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Huge wildfire rages in Chile national park

A massive forest fire raged out of control Friday in southern Chile, forcing the closure of a famed national park after destroying thousands of hectares of pristine Patagonian steppe. High winds fanned the huge blaze at the Torres del Paine National Park, where Chilean President Sebastian Pinera said 8,500 hectares…

Syria forces use ‘nail bombs’ on protesters

Syrian forces fired nail bombs to disperse tens of thousands of protesters Friday in the Damascus suburb of Douma and the demonstrators retaliated with stones, activists said. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 24 protesters were hurt when the security forces fired the “nail bombs to…

Jamaica opposition wins election in landslide

Jamaica’s leading opposition People’s National Party has won a landslide election in a vote driven by concerns about crime, corruption and poverty on the picturesque Caribbean island. Preliminary results late Thursday indicated the left-leaning party had won 41 out of 63 constituencies, giving it a resounding majority and showing the…

Russian nuclear submarine fire put out

Firefighters have put out a blaze on the exterior of a Russian nuclear submarine that broke out during repairs in the northern Murmansk region, a minister said Friday. “The fire has been liquidated. There is no burning,” Emergency Situations Minister Sergei Shoigu told a meeting of officials, adding radiation monitoring…

Orthodox Israeli charged with insulting woman soldier

JERUSALEM — An orthodox Jew was charged with sexual harassment on Thursday after a young Israeli woman soldier was verbally abused for refusing to sit at the back of a bus, a judicial source said. Shlomo Fuchs, a 44-year-old father, was charged for allegedly insulting the soldier several times, including…

Rights groups urge Egypt to free jailed blogger

GENEVA — Thirty rights groups and activists united on Thursday in a call for Egypt to release a jailed blogger who has been staging a hunger strike since August. A military court sentenced Michael Nabil, 26, to three years in prison in April for insulting the armed forces on his…

U.S. sends ‘strong message’ with Saudi fighter deal

HONOLULU, Hawaii — The United States announced Thursday the signing of a $30 billion arms deal to provide Saudi Arabia with 84 new fighter jets, a move it said sent a “strong message” to the Gulf region. The announcement came with tensions between Iran and the United States on the…

Gunman kills two foreign aid workers in Mogadishu attack

MOGADISHU — A gunman killed two foreign aid workers after opening fire at a Doctors Without Borders compound in Mogadishu on Thursday, police and medics said. Somali security forces arrested the man, a witness told AFP, while a police officer identified him as a Somali employee with Medicins Sans Frontieres…

Taliban ringtones become social camouflage for some in Afghanistan

A new cottage industry has sprung up in Afghanistan: ringtones. But it’s not just any ringtones. According to a report this week by The Wall Street Journal, merchants are loading some of the favorite songs of the Taliban onto phones, which are being used as a form of social camouflage…

Egypt police raid NGOs in foreign funds probe

Egyptian police raided more than a dozen offices belonging to local and foreign rights groups on Thursday, as part of an investigation into alleged illicit foreign funding, an official statement said. At least two US rights groups — the National Democratic Institute (NDI) and the International Republican Institute (IRI) —…

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