Pompeo is 1st top US diplomat to visit an Israeli settlement

JERUSALEM (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Thursday became the first top American diplomat to visit an Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank as the State Department in a major policy shift announced that products from the settlements can be labeled “Made in Israel.” The two moves reflected the Trump administration’s […]

Trump: Sudan to join UAE, Bahrain in recognizing Israel

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump announced Friday that Sudan will start to normalize ties with Israel, making it the third Arab state to do so as part of U.S.-brokered deals in the run-up to Election Day. The deal, which would deepen Sudan’s engagement with the West, follows Trump’s conditional agreement this week to remove […]

Armenia and Azerbaijan clash as Iran works on peace plan

YEREVAN, Armenia (AP) — Armenia accused Azerbaijan of firing missiles into the capital of the separatist territory of Nagorno-Karabakh on Monday, while Azerbaijan said several of its towns and its second-largest city were attacked. Iran, which borders both countries, said it was working on a peace plan for the decades-old conflict, which reignited last month […]

Kuwait ruler, longtime diplomat Sheikh Sabah, dies at age 91

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah, the ruler of Kuwait who drew on his decades as the oil-rich nation’s top diplomat to push for closer ties to Iraq after the 1990 Gulf War and solutions to other regional crises, died Tuesday. He was 91. In a Middle East replete […]

Israel signs pacts with two Arab states

WASHINGTON (AP) — Israel on Tuesday signed historic diplomatic pacts with two Gulf Arab states at a White House ceremony that President Donald Trump declared will mark the “dawn of a new Middle East,” casting himself as an international peacemaker at the height of his reelection campaign. The bilateral agreements formalize the normalization of Israel’s […]

Bahrain becomes latest Arab nation to recognize Israel

WASHINGTON (AP) — Bahrain on Friday agreed to normalize relations with Israel, becoming the latest Arab nation to do so as part of a broader diplomatic push by President Donald Trump and his administration to further ease the Jewish state’s relative isolation in the Middle East and find common ground with nations that share U.S. […]

Trump: US demands restoration of UN sanctions against Iran

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States will demand Thursday that all United Nations sanctions be reimposed against Iran, President Donald Trump announced Wednesday, a move that follows America’s embarrassing failure to extend an arms embargo against Tehran. The administration’s insistence on snapping back international sanctions against Iran sets the stage for a contentious dispute. It’s […]

Iran surpasses 20,000 confirmed deaths from the coronavirus

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran surpassed 20,000 confirmed deaths from the coronavirus on Wednesday, the health ministry said — the highest death toll for any Middle East country so far in the pandemic. The announcement came as the Islamic Republic, which has been struggling with both the region’s largest outbreak and the highest number of […]

UAE to establish full diplomatic ties with Israel

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel and the United Arab Emirates announced Thursday they are establishing full diplomatic relations in a U.S.-brokered deal that required Israel to halt its contentious plan to annex occupied West Bank land sought by the Palestinians. The historic deal delivered a key foreign policy victory to President Donald Trump as he seeks […]

Lebanese government resigns after Beirut blast, public anger

BEIRUT — Lebanon’s prime minister stepped down from his job Monday in the wake of the catastrophic explosion in Beirut that has triggered public outrage, saying he has come to the conclusion that corruption in the country is “bigger than the state.” The move risks opening the way to dragged-out negotiations over a new Cabinet […]