Niloufar Shahbandi

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Syria war: War crimes committed in Eastern Ghouta battle - UN

<b>Syrian pro-government forces committed a crime against humanity and war crimes during their siege of the Eastern Ghouta region, UN investigators say.</b><p>A new report says troops caused serious mental and physical suffering to the rebel enclave's residents by bombarding their homes and denying them food.<p>…

Stranded migrants: Macron scolds Italy over Aquarius ship

<b>French President Emmanuel Macron has accused the Italian government of "cynicism and irresponsibility" for refusing to let a stranded rescue ship packed with migrants dock in Italy.</b><p>A charity looking after the 629 migrants on the Aquarius, stranded off Malta, says two Italian ships will help take …

Why confidence in Argentina's economy is dwindling

<b>When a business-friendly conservative was elected president of Argentina in October 2015, hopes were high he would put the South American country's economy on a stable path.</b><b>Mauricio Macri promised to revive Argentina's economy and achieve "zero poverty". But less than three years later, he has</b> …

Economics

Abandoned 'ghost village' in China becomes overgrown

<b>Shengshan island in China's eastern Zhejiang province is home to Houtouwan, an abandoned village that has become overgrown with thick green vegetation.</b><p>Agence France-Presse photojournalist Johannes Eisele went to Houtouwan to capture these extraordinary aerial photos.<p>The tiny island was once home to …

Nigeria's Tramadol crisis: The drug fuelling death, despair and Boko Haram

<b>After a BBC investigation in April showed the extent of codeine addiction in Nigeria, the production of codeine-based cough syrup was banned in Nigeria.</b><b>But codeine is not the only opioid scourge spreading across West Africa. Another painkiller, Tramadol, is fuelling widespread addiction - and as</b> …

Why Nicolás Maduro Clings to Power

Even as crisis consumes him, the president of Venezuela knows he has no alternative but to remain entrenched in Caracas.<p>It’s difficult to describe the state of Venezuela today without coming across as a little hysterical. Phrases like “zombie movie set” and “post-apocalyptic hellscape” keep turning …

Viewpoint: Why racism in US is worse than in Europe

<b>News stories emerge almost daily in the US about police being called over black Americans doing nothing more than being black. Writer Barrett Holmes Pitner explains why he thinks American racism is unique.</b><p>Last week in California, three black people - a Jamaican, a Canadian of Nigerian descent, and …

Israel's Gaza response 'wholly disproportionate' - UN rights chief

<b>The UN human rights chief says Israel used "wholly disproportionate" force against Palestinian border protests which have left over 100 people dead.</b><p>Zeid Raad al-Hussein told a meeting in Geneva that Gazans were effectively "caged in a toxic slum" and Gaza's occupation by Israel had to end.<p>Israel's …

Gaza clashes: 52 Palestinians killed on deadliest day since 2014

<b>At least 52 Palestinians have been killed and 2,400 wounded by Israeli troops, Palestinian officials say, on the deadliest day of violence since the 2014 Gaza war.</b><p>Palestinians have been protesting for weeks but deaths soared on the day the US opened its embassy in Jerusalem.<p>Palestinians see this as …

Surabaya attacks: Family of five bomb Indonesia police headquarters

<b>A suicide bombing at a police headquarters in the Indonesian city of Surabaya on Monday was carried out by a family of five riding on two motorbikes, police say.</b><p>It came after another family carried out bomb attacks on three churches on Sunday. Police blamed an Islamic State-inspired network.<p>An …

Somali woman 'with 11 husbands' stoned to death by al-Shabab

<b>A woman has been stoned to death in Somalia after a court run by al-Shabab convicted her of having several husbands, the militant group says.</b><p>Shukri Abdullahi Warsame was accused of marrying 11 times, without divorcing her previous husbands.<p>She was buried neck-deep and pelted to death with stones by …

Caste hatred in India - what it looks like

<b>A recent exhibition in the Indian city of Mumbai documented Dalit (formerly known as "untouchable") families that have lost a loved one because of discrimination and violence. The photographs by Sudharak Olwe capture the prejudice that remains a reality for millions of Dalits.</b><p>They are some of the …

Why I Left The U.S. 20 Years Ago... And Why I Won't Be Coming Back

In hindsight, growing up in white, middle-class suburbia in 1980s America was kind of like being brainwashed. I grew up believing that having money was an objective to strive for and that life was a ruthless competition. I worked hard in school and got a good job because that was what was expected …

Syria war: At least 70 killed in suspected chemical attack in Douma

<b>At least 70 people have died in a suspected chemical attack in Douma, the last rebel-held town in Syria's Eastern Ghouta, rescuers and medics say.</b><p>Volunteer rescue force the White Helmets tweeted graphic images showing several bodies in basements. It said the deaths were likely to rise.<p>There has …

