Egypt reacted angrily Wednesday to the Trump administration’s decision to cut or delay nearly $300 million in military and economic aid over human rights concerns, a surprise move given the increasingly close ties that have bound the two allies since President Donald Trump took office in January.
Hamza Hendawi and Matthew Lee, The Associated Press
Four Arab nations seeking to isolate Qatar over its alleged support for extremist groups were angered Wednesday by what they said was a "negative" response by the tiny Gulf nation to their demands for ending the crisis roiling the region.
A senior U.S. military commander on Sunday praised Iraqi forces fighting to recapture the northern city of Mosul from the Islamic State group, saying they were "at their peak" and adjusting well to changing realities on the battlefield.
Iraqi forces stalled for weeks on the edges of Mosul have been bolstered by reinforcements and are now ready, along with elite special forces, to launch a stepped up, three-pronged assault against Islamic State group militants in the city's eastern sector, ending a two-week lull in fighting, a top Iraqi general told The Associated Press.
Rekindling sectarian rivalries at a sensitive time, Iraq's parliament on Saturday voted to fully legalize state-sanctioned Shiite militias long accused of abuses against minority Sunnis, adopting a legislation that promoted them to a government force empowered to "deter" security and terror threats facing the country, like the Islamic State group.
Hamza Hendawi and Qassim Abdul-Zahra, The Associated Press
The Mosul district of Gogjali was captured from the Islamic State group weeks ago. So the commander of Iraqi troops here was alarmed when a surprise attack by militants sparked an hour-long gunbattle with his forces.
Huusein Malla, Hamza Hendawi, Qassim Abdul-Zahra, The Associated Press