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Hezbollah militants to leave Beirut streets

Hezbollah militants will leave Beirut's streets in response to the Lebanese army's assuming security in the city, an opposition spokesman said Saturday, but "civil disobedience" will continue.

Militant rockets from Gaza land in Israel

Palestinian militants fired eight rockets into Israel early Saturday from Gaza, the Israeli military said.

Kurdish rebels reportedly killed in Turkey airstrikes

The Turkish military launched airstrikes on Kurdish rebel positions in southeastern Turkey on Friday evening, killing 19 rebels, the military said.

Agency: Millions more in aid needed for Iraqi refugees

Hundreds of thousands of displaced Iraqis may have to go without food or health care unless foreign aid increases, the U.N. refugee agency said Friday.

Hezbollah militants take over West Beirut

Hezbollah militias took control of western Beirut on Friday, dealing a major blow to the U.S.-backed government in Lebanon.

Israel at 60: Timeline

Rivals: Israeli PM must quit over 'bribes'

Ehud Olmert's political opponents demanded his resignation Friday, saying new allegations that the Israeli prime minister illegally accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars from a U.S. citizen render him unfit for the country's top job.

U.S. says al Qaeda in Iraq leader not captured

The U.S. military in Iraq denied widespread reports Friday that trumpeted the capture of a top Iraqi insurgent leader.

Gun battles break out in Beirut

Gun fire broke out in downtown Beirut on Thursday after Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said recent government actions amount to "a declaration of open war."

Al Qaeda in Iraq leader not captured - U.S.

Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the head of al Qaeda in Iraq, has not been captured, a senior U.S. military official told CNN on Friday.

Hezbollah militants to leave Beirut streets

Hezbollah militants will leave Beirut's streets in response to the Lebanese army's assuming security in the city, an opposition spokesman said Saturday, but "civil disobedience" will continue.

Militant rockets from Gaza land in Israel

Palestinian militants fired eight rockets into Israel early Saturday from Gaza, the Israeli military said.

Kurdish rebels reportedly killed in Turkey airstrikes

The Turkish military launched airstrikes on Kurdish rebel positions in southeastern Turkey on Friday evening, killing 19 rebels, the military said.

Agency: Millions more in aid needed for Iraqi refugees

Hundreds of thousands of displaced Iraqis may have to go without food or health care unless foreign aid increases, the U.N. refugee agency said Friday.

Hezbollah militants take over West Beirut

Hezbollah militias took control of western Beirut on Friday, dealing a major blow to the U.S.-backed government in Lebanon.

Israel at 60: Timeline

Rivals: Israeli PM must quit over 'bribes'

Ehud Olmert's political opponents demanded his resignation Friday, saying new allegations that the Israeli prime minister illegally accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars from a U.S. citizen render him unfit for the country's top job.

U.S. says al Qaeda in Iraq leader not captured

The U.S. military in Iraq denied widespread reports Friday that trumpeted the capture of a top Iraqi insurgent leader.

Gun battles break out in Beirut

Gun fire broke out in downtown Beirut on Thursday after Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said recent government actions amount to "a declaration of open war."

Al Qaeda in Iraq leader not captured - U.S.

Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the head of al Qaeda in Iraq, has not been captured, a senior U.S. military official told CNN on Friday.

U.S. agrees to EU's Iran nuclear plan

The United States has signed off on a European plan that would offer increased incentives for Iran to suspend its uranium enrichment program, senior State Department officials said Thursday.

Clash, crash-landing mar Israel's 60th birthday party

A clash between Arab protesters and police, and a paratrooper's crash-landing during a ceremonial jump marred Israel's 60th independence day festivities Thursday.

Al Qaeda in Iraq leader reportedly arrested

The leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Ayyub al-Masri, was arrested in the northern city of Mosul, the Iraqi Defense Ministry spokesman said Thursday.

Police investigate whether Israeli PM received money illegally

Police are investigating whether Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert received money illegally while he was mayor of Jerusalem and the nation's minister of industry, trade and labor.

