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Iran sentences two U.S. citizens to 10 years prison: official website

Iran sentences two Americans to ten yearsAn Iranian court has sentenced an Iranian-American businessman and his elderly father to 10 years in prison on charges of cooperating with the United States, the Iranian judiciary's official news website reported on Tuesday.

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps detained Siamak Namazi, a businessman with dual U.S.-Iranian citizenship in his mid-40s, in October 2015, while he was visiting family in Tehran. The IRGC arrested his father, Baquer Namazi, 80, a former UNICEF official and also a dual citizen, in February.


Mexico: Judge whose court handled cartel cases killed

Mexican judge assssinatedA federal judge whose court handled some cases related to drug cartels has been killed near Mexico City.

Vicente Antonio Bermudez Zacarias was murdered in Metepec, a town in the state of Mexico, the Supreme Court said in a statement on Monday.

President Enrique Pena Nieto condemned the murder and ordered the attorney general's office to take over the investigation.


Iraqi forces take 20 villages from ISIL in Mosul push

Mosul battleArmed forces closing in on Mosul say they have secured about 20 villages on the outskirts of the city in the first 24 hours of an operation to retake the last major stronghold in Iraq of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group.

With air support from the US-led coalition, government and Kurdish forces edged closer to the city on Monday as smoke darkened the blue sky above one ISIL position, apparently from oil fires ignited to hamper the incursion and make it harder to land air strikes.


25 inmates killed -- some beheaded, burned -- in Brazil prison gang fight

Boa Vista prison riotAt least 25 inmates were killed, including seven who were beheaded and six who were burned to death, in Brazil's Monte Cristo Rural Penitentiary on Sunday after two rival gangs clashed.

The killings at the prison in Boa Vista, the capital of Roraima state, were preceded by a riot, prison director João Paulo Passos said, O Globo reports. About 100 relatives of prison inmates were taken hostage during the riot, according to Brazil's Secretary of State for Justice and Citizenship, or SECJUC.


Syria: Air strike kills 14 members of one Aleppo family

family killed by Syrian strikesAir strikes have killed at least 14 people from one family in rebel-held Aleppo in northern Syria, bringing the death toll to 47 over the past 24 hours.

Members of the Syrian Civil Defence, a search and rescue group also known as the White Helmets that operates in rebel-held areas across the country, say they are searching for more than a dozen people trapped under the rubble.


Iraq PM declares offensive to retake Mosul from ISIL

Battle for Mosul

Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has announced the start of a major offensive to retake Mosul from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group.

Mosul is Iraq's second largest city and the last urban centre still under ISIL control in Iraq after a series of government offensives to reverse the armed group's lightning-quick seizure of territory in 2014.


At least nine dead, dozens injured in suspension bridge collapse near Indonesia's Bali island

Suspension bridge collapse near BaliAt least nine people died and dozens were injured after a suspension bridge collapsed near the resort island of Bali, officials said.

The "Yellow Bridge" — linking the islands of Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan — collapsed Sunday evening, according to Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency.


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