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Wednesday, Sep 02nd

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Barack Obama in Kenya: 'no excuse' for treating women as second-class citizens

Barak in KenyaBarack Obama wrapped up his visit to Kenya on Sunday with a strong condemnation of female genital mutilation and other “bad traditions” that treat women as second-class citizens, in a speech that also a offered a poignant glimpse into his African heritage.

The US president, whose ancestry has at times been a politically awkward part of his identity, looked at ease as he embraced his status as a “Kenyan American” in a major speech that also condemned corruption, tribalism and terrorism.

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Israeli Police, Palestinians Clash in East Jerusalem

Clash in JerusalemIsraeli police said they made a rare but brief intrusion into the entrance of the al-Aqsa Mosque on Sunday, but only to close its doors to prevent "rioters" barricaded inside from continuing to throw rocks and firecrackers.

"It was only to close the doors," said Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld. "We didn't burst inside. We didn't storm inside."

No serious injuries were reported. Reuters said police used stun grenades as they came to dismantle makeshift barricades set up by masked youths who also threw rocks and flares.

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Taliban take remote Afghan police base after mass surrender

Taliban take afghan polic baseThe Taliban took control of a large police base in a remote part of northeastern Afghanistan after some 100 police and border guards surrendered and joined the insurgents following three days of fighting, security officials said Sunday.

The loss of the Tirgaran base in Badakhshan province late Saturday marked the largest mass surrender since U.S. and NATO forces concluded their combat mission at the end of last year. It highlighted the challenges facing Afghan security forces, which have seen their casualties soar in the face of stepped-up insurgent attacks.

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In Kenya, Obama blends blunt messages with warm reflections

Obama in KenyaPresident Barack Obama mixed blunt messages to Kenya's leaders on gay rights, corruption and counterterrorism Saturday with warm reflections on his family ties to a nation that considers him a local son.

He foreshadowed a focus on Kenya in his post-White House life, saying, "I'll be back."

Obama's comments during a news conference with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta reflected the unusual nature of his long-awaited visit to this East African nation. His official agenda has been sprinkled with opportunities to reconnect with his late father's sprawling Kenyan family, including some meeting the American president for the first time.

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Turkey launches airstrikes against Kurds in Iraq, ISIL in Syria

Turkish air strikesTurkish jets struck camps belonging to Kurdish fighters in northern Iraq, authorities said Saturday, the first strikes since a peace deal was announced in 2013, and again bombed ISIL positions in Syria.

The strikes in Iraq targeted the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, whose affiliates have been effective in battling the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. The strikes further complicate the U.S.-led war against the armed group, which has relied on Kurdish ground forces making gains in Iraq and Syria.

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Israel Security Establishment Breaks With Bibi on Iran Deal

NetanyahuThere’s a deep crack emerging in the veneer of wall-to-wall support offered by Israel’s political leadership to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his war against the Iran nuclear agreement.

The crack has a name you might recognize: the Israeli security establishment. You know — the folks whose job it is to identify and address threats to Israel’s safety. A small but growing group of high-power ex-commanders has been speaking out in media interviews and op-ed essays in the past few days, saying that Netanyahu has got the Iran issue wrong.

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WTO members reach deal to eliminate tariffs on $1.3T in technology

Robrto AcevedoMember countries of the World Trade Organization on Friday reached a tentative agreement to reduce tariffs on more than $1 trillion worth of technology products each year, the organization said.

Representatives from 54 WTO member countries met Friday in Geneva to hash out the deal with the hopes of officially putting in place the plans in time for the organization's 10th Ministerial Conference in December.

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