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Colombia rebels inch toward peace BOGOTA: Colombia this week marks one year of talks to end Latin America's oldest insurgency, making substantial gains towards peace despite continued fighting between the government and leftist rebels.The current negotiations between the Bogota government and rebels with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia began November 19, 2012 in Cuba. Unlike in previous failed talks, Colombians who have endured nearly 50 years of conflict that has left thousands dead now believe peace actually might be attainable.But the dialogue over the year has advanced in fits and starts. It was put on hold again on Sunday, when negotiators for the government and and the leftist FARC rebels, postponed the next round of talks planned for November 18."By common consent, it was decided to postpone the start of this round of talks, because they asked for more time to work on the issue of illegal drugs," a source close to the negotiations ...

Libya deputy intelligence chief abducted: security TRIPOLI: Libya's deputy intelligence chief Mustafa Nuh was abducted Sunday in Tripoli, a security official told AFP, as tensions ran high in the capital following deadly violence over the weekend."The vice president of intelligence was abducted shortly after his arrival in Tripoli from a trip abroad," said the official, who declined to be identified.Contacted by AFP, an intelligence source confirmed that Nuh had "disappeared", but did not elaborate. Private television station Al-Naba quoted a witness ...

Iran parliament approves Rouhani's last minister pick TEHRAN: Iran's conservative-dominated parliament on Sunday approved President Hassan Rouhani's nominee for sports minister, filling out the cabinet after rejecting a number of earlier picks, media reported.Mahmoud Goudarzi, currently head of the Faculty of Physical Education and Sports Science at the University of Tehran, received 199 of the 267 votes cast, with 44 opposed and 24 abstaining.Rouhani, a reputed moderate who took office in August, attended the session to defend his nominee, urging parliament to ...

Syria air force bombards town near Lebanon: monitor BEIRUT: Syria's air force struck Qara near the Lebanese border on Sunday as loyalist forces tried to storm the town where rebels have taken up positions, a monitoring group said."Since the morning, the town of Qara has been hit by air strikes. Warplanes bombarded the town heavily yesterday. Regime troops are trying to storm it and to drive the rebels out," said Syrian Observatory for Human Rights director Rami Abdel Rahman.The Britain-based group also said ...

Mandela unable to speak: ex-wife CAPE TOWN: South Africa's Nelson Mandela remains "quite ill" and is unable to speak, using facial expressions to communicate as he receives intensive medical care at home, his former wife told Sunday media.Winnie Madikizela-Mandela said the 95-year-old was not on life support but he was no longer talking "because of all the tubes that are in his mouth to clear (fluid from) the lungs"."He can't actually articulate anything" as a result, she told The Sunday ...

Afghan senior official escapes suicide attack: police KABUL: A senior official in northern Afghanistan escaped a suicide attack Sunday as the bodies of six civilians hanged by the Taliban were found dumped by the roadside in the south, police said.The attack comes a day after a suicide bombing in capital Kabul that killed a dozen people including nine civilians in an area where thousands of tribal elders and politicians will decide on the future of US troops in the country after a ...

Two dead in Iraq unrest, six militants die in attacks BAGHDAD: Violence in Iraq killed two people on Sunday, officials said, while six militants also died in a series of attempted attacks, the latest in a nationwide surge in unrest.Mired in its worst bloodshed since 2008, Iraq has been forced to appeal for international help to combat militancy only months before its first general election in four years.On Baghdad's southern outskirts, gunmen launched a pre-dawn attack on a local Sunni tribal militia leader, sparking clashes ...


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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
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