Stephen Hawking's Most Provocative Moments, From Evil Aliens to Black Hole Wagers

The famous physicist was fond of making scientific bets and predictions, from the nature of black holes to the end of humanity.<p><i>This article was originally published on March 14. It was updated on May 2.</i><p>In the 1970s, Stephen Hawking, who died in March at age 76, turned the physics world upside down …

Hope Hicks, one of Trump’s closest aides, is resigning

Her departure comes after a tumultuous few weeks in the White House.<p>White House communications director Hope Hicks is leaving the White House.<p>Hicks is likely to leave the White House in a few weeks, although her departure date isn’t yet known. Her resignation comes after some of the most tumultuous …

Was Obama’s $1.7 billion cash deal with Iran prohibited by U.S. law?

By Glenn Kessler<p>Glenn Kessler<p>The Fact Checker<p>Email Bio Follow<p>This will be an unusual fact check. Essentially, we are fact-checking The Fact Checker.<p>Like many things these days, it all started with a tweet. President Trump tweeted about the $1.7 billion in cash that the Obama administration sent to …

Obama Administration

AR-15s Are Biblical 'Rod Of Iron' At Pennsylvania Church

Hundreds of faithful at a Pennsylvania church on Wednesday carried AR-15-style rifles in adherence to their belief that a "rod of iron" mentioned in the Bible refers to the type of weapon that was used in last month's mass shooting in Parkland, Fla.<p>The armed ceremony at World Peace and Unification …

South Korea

Trump is embracing a new generation of strongmen

Some of Trump’s best friends are authoritarians.<p>Over the weekend, Chinese President Xi Jinping essentially declared his intention to stay in power for life. He began the process of amending China’s constitution to eliminate term limits for the presidency.<p>This move, which seems very likely to …

Over 40 Should Face Trial for South Sudan Atrocities, U.N. Team Says

GENEVA — More than 40 senior military officers and officials in South Sudan should be prosecuted on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity, a United Nations commission said on Friday, citing harrowing witness testimony and thousands of documents tying them to mass atrocities in the …

Two blasts, an acrid smell, then panic: Syrians describe alleged chemical attack

<b>Saraqeb, Syria (CNN) —</b> Fayiz Khattab was in a single-room makeshift basement bunker with eight other men when they received news on their two-way radio that there were aircraft overhead.<p>They heard two small explosions. One of the men went to open the door to look, and that's when the odor hit …

Sleep deprivation seems to affect healthy and depressed people differently

The first sign that something is happening is Angelina’s hands. As she chats to the nurse in Italian, she begins to gesticulate, jabbing, moulding, and circling the air with her fingers. As the minutes pass and Angelina becomes increasingly animated, I notice a musicality to her voice that I’m sure …

Iran's Rouhani urges Turkey to halt Afrin operation

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has called on Turkey to stop its military operation in the northern Syrian enclave of Afrin, saying it will only result in more deaths on both sides.<p>In a wide-ranging press conference on Tuesday, the Iranian leader said his government believes "a military foreign …

Denmark proposes ban on Islamic full-face veil

"It is incompatible with the values ​​in Danish society and disrespectful to the community to keep one's face hidden when meeting each other in …

Half of Iran wants to drop headscarf laws: government report

President Rouhani released a study showing how drastically public attitude towards mandatory Islamic dress has changed in the past decade. Nearly …

All hell breaks loose in Syria after rebels shoot down Russian jet over the weekend

Syrian rebels shot down a Russian jet on Saturday and then killed the pilot on the ground, Russia's Defense Ministry said, triggering a furious barrage of dozens of airstrikes that observers say hit hospitals and killed civilians.<p>Adding to a chaotic weekend in the country, Turkish forces poured …

Yemen’s government 'prepares to flee' as UAE-backed separatists seize control in Aden

Yemen’s government is reportedly preparing to flee the country after fighters from a separatist group backed by the UAE seized control in the city of Aden and surrounded the presidential palace.<p>The internationally recognised government of Yemen has been fighting for nearly three years to regain …

South Africa levels apartheid charge at Israel, drawing seething response

South Africa accused Israel of being the world’s only apartheid state, triggering an angry Israeli reaction.<p>At a standard review of Israel’s human …

82 Percent of the Wealth Generated Last Year 'Went to the Richest 1 Percent of the Global Population'

(LONDON) – Four out of every five dollars of wealth generated in 2017 ended up in the pockets of the richest one percent, while the poorest half of …

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's risky gamble could quickly turn sour | Simon Tisdall

Turkish president defies Russia, the US and Bashar al-Assad with assault on Kurds in Syria<p>Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Kurdish vendetta has taken a dramatic new twist with the cross-border ground assault on the Afrin enclave in north-west Syria.<p>Defying Russia, the US, and Bashar al-Assad’s regime, …

Bashar al-Assad