BAGHDAD In late May, an Iraqi cleric called Akram Kaabi visited militia fighters in a desolate Iraqi town near the Syrian border. Kaabi, who heads a Shi'ite Muslim militia named Harakat Hezbollah al Nujaba, was decked out in a camouflage uniform and led the fighters in prayer on mats laid on the dusty ground. A video of the session showed heavily armed militiamen standing guard.
SCOTTSDALE, Arizona The X26 is in a class by itself.
SAN FRANCISCO An international group of cryptography experts has forced the U.S. National Security Agency to back down over two data encryption techniques it wanted set as global industry standards, reflecting deep mistrust among close U.S. allies. | Video
MARAWI CITY, Philippines When he saw his commander holding the severed head of one of his neighbours, teenage Islamist fighter Jalil knew it was time to escape from Marawi City. | Video
LONDON Russia, the only major power that has not called on Iraq's Kurds to cancel a referendum on independence next week, has swiftly become the top funder of Kurdish oil and gas deals, with as much as $4 billion pledged in less than a year, industry sources say.
SCOTTSDALE, Arizona When Rick Smith launched his supercharged stun gun in 1999, his startup had produced two failed products, several years of losses and a load of debt.
WASHINGTON The Trump administration is making it more difficult for skilled foreigners to work in the United States, challenging visa applications more often than at nearly any point in the Obama era, according to data reviewed by Reuters. | Video
INDIANA, Pa./CHILLICOTHE, Ohio As deaths mount in America's opioid crisis, communities on the front lines face a hidden toll: the financial cost. | Video
NEWLYN, England/PARIS For the fishermen of this small port on the toe of England, Britain's vote to leave the European Union was an answer to their prayers. | Video
WACHAKAL, Nigeria When millions of people in northeast Nigeria faced hunger and attacks by Islamist militant group Boko Haram in March 2016, the government acted: it decided to spend $1.4 million cutting down weeds around the village of Wachakal in order to stop flooding.
FLORENCE, Italy Prime Minister Theresa May set out a plan on Friday to retain full access to the EU's single market for two years after Brexit to try to reassure business and reset the tone of stalled negotiations with Brussels. | Video