Middle East and North Africa

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Afghan rivals set to sign unity government deal after messy election

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KABUL - Rival candidates in the bitterly disputed Afghan presidential election will sign an agreement on a unity government on Sunday, aides said, potentially easing months of tension that destabilised Afghanistan while foreign troops withdraw.

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Exclusive - Iran seeks give and take on militants, nuclear programme 6:36am BST

UNITED NATIONS - Iran is ready to work with the United States and its allies to stop Islamic State militants, but would like to see more flexibility on Iran's uranium enrichment programme, senior Iranian officials told Reuters.

Iraqi Christians fly to new life in France after escaping Islamic State 2:40am BST

ARBIL Iraq - On a warm evening at Arbil International Airport in Iraqi Kurdistan some 150 mostly Christian refugees anxiously waited to flee their homeland aboard a French government plane.

Egypt to host Palestinian-Israeli Gaza talks in days - state news agency 20 Sep 2014

CAIRO - Egypt will host talks between rival Palestinian factions within days, followed by indirect negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis on the ceasefire in Gaza, the state news agency MENA said on Saturday. The report quoted an Egyptian official as saying that delegations from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas's Fatah faction and the Islamic militant group Hamas, which dominates Gaza, would meet on Monday "to complete the Palestinian reconciliation". The official said

Rival prime ministers address Libyans, highlighting divisions 20 Sep 2014

BENGHAZI Libya - Libya's rival prime ministers both addressed the nation, with each claiming legitimacy and denouncing the other side, highlighting deep divisions in the oil producing country.

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Afghan presidential rivals at last reach unity deal after disputed vote 20 Sep 2014

KABUL - The rival candidates in Afghanistan's messy election for a new president finally struck a power-sharing deal on Saturday, aides said, after more than two months of tension over a vote in which each side accused the other of fraud.

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About 60,000 Syrian Kurds flee to Turkey from Islamic State advance 20 Sep 2014

SURUC Turkey - About 60,000 Syrian Kurds fled into Turkey in the space of 24 hours, a deputy prime minister said on Saturday, as Islamic State militants seized dozens of villages close to the border.

Egypt upholds death sentence for five in killing of policeman 20 Sep 2014

CAIRO - An Egyptian court upheld death sentences on Saturday against five Islamists convicted of charges including killing a policeman and carrying weapons, judicial sources said.

14 Pakistanis freed from U.S. custody in Afghanistan's Bagram prison - lawyers 20 Sep 2014

ISLAMABAD - Fourteen Pakistani detainees were released from U.S. custody in Bagram Prison in Afghanistan and repatriated to Pakistan on Saturday, a Pakistani legal firm representing some of the prisoners said.

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French jets strike in Iraq, expanding U.S.-led campaign against Islamic State 20 Sep 2014

BAGHDAD/PARIS - French jets struck a suspected Islamic State target in Iraq for the first time on Friday, expanding a U.S.-led military campaign against militants who have seized a third of the country and also control large parts of neighbouring Syria. | Video

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