Lapid, Netanyahu visit Arab town targeted in latest price tag attack, slam attacks; Lapid: They aren’t patriots or Zionists, they are only criminals.
Saudi health authorities announced Wednesday two new deaths from the MERS coronavirus in the kingdom, where 16 more infections were also detected. A 41-year-old man in the northwestern city of Tabuk and an 88-year-old in Riyadh died of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, bringing to 107 the total deaths since the disease appeared in the kingdom in September 2012, the health ministry said. Public concern over the spread of MERS mounted earlier this month after the resignation of at least four doctors at Jeddah's King Fahd Hospital who refused to treat patients for fear of infection. Acting health minister Adel Fakieh said Tuesday that measures to contain the spread of MERS "will be announced in the coming days" as Western experts and representatives of the World Health Organisation met in Riyadh this week.
By Mark Hosenball WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States said on Wednesday that while al Qaeda's Pakistan-based "core organization" had been severely degraded, affiliates of the militant group in Africa and the Middle East were becoming more "operationally autonomous" and aggressive. The State Department said in its annual global report on terrorism that the central organization of al Qaeda, under the leadership of Ayman al Zawahiri, had been "much diminished" by international efforts and had lost many of its senior leaders. But the report said instability and weak governments in the Middle East and North Africa had enabled al Qaeda affiliates and like-minded groups to "broaden and deepen their operations" in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, North Africa and Somalia.
Two years ago a light fixture collapsed during preparations for Israel’s Independence Day ceremony on Mt. Herzl, killing a 20-year-old female soldier; now those behind accident set to face trial.
NEW YORK (AP) — General Electric inched closer to buying the energy-related businesses of France's Alstom by making a $16.9 billion bid, but rival offers and the concerns of French politicians may hold up or scuttle the deal.
By Suleiman Al-Khalidi AZRAQ, Jordan (Reuters) – Across the desert horizon of eastern Jordan rows of iron skeleton structures rise from the sand, marking what the United Nations says could become the biggest camp for Syrian refugees in the Middle East. Azraq refugee camp, 100 km (62 miles) east of the capital Amman, was formally opened on Wednesday after 10 months of work paving tarmac roads and constructing thousands of zinc and metal shelters that will ultimately be able to host 130,000 residents. In planning the sprawling 15-square-km site, donors sought to avoid the pitfalls of Jordan’s first camp at Zaatari, hastily opened two years ago in a dust-filled border zone where poor services and mismanagement provoked violent protests. “What you are seeing when you drive around is possibly one of the best planned refugee camps in the world and probably what will be one of the biggest refugee camps in the world,” UNHCR’s Jordan representative, Andrew Harper, told donors and government officials attending the opening ceremony.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A surge in the number of aggressive al-Qaida affiliates and like-minded groups the Middle East and North Africa poses a serious threat to U.S. interests and allies, the State Department said Wednesday in reporting a more than 40 percent increase in terrorist attacks worldwide between 2012 and 2013.
By Justyna Pawlak BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Senior diplomats from six world powers met in Brussels on Wednesday to fine-tune negotiating strategy towards Iran with talks on its contested nuclear program entering a crunch stretch before a July 20 deadline. The six – the United States, Russia, China, France, Britain and Germany – and Iran plan in mid-May to start drafting the key elements of a broad settlement to the nuclear dispute, with the hope of putting an end to a decade of tensions that have heightened the risk of a wider Middle East war. Diplomats have signaled some progress may have been made during three rounds of talks since February on one of the most thorny issues – the future of Iran's planned Arak heavy-water reactor, which Western states worry could prove a source of plutonium for nuclear bombs once operational. Broadly, they want to ensure the program is curtailed enough so that it would take Iran a long time to assemble nuclear bomb components if it chose to do so.