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Middle East

A screen grab from an Islamic State propaganda video shows men about to launch a drone.<br>

Use of 'weaponized' drones by Islamic State spurs terrorism fears

Two years after the Islamic State first used commercially purchased drones to conduct surveillance, the militants are showing a growing ambition to use the technology to kill enemies, U.S. officials and terrorism experts say. The threat to troops is serious enough to prompt U.S. and Iraqi commanders to issue warnings to troops near the front lines.


Syria peace talks resume, but Assad is in the driver's seat

No one is expecting much progress when United Nations-brokered talks on Syria resume on Thursday in Geneva. Given such pessimism, here are a few key points when considering Syria's future prospects.


Analysis

New anti-Islamic State plan could change US strategy in Syria

President Donald Trump's developing plan to defeat the Islamic State may lead to significant alterations in the Syria strategy that Trump inherited from Barack Obama, including a reduction or elimination of both long-standing U.S. support for moderate opposition forces fighting against the Syrian government and the use of Syrian Kurdish fighters as the main U.S. proxy force against the militants.


How Israel became a leader in cybersecurity and surveillance

srael, with a population of just 8 million people, has become a powerhouse in cybersecurity. Only the United States has greater strength in the field.

Jordan hands 15-year prison terms for 8 in alleged Islamic State plots

Jordan's state security court has sentenced eight men to 15-year prison terms for involvement in alleged plans by the extremist Islamic State group to attack a military airport, military personnel, foreign aircraft and foreign embassies in the kingdom.


Pakistani official: Explosion kills 8 in city of Lahore

Explosives in a building under construction ignited Thursday, ripping through a market in an upscale neighborhood in the eastern city of Lahore, killing eight people, officials said. It was not immediately clear whether the explosives were meant to be a bomb or were merely stored in the building.


3 Indian soldiers, Kashmir woman killed during rebel attack

Three Indian soldiers and a woman were killed when rebels ambushed soldiers in the disputed region of Kashmir, police said Thursday.


middle east bureau

Pentagon: US troops under fire in battle for Mosul

U.S. troops embedded with Iraqi forces have been engaged in combat as they move closer to the front lines in the battle for Mosul, the spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve said Wednesday.



Pentagon: US troops under fire in battle for Mosul

U.S. troops embedded with Iraqi forces have been engaged in combat as they move closer to the front lines in the battle for Mosul, the spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve said Wednesday.


ANALYSIS

Iraqi suicide bomber was former Gitmo detainee

A suicide bomber who attacked a military base in Iraq this week was a former Guantanamo Bay detainee freed in 2004 after Britain lobbied for his release, raising questions about the ability of security services to track the whereabouts of potential terrorists.


Away from Iraq's front lines, the Islamic State is creeping back in

The Islamic State is nearing defeat on the battlefield, but away from the front lines its members are seeping back into areas the group once controlled, taking advantage of rampant corruption in Iraq's security forces and institutions.

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