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Middle East

Iraq’s Kurds brush aside warnings on independence plebiscite

The Kurdistan Regional Government reiterated its pledge to stage a planned referendum in September, warning that any effort to thwart it would result in “catastrophe” and “bloody war.” “I do not know when this kind of thing may occur. However, the current situation is not sustainable between the central government …

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Saudi envoy denies Pakistani mediation in Gulf row

ISLAMABAD: Acting Saudi ambassador Marwan bin Radwan Mirdad has denied that Pakistan is mediating between Saudi Arabia and Qatar over their diplomatic row. Speaking at a press conference at the Saudi embassy here on Thur­s­day, the Saudi charge d’affaires said Pakistani “prime minister did not say he was mediating”. He …

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Prince’s meteoric rise steers S. Arabia in uncertain direction

KARACHI: With the removal of Mohammed bin Nayef as crown prince from the Saudi line of succession on Wednesday, the decks have apparently been cleared for King Salman’s young, ambitious son Mohammed bin Salman to one day assume the throne of the desert kingdom. While palace intrigues and court politics …

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Saudi claims capturing of three Iranian Revolutionary Guards from the boat

AFP Saudi Arabia said on Monday that it captured three Iranian Revolutionary Guards aboard an explosive-laden boat heading to an oil platform in the Gulf. The three “are now being questioned by Saudi authorities,” the information and culture ministry said in a statement, at a time of already heightened tensions …

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‘Are you with us or with Qatar,’ Saudi King asks Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif

ISLAMABAD: “Are you with us or with Qatar?” Saudi King Salman raised this question during a meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who had visited the Gulf Kingdom for finding a diplomatic solution to the Qatar crisis. The Saudi monarch asked Sharif to take a clear position on Qatar …

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Naughty Qatar

Mahir Ali THE extraordinary excoriation of Qatar in the immediate wake of Donald Trump’s May dance in Riyadh was almost certainly premeditated. Before his foray into a region about which he knows next to nothing, the US president was briefed by princes from Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi. Hence he …

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S. Arabia promoting terror in Iran’s borders: Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Tuesday that Iran has obtained intelligence showing that Saudi Arabia is actively involved in activities promoting terrorism in Iran’s eastern and western border areas.  “We have intelligence that Saudi Arabia is actively engaged in promoting terrorist groups,” Press TV quoted Zarif as telling …

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Iran sends warships to Oman amid Gulf dispute

Flotilla will head to Oman before starting mission in international waters near Yemen, the country’s navy says. Iran is sending two warships to Oman before they start their mission in international waters near the coast of Yemen, the country’s navy has said. The Tasnim news agency reported that the two …

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Will Iran Descend Into Chaos?

LONDON — Almost since the beginning of this millennium, Iran has been an island of calm amid instability and violence. Afghanistan, its neighbor to the east, descended into chaos following the American-led invasion of 2001; Iraq, across its western border, suffered the same fate after 2003. Eight years later, in …

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Iran flies food to Qatar after isolation by Gulf neighbours

The gas-rich peninsula has seen its land border with Saudi Arabia closed amid claims that it supports terrorist groups By Bethan Staton, News Reporter Iran has started sending fruit and vegetables to Qatar after Gulf nations cut trade links with the emirate. Iran’s national carrier has already delivered 90 tons …

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