Baghdad stadium to shelter Iraqis fleeing Sadr City danger

A top official in Baghdad said the capital's biggest stadium is one of three locations being prepared for residents fleeing Baghdad's Sadr City, where Iraqi and U.S. forces have been fighting Shiite militants for weeks.

Iran: Britain, U.S. helped mosque bombers

Iran has once again switched its account of what caused a mosque explosion last month that killed 13 and wounded more than 200.

Israel marks 60 years amid hopes, doubts

A Jewish astronaut greets Israel from space. Revelers try to set a record for the most people singing a national anthem. To celebrate turning 60, Israel is staging fireworks, air force flyovers and a birthday bash for anyone born on the day the Jewish state was founded.

People to know in the Middle East

Middle East map

Strike is paused as labor protest paralyzes Beirut

Labor union members and anti-government Hezbollah supporters blocked roads with mounds of sand and burning tires Wednesday to demand higher salaries for public workers, protests that paralyzed the airport and much of the capital.

Pentagon: Ex-detainees returning to fight

A Kuwaiti man released from U.S. custody at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in 2005 blew himself up in a suicide attack in Iraq last month, Pentagon officials said Wednesday.

3,500 U.S. troops to head home from Iraq

A "surge" brigade deployed to Iraq last year is heading back to the United States, the U.S. military said Monday.

Proposed Iraqi law could blunt anti-U.S. cleric's power

A proposed election law could hurt the popular political movement of anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr -- whose Mehdi Army militia followers have been battling U.S. and Iraqi troops in Baghdad's Sadr City.

Foreign witness may be deposed in Israeli leader probe

Authorities continue to investigate Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and a former top aide, and a court said Tuesday it may question a foreign national in connection with the probe.

Iran: No talks until U.S. stops Iraq attacks

An Iranian official says the government wants the United States to stop its "savage attacks" in Iraq before its envoys hold more talks with U.S. and Iraqi officials, Iran's Fars News Agency reported.

Shiite Muslims clash with Yemeni troops; more than 20 dead

A third day of fighting between Shiite Muslim militants and government troops in northwestern Yemen killed more than 20 people Sunday, government and rebel officials reported.

Rice: Mideast peace deal possible by end of year

Laying the groundwork for President Bush's upcoming trip to the Middle East, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Sunday a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians can be reached by the year's end.

Attack on Iraqi first lady's convoy wounds soldiers, civilians

A bomb detonated near the Iraqi first lady's motorcade in downtown Baghdad on Sunday, wounding soldiers and at least two civilians, but the president's wife escaped without injury, officials said.

3 boys killed in Iraq airstrike, companion says

Three Iraq boys were killed in an airstrike in eastern Baghdad on Saturday as they were sifting through trash, looking for stuff to sell, said a 10-year-old boy wounded in the attack.

Iran denies militia backing in Iraq

An Iraqi delegation that arrived in Tehran on Wednesday confronted Iranian officials with "evidence" that Iran is smuggling weapons and explosive devices into Iraq and training Iraqi militants, charges that the Iranians vehemently denied, an Iraqi politician said Saturday.

Violence in Yemen after mosque blast

The government of Yemen dispatched troops and artillery to the city of Saada on Saturday after violence involving Shiite militants left 18 people dead and 48 others injured over a 24-hour period, authorities said.

Imam decries militias, clashes in Sadr City

A top Iraqi political figure -- who also is an imam at a prominent Shiite mosque in the capital -- urged the abolition of militias Friday and decried violence and pervasive corruption in Baghdad's Sadr City.

Investigators clear Israeli air force in deaths of Gaza family

An Israeli military investigation has cleared its air force in Monday's deaths of a Palestinian mother and her four children, the Southern Command of the Israel Defense Forces said Friday.

Inside the Middle East -- May

Reports: Blast hits Yemen, several dead

An explosion rocked the entrance of a Yemeni city on Friday, causing several deaths and injuries, witnesses told CNN.

Mideast Quartet presses Israel over settlements

The Mideast Quartet -- four international entities seeking peace between Israel and the Palestinians -- expressed deep concern Friday over Israeli settlement in the West Bank and Palestinian militants' rocket attacks on Israeli towns.

