Islamic State holds up Iraqi army south of Mosul
By Babak Dehghanpisheh and Maher Chmaytelli QAYYARA/BAGHDAD, Iraq (Reuters) - Islamic State fighters on Wednesday kept up their fierce defense of the southern approaches to Mosul which has held up Iraqi troops on the southern front and forced an elite army unit east of the city to put its more rapid advance on hold. Ten days into the offensive, Iraqi army and federal police units are trying to dislodge the militants from villages in the region of Shora, 30 km (20 miles) south of Iraq's second largest city. The frontlines in other areas have moved much closer to the edges of Mosul, the last major city under control of the militants in Iraq, who have held it since 2014.
Hong Kong murder accused Jutting 'deeply addicted to cocaine'
British banker Rurik Jutting who is accused of murdering two Indonesian women in his upscale Hong Kong apartment was a cocaine addict who had developed drug-induced fantasies, a court heard Wednesday. Since the trial started Monday, jurors have viewed harrowing iPhone footage of Jutting torturing his first victim, Sumarti Ningsih, 23, for three days before he killed her by cutting her neck with a serrated knife at his apartment two years ago. Days later, he killed Seneng Mujiasih, 26, cutting her throat.
Despite ratings drop, Olympics boosts Comcast in 3Q
Comcast's profit rose 12 percent in the July-September quarter thanks to the Olympics and the first third-quarter gains in video subscribers in a decade. NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke has said that the ...
Oil price declines weigh on European markets
Mixed results from the continent's banking sector and losses in the mining sector pushed the pan-European STOXX 600 index down 0.6 percent. The losses came after oil prices fell 1.18 percent on Wednesday as investors grew increasingly doubtful that OPEC members will agree to cut output and as U.S. inventories staged a surprisingly large increase. The market is starting to question whether the OPEC agreement reached a couple of weeks ago is really as solid as originally thought," Investec economist Ryan Djajasaputra said.
Philippine, Japanese leaders sign military, economic deals
TOKYO (AP) ? The leaders of Japan and the Philippines agreed Wednesday to cooperate in promoting regional peace and stability and endorsed Japan's provision of patrol boats and military training aircraft to bolster Philippine maritime security, without discussing their alliances with the U.S., whose relationship with Manila has quickly become strained.
AP Explains: Why African states have started leaving the ICCJOHANNESBURG (AP) ? Until last week, no country had withdrawn from the International Criminal Court. Now, three African states ? South Africa, Burundi and Gambia ? have made official decisions to leave. Gambia announced its decision late Tuesday. Concerns are high that more African countries now will act on years of threats to pull out amid accusations that the court unfairly focuses on the continent. Here's a look at what it all means.
Global stocks hit by gloom on Wall Street, lower oil prices
Gambia says it is leaving International Criminal Court
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) ? A third African country, Gambia, says it will leave the International Criminal Court as fears grow of a mass pullout from the body that pursues some of the world's worst atrocities.
National Geographic 'Afghan girl' arrested in Pakistan
An Afghan woman immortalised on a celebrated National Geographic magazine cover as a green-eyed 12-year-old girl was arrested Wednesday for living in Pakistan on fraudulent identity papers. The haunting image of Sharbat Gula, taken in a Pakistan refugee camp by photographer Steve McCurry in the 1980s, became the most famous cover image in the magazine's history. Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) arrested Gul for fraud following a two-year investigation in the northwestern city of Peshawar, the capital of restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan.
Police: Oklahoma man wanted for violent crimes had hit list
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) ? Authorities say the Oklahoma man who has been wanted since Sunday in a string of violent crimes, including the killings of two relatives, had a hit list purporting to target several more people.