News

Standard and Poor’s Takes Negative Ratings Action Against 8 Saudi Banks

By Staff Writer Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services took negative rating actions on eight Saudi banks, citing increased economic risks as the main reason. The ratings agency, which has recently lowered the Kingdom’s ratings to ‘A+/A-1’, said the sharp drop in oil prices and the resulting negative swing in Saudi Arabia’s fiscal balance “will weaken

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Syrian Rebels Seize Town, Cause Blow to Assad Regime

By Naline Malla and Sylvia Westall BEIRUT, Nov 5 (Reuters) Syrian insurgents captured a town on a major highway in the west of the country on Thursday and fought fierce battles with pro-government militias around it, rebels and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said. The town of Morek is located north of

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The Cost Of War

Health needs in conflict zones must be addressed BY Dr. Ala Alwan www.twitter.com/WHOEMRO Prior to the current conflict in Syria, immunization rates in the country were among the highest in the Eastern Mediterranean Region. More than 90 percent of Syrian children were vaccinated against diseases like measles and polio and there was no incident of

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Till Politics Do Us Part

Imran and Reham Khan’s divorce causes media meltdown By Fareed Qureshi In 2002, things were looking up for Pakistan’s media. Privately-owned television channels were booming; news outlets insisted they took the craft seriously and were setting out to eclipse the dry format of state-owned Pakistan Television. It was a veritable gold-rush; you couldn’t move for

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Over 40,000 Displaced in Yemen Cyclone says U.N.

ADEN, Nov 4 (Reuters) – Aid flights rushed food and tents to the Yemeni island of Socotra, local officials said on Wednesday, after it was hit by a rare cyclone the United Nations said has displaced 40,000 people there and on the mainland. Cyclone Chapala killed three people when it made landfall on Monday on

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How to Win Back Jihadis Without Using Reason

By Pauline Mevel and Chine Labbé PARIS (Reuters) Anthropologist Dounia Bouzar used to try religious arguments to turn young people away from militant Islam – and failed. So the 51-year-old grandmother developed her own techniques along the lines of Alcoholics Anonymous. Her main rule: Don’t try to reason with people. “Characteristically, a young person who

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Is Russia Changing Its Stance on Syria’s Assad?

BY Jack Stubbs and Polina Devitt MOSCOW (Reuters) Russia does not see keeping Bashar Al Assad in power as a matter of principle, the Foreign Ministry in Moscow said on Tuesday in comments that suggested a divergence of opinion with Iran, the Syrian president’s other main international backer. Fuelling speculation of Russian-Iranian differences over Assad,

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Gulf’s Private-Sector Growth Slows As Price of Oil Falls

DUBAI, Nov 3 (Reuters)  The private sector in the two biggest Gulf Arab economies grew at the slowest pace in years in October, corporate surveys showed on Tuesday, indicating low oil prices are starting to slow business activity across the region. The seasonally adjusted Emirates NBD Saudi Arabia Purchasing Managers’ Index for last month dropped

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Prominent Iraqi Politician Ahmed Chalabi Dies of Heart Attack

BAGHDAD, Nov 3 (Reuters) Ahmed Chalabi, the smooth-talking Iraqi politician who played a role in persuading the United States to topple Saddam Hussein in 2003, died on Tuesday of a heart attack, state television and two parliamentarians said. Haitham Al Jabouri, secretary of parliament’s financial panel, which Chalabi had chaired, said attendants had found him dead in his

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Americans Are Becoming Less Religious Says Poll

Nov 3 (Reuters) Americans are becoming less religious, judging by such markers as church attendance, prayer and belief in God, and the trend is more pronounced among young adults, according to a poll released on Tuesday. The share of U.S. adults who say they believe in God, while still high compared with other advanced industrial

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