Iraqi lawmakers confront Iran with 'evidence' of militia backing

Iraqi lawmakers were making a "brief" visit to Iran to confront officials there with "sufficient evidence of Iran's support for militias and outlaws in Iraq," Iraqi officials said Thursday.

UK rejects residency for bin Laden's son

One of Osama bin Laden's sons has been denied British residency because authorities believe his presence in the country would cause "considerable public concern," the man's wife said Thursday.

Palestinian president Abbas has operation

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is recovering Thursday after undergoing an angioplasty procedure Thursday at a Jordanian hospital, one of his aides told CNN.

Israeli forces kill Islamic Jihad chief, sources say

One person was killed and three were wounded Wednesday in an Israeli airstrike targeting a metal shop in Rafah, according to Palestinian security and medical sources.

Officials: Sadr City battles killed hundreds in April

The fighting that erupted in Baghdad's Sadr City last month has killed 925 people and wounded 2,605, a top government official said Wednesday.

Hussein's deputy on trial over executions

Court proceedings in the trial against Tariq Aziz, one of the best-known faces of Saddam Hussein's former regime in Iraq, and several co-defendants have ended after being in session only briefly Tuesday.

Ancient war booty finding its way back to Iraq

Stolen by smugglers and now returned to the cradle of civilization.

Iran to discuss pipeline with India, Pakistan

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad heads to Pakistan and India this week to put the finishing touches on a controversial deal to build a pipeline that would deliver Iranian gas to both countries, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency says.

Behind the Scenes: Walking amid 2,000 al Qaeda suspects

The inmates huddle below the barbed wire, looking up at the strangers who have arrived at the detention facility. They're dressed in bright yellow, almost fluorescent jumpsuits. There are 2,000 of them, described by the U.S. military as hard-core al Qaeda loyalists.

Sentencing judge condemns Hussein's execution

The judge who sentenced Saddam Hussein to death has condemned the manner in which the notorious dictator was executed.

Iranian official calls Barbie 'destructive'

A top Iranian judiciary official has warned against the "destructive" cultural and social consequences of importing Barbie dolls and other Western toys.

Saddam Hussein's deputy PM faces trial

He was the international face of Saddam Hussein's regime -- defending Iraq and taunting the West for more than a decade. Now, Tariq Aziz awaits an Iraqi court as the latest member of the Saddam's inner circle to face trial.

International Zone again under fire

Two mortars were fired Monday into Baghdad's heavily fortified International Zone where U.S. and Iraqi offices are based, Iraqi Interior Ministry officials told CNN. There was no word on casualties or damage.

Mideast violence kills mother, 4 children

Four Palestinian siblings ages 1 to 6 and their mother were killed Monday when Israeli tank shells hit their house, Palestinian medical and security sources said.

Palestinian family killed in shelling

An Israeli tank shell hit a Gaza home Monday, killing a Palestinian woman and four of her children as they prepared to sit down for breakfast, officials and relatives said.

Official: Female suicide bomber kills 3 at checkpoint in Iraq

A female suicide car bomber attacked an Iraqi security forces checkpoint in eastern Baghdad on Sunday, killing at least three Iraqis and wounding 14, an Interior Ministry official said.

Freed Saudi blogger: Teens mustn't become terrorists

Blogger Fouad al-Farhan said Sunday, the day after his release from a Saudi jail, that his four months in detention has given him a new focus.

Saudi blogger freed from jail, colleague says

A Saudi Arabian blogger detained in December, ostensibly because he supported reform advocates accused by the Saudi government of backing terrorism, has been released, a fellow blogger posted Saturday.

Suicide bombers, explosions rock Iraq

Three suicide bombers and a car bomb in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul on Saturday capped off a day of nationwide violence that left at least 15 people dead and 94 wounded, police and Iraqi officials said.

Palestinians: Hamas leader's child killed in Gaza raid

The daughter of a senior member of Hamas was killed and her two siblings and mother were wounded in an exchange of fire with Israel Defense Forces, who surrounded the house Saturday morning, Palestinian security forces said.

Conservatives claim Iran election win

Iranian conservatives have said they captured most of the 82 parliamentary seats up for grabs in Friday's runoff election.

