World mourns loss of Kofi Annan

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(Geneva) - There was an outpouring of condolences from leaders around the world after the death of former UN Secretary General and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Kofi Annan. Here are some of the tributes: - United Nations - Current UN…

More than two million Muslims begin hajj pilgrimage

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(Makkah) - More than two million Muslims from around the globe started the hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, one of the world´s largest annual gatherings in a country undergoing unprecedented change. The ultra-conservative kingdom -- where…

Kerala death toll rises to 357

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(Kerala) - The death toll from the worst flooding to hit India's Kerala state in a century has jumped to 357, authorities said, with losses to infrastructure estimated at some $3 billion. "Since May 29, when the monsoon starts in Kerala,…

30 dead in Italy motorway bridge collapse tragedy

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(Genoa) - About 30 people were killed when a giant motorway bridge collapsed in heavy rain in the Italian city of Genoa in what the government called an "immense tragedy". The collapse, which saw a vast stretch of the A10 freeway tumble on…

Saudi FM meets with EU Ambassadors

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(Riyadh) - Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubair met with ambassadors of the European Union countries accredited to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. During the meeting, they discussed developments and cooperation between…

Erdogan tells Turks to buy crumbling lira

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(Istanbul) - President Tayyip Erdogan told Turks to sell their gold and U.S. dollars to support the country´s currency which plunged after U. S. President Donald Trump escalated a feud with NATO ally Turkey by doubling tariffs on metals imports.…

662,051 pilgrims arrive in Saudi Arabia

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(Jeddah) - A total of 662,051 foreign pilgrims have arrived in Saudi Arabia till now, a six percent increase of 39,714 Hajj from the corresponding period last year, according to the Saudi General Directorate of Passports. Of this number,…

UN holds consultations on Syria in Russia

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(Geneva) - The United Nations chaired informal consultations with senior representatives of Iran, Russia and Turkey, during the Astana-format meeting in Sochi, Russian Federation. In a statement issued in Geneva by the office of the UN Special…

Chile enacts historic ban on plastic bags

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(Santiago) - Chile made history when it became the first country in Latin America to ban the commercial use of plastic bags. "I want to share with you the joy that as of today we´re enacting the law," said President Sebastian Pinera at a…

World Bank, Afghanistan sign grant agreements

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(Kabul) - World Bank and Afghanistan signed a new package of grant agreements in support of reforms valued at $350 million. The reforms are designed to improve efficiency and effectiveness in government operations for better revenue mobilization…

UN chief calls for increased protection for human trafficking victims

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(New York) - The UN Secretary-General has called on governments to step up efforts to protect children, women and men - especially migrants - who fall prey to traffickers across the world. In a statement marking World Day Against Trafficking…

Turkey approves security law after state of emergency lifted

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(Istanbul) - Turkey´s parliament approved all articles of a security law to continue fighting against terrorism after a two-year-old state of emergency, imposed after a failed coup, was lifted last week. The law will grant broader authority…

Record high in deadly Japan heatwave

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(Tokyo) - Temperatures in Japan have hit a record high, with officials issuing a fresh warning to stay safe. Japan has for days been in the grip of a deadly heatwave, although the numbers reported killed vary widely from 15 to as high as…

Grand Imam of Al-Azhar meets Tony Blair

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(London) - Dr. Ahmed Al-Tayyeb, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar and Chairman of the Muslim Council of Elders, met Tony Blair, former prime minister of Britain and Chairman of the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, at his residence in London. At…