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Middle East

In this June 3, 2011, file photo, the Pentagon is seen from air from Air Force One.<br>Charles Dharapak/AP

Pentagon to deploy another 900 troops to Middle East, extend Patriot missile battalion amid tensions with Iran

The Pentagon will send another 900 troops to the Middle East in the coming weeks in a move meant to bolster security for U.S. troops in the region amid heightening tensions with Iran, the Defense Department announced Friday.


In letter to Guterres, Yemen's president says UN envoy undermines chances for peace

Yemen's internationally recognized president sent a letter to the U.N. secretary-general criticizing his envoy to the war-torn Arab country over allegedly siding with Iran-aligned Houthi rebels, the president's office said Friday.


US following deportation case of rights activist in Israel

The U.S. State Department says it is closely following Israel's case against the local director of Human Rights Watch, who faces deportation under a law barring entry to those who have publicly supported a boycott of Israel or its West Bank settlements.


Pakistan official: Bomb at Quetta mosque kills 2, wounds 28

A bombing Friday at a mosque in the Pakistani city of Quetta, the capital of restive Baluchistan province, killed two people, including the prayer leader, and wounded 28 worshippers, officials said.

Supporters of Iraqi Shiite cleric hold sit-ins against war

Thousands of supporters of an Iraqi populist Shiite cleric held sit-ins around Iraq on Friday night, saying their country should not be a battlefield between the United States and Iran.


ANALYSIS

Faced with relentless American pressure, Iran starts to hit back

Iran has made a dramatic shift in how it confronts the United States, abandoning a policy of restraint in recent weeks for a series of offensive actions aimed at pushing the White House to rethink its efforts at isolating Tehran, say diplomats and analysts.


Syrian Kurds accuse Putin of failing them as US role fades

A senior Kurdish official said Russia has let Syrian Kurds down by failing to support their autonomy and by negotiating a behind-the-scenes deal with Turkey.



Afghanistan envoy briefs skeptical lawmakers on peace talks

Lawmakers were tight-lipped as they left the classified meeting with special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, but the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Republican Jim Risch of Idaho, says he believes Khalilzad is making progress.


Car bomb kills 2 in western Iraqi village near Syrian border

An Iraqi security official says a car bomb has exploded in a western village near the Syrian border, killing two people and wounding two others.


Northwest Syria fighting damages schools, health facilities

Bombings by Syrian government forces damaged two schools and a health facility in the rebels' last stronghold in the northwest, activists said Thursday, after insurgents successfully hit a power station in a government-held town.

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