Al-Sadr threatens 'open war' on 'occupiers,' not Iraq

Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr threatened "open war," against the American "occupiers" and not the Iraqi government, according to a letter read by a top aide during Friday prayers.

U.S. cargo ship fires warning shots in Persian Gulf, Navy says

A U.S.-contracted cargo ship fired warning shots in the Persian Gulf at two small patrol boats believed to be from Iran, U.S. Navy officials said Friday.

Voting under way in Iran parliamentary races

Iranians headed to the polls Friday to cast ballots in parliamentary runoff elections to decide 82 seats.

Hamas 'playing games' with truce, Israeli official says

An Israeli official says a Hamas proposal for a truce in the Gaza Strip is "not serious" and would only allow the hardline Islamic group to prepare for a new round of fighting.

Beating odds has different meaning for Iraqi disabled athletes

They competed on a dusty track this week as war ground on around them. Some were missing arms or legs while others were blind -- victims of relentless violence that has maimed an untold number of Iraqis in the past five years.

Syria, Israel reportedly in indirect talks

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad has been indirectly negotiating with Israel for a year, through Turkey, according to Arabic language newspaper published this week.

Death toll mounts in Baghdad battles

Battles between U.S.-backed Iraqi forces and militants raged overnight and into Thursday in two Baghdad neighborhoods, leaving at least 11 dead, an Interior Ministry official said.

Al-Maliki claims 'new phase' of unity in Iraq

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki told neighboring countries Tuesday that Iraq has moved past its internal divisions and "has entered a new phase" of unity.

Food, drugs run short in Sadr City, Red Cross says

Weeks of fighting in Baghdad's Sadr City neighborhood have destroyed the main market and isolated civilians from supplies of food and water, the International Committee of the Red Cross warned Wednesday.

Carter: Rice did not advise against Hamas meeting

Former President Carter very politely denied Wednesday that the secretary of state or anyone else in her department had warned him against meeting with Hamas leaders during his recent trip to the Middle East.

Al Qaeda No. 2: Attacks on Western nations in works

Al Qaeda still has plans to target Western countries involved in the Iraq war, Osama bin Laden's chief deputy warns in an audiotape released Tuesday to answer questions posed by followers.

Shiite cleric's followers ready to fight

Anti-U.S. Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's movement is "ready for all options" in a growing confrontation between his followers and the government of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, a spokesman said Monday.

Hamas: No plan to recognize Israel

After talks with former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, Hamas' exiled leader Khalid Meshaal said Monday the militant group has no plans to recognize Israel.

Israeli strikes kill Gaza militants; journalist's death draws protest

Israel carried out a series of airstrikes against armed Palestinians in northern Gaza late Saturday and early Sunday, according to an Israel Defense Forces spokeswoman. Hamas sources said five of its fighters were killed in the raids.

PM vows not to let Iraq become 'the new Somalia'

Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki is calling on political parties to unite against armed groups in Iraq, a spokesman said Sunday, warning that "Iraq cannot be the new Somalia."

Hamas claims second Carter meeting

Defying U.S. and Israeli warnings, former President Carter met again Saturday with the exiled leader of the militant Hamas group, the leader's deputy said.

Al Qaeda in Iraq calls for offensive against U.S.

A man claiming to be the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq mocked the death toll of American troops and urged his fighters to launch an offensive against U.S. forces in the next few weeks.

5 dead in Gaza car bombing, airstrikes

Three Palestinian militants were killed and 13 Israeli soldiers wounded when one of two explosives-laden cars blew up at a Gaza border crossing Saturday, an Israeli spokeswoman said.

Al Qaeda planning Baghdad attacks, says U.S.

Al Qaeda in Iraq is planning suicide attacks against Iraqis in Baghdad "in the near future," the U.S. military warned Friday.

Carter meets with exiled Hamas leader

Former President Carter met Friday with a top Hamas politician, exiled leader Khalid Meshaal, in Damascus, Syria, Carter aides said.

Al Qaeda declares 'failure and defeat' for U.S. troops in Iraq

Marking the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, al Qaeda's media arm released an audio recording, purportedly from the group's second-in-command, saying U.S. troops there have failed.

