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Israel shoots 2 Palestinians after settlers storm Nablus site

Two young Palestinian men were shot and injured and another was detained early this morning when clashes erupted between Israeli occupation forces and Palestinian youths, as the soldiers escorted hundreds of settlers and right-wing Israelis to Joseph’s Tomb near Balata refugee camp in the northern occupied West Bank district of Nablus. Palestinian security sources told Ma’an in Nablus that five busloads of Israelis under heavy military protection stormed the area to perform religious rituals at Joseph’s Tomb, which is located in an area controlled by the Palestinian Authority. The sources added that young Palestinian men clashed with the Israeli soldiers around the site and two young men were shot and injured during the clashes. Read: Bulldozers raze lands in Hebron area as settlers assault […]

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Iraq MP: ‘Armed militias pose a threat to the state’

The Speaker of the Iraqi Parliament Salim Al-Jabouri called for the need to fight what he called “armed militias and gangs” stressing that they are a “threat” to the security and stability of the state. Speaking at a news conference yesterday, Al-Jabouri said: “Whatever is the affiliation and agenda of armed militias and criminal gangs, they pose a threat to the security and stability of the state and must therefore be confronted and fought.” He added that “Daesh was defeated and became powerless in Iraq, and what was achieved by Iraqi forces in Tal Afar is a major accomplishment.” According to the official, Iraq “has regained its position in decision-making at the Arab and regional levels.” On 20 August, Iraqi […]

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Iran and Turkey step up cooperation

The visit to Ankara earlier this month by the chief of staff of the Iranian armed forces, Major-General Mohammad Baqeri, is a clear indication of a significant upgrade in bilateral ties, particularly in the security sector. It is also an indication of the eclipse of the Syria crisis as a major thorn in relations between Iran and Turkey. Syria undoubtedly loomed large in the discussions between Baqeri and his Turkish counterpart, General Hulusi Akar, not least as the conflict is taking new shape following the collapse of most of the rebel groups. Most important of all, the ascendance of Al-Qaeda affiliated jihadists in Idlib has called into question a proposed de-escalation zone in that strategically important province. However, the most […]

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Afghanistan: America’s Trillion Dollar War

16 years since the Bush administration launched its military intervention in Afghanistan, President Trump has announced his intention to increase the U.S. military presence in the country. As Statista's Niall McCarthy notes, there are approximately 8,400 U.S. troops on the ground in Afghanistan and reinforcements could start arriving within days. Trump's new strategy is set to extend the longest war in U.S. history and add even further to its already staggering cost.

Website "The Balance" has been keeping track of Afghanistan's economic impact and the conflict has now cost the U.S. at least $1.07 trillion since 2001.

Infographic: Afghanistan: America's Trillion Dollar War  | Statista

You will find more statistics at Statista

That can be divided into three segments.

$773 billion can be attributed to Overseas Contingency Operations funds specifically dedicated to the war.

 

$243 billion comes from increases in the base budget of the Department of Defense...

 

while the increase in the Veterans Administration budget cost $54.2 billion.

Financing Afghanistan reached its zenith in 2010 amid Obama's surge when costs topped $112 billion.

That gradually dropped as U.S. troops shifted their focus away from offensive operations to concentrate more on training Afghan forces. Earlier this week, General John Nicholson, the top U.S. military commander in Afghanistan, said that the president's strategy is a sign of long-term commitment to Afghanistan and called on the Taliban to agree to peace talks.

Even though Trump has said that his decision to boost troop levels isn't "a blank check", it is still difficult to see how his Afghanistan strategy is any different from his predecessors.

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Christian Group Sues SPLC And Amazon After Being Labeled A “Hate Group”

Last week D. James Kennedy Ministries (DJKM), a Christian-based missionary ministry based in Florida, filed a lawsuit against the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and Amazon after being added to the SPLC's list of "hate groups" and excluded from Amaz...

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AU: 0.7926 USD = 1 AUD 2017-08-29 RBA 4.00 pm Eastern Australian time

AUD/USD representative rate as at 4.00 pm Eastern Australian time on 29 Aug 2017
The post AU: 0.7926 USD = 1 AUD 2017-08-29 RBA 4.00 pm Eastern Australian time appeared first on Central bank.
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AU: 0.5591 SDR = 1 AUD 2017-08-29 RBA 4.00 pm Eastern Australian time

AUD/SDR representative rate as at 4.00 pm Eastern Australian time on 29 Aug 2017. The value of the Special Drawing Right is calculated by the International Monetary Fund on the basis of a weighted basket of four currencies - US dollar, European euro, J...

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Vietnam’s Aug <b>crude oil</b> output falls 5 pct y/y to 1.14 mln tonnes

HANOI, Aug 29 (Reuters) - Vietnam's crude oil output in August is estimated at 1.14 million tonnes (270,000 barrels per day), down 5 percent from a ...

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