France's foreign minister hinted Tuesday at divergences between Russia and Western countries currently involved in a decisive final round of talks with Iran to negotiate a deal on its controversial nuclear drive. "Whereas until now the P5+1 (the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany) had a very homogeneous attitude, in the past days representatives in the negotiations have put forward a certain number of different approaches between part of the 5+1 and our Russian partners," he told a parliamentary commission. Fabius did not say what exactly the differences were between members of the P5+1, which has always presented a united front in negotiations with Iran on its nuclear programme.
By Marina Lopes WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government issued about 150,000 requests for customer information from Verizon Communications in the first half of 2014, most of them subpoenas, the country's largest wireless carrier reported on Tuesday. The report is the second summary of government requests Verizon has publicly issued since shareholders pressured the company to divulge information it shared with the government in December. The government issued 72,342 subpoenas, half of which request subscriber information on a given phone number or IP address, while others ask for transactional information, like the phone numbers a customer has called, according to Verizon. Verizon also received over 37,000 court orders, including 714 wiretaps, which give access to the content of communications and over 3,000 pen registers and trap and trace orders, which give the government real-time access to outgoing and incoming phone numbers, respectively.
Germany debated retaliatory measures against the United States on Tuesday after reports of an alleged double agent stoked still smouldering public anger over the NSA scandal. The case of a German intelligence operative suspected of spying for Washington drew a fierce response from Berlin, where indignation against one of its closest allies has run high since reports last year that the US National Security Agency (NSA) tapped Chancellor Angela Merkel's mobile phone. "The American intelligence services are obsessed with surveillance," he said.
By Emily Le Coz JACKSON Miss. (Reuters) - Chris McDaniel, a Tea Party-backed Mississippi U.S. Senate candidate, is preparing a possible legal challenge to his defeat in last month's Republican primary after supporters spent Monday sorting through voting records in dozens of counties, campaign officials said. The conservative state senator has blamed his loss to U.S. Senator Thad Cochran on what he describes as illegal voting by Democrats who favored the six-term incumbent. The primary election is scheduled to be certified on Monday evening by the state Republican party, which will forward the results to the Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office, party spokesman Bobby Morgan said. “There were several thousand absolute ineligible votes,” Mitch Tyner, a lawyer for the McDaniel campaign, told reporters on Monday.
Ukraine on Tuesday brushed off strong European pressure as it rejected talks with pro-Russian rebels on a truce to halt a bloody insurgency convulsing the ex-Soviet nation until they laid down their arms. The unconditional stance reflected a new confidence in Kiev that it was on the verge of quashing a rebellion it views as Moscow's retribution for the February ouster of a Kremlin-backed leader and the decision to pursue a historic alliance with the West. Ukrainian forces have scored a string of surprise military successes since the weekend that forced most of the militias to retreat to the sprawling eastern industrial hubs of Donetsk and Lugansk -- both capitals of their own "People's Republics". President Petro Poroshenko has ordered his troops to blockade the insurgents inside the cities and cut them off from any further arms supplies.
Iraq's politicians agreed to meet next Sunday after delays to the formation of a new government outraged Iraqis exasperated by political polarisation and fearful of a brutal Sunni militant offensive. The month-old crisis has seen a jihadist-led alliance overrun large swathes of northern and north-central Iraq, displacing hundreds of thousands of people and piling pressure on Nuri al-Maliki as he seeks a third term as prime minister. "The postponement of the parliamentary session was a shock to Iraqis living amid a sea of blood and a lack of services and jobs," said Essam al-Bayati, a professor at the University of Kirkuk in northern Iraq. A Baghdad grocer who gave his name as Abu Moussa said: "We have a crisis, and this postponement for calculations and deals between politicians is the biggest betrayal of the Iraqi people who went out to vote for them."
The Israeli army is preparing all options for stamping out militant rocket fire from Gaza, including a ground assault, a senior official said on Tuesday. Earlier on Tuesday, the Israeli military announced the start of a new campaign called Operation Protective Edge aimed at stamping out rocket fire on southern Israel and destroying Hamas's military infrastructure. Overnight, the air force and the navy struck more than 50 targets across Gaza, wounding 22 people, medics said, with air strikes continuing into the morning. An air strike on the central Gaza Strip killed a Palestinian on Tuesday, an emergency services spokesman said.
An Israeli air strike on the central Gaza Strip killed a Palestinian man on Tuesday, an emergency services spokesman said. "A man named Ashraf Yassin was killed in an Israeli air strike west of Nusseirat refugee camp in central Gaza," spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra told AFP. Witnesses said the man was a militant of the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Islamist Hamas movement.
Presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah claimed victory on Tuesday in Afghanistan's disputed election, blaming fraud for putting him behind in preliminary results as fears rise of instability and ethnic unrest. Abdullah told a rally of thousands of rowdy supporters in Kabul that he would fight on to win the presidency, but he called for patience from loyalists who demanded he declare a "parallel government" to rule the country. Before he spoke, a huge photograph of President Hamid Karzai was ripped down from the stage -- underlining the boiling anger among many of Abdullah's supporters after the preliminary result in favour of poll rival Ashraf Ghani. The election stand-off has sparked concern that protests could spiral into ethnic violence and even lead to a return to the fighting between warlords that ravaged Afghanistan during the 1992-1996 civil war.
Eight people were wounded, one seriously, in a bomb blast in a restaurant late Monday in the northern Tanzanian town of Arusha, police said Tuesday. "No one died but eight people were wounded, one is in a serious condition," top Tanzanian police officer Issaya Mngulu told AFP. The attack took place at an upmarket Indian restaurant popular with foreigners and wealthy Tanzanians in the centre of town. Arusha is a key town for Tanzania’s tourist industry, a major source of foreign currency for the eastern African country.
At least one person was killed and several injured when gunmen hurled a grenade in a restaurant in Kenya's restive northeastern town of Wajir, before spraying the building with bullets and escaping, police said Tuesday. "The victims were rushed to Wajir district hospital... one of the injured people succumbed to his bullet wounds," Wajir police chief David Kuria said. No one claimed immediate responsibility for the killing late Monday, the latest in a string of attacks along Kenya's border region with war-torn Somalia. Somalia's Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab have launched attacks in the area, but the region has also witnessed weeks of revenge attacks between rival Somali clans, with at least 80 killed since May in fighting over land and grazing for livestock.