Carter meets with Hamas officials in Egypt

Former President Carter met with senior Hamas officials in the Egyptian capital Thursday, rankling the Israeli and U.S. governments, which say it runs counter to their policies of not negotiating with terrorists.

Girl, 8, granted divorce in Yemen

A Yemeni judge dissolved the marriage of an 8-year-old girl to a man nearly four times her age, and the girl's lawyer said Wednesday that the court also ordered the youngster removed from the control of the father who forced her into the wedding.

Suicide bomber kills 50 in northern Iraq

A suicide bomber killed at least 50 people and wounded 60 Thursday by setting off an explosive vest in a crowd mourning the deaths of two sons of a Sunni Arab tribal leader, the Iraqi military said.

Israelis kill militants, Palestinians say

Israeli troops Thursday killed a Palestinian militant trying to cross into Israel from Gaza and wounded another, according to Palestinian security sources.

Russia cancels Libya's debt

Russian President Vladimir Putin held talks with Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi in a move to rebuild ties with a former Soviet ally that is now increasingly open to foreign investment.

Israeli-Palestinian fighting kills 21

Israeli airstrikes and ground battles with Palestinian militants on Wednesday left 21 dead, most of them Palestinians, according to Palestinian security sources.

U.S. military frees Iraqi journalist

An Iraqi photographer for The Associated Press has been freed after two years in U.S. military custody, an American military official said Wednesday.

Militant's letter: Generate chaos, 'psychological conflict'

The U.S. military says a recent raid uncovered a detailed letter from an al Qaeda in Iraq militant to the group's leader about how the insurgent network should continue to generate economic chaos and "psychological conflict" and must bear down against American-backed Sunni militias.

Iran: '9/11 an excuse for U.S. invasions'

Iran's hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad cast doubt over the United States' version of the September 11 attacks on Wednesday, calling them a pretext used to invade Afghanistan and Iraq.

Airstrike, battles kill at least 11 in Iraq

Fighting flared overnight in two key Shiite regions of Iraq, with four people killed early Wednesday in a U.S. airstrike in Basra and five others dying in battles in Baghdad's volatile northeastern region.

Bombings kill at least 60 in Iraq

A wave of bombings blamed on al Qaeda in Iraq shook Baghdad and three provincial capitals Tuesday, killing at least 60 people and wounding more than 100 across Iraq.

State Department warns of forced service in Iraq

U.S. diplomats may be forced to serve in Iraq next year if enough qualified candidates do not apply for certain jobs, the State Department warned employees Tuesday.

Iraqi militias use food as recruiting tool, report says

A leading humanitarian group says Sunni and Shiite militias in Iraq are pulling displaced people into their movements because governments and international entities are failing to adequately address their plight.

U.S. military: Photographer to be released

The U.S. military says it will release Wednesday an AP journalist who was arrested two years ago for alleged ties to terrorists.

Months-delayed U.S. Embassy ready in Baghdad

After months of delay, the United States has established an embassy in Baghdad, the State Department said Monday.

Car bombs, suicide attack kill 17 in northern Iraq

A string of car bombs shook Mosul, northern Iraq's largest city, on Monday, killing 12 Kurdish troops and a civilian and wounding several others, U.S. and Iraqi authorities reported.

Israeli airstrike kills Palestinian militant

An Israeli airstrike killed a wanted Palestinian militant in Beit Hanoun, Israel Defense Forces and Palestinian sources said Monday.

Iraqi soldiers free CBS journalist from captors

Richard Butler, the CBS journalist rescued by Iraqi soldiers in the southern Iraqi city of Basra on Monday, described a quick escape and "brilliant" military work that ended his two long months of captivity.

Olympic torch relay moves to Oman

The Olympic torch arrived Monday in Oman amid tight security and expectations of a smooth relay of the flame on the Middle Eastern leg of its round-the-world tour.

Israeli, Palestinian leaders hold talks on Gaza

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met Sunday in Jerusalem to discuss the situation in Gaza, the chief Palestinian negotiator told CNN.

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