removal backfires

BRUSSELS (AP) — A plan by a Belgian mayor to remove a group of Gypsies by playing loud music backfired when the camping cars stayed put and the children danced to the music.

Typhoon slams into Philippines; thousands evacuate

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A typhoon slammed into the northeastern Philippines late Tuesday night, flooding low-lying villages, ripping off roofs and knocking down trees and electric posts in a disaster-prone region where tens of thousands of people fled to safety ahead of the deluge.

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Egyptian truce plan unravels after new fighting

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — An Egyptian truce proposal for the conflict in Gaza quickly unraveled Tuesday, after the Islamic militant Hamas rejected the plan, Gaza militants fired scores of rockets at Israel and Israel responded with more than a dozen air strikes.

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Israeli bombing turns Gaza into ghost town

GAZA CITY, Gaza — It’s the holy month of Ramadan, when people throughout the Muslim world meet with friends and family, buy presents for loved ones and break a day-long fast each evening amid colorful street scenes.

Over 100 killed in Gaza as rockets fall on Israel

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Palestinian death toll from Israel’s massive air campaign in Gaza topped 100 people Friday as rockets fired by militants reached deeper into Israel — and for the first time in the fighting, struck from neighboring Lebanon.

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Iraqi Kurds take over two oil fields

BAGHDAD — Kurdish security forces took over two major oil fields outside the disputed northern city of Kirkuk before dawn Friday, Iraq’s Oil Ministry said, the latest move in a deepening a dispute with the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Oil Ministry spokesman Assem Jihad denounced the takeover of the Bai Hassan and Kirkuk oil fields as “a violation to the constitution” and warned that it poses “a threat to national unity.” He said Kurdish troops moved in and expelled local workers from the two sites. The seizure of the fields could accelerate the unraveling of already worsening relations between the Kurdish autonomy zone in the north and Iraq’s central government. The spat is one of the ripple effects of the Sunni militant offensive that overran much of northern and western Iraq last month, plunging the country into its worst crisis since the last U.S. troops left in 